Groups that represent the automotive aftermarket industry are lobbying for an amendment to the original law that would add new requirements for aftermarket access to data.
Bill Hanvey, president of the Auto Care Association, says the law doesn't provide sufficient access to telematics data that aftermarket providers insist they need to make proper and safe repairs to high-tech components.
A version of the proposed digital amendment would authorize independent repair providers to file a complaint with an automaker over data access.
If there is no agreement within 30 days, a provider could sue the automker for failing to provide "information, including documentation, updates to firmware, safety and security corrections, diagnostics ... or a tool required" by the amendment.
Two Washington-based groups that represent automakers counter that the Massachusetts law gives the aftermarket sufficient access to data, says Conor Yunits, a Boston-based consultant. Digital "information is already covered by this law and already required to be provided," Yunits told Automotive News.
The Auto Care Association responds that the current law requires carmakers to provide access to data only under limited circumstances.
In practice, the law as it stands "would provide a strong competitive advantage to the manufacturers at the expense of repair shops and their customers, car owners, by raising costs and increasing the hurdles for access to key data needed to repair late-model vehicles," says Aaron Lowe, the association's senior vice president of regulatory and government affairs.