Nearly every industry in the business world will encounter new trends that will change how organizations operate and affect consumer demands and expectations. Auto repair franchises are just one example of this. Innovative vehicle technology and driver preferences could lead to newer cars needing many different services to fix and maintain the latest technology, and auto shops should be prepared for this influx.
Small, one-person shops, in particular, are in danger of struggling to keep up with the rapid innovation that the industry has been experiencing. To avoid falling too far behind, automotive service entrepreneurs should consider franchising with a brand that has already established itself as a major player – and can do the same for its franchise owners.
Midas has been taking care of vehicle owners across North America for over sixty years. This level of expertise is unique and rare in many franchise opportunities in the automotive services industry, and we have used our experience to anticipate changes and new trends in the industry today.
As one can imagine, the average car brought to one of our locations in need of repairs looks, feels, and runs much differently than the type of vehicle we typically serviced when we first opened six decades ago. However, the Midas team helps our franchisees find the tools and resources they need to service each new car they are trusted to fix. We are confident that each new location we open with an investor will be able to keep pace with the industry trends shaping where drivers choose to bring their cars for service.
Technology is rapidly evolving and affecting almost all of our daily lives – vehicles are no different. Connected, autonomous, shared, and electric (CASE) vehicles are changing the average driver’s habits and have different maintenance and repair needs. Auto shops will be impacted heavily by this, which is why the ones that partner with a franchisor they know they can rely on will be best positioned to take advantage. Let’s take a look at some of the current impactful trends that will continue to shape the automotive services industry in the near future(1):
Many car manufacturers have been releasing new electric vehicle models to appeal to drivers who are wary of their environmental impact and want to keep fuel costs low. Repairs for these EVs will likely differ from traditional cars, but auto repair shops will still be expected to address the needs of customers who own EVs anyway. New safety standards will also need to be implemented – which can all be a lot to ask for from a one-person auto shop.
Another thing that has created a need for adjustment for auto shops of all sizes is the development of self-healing parts. Some car brands have been using self-healing materials that can automatically fix themselves if something goes wrong, so drivers don’t need to visit a nearby mechanic.
While these parts are still a bit further away from widespread adoption, vehicle manufacturers will be eager to incorporate them into future car models because they can advertise them as a way for drivers to save on repair costs. This may lead to a decreased need for certain automotive services from local shops.
A franchisor with a widespread presence and automotive industry connections can help keep their investors informed regarding what changes they should anticipate and what services they may still need to provide that self-healing cars cannot fix on their own.
PdM is “data science that utilizes time series data and machine learning algorithms to accurately forecast system failures before they actually happen (1).” Connected “smart cars” will eventually be able to use this feature to tell their owners when to bring the vehicle in for repairs at a nearby automotive services franchise.
Leading auto shops can work with vehicles that integrate PdM to extend the cars’ lifespan while also showcasing their knowledge to the owners by helping prevent the issues that PdM still has limited abilities in tracking, such as maintenance related to driver behavior and weather conditions.
3D printed materials are another innovation that has quickly grown in popularity, even outside the automotive services industry. While 3D printing’s primary use early on was mainly for prototyping, 3D printing steadily developed further to allow for the production of auto repair tools and equipment that is generally considered less costly and easier to replace and customize. Auto repair franchises with 3D printing capabilities have a valuable advantage over their small business counterparts that typically lack this technology.
Midas franchisees can feel confident about their chances of remaining “ahead of the curve” when it comes to these newest trends and innovations. The brand recognition and industry knowledge we have built up over many years as industry leaders will offer protection and competitive advantages that are stronger than any other opportunity on the market.
Curious to learn more about the latest auto repair industry trends and how we help our franchisees prepare for them? Reach out to us today to take advantage of our franchise opportunity!
1 Emerging Trends Shaping the Automotive Repair Industry; KARREP, Jul 4, 2022