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Aug 19 2020

Today’s automotive landscape is much different than 20 years ago, with the average life of a vehicle at a record high of 11.8 years. Automotive manufacturers across the board are building high-quality, longer-lasting vehicles, provided the owner keeps up with maintenance.

Given the diverse selection of vehicles on the road today, it’s valuable for automotive businesses, from retail to repair and everything in between, to have access to a comprehensive vehicle database with robust coverage for newer and older vehicles.

In this article we’ve covered some of the auto industry segments that are most impacted by the wide range of model years in use and how a complete database will benefit them.

Automotive Retail

The automotive retail space has the greatest need for comprehensive vehicle details to support their marketing and merchandising efforts. For quite some time now, dealerships and their service providers have been seeking predominantly new vehicle data to support their new car research tools, such as side-by-side vehicle comparison and vehicle builder tools (also called vehicle configurators). While this makes sense with new vehicle sales hitting over 17 million for 5 years in a row (2015-20019), there is still a need for complete data coverage on older vehicles as well.

Preowned vehicle sales continue to dominate new vehicle sales, breaking over 40 million units sold in both 2018 and 2019. Not only do franchise dealers require extensive vehicle data for older vehicle model years, there are many booming used vehicle retail businesses, such as Carvana, Vroom, CarMax, etc., that also require this data for a more powerful online shopping/buying experience.

Vehicle Service

With an average vehicle life of 11.8 years, there’s a lot of money to be made for vehicle service and repair businesses, both dealers and independent repair shops. It’s essential that these repair facilities are armed with high-quality, extensive vehicle data for accurate identification of all vehicles. Additionally, service schedules and service bulletin data, which are available through some vehicle data providers, including DataOne, are also valuable for building rapport with customers – especially as consumers hold on to their vehicles longer and require more maintenance and repair throughout the life of their vehicle.

Auto Insurance

New vs. old vehicles is an interesting topic when discussing how it will impact auto insurance premiums, given the rise of safety technology, also known as Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS). The ultimate question is if ADAS equipment will help offset the insurance premiums of new vehicles in the future. If so, will it be comparable to used vehicle insurance premiums without ADAS equipment?

There are still many uncertainties around how insurance companies should address ADAS technology given their complexities and the challenges of identifying which vehicles have which features. Additionally, while ADAS equipment should lower the frequency/severity of vehicle accidents, repairing vehicles with these safety features is much more costly as they are integrated in the most commonly damaged parts of a vehicle (bumpers and windows).

A comprehensive vehicle database will be part of the solution in identifying which vehicle have ADAS and how each manufacturer’s systems function. Though it may be a little while before we see the majority of vehicles with ADAS equipment, since there will be many late adopters with earlier model years staying on the road for longer.

All parts of the auto industry are affected by the increasing age of vehicles and will have a need for a vehicle database that offers depth and breadth of coverage for new and old vehicles.

Does your vehicle data provider lack in granularity, especially for older vehicles? Check out our vehicle database and see how it can add more value to your business!

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Photo credit: nitinut380 / Shutterstock.com

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