In what’s being called a win for home mechanics and independent shops, voters in Massachusetts approved a ballot initiative expanding the existing “Right to Repair” law originally adopted in 2012.
This new law adds language surrounding vehicle telemetrics, data access, and wireless transfer.
Basically, as vehicles become more technologically advanced, their internal computer systems are logging more and more data. That data is very useful in the diagnostic, troubleshooting, and repair process. The new law allows independent shops and home mechanics to access that data, without the permission of the vehicle’s original manufacturer.
Proponents say that this will give consumers more repair options, as they won’t be limited to manufacturer-approved service centers (AKA, dealerships). Opponents had raised concerns about data security.
Per the language of the law, these changes will begin with 2022 models.
While the law only impacts the state of Massachusetts, there is momentum growing for similar legislation in other states. It’s worth noting that the Massachusetts ballot initiative passed with overwhelming support.