If you see fewer auto repair shops in your community then you are witnessing a trend that is spreading throughout the auto repair industry. The small independent auto repair shop is getting squeezed by both the dealers and also the ‘backyarders’ creating shrinking margins and putting many auto repair independents out of economic.
The global problem is the auto repair and service market has been shrinking in the last ten or fifteen years. Technology has made cars much more reliable with fewer breakdowns, repairs and scheduled maintenances.
Many manufacturers offer at least one 100,000 mile warranty which means that the independent will get little chance to operate that car for the most important 5-10 years it is owned.
As new car sales margins go down, VW, Chevrolet, Toyota and other manufacturers are looking to their service departments to make the difference.
Additionally many dealers such as Porsche and Saab already been adding other useful benefits such as being a loaner car while repairs are being made. Independents are increasingly being forced to give courtesy rides to customers in hard work to keep up with the dealers since customers now expect this service.
Furthermore dealers for Mercedes and Ford are now directly offering specials on services making their dealer prices in order to independent repair shop prices.
But it’s simply competitive pricing naturally worrying the independents.
The battle for skilled labor is also being won by the dealers: the dealers have been competed for skilled labor and now have become a lot aggressive. With fewer right now entering effect on repair profession and opting instead for careers such as health and technology, overall talent pool of the superior skilled auto technicians is shrinking.
Increasingly appeared becoming more difficult for independents you ought to hire and retain these competent employees. Being an automotive technician, would you rather work in Audi or Joe’s Drive way?
The dealers are discovering the best ‘mechanics’ or as they are known today, ‘technicians.’ An increased end dealer technician can make $100,000 yearly with benefits while an independent shop owner would must gross during a $1,000,000 twelve months to make that and have to reimburse their own benefits and social protective measures.
Because in the economic realities many independent owners are at this moment closing their shops and going to be suitable for GM, Nissan and other dealers.
This puts the independent auto mechanic at a definite disadvantage when diagnosing and repairing difficult drivability, fuel injection, electronic and computer related rrssues.
Additionally, each time a diagnosis is made and a part of needs replacing the dealer will are in stock, not only verifying diagnosing but greatly speeding in the repair as well as increasing customer satisfaction. Big advantage Cadillac and Rolls royce.
But it isn’t just a skilled employee conflict. Techs cannot fix cars without information and you’ll find a long and ongoing dispute from the dealers/manufacturers and independents over technical information access and diagnostic applications.
The manufacturers claim that their technical data is proprietary everybody is making independents claim the information should be around to anyone that owns or fixes that make of automobile.
Excel Auto Repair & Sales
94 E Falmouth Hwy, East Falmouth, MA 02536