On the heels of this week’s Right to Repair ballot victory in Massachusetts, aftermarket association leaders Paul McCarthy, president, Automotive Aftermarket Suppliers Association, and Bill Hanvey, president and CEO, Auto Care Association, issued a statement to industry members announcing measures the two organziations will take to keep momentum going for the right to access in-vehicle mechanical data.
The Automotive Aftermarket Suppliers Association (AASA) and the Auto Care Association plan to draft federal legislation providing a long-term national solution protecting aftermarket access to vehicle repair and maintenance data.
“As you know, aftermarket access to appropriate vehicle data is crucial. It is critical to protect choice for millions of motorists, reduce unnecessary costs and obstacles for consumers, advance meaningful aftermarket innovation, ensure the health and future of our industry, and, ultimately, to ensure safe vehicles and protect drivers and passengers,” the industry letter stated.
“Key activities to date, such as the national Your Car. Your Data. Your Choice. ™ campaign, and the critical Massachusetts Right to Repair referendum, have been vital in demonstrating broad consumer support for access to data. We need to codify this at a national level to ensure that consumers retain choice on where and with what parts their vehicles are maintained and repaired. The legislation we are currently drafting, the Right to Equitable & Professional Auto Industry Repair (REPAIR) Act, would achieve this goal.”
If approved, the REPAIR Act would resolve current and future data issues that prevent consumers from choosing vehicle service at a business of their choice, while preserving intellectual property rights of vehicle manufacturers and ensuring cybersecurity for critical vehicle systems.
Both associations have partnered with a new collision industry group – the Consumer Access to Repair (CAR) Coalition – to create a formidable, aligned industry force to support this effort.
This important federal legislation speaks to the needs of our industry and drivers across the country to:
• Protect consumer choice.
• Preserve competition.
• Ensure safety and cybersecurity.
• Encourage innovation.
“We continue to be open to constructive agreements with the automakers to achieve this outcome for all consumers, but without an agreement of that sort, the industry must continue to push nationwide,” said the letter.
“We will win this fight because we should win this fight – we are “fighting on the side of the angels” on this issue. We are fighting for the over 70 percent of the motoring public who depend on the independent aftermarket for parts and vehicle repairs. Consumers – and automakers – need the capacity and capability of the aftermarket to protect resale values and ensure vehicles are safely maintained in an affordable manner,” Hanvey and McCarthy said.
“We urge you to actively participate in protecting our industry by advocating for the REPAIR Act. Going forward, we will need you to contact your representatives in Washington; participate in industry fly-ins and legislative summits, virtually or physically; sign and spread the word about the Your Car. Your Data. Your Choice. petition; and host members of Congress at your facilities.”