CAR Coalition warns Congress of OEM tactics

Toronto, Ontario ⁠— Allstate, the Automotive Body Parts Association, LKQ Corp and other members of the newly-formed Consumer Access to Repair (CAR) Coalition have penned a letter to the U.S. House Energy and Commerce committee leaders, warning the officials of the “monopolistic and expensive” nature of automaker’s certified collision repair programs. 

The CAR Coalition is encouraging American Congress to reject an OEM proposal that calls for a five-year federal preemption of any state action regarding access to telematics data—a move the Coalition says “would only strengthen an OEM monopoly of the automotive collision repair chain.”

The organization argues that tactics employed by OEMs⁠—such as the use of embedded software and data restrictions⁠—are driving out repair competition, while the consumer cost of repair has risen dramatically. 

Where OEMs argue that “there is no real scenario which real-time remote access by third parties would be necessary to diagnose or repair a vehicle,” the Coalition states that real consumer choice begins with transparency and allowing customers to choose what happens to their data⁠—not “OEMs serving as gatekeepers with consumers forced to seek their permission.” 

The Coalition says the public “would be better served by an open dialogue on these issues resulting in comprehensive legislation that preserves consumer choice and control over their data while ensuring cybersecurity, privacy, and safety protections.”

Launched on July 1, the CAR Coalition is a group of independent parts and repair companies committed to preserving and protecting consumer choice and affordable vehicle repair by ensuring competition in the automotive collision parts industry. Members include: Allstate, Automotive Body Parts Association (ABPA), Certified Automotive Parts Association (CAPA) and LKQ Corp.

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