Automated recall system protects dealers from costly liability
There is an ongoing debate over who dropped the ball on automatic reminders.
Some say it’s NHTSA, but the agency only defines and enforces recalls that have safety-related flaws. It forces OEMs to issue recalls.
Still, some dealers complain that OEMs are too slow to send out recall notices, so they sometimes can’t act before cars leave their lots. On the other end of the argument, some industry insiders blame dealerships for not carefully checking their inventory for recalls, putting drivers at risk.
Although OEMs are responsible for recalls, dealers can face civil penalties, bad publicity and other inconvenience when selling a car with an open recall – no matter where the chain of recall alerts exploded.
An example: NHTSA reports an ongoing investigation into Healy Brothers Ford, Beacon, New York, for selling at least one new Ford with an open recall. Penalties range from $21,000 per violation up to $105 million. And that’s not including the millions and billions of dollars that OEMs and suppliers have paid in fines, repairs and lawsuits related to faulty systems and materials.
Michael Baker, digital marketing director for California-based Antioch Auto Group, says he’s found the answer to ensure the dealership doesn’t miss recalls for the eight new brands under the group’s six roofs – as well as the many vehicles used on its lot: AutoAp.
AutoAp reports that it is the first to Automate a dealer’s inventory review, spot open recalls, and provide proprietary information that can help reduce liability. The company develops advanced data collection and cleansing processes and health check processes to correct errors and out of sync security recall information. It’s a quick and efficient way to ensure inventory is call-free, says Baker.
Plus, it frees dealership personnel from the tedious work of manually checking multiple sources for recalls.
“Every day I receive a report status. Our service personnel keep me up to date with any vehicles that are under recall, so nothing slips through the cracks,” Baker told Wards. And every time they sell a vehicle, they have to print the AutoAp report.”
It’s not exaggerated. Baker says it’s not unusual for a vehicle without a recall in the morning to suddenly have one a few hours later. ApAuto says there’s often a 16-day lag between an automaker’s recall announcement and its release by NHTSA.
Automatic application reports dealerships nationwide have more than 15 out of 100 vehicles in inventory with at least one open safety recall.
AutoAp President and CEO Mark Paul says the system fills those gaps and speeds up dealer information. He credits over 50,000 hours of business development that has allowed the service to have as much automation as possible, multiple sources of data and information, and external auditing processes. This and other sophisticated processes prevent errors from occurring.
Some dealerships also check for open recalls when acquiring used cars. While there’s no federal law prohibiting the sale of a used vehicle with an outstanding recall, Baker says it’s just smart business to put a “sale stop” on those cars and trucks as well. .,
“It’s true that there’s no law that says we can’t sell a used vehicle with an open recall,” Baker says, noting that he receives vehicle reports for every vehicle in the field, including prepared ones. for wholesale. “But we have seen the results of litigation when (dealers) knowingly sold vehicles with (safety-related) recalls. The dealer is liable whether the law says so or not.
AutoAp’s effectiveness is no accident. Paul said the company was founded after dealers detailed their frustrations with current safety recall reports.
“I was checking recalls and also checking reports from OEMs and our competitors,” he told Wards. “We have seen delays of several days, weeks, even a two month delay. And we had a 30% error rate in reporting. We have notified dealers of the recalls that are still on the trucks, which are reaching them.
“Our solution is to fix the problem (missed callbacks), reduce their liability and generate an additional warranty refund. Some customers want something cheaper and opt for competitors. Then they come back. They want to do well with their customers and know that we do well with our customers. It’s all about quality.