Global influences, technical threats, rapidly evolving technology and Brexit were key issues highlighted at the IAAF annual conference last week, held at the DoubleTree by Hilton in Milton Keynes.
Wendy Williamson, IAAF chief executive, opened proceedings with a summary of the biggest issues including proposed MOT changes, the connected vehicle and the demonisation of diesel cars regarding emissions, with the outcome of the TRL report being “one of the gold results of the year”.
Speaking during the conference, Wendy said: “We continue to face a number of challenges on many fronts.
“We as a sector need to ensure we keep up with the times.
“We must ensure continue to invest in tools, equipment, people and of course training to ensure we’re able to cope with a myriad of changes that are currently taking place within the automotive industry.
“We do have a reputation of finding a way through – the threats may be getting more complex but we’re certainly up for the challenge.
Accessing technical information
“All we’re asking for is to have a level playing field when it comes to accessing technical information to identify parts in order to service, repair and maintain vehicles and harness the excellent skills we have in the market place today.
“With a car parc of 36 million vehicles, we believe there is a key role for our sector in the future.”
Other key industry speakers, shared insight exploring IAAF’s key theme, ‘Facing a new Brexit world in the automotive aftermarket’.
Dr Julia Saini from Frost & Sullivan examined the importance of the UK aftermarket to the UK economy and the impact of Brexit on the sector, supported by key metrics and statistics highlighting UK growth, as well as the effect on trade balance as a result of the relationship between the UK and EU.
WhoCanFixMyCar.com Co-Founder, Alistair Preston addressed the rise of online service providers and the impact on the UK aftermarket.
Olaf Henning of MAHLE illustrated how F1 technology is being used to drive developments in the automotive parts aftermarket, whilst underlining MAHLE’s global expertise and ongoing collaboration with Ferrari.
Neil Pattemore of Figiefa, an international automotive aftermarket federation, addressed the latest emerging technical threats to the aftermarket with an update on progress made over the past 12 months.
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