“The agreement falls short of all the protections necessary to ensure consumer choice now and into the future for all parties, not only signatories of the pact,” states MEMA Aftermarket Suppliers
Editor’s Note: The following is MEMA Aftermarket Suppliers response, in its entirety and verbatim, to today’s announcement by the above noted industry groups.
Research Triangle Park, N.C.—Today’s release of an agreement between the Automotive Service Association (ASA), the Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS), and Alliance for Automotive Innovation highlights crucial elements in the fight for consumer choice and a fair market in automotive repair access.
The agreement demonstrates that stakeholders can and should collaborate to find a solution that is in the best interests of the motoring public and the marketplace. It also highlights that the agreements currently in place fall short of protecting the future of repair access.
MEMA Aftermarket Suppliers supports progress toward a solution to repair access, and we see this agreement as a step in the right direction to ensure that consumers are protected. However, the agreement falls short of all the protections necessary to ensure consumer choice now and into the future for all parties, not only signatories of the pact. As a transportation industry, we believe that we have one opportunity to pass federal legislation and that legislation must include the ability to prioritize and protect consumers’ access to both light duty and heavy-duty vehicle repair and maintenance through all iterations of vehicle technology on the road today and to come.
That legislation must include:
- All vehicles in operation, light-duty, medium-duty, and heavy-duty
- Access to telematics and diagnostics data beyond that available just through the OBDII port
- An enforcement mechanism
- The ability for independent repair shops, using bi-directional communication, to update vehicles and parts to the latest software.
- Addressing the risk of repair monopolies
- Language to protect consumers’ access to both light duty and heavy-duty vehicle repair, maintenance, and parts of their choosing through all iterations of vehicle technology on the road today and to come..
The agreement does advance the conversation around right to repair and consumer choice, but if automakers and repair shops are prioritized over consumers, fair competition and a free market would not be realized. As a key stakeholder in protecting consumers’ rights and an essential part of the value chain, MEMA Aftermarket Suppliers must be a part of the conversation.
MEMA Aftermarket Suppliers welcomes the opportunity to work with all parties to align on a federal solution that reflects the principles of consumer choice and a free market, includes the expertise of the supplier community, has a mechanism for real enforcement, and prioritizes consumers, their safety, and their economy – and the innovative industry we serve. The Right to Equitable and Professional Auto Industry Repair (REPAIR) Act (H.R. 906) addresses these needs, and MEMA Aftermarket Suppliers continues to support this bill that addresses the above concerns and creates a repair ecosystem that puts consumers at the center.