(source: ASA press release)
Washington, D.C., Sept. 23, 2004 - The U.S. House of Representatives
Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade and Consumer Protections
held a hearing titled "Repairing the 21st Century Car: Is Technology
Locking the Consumer Out?" Sept. 22 in Washington, D.C.
Testifying for the Automotive Service Association (ASA) were Bill Haas,
AAM, ASA's vice president of service repair markets, and Donny Seyfer,
AAM, ASA-Colorado member.
Haas demonstrated how the manufacturers' Web sites operate. Donny Seyfer
testified to his experience as a shop owner and the ease with which
he has used these Web sites to gain access to service information.
"Many shops across the country are still not using the huge amount
of information that continues to grow on a daily basis. Often it is
due to a fear that it will take too long or that they will not find
the information they need," said Seyfer. "My experience has
been that, yes, there will be a learning curve because each manufacturer
has a corporate culture that delivers their service information in somewhat
different ways. The fact that is too often discounted is that technicians
are highly skilled and adaptive individuals. If they give it a chance
they will be using these tools with confidence in no time."
ASA, auto manufacturers, new car dealers and members of the aftermarket
formed the National Automotive Service Task Force (NASTF) in 2000 to
address service information, training and tool issues.
In 2002, ASA and the automakers reached an agreement to provide service
information to the independent automotive repair industry. NASTF serves
as a conduit for repairers to make the manufacturers aware of any problems
or concerns with emissions and non-emissions service information. From
Jan. 1, 2004, to Sept. 20, 2004, NASTF received 33 complaints and automobile
manufacturers have responded to 31 of those complaints.
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