Technology touches nearly every aspect of our lives, from how we communicate to the way we drive. Each year, auto manufacturers introduce new models equipped with advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) and other cutting-edge technologies. While these continuous advancements are exciting, they also present challenges for the auto body industry as a whole.
Here’s a look at how technology has shaped the current collision repair landscape and three innovative industry trends to watch for in the future.
3 Ways Technology Has Affected Collision Repair
The auto body industry has witnessed some remarkable changes in recent years, thanks to a variety of technological advancements.
One of the cornerstones of this transformation is in how collision repair shops operate. Efficiency is key to delivering high-quality service, so many shops, including European Collision Center, have adopted advanced software that enables accurate repair timeline estimates, streamlined part and supply orders, and seamless management of every aspect of the repair process.
Modern vehicles are equipped with sophisticated technology that makes them far more complex than their older counterparts. ADAS features like adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist, and blind spot monitoring rely on sensitive sensors and cameras to enhance driving safety.
The downside is that these components are more expensive to replace than typical auto parts and they must be recalibrated after a collision—two factors that have caused the cost of repairs to surge. Statistics have shown that auto body repair costs are rising steadily, with an average increase of 2-3% year-over-year.
While ADAS features have contributed to the increase in repair costs, there is a silver lining: ADAS has played a significant role in reducing the frequency of accidents. In fact, it’s estimated that these technologies will contribute to a 20% decrease in accidents by 2030 and an overall reduced demand for auto body repairs.
Upcoming Industry Trends
So, what’s next in the collision repair industry? Here are three trends to keep an eye on:
- Artificial Intelligence (AI): AI has long been integrated into the automotive industry, with features like lane-keep assist and automatic braking systems, but as it evolves, it’s poised to have another role: technician support. AI can be used to enhance technicians’ capabilities by streamlining damage assessments and repair recommendations. Additionally, AI provides tools and information (such as AI-powered diagnostics or repair information databases) that can help technicians identify and repair issues with greater accuracy.
- Electric Vehicles (EVs): As the automotive industry rapidly shifts towards electric vehicles (EVs), it’s anticipated that every automaker in the U.S. will have EVs as part of their vehicle lineup by 2025. This monumental means there will be significantly more electric vehicles on the road—and auto body shops need to be ready. EVs differ significantly from traditional internal combustion engines, so shops must be willing to invest in training and equipment in order to effectively address the distinct repair challenges they bring.
- Virtual Reality (VR) Training: As with many trade industries, collision repair has difficulty recruiting younger technicians. Virtual training programs have the potential to be a very cost-effective way to offer training that attracts the next generation—and it can be done remotely.
As automotive technology advances at an unprecedented pace, European Collision Center stands firm in our commitment to remaining at the forefront of the collision repair industry. We invest in the latest tools and equipment, as well as specialized training.
Our skilled technicians are well-equipped to handle ADAS calibration, as well as OEM-certified repairs for EV giants Tesla and Rivian. Our dedication to embracing industry advancements, adapting to emerging trends, and nurturing our team’s expertise guarantees that we will continue to provide top-tier collision repair services in an ever-evolving automotive landscape.
For auto body repair services, contact ECC today at (415) 551-9700 or request an appointment online. With two locations to serve you, we cater to all makes and models and provide comprehensive insurance coordination for stress-free repairs.