The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) released a report in 2018 that detailed an 18-month investigation into the automotive industry in Australia. The report which was segmented into three key areas was designed to increase transparency between the manufacturer, car dealerships, and consumers.
The report from the ACCC is the result of years of speculation from car owners around servicing and maintaining a new car warranty. the report was broken down into three key areas that aim to increase transparency between car manufacturers and buyers. These areas included:
- A mandatory scheme whereby car manufacturers are liable to share technical information with independent car repair shops so that consumers have increased choice when it comes time to service their car.
- Car manufacturers are responsible for updating their complaint handling systems and improving their approach to customer service warranty claims.
- Vehicle manufacturers are obliged to share more accurate information about the car's fuel consumption and emissions to buyers.
The new regulations mean that consumers will enjoy increased and unprecedented access to technical information from dealers and manufacturers that will drastically improve transparency and create clearer servicing guidelines.
The new reforms also aimed to empower independent mechanics to compete with larger manufacturer approved workshops. The new reforms will also allow consumers to purchase essential car service components such as car engine oil, filters, and coolant while having the Assurance that they are buying the correct manufacturer-approved parts.
The ACCC chairman Rod Sims is confident that the new reforms are a positive step forward for consumers as the ACCC aims to clean up the notoriously shady car industry.
“The ACCC recommends several reforms to improve the new car retailing industry, which should lead to better outcomes for consumers. Some will require industry led change and others, we consider, require regulation.”
The ACCC is yet to lock down a firm timeline for when manufacturers will be forced to comply with the new regulations, however, Sims is confident that consumers will start to feel the change within the next 12 months.