Over the past decades, flourishing of the vehicle market has been a clear indicator of increasing number of vehicles on roads. According to statistics, close to 60,000 new vehicles are registered daily in India. The rise in the number of vehicles on  the road is directly proportional to the size of the aftermarket.

So, once the warranty is over in about 3-4 years, most of the cars are taken to a local garage for servicing.

For a car owner or used garbage truck owners, he could either opt between original equipment manufacturers (OEM) authorized service centres or multi-brand service centres like Mahindra First Choice, Bosch Car Service or settle for the local roadside garages.

There are two major reasons as to why startups are trying their hands in this industry. Well, first of all, there is always uncertainty about service charges at an authorized centre. However, opting for a local garage may offer a cheaper service but the service itself is questionable. While the former is beginning to use computer controls to diagnose errors, the customers end up fretting about the money they have to shell out. This white space of using analytics and IoT at a significant price differential to authorized service centres and quality differential to local garages is what startups like Vehito, Pitstop and Koovers are filling up.

Talking about the digitization at customer’s end, a lot of manufacturers like Mahindra are coming up with an application that facilitates a variety of services like tracking the progress, check for online estimates and invoices. One can even use the application to locate the nearest authorized service centre. The primary objective in opting for such changes is to bring the transparency in operations for the customers.

Not just that, the data analytics, sort of, help customers stay aware of their car on a real-time basis, which otherwise seems lost once the warranty ends as mom-and-pop garages operate manually. No wonder there’s a significant rise in pollution with fuel wastages and frequent car break downs which ultimately means burning a hole in your pockets.  

The growth eventually might not completely come from organizing the vast automotive aftermarket, as the market shifts into electric vehicles gradually. The digitization has totally eased the process in terms that now even garage owner gets details related to purchase, registration, servicing, transfer etc., on a single dashboard screen which is also shared with customers.

Digitization has taken over a lot of markets and this is just another one. Perhaps, it’s the vast potential of the vehicle market that attracts the attention of entrepreneur in the quest of trying to take the road less travelled. If the current growth rate brought by the wave of digitization stays in the market for some more years, the future of talking cars would soon turn out to be a reality for almost all of us. Thus, it won’t be wrong to hope for a lot of innovations in the coming year that would make our life simpler and comfortable.