Survey suggests the industry wants to learn about EV repair—accessibility is the issue


It’s time for an electric check—is the industry ready and able to embrace its role in the vehicle electrification process?

Collision Repair magazine ran a survey asking readers across the industry for their opinions on electric vehicles. Responses came from various verticals of the sector, including collision repair centre owners and staff (66.7 percent); industry educators (12.1 percent); front-end staff (12.1 percent); suppliers and distributors (6.1 percent) and insurance reps (3 percent).

According to the results, not everyone is prepared to get on board with the electric era. One respondent even said they plan to turn away electric vehicle jobs.

The majority of the industry, however, is prepared to embrace zero-emissions vehicles—if only the circumstances better allowed it. There are courses out there, like AIA Canada’s EV training program or EVFriendly’s certification for collision repair, and 84.8 percent of respondents agreed that the industry has ample resources for EV repair education and training.

Still, 51.5 percent of respondents said they lack a basic understanding of how to repair EVs compared to ICE vehicles, and the same percentage said they haven’t taken any courses or seen any industry presentations on EV repair.

There are plenty of resources out there—people just appear to be hesitant to read them.

Accessibility and costs are the major obstacles, according to respondent comments. There’s only so much you can learn about EVs online when there’s no physical vehicle in front of you. Not to mention the price of travel, course fees, etc. Then tag the price of equipment required for the jobs.

One survey comment said there “needs to be better compensation for shops, so they can invest.” Otherwise, wrote the respondent, shops will turn away EVs—which they said is currently happening.

The focus of course materials and the lack of specific collision repair information remains another challenge for the sector. Many respondents commented that courses or resources specifically catered to electric vehicle collision repair are needed for any real progress to occur. Others suggest one-on-one courses, where an expert instructor comes to the shop.

Some respondents pointed fingers at industry presentations for “fear-mongering” and giving “the aura of fear to new technology instead of rallying to accept the opportunities before us.”

Overall, the industry does understand the need to understand EV repairs—more than 90 percent of survey respondents said they believe their role will require an understanding of EVs in the next five years. More than 85 percent want to learn how to repair them. Now is the time to lead the charge and brainstorm new ways to keep the industry current.


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