Carmakers in connected car data-sharing deal with suppliers

December 02, 2016

Manufacturers have agreed to develop methods of securely sharing connected car data with suppliers. The move could create a massive market for proactive servicing worth billions of euros.

The deal between the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) and the European Association of Automotive Suppliers will create a secure method for cars to share vehicle data with suppliers such as garages and leasing companies.

BMW has already shown the value of access to data during live trials with its leasing arm Alphabet in the UK.

Since January, Alphabet has received more than 13,200 data alerts from BMWs and Minis on its fleet, allowing it to proactively contact customers about servicing.

Kit Wisdom, head of technical services at Alphabet, told the International Auto Finance Network (IAFN) conference: ‘Data from the manufacturer enables us to capture the servicing that is required on those vehicles and liaise with the customer.’

Wisdom said that in some cases Alphabet is aware of a maintenance issue, such as engine oil being due for replacement, before the company car driver sees a message in their vehicle.

Alphabet is also aware when the next service is due and when brakes are expected to be required based on usage of that vehicle, meaning it can contact the driver or fleet manager to get the vehicle booked in.

Wisdom said: ‘Customer feedback is very positive. For us to say ‘we know that your brake pads in the front need to be changed, we can book that in for you next week’ is a ‘wow’ moment for the customer.’

Nissan is also developing connected car services which monitor vehicle data to alert the company and its dealer network when a vehicle requires maintenance.

While BMW and Alphabet are data sharing directly, the ACEA agreement focuses on car data being loaded onto a secure third-party server, which can then be interrogated by suppliers.

ACEA executives say access to in-vehicle data must be safe and secure and direct third-party access to vehicle functions could increase exposure to hackers.

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