It is time for automotive workshops to consider the effect that electric cars might have on their operations but fortunately there is already much in the way of support for workshops looking to increase their repertoire and prepare for the future.
Many are thinking about investing in the training and equipment required to assess and service the ever-increasing number of electric and hybrid cars – and even more so these days, given several major manufacturers are heading towards pure electric line-ups.
The government-backed Skills for Australia organisation operated by PricewaterhouseCoopers is in the process of developing new electric vehicle (EV) qualification and competency units.
The Motor Trade Association of Queensland (MTAQ), which provides support and training for Australian automotive companies, also offers a range of nationally recognised dedicated hybrid and battery-electric vehicle courses through its MTA Institute.
MTAQ training general manager Paul Kulpa said: “The MTA Institute understands the importance of providing accredited hybrid and electric vehicle training to automotive professionals and businesses preparing for the future and looking to adapt to new market trends.
“Mastering the latest technology is complicated and dangerous – it’s not something you can learn on the job. It’s crucial for automotive professionals to complete the accredited course and gain the necessary qualifications before attempting to inspect or service a hybrid or electric vehicle.”
Other associations offering courses include training.gov.au and Assured Learning Australia.
Getting ahead of the curve might not seem particularly pressing at the moment, given that the uptake of EVs in Australia and New Zealand isn’t particularly significant. However, should more be done to promote the sale of EVs, that situation could change rapidly.
Consequently, in the future, a workshop that isn’t set up to service and repair EVs may find itself losing customers to other businesses that have invested in the capabilities required to support EVs.