Auto Service World
News   March 25, 2014   by CARS Magazine

Telematics is game-changer new Delphi boss says

Philippe Desnos, who replaced Lucia Veiga Moretti as president of DPSS earlier this year, says repair facilities will need to be able to connect remotely with their customers vehicles in order to compete in the future.

The new head of Delphi Product and Service Solutions (DPSS) says the importance of telematics to the aftermarket will grow exponentially in coming years.

Philippe Desnos, who replaced Lucia Veiga Moretti as president of DPSS earlier this year, says repair facilities will need to be able to connect remotely with their customers’ vehicles in order to compete in the future.

“Telematics is a game changer in the aftermarket,” Desnos says. “There is already a great deal that you can do with the solutions that we have provided on the market and there will be more things that you will be able to do in the future.”

In an interview with Canadian Technician, Desnos spoke of Delphi’s commitment to developing cutting-edge tools that stream data from vehicles in operation directly to the people who will service them.

“We are continuing to develop telematics as a service solution for our customers – both the warehouse distributor and the technician – in order to generate more business to them and to anticipate what problem that we will face on the consumer’s cars,” he said.

He believes the next step in the technology will be the ability to do predict component failures before they occur.

“We want to fix concerns even before they become a problem,” he said. “We can already do it with batteries and brakes. We can tell that they are about to fail. But in the future you will be able to do it on every device on the vehicle.”

Shops will then have the opportunity to pre-order parts and minimize a vehicle’s down time. Best of all, the customer should never be stuck at the side of the road.

“That is absolutely massive,” he said. “You will be able to create a relationship of great trust with the customer. This is where we’re going.”

Desnos also spoke of Delphi’s continuing investment in remote diagnostics – that is, the ability to help technicians around the world diagnose the vehicles in their bays.

“The main job that my team has is to increase the knowledge of the technician and to increase the training of the technician, and provide the right tools. It is by leveraging all the OE technology that we have access to that we are able to do this.”

Though currently based in the United Kingdom, Desnos is very familiar with the North American market. He was based in Troy, Michigan from 2005 to 2010, as managing director for the Diesel North American business. In fact, he began his Delphi career in 1995 as engineering manager for the Diesel Aftermarket Operation in Blois, France.

He acknowledges that Europe remains considerably ahead of North America when it comes to the use of diesel technology in passenger cars.

“It is growing very slowly in North America,” he said. “I don’t think it will change significantly in the coming years.”

Nevertheless, Delphi’s ongoing research and development in diesel technology has proven useful in developing new products for the gasoline-direct injection for the light-duty market.

“We are leveraging all the experience that we have on diesel to develop service solutions for GDI,” he said.

“There has been a lot of change in GDI,” he says, pointing out the ever-increasing pressures used in modern systems. “The pressure of injection used to be only 20 bar (300 psi) or so. Today, I think we have 300 bar (4351 psi), and we are soon going to get to 500 bar on GDI (7250 psi).”

In 2010, Desnos returned to Europe as Global Delphi Service Centre (DSC) director, and later as director of Global Diesel Marketing & Delphi Service Centres, leading the development of emissions and engine-efficiency technologies.

Lucia Veiga Moretti was with Delphi for 16 years. She is now a senior vice president at Allegion, PLC, a $2 billion global company in the security and safety industry.