The block exemption changes a concern for independent vehicle repairers


“What changes is the level of complexity of new cars,” said Dan Joyce, Kwik Fit’s fleet manager. “Over the past three years we have seen an increase in the time it takes for manufacturers to provide us with information and data, while a lot of vital data accessed through the OBD port and needed for ADAS updates and calibration are often hidden behind a paywall.”

Joyce hopes the new regulations will recognize the challenges associated with new technologies, including ADAS and electrification, while ensuring better access to vehicle data and software.

“We are not trying to steal business from OEMs, but rather to provide an effective solution and facilitate customer relationships,” he said.

Sales agency model raises pricing concerns

The MVBER is not the only competition regulation that needs to be replaced. In May, the Vertical Agreement Block Exemption Regulation (VABER) which covers the distribution of new cars will expire.

It is still the AMC who has the task of deciding who will be the replacement. It consults with interested bodies, including the SMMT, and recommends that the government adopt a new regulation called the Block Exemption Order for Vertical Agreements (VABEO).

He will have to serve an industry that is on the cusp of major changes in vehicle retailing.

During the consultation period for the new regulations, the National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA) expressed concern about the emergence of a new business arrangement called the sales agency model, under which manufacturers sell new cars directly to consumers, rather than through their dealers, and possibly at fixed prices. prices.

In its submission to the AMC, the NFDA said it was concerned the sales agency model would lead to higher prices for consumers.

A spokesperson for the organization told Autocar that it is working closely with dealers and liaising with manufacturers on the new business model, in addition to taking legal advice.

Last December, Mercedes-Benz announced that it would adopt the agency model from 2023.


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