Maintenance Crucial to Safety, Economy and Environment as Canadians Drive Vehicles Longer
May 14th, 2012 – Ottawa, ON – Canadians are tightening their purse strings and driving their vehicles longer than ever before, according to the 2011 Canadian Automotive Demand Study: The Door to Opportunity, produced by the Automotive Industries Association (AIA) of Canada in cooperation with DesRosiers Automotive Consultants Inc.
The study, which examined the habits of Canadian motorists, found that the average Canadian vehicle is 8.52 years old and aging. In 2011, vehicles between the ages of six and 12 increased by 2.0 million units, rising from 38.3% to 41.8% of Canada’s total vehicle fleet.1
“In today’s challenging economic times, Canadians need to drive their vehicles longer and make their dollar work harder,” said Marc Brazeau, President, AIA Canada. “However, much like Canada’s health care system, our automotive industry is being challenged by this aging vehicle fleet, which requires professional care and maintenance to remain viable and safe.”
Notwithstanding the increasing age of Canadian vehicles, many drivers are delaying essential vehicle maintenance and repairs, or simply not performing any at all. This neglect not only negatively impacts motorist safety, but it is also detrimental to the economy of the automotive aftermarket, and Canada as a whole.
Potential industry demand for maintenance and repairs is $30.40 billion annually, while actual services performed is $18.49 billion, according to the study.
If all Canadians were to maintain their vehicle as recommended, an additional $11.91 billion would flow into all levels of the supply chain, from the shop to the manufacturer. “There is a significant gap between the services being performed, and those that Canadian motorists need to safely operate their vehicle,” said Brazeau. “If this number is achieved, the overall health and safety of our roads will drastically improve.”
As the average price for a litre of gas increases, there is a significant savings to be realized through proper vehicle maintenance. Such maintenance would include replacing clogged air filters, which can decrease fuel consumption by 10% and correcting under inflated tires, which can save up to 4% in fuel consumption, according to the study.
To educate Canadians on the many benefits of regular vehicle maintenance, AIA Canada launched its successful ‘Be Car Care Aware’ campaign. The campaign has been built around three key pillars, including vehicle dependability and safety, protecting the environment and enhancing and maintaining vehicle value.
About the Automotive Industries Association Canada AIA is a national trade association representing the automotive aftermarket industry in Canada; an $18.7 billion industry that employs more than 420,200 people. The industry is made up of companies that manufacture, distribute and install automotive replacement parts, accessories, tools, and equipment.
Be Car Care Aware Program To support and enhance consumer engagement on the benefits of vehicle repair and maintenance, AIA Canada launched the ‘Be Car Care Aware’ campaign. The campaign’s goal is to build awareness and knowledge to prepare consumers to make sensible decisions about their vehicles. The campaign is built around three key message areas of dependability and safety, protecting the environment and enhancing and maintaining vehicle value.