Opinion | Commentary

  • Africa, Latin America and the Middle East are growth areas for the global automotive aftermarket, according to members of the Overseas Automotive Council (OAC) of the Automotive Aftermarket Suppliers Association (AASA).
    Ben Brucato
  • Congress returned from its August recess with at least two Senate bills with aftermarket components awaiting further action. One of those bills deals with highway transportation, the other with energy.
  • Once you make such a rule how do you actually get it to result in a reduction of ozone? First, you have to identify the means of reduction and that is the reason for writing this column; to let you know what is almost certainly on its way.
  • In the global marketplace the top emerging markets for growth is moving from BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India and China) to the MINT community (Mexico, Indonesia, Nigeria and Turkey). Turkey, in particular, holds particular opportunity for the automotive aftermarket.
    Ben Brucato
  • The costs of complying with the new rule on underground storage tanks won't be as onerous for service stations and others in the aftermarket sector as once thought. The EPA in mid-July eased some of the mandates it had proposed back in late 2011. 
  • As good as I’ve gotten with my telephone skills, my customers have pretty much remained the same. Enjoy reading these phone calls that I’ve received over the years. They are too absurd to make up.
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  • The original equipment manufacturer (OEM) side of the automotive industry is on the precipice of experiencing what financial analysts call disruption. There are a number of factors at play and shop owners should be paying attention because what happens in manufacturing is going to affect repair shops.
  • There are approximately 89 million vehicles within the aftermarket sweet spot. To offset the limited number of vehicles that fall within their prime target, aftermarket companies need to understand where these vehicles are located so they can better manage their inventory.  
  • Retail parts stores and code readers don’t mix well. Even worse, the fact that they use code readers openly and freely for many customers furthers the public perception that code readers are magical tools.
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  • Truck manufacturers, truck fleet owners and their trade groups greeted the Obama administration's new proposal on fuel emissions with some trepidation. They support reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and improvements in gas mileage, as long as the payback for the new technology is not too onerous, and the standards are achievable for manufacturers.
  • First, keep in mind that a large percentage of the software used on cars is not directly developed by the OEMs; it is actually developed by suppliers with names you would probably recognize – more on this later.
  • Think about how much easier your business’s daily activities would be if each step, each process, each requirement were clearly identified.
    Keith Manich
  • Market intelligence helps members and others make strategic decisions about new product introductions, budgeting, competitive pricing, allocation of promotional resources, geographic distribution of product and more.
    Auto Care Association
  • Hardly a day goes by without a story involving autonomous driving, vehicle hacking, privacy concerns, traffic mitigation and more. A major take away from Dr. Juliussen was the rate at which these technologies are becoming mainstream.
    Scott Luckett
  • The aftermarket distribution system is truly a paradox. It’s built on a costly and inefficient distribution system, but at the same time it has performed beyond comparison with any other industry you can name. And therein lies the problem.
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  • When you’re on the receiving end of a delivery, you don’t really care how it got to you as long as you get what you ordered and it arrives undamaged and on time. However, if you’re a manufacturer or distributor and are responsible for delivering the right goods to the right place on time, you should have a keen interest in the logistics behind the delivery method.
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  • The winners and losers in the age of digital distribution will be distinguished by what they sell as much as how they sell.
    Scott Luckett
  • With the old system, they had a limited ability to capture important information on customer buying patterns. They couldn’t easily spot a sudden decline in friction purchases, for example – a decline that likely meant another jobber had gained that business. They were spending hours each day on price maintenance rather than focusing on building sales.
    Scott Thompson, Epicor
  • What does this push into Big Data by automakers mean for the expansive automotive aftermarket?
    Brian Lindenmeyer
  • Today you can get just about any type of maintenance or repair information online which, according to a 2013 survey by online retailer AutoPartsWarehouse.com, is a key reason for do-it-yourselfers (DIYers) to shop online.
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