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FTC urges Congress to ‘prioritize investigations and enforcement’ to protect consumers from automakers’ ‘unfair practices’

Federal lawmakers are signaling unprecedented support for protecting consumers’ right to repair their cars as part of the newly unveiled $1.7 trillion government funding package

Washington, D.C.—As the year comes to a close, federal lawmakers are signaling unprecedented support for protecting consumers’ Right to Repair their cars, according to the Consumer Access to Repair (CAR) Coalition this week.

As part of the newly unveiled $1.7 trillion government funding omnibus package for FY2023, bill language directs the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to “prioritize investigations and enforcement efforts that protect consumers from unfair acts limiting competition, specifically stemming from [car] manufacturers’ control over telematics systems.”

The move lays promising groundwork for congressional action on automotive Right to Repair in the coming year, stated the CAR Coalition.

Currently, two bipartisan bills to curb automakers’ anticompetitive behavior sit before federal lawmakers: the Save Money on Auto Repair Transportation (SMART) Act, which would increase access to aftermarket auto parts, and the Right to Equitable and Professional Auto Industry Repair (REPAIR) Act, which would expand vehicle data access.

Since its 2021 “Nixing the Fix” report to Congress, the FTC has taken consistent action to protect consumers’ right to repair the products they purchase. Most recently, the FTC reaffirmed its commitment to enforcing federal law banning “unfair methods of competition,” like patent abuse and data limitations.

About the CAR Coalition

The Consumer Access to Repair (CAR) Coalition has become a leading advocate for protecting consumer choices and access to vehicle data, fighting automakers’ attempts to monopolize the post-collision repair market and hoard vehicle data. The CAR Coalition has conducted extensive outreach to a bipartisan group of policymakers and is supporting federal legislation designed to protect consumer choice in the post-collision repair market.

Members include: Allstate, American Property Casualty Insurance Association (APCIA), Automotive Body Parts Association (ABPA), Automotive Manufacturers Equipment Compliance Agency, Inc. (AMECA), AutoZone, Certified Automotive Parts Association (CAPA), Diamond Standard, Geotab, and LKQ Corporation.

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