NAPA announced NexDrive at the Montreal Electric and Plug-in Hybrid Vehicle Show in April 2022.
A program dedicated to training the automotive service industry for electric vehicles is expanding outside of Quebec for the first time this fall.
The standardized training program for the maintenance and repair of electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles has been developed by NAPA Canada and the Conseil provincial des comités paritaires de l’industrie des services automobiles (CPCPA).
The CPCPA — which is responsible for creating and implementing qualification and training standards for those working in the automotive repair and service industry — developed the EV Skills program in 2019. As part of NAPA’s NexDrive certification program, it will be offered outside of Quebec starting this fall. NexDrive is the electric banner from NAPA, providing its Autopro and AutoCare member shops with the training and equipment needed to provide maintenance and repair services for next-generation vehicles.
Level 1 training is already underway in Ontario; it will expand along with Level 2 training to British Columbia in early 2023.
“We are very proud to partner with NAPA and contribute to the rollout of a national electric vehicle maintenance training program that was developed right here in Quebec and is already recognized as an industry reference,” said Charles Gagnon, executive director of the CPCPA. “Our program was developed to a very high standard to meet the current and future needs of the industry. It’s not tied to any particular vehicle manufacturer, and it’s updated regularly to keep up with the latest technological developments. No other program offers 175 hours of training and the support of a network of certified EV master trainers.”
So far, almost 400 auto mechanics have completed the program in Quebec, with demand continuing to row, the announcement said.
“Technician training is one of the key challenges posed by the electrification of transportation, as electric vehicle owners want a reliable network of service locations to meet their maintenance and repair needs. That’s why a standardized and accredited training program is a cornerstone of the NexDrive banner rollout strategy,” said John O’Dowd, vice president of marketing at NAPA Canada. “We are particularly pleased to be able to partner with the CPCPA to deliver a leading training program across Canada in both official languages.”