Auto Service World
Feature   June 1, 2000   by CARS Magazine

News – 01-JUN-00

ASANETWORK and AAIA to design worldwide shop integration standardsThe German Garage Equipment Association, (ASA) and the Bethesda, Maryland-based Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association have agree...

ASANETWORK and AAIA to design worldwide shop integration standards

The German Garage Equipment Association, (ASA) and the Bethesda, Maryland-based Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association have agreed to cooperate on the design of a single worldwide standard for the interconnectivity of computerized repair shop equipment. “The old model of solutions built on closed and proprietary technology is no longer valid”, declares AAIA president Gene Gardner. “This new cooperation with our German colleagues means that North American equipment manufacturers will be able to build to a single standard and enjoy full connectivity with repair shops using the asanetwork in Europe and elsewhere.” The asanetwork is ASA’s communications standard, and is supported by 47 European firms, including Volkswagen and DaimlerChrysler. AAIA’s initiative operates through its Shop Integration Task Force, which has worked with input from Snap-on Corporation and the Enterprise Alliance (Passport Standard). Charter members of the Alliance include ALLDATA, Anderson BDG, Hunter Engineering, SPX/OTC and Vetronix. The new standard will include features from the two current North American solutions, with an open format for future development.

New Internet service aimed at Canadian car buyers

Mississauga, Ontario-based CCC Internet Solutions has created a Web site aimed specifically at the one and a half million Canadians who will buy a new car this year. features new car MSRP, dealer cost, options, holdbacks, rebates, cash-backs, and the national average mark-ups for each model. Links to Canadian manufacturer sites and Transport Canada are included. Users pay a membership fee of between $19 to $49, depending on the number of quotes needed. Car Cost data shows that the current average mark-up in Canada hovers between five and 10 percent.

2000 AIA Car Care Awards for Excellence

Grand Prize Winner: Downtown Auto, Kitchener Ontario

Quebec Regional Winner: Auto Laperrire, Gatineau, Quebec

Prairie Provinces Regional Winner: Temple Esso, Calgary, Alberta

British Columbia Regional Winner: SMC Automotive, Burnaby, B.C.

Ontario Budget to phase out retail sales tax on warranty service

According to the Ontario Budget tabled on May 2 by finance minister Ernie Eves, the retail sales tax on repairs and replacements done under warranty in Ontario will be completely phased out by 2004.

The phase-out begins with a six percent rate effective immediately, dropping to four percent on April 1, 2001, and going to zero by April 1,2004.

The government claims that the tax benefit for 2000-2001 will amount to $28 million, and that the full impact will reach $130 million. Deductibles, non-warranted labour charges, and extended warranty contracts are still taxed at the eight percent rate.

Ontario service retailers charging back warranty work should clearly indicate the date that warranty work was performed during the phase-out period.

Toronto taxi drivers fight mercury pollution with switch retrofit

In an unusual demonstration against mercury pollution, taxicabs waiting for fares at Toronto’s Union Station on May 17th had a free retrofit of mercury-filled lighting switches for ball-bearing replacement units, courtesy of Pollution Probe, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, and Environment Canada. Mercury switches are used for under hood and trunk convenience lighting. Pollution Probe estimates that in Ontario alone, switches representing 200 kilograms of mercury go to automotive recyclers each year. Shredding of junk cars releases the mercury into the atmosphere, where the contents of a single switch is enough to contaminate the fish in a 20-acre lake. Currently, five provinces and 47 states issue fish advisories due to mercury contamination.