An Aussie icon sadly met its demise last week, but a previous commitment by Holden to share repair and service information will ensure Holden owners can enjoy their pride and joy for many years to come.
The Australian Automotive Aftermarket Association (AAAA) was sad to hear that Holden would be retired as an Australian brand. The implications for more than 600 employees of the iconic brand plus the large network of dealerships and aftermarket suppliers involved with product and service support can’t be underestimated.
“Holden is about as ‘Aussie’ as it gets and holds a special place in the hearts of many who own or have owned a Holden. It is a loss to the country and the automotive industry. There are over 1.6 million Holdens on our roads today and many of these owners will be concerned about the availability of ongoing parts and servicing,” said Stuart Charity, CEO of the AAAA.
But despite this loss to the industry, Holden vehicle owners can continue to have their vehicles professionally serviced and repaired, thanks to a previous landmark decision by Holden that has now taken on special significance.
In 2014, the industry body representing the car producers and distributors in Australia signed a voluntary agreement to make dealer level service and repair information available to independent repairers on fair and reasonable terms. There are 68 car brands in the Australian market, but only one car maker complied with this agreement: Holden.
Holden was the only manufacturer that honoured the voluntary agreement by opening up access to repair and service data to independent repairers. As a result, workshops that have a paid subscription can access Holden service and repair information using the Australian Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) and a credit card. This includes full parts lists, fault codes, diagnostic codes, re-flashing, and software updates. Holden stood alone in their decision to open data access with most car importers continuing to geo-block Australian workshops from accessing vehicle related data and service information.
Stuart Charity said “Holden’s willingness to share service and repair information to repairers outside their authorised dealer network was a tick of support for the Choice of Repairer campaign in Australia. It also assures Holden owners across the country, and particularly in regional and remote areas, that their local mechanic is able to service and repair Holden vehicles because they have access to the parts, expertise and data to do so”.
In October 2019 the Government announced a decision to introduce Primary Legislation for Mandatory Data Sharing for all car companies that supply vehicles into the Australian market. This new law will bring Australia into step with the USA and EU for right to repair in the automotive industry.
“The government’s commitment to primary legislation is a huge win for the industry and for consumers. We are grateful for the government’s unequivocal commitment to open competition and to Minister Michael Sukkar for his leadership on this important issue. The Holden decision proves just how important this new law will be to all Australian car owners” said Stuart Charity.
The industry is expecting this new Law to be introduced in 2020.
Lesley Yates, Director – Government Relations and Advocacy at the AAAA. 0402 005 476 or firstname.lastname@example.org