HYANNIS – Proponents of Question 1 on the November 3 ballot say that independent auto repair businesses need access to data collected by cars in order to fix vehicles, while opponents say that Question 1 could risk owner’s personal data as well as safety.
If Question 1 is approved, cars 2022 model or newer must be equipped by manufacturers with a standardized, open access platform that would allow auto repair shops to wirelessly access mechanical data using a smartphone-based app with owner’s permission.
Currently, telematics data generated by sensors in the cars is transmitted to servers only the automakers can access.
Supporters of Question 1 say that the telematics data only being available to the manufacturer means car owners must take the car to its original automaker to receive service and make repairs, diminishing consumer choice in where they can take their cars.
“If a person goes out and buys a car, they should own the data that enables that car to be fixed, and they should be able to choose where they want the car fixed. If shops like mine don’t have that information, then we can’t fix the car, which kind of forces someone to go to a place where they don’t want to go,” said Robert Wallace, President and Treasurer of Cape Tire and supporter of Question 1.
Wallace said that the limits on customer choice on where they can receive service for their car will lead to a monopolization of the industry by car manufacturers, with a rise in prices and a drop in quality service.
Wallace said that he and other supporters would be willing to purchase the data, similar to how the auto repair shops already purchase parts, and that they are not requesting that the data be made available for free.
“We’re willing to pay for it, we just want the information to keep our customers rolling.”
Conor Yunits, spokesperson for the Coalition for Safe and Secure Data which opposes Question 1, said that the issue of telematics is already covered under the right-to-repair-law that was introduced in 2013.
“It specifically says that any information necessary to diagnose and repair a vehicle that is provided to dealer repair shops and only available through telematics must be made available to local repair shops. This is already covered,” said Yunits.
Yunits said that currently data is only sent to secure servers owned by manufacturers, then to repair shops or customers through secure systems developed with the automaker.
According to Yunits, Question 1 would prevent manufacturers from being a part of the development process of security systems and apps that share the information in the future, sacrificing a layer of security for consumers.
Yunits also said that Question 1 unnecessarily risks owners’ personal data by creating opportunities for bad actors outside as well as inside repair shops to access personal data wirelessly.
While mechanics or others may be able to intercept and use the data for malicious purposes, Wallace said that is a risk that comes with a lot of modern technology, such as cellphones and other smart devices that collect data on their users, and that it is up to the customer to decide whether they want to take that risk.
Yunits also said that Question 1 would also force car manufacturers to comply with an unrealistic timetable which would be impossible to do in a safe and effective manner, with new requirements that would be enforced as early as January 2021.
Our Service writer is paid 8% on all sales. When he is off for 2 days, we have another hourly person that service writes. My question is we pay the SW that was off for 2 days 8% on all sales, but take them as vacation days. The person filling in (he does a great job) pay him the difference if he was service writing and would be commission. Looking to see if somebody has a better solution. If the regular SW is on vacation, I can figure the sales from his last day till he comes back. That is not a problem
Icahn Automotive Group LLC today announced the launch of Pep Boys Fleet, a program that puts a renewed focus on automotive service designed to better meet the needs of today’s growing fleets. With a new tagline, “Driving your business forward,” Pep Boys Fleet will continue to serve as a preferred partner to large, national fleet management companies and with this move is now better-positioned to meet the needs of the many small fleets emerging from the explosive growth of transportation network companies and last mile delivery services.
Pep Boys Fleet has the experience to handle any size fleet, providing inspections and warranty-backed repairs, both routine and complex, according to Icahn Automotive. Pep Boys Fleet service, including preventative maintenance such as tires, brakes, batteries and suspension, is done through the Pep Boys national network, which consists of more than 9,000 service bays in more than 1,000 company-owned locations. Pep Boys Mobile Crew, which launched in 2018 with state-of-art trailers, will now expand to include smaller-format fleet vans that are fully equipped with all the necessary supplies and staffed by trained technicians to complete common fleet maintenance and repair needs on-location.
“No matter the size of the fleet, our goal is always to decrease the vehicle’s downtime, ultimately providing a more convenient, flexible and personalized way of addressing repairs and vehicle maintenance,” said Brian Kaner, president of service, Icahn Automotive. “Pep Boys Fleet is the only service provider to be backed by a national network and offer mobile
maintenance and repairs, as well as provide dedicated fleet team support and solutions designed to both streamline the fleet manager’s role and help an owner focus on the running the business and not the fleet.”
Today 20% percent* of vehicles are sold to fleets, a number that’s expected to shift as high as 40% over the next 20 years as ride-sharing, ride-hailing and online retail continues to grow. As one of the largest, most trusted and widely known aftermarket automotive service providers, Pep Boys Fleet and the company’s trained and certified technicians can work on all makes and models. Changes have been made to the service format in Pep Boys locations to establish dedicated Pep Boys Fleet bays reserved exclusively to expedite fleet jobs, and locations are also being updated to include meeting rooms with amenities where fleet customers can conduct business while their vehicle is undergoing maintenance.
Pep Boys Fleet provides customers with national, regional, local and store-level support where customers receive a single point-of-contact that gets to know them and their business. The Pep Boys Fleet Team representative develops a customized service program and pricing plan and remains engaged to help manage a customer’s fleet business. Pep Boys Fleet also provides customers with a universal fleet services credit card that allows fleet managers to track and pay for vehicle repairs and preventive service and earn rewards. All fleet customers can also take advantage of a specialized online invoicing and payment system and a 24/7 towing program to any Pep Boys location.
Pep Boys Fleet is an official tire, brake and preventative maintenance supplier of Amazon’s Delivery Service Partners (DSP), which provides negotiated pricing for Amazon DSP maintenance, along with a pro rewards program, and fleet credit which owners can use to cover unforeseen expenses. Later this year, Pep Boys plans to launch a management technology solution to help small and mid-size businesses better manage their fleet maintenance.
The launch of Pep Boys Fleet is a continuation of Icahn Automotive’s investments in its service business and follows the announcement of a comprehensive program to recruit and train automotive service technicians to meet the demands of the industry, which are being driven largely by the fleet customer. In addition to launching new service formats such as Mobile Crew, the company continues expanding its footprint in key markets by acquiring both franchised and owned service centers and remodeling existing Pep Boys locations.