Cars 2004 Sets Attendance Record

(source: ASA press releases)

BEDFORD, TEXAS, Nov. 9, 2004 - More than 700 people were in attendance last week at the 2004 Congress of Automotive Repair and Service (CARS) held at the Flamingo Las Vegas. The number of attendees set an all-time attendance record for the event. CARS, the premier event of the Automotive Service Association's (ASA) Mechanical Division, is held annually during Automotive Aftermarket Industry Week (AAIW).

"Being the only event during Industry Week entirely dedicated to the automotive service professional, CARS has become home to the 'best of the best,'" said Bill Haas, AAM, ASA vice president, service repair markets. "ASA is proud to offer an environment for the service and repair industry's best to participate in education, share experiences, develop relationships and grow personally."

The convention's theme, "Feel the Power," was highlighted in the educational programs offered throughout the event. This year's CARS offered seven technical courses and three Automotive Management Institute (AMI)-approved management seminars, all taught by some of the leading instructors in the industry.

To mark the opening of CARS, Thursday, Nov. 4, was Service Professionals Day at the Automotive Aftermarket Products Expo (AAPEX). ASA representatives cut the ribbon to officially open the AAPEX show that day.

Thursday night, more than 900 professionals convened for the third annual Service Professionals Industry Reception co-hosted by ASA and the International Automotive Technicians' Network (iATN). Rounding out that event was an exhibitor showcase featuring 55 exhibiting companies, the largest in CARS history.

Steve Louden, AAM, owner of Louden Motorcar Services in Dallas, served as the CARS 2004 chairman. John G. Miller, author and organizational development speaker, was this year's keynote speaker.

Bob Redding, ASA's Washington, D.C., representative, discussed the recent election's impact on independent repairers, specific issues in play for ASA in 2005, and how ASA could best use its advocacy resources next year.

More than $20,000 in prize giveaways, an EPA update on OEM Web site implementation, an open meeting of the National Automotive Service Task Force (NASTF), and Saturday night's Chairman's Reception completed this year's CARS event.
Next year's CARS event will be held Nov. 3-5, 2005.

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