Today ARA congratulated the voters of Massachusetts along with all the individuals, businesses, and organizations that worked tirelessly to get Massachusetts’s updated Right to Repair Ballot Measure passed. The ballot initiative passed overwhelmingly with 75% approval, which shows that Massachusetts voters recognized the need to give consumers the right to access their vehicles’ data via telematics.
Before the recently passed ballot initiative, automakers used the exclusion of telematics from the 2013 Right to Repair Act to circumvent the requirement that automakers provide independent repair shops and consumers with access to diagnostic and repair information. Without open access to telematic data, automakers were able to assert considerable control over who and how vehicles could be repaired – usually supporting the manufacturers’ own certified repair shops at the expense of independent repairers and the vehicle owners. Independent repair shops rely on vehicle data and diagnostic data to safely repair vehicles.
Massachusetts’s new Right to Repair law will require vehicle manufacturers to equip model year vehicles beginning in 2022 with standardized open access data platforms if the vehicle contains telematic systems. These open access data platforms will permit owners of motor vehicles equipped with telematics to access vehicle data. Open access platforms allow independent repair facilities and independent dealerships to have access to vehicle data and also allow for the sending of commands to a vehicle for repair, maintenance, and diagnostic testing. The passage of the new Right to Repair initiative will level the playing field for repairers and will ultimately pass considerable savings along to consumers who will now have a choice in how they get their vehicle repaired.
ARA has been a longtime member of the Right to Repair Coalition along with other ARA members such as the Automotive Recyclers of Massachusetts and LKQ Corporation. The Right to Repair Coalition has been the group spearheading the effort to increase access to telematic data. In 2012, when the first Right to Repair initiative passed, it led to automakers agreeing to meet Massachusetts’s Right to Repair law in all 50 states. ARA will now work to encourage automakers to similarly agree to provide access to telematic data nationally.
ARA would like to offer a special thanks to all our members and strategic partners who helped make Right to Repair in Massachusetts a reality once again.