A level playing field in the battle for access to information will leave franchised dealers vulnerable to losing more service business to the independent garages, says the Independent Garage Association (IGA).
Recent research has shown independent garages taking an increasing market share of service work despite difficulty carrying out certain functions. This limitation will soon be removed, allowing independents to carry out every part of a service and repair for their customers, says the IGA.
EU legislation coming in to force will support the existing right of consumers to take their car, no matter how old, to any garage they choose. Garages who demonstrate their integrity will be certified to have access to all the functions required to service, repair and update modern cars.
The IGA has been working in Brussels for several years to see this legislation come to fruition, and through the RMI’s UKAS accredited business, RMISC, will offer garages certification against the ISO standard that will give them access to the relevant information from any manufacturer to be able to fix any car.
IGA director Stuart James said: “The IGA has worked tirelessly to see this legislation through, and RMISC is positioned to be the first certification body for this type of information in Europe.
“This is the largest change to the current structure of the UK motor industry and professionally run, independent garages will flourish.
“It has been advantageous for independents that the franchised sector has not picked up the gauntlet of genuinely meeting consumer needs in terms of price and quality. This new change will allow independents to seize the opportunity, take the initiative and increase their share of service and repair work even further.”