Right to Repair South Africa (R2RSA) has announced that Volkswagen now supports its Guidelines access scheme for data sharing with independent service providers (ISPs).
“In order for the Guidelines for Competition in the Automotive Aftermarket to be a success and create a truly competitive market where quality and price rule the market, we need the big original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to step up and embrace the spirit of the Guidelines and not just implement the bare minimum for compliance,” said Kate Elliott, Chief Executive of R2RSA.
Elliott also said that while compliance has been relatively slow until now, it is fantastic to see some of the big players finally coming onboard.
“In particular, we have been very impressed with the work done by Volkswagen South Africa on all aspects of the Guidelines. We are yet to be contacted by a member of the public with a complaint against VWSA relating to the Guidelines and they have been the most transparent and open about how to make full use of the opportunities presented,” said Elliott.
She added that R2RSA confirmed receipt of the full details regarding how ISPs can access VW’s technical maintenance and repair information.
According to R2RSA, the offering has been carefully thought out and allows for a range of access options from hourly to annual access. The organisation believes that this flexibility makes usage viable for ISPs that will most commonly service a range of different brands and may only need access to the information for each brand sporadically.
“The Guidelines are in place to support consumer choice,” continued Elliott. “For a consumer comparing models of vehicles in the same price and spec range, the fact that one brand is fully supporting the Guidelines and sharing critical technical information with ISPs should be a big plus. In effect, it means that the consumer can choose their repairer of choice with the confidence that they have been provided with all of the technical information they require to do a good job repairing their vehicle. We believe this may very well be the deciding factor in their decision on which vehicle to purchase.”
Elliott emphasises that a car is normally a consumer’s second most valuable asset – after their home – and that it costs a lot of money to maintain. Any opportunity to reduce maintenance and repair costs on a vehicle, while not compromising the integrity of the vehicle or the warranty, would be hugely valuable.