The Automotive Aftermarket Liaison Group (AALG) presented its new lobbying position on European issues that affect the aftermarket in a post-Brexit Britain at a press launch today (Tuesday 23 May) at Silverstone race track.
AALG members have pledged to “work for the interests of all businesses associated with the aftermarket”, particularly in light of Brexit, the development of the connected car and the trend towards electric and autonomous vehicles.
Figureheads of each association within the AALG formed a panel to discuss current European issues affecting the aftermarket and how the group plans to lobby them.
Longest standing member of the group, Dave Garratt of the Garage Equipment Association said: “Garage equipment manufacturers need to provide the aftermarket with the tools required to service, inspect and diagnose tomorrow’s vehicles.
“The introduction of the connected car brings forward a real threat of losing diagnostic connectivity for the independent sector.
“There has never been a more important time for our organisations to work together to protect consumer choice.”
Stuart James of the Independent Garage Association raised access to data as a key issue faced by independent garages.
He said: “One of the biggest issues affecting the independent sector is the ability to access vehicle manufacturers technical information, standing united with other aftermarket associations to lobby in the UK and on a European front will heighten the chances of a robust and time efficient solution.”
Wendy Williamson of the Independent Automotive Aftermarket federation explained that the aftermarket is already making grounds towards “overcoming potential industry threats”.
She said: “We are currently striving towards overcoming a number of potential industry threats and have begun to promote the Your Car – Your Choice campaign to a wider audience.
“Protecting the aftermarket’s rights during the development of the connected car and type approval legislation is of paramount importance to the Federation, with the aim of ensuring the independent aftermarket has a level playing field when it comes to access to technical, parts, repair and maintenance information.”
Sandy Burgess of the Scottish Motor Trade Association said: “As we progress towards the ‘Brexit date’, the landscape for our industry will change, no doubt creating any number of situations which will generate the need for significant and potentially costly change.
“Acting as a strong united body the AALG will be able to use the pooled resource of the members to ensure a clear interpretation of the impacts of these changes and provide clarity of understanding to assist those within the industry to take sensible action to mitigate these impacts.”
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