The GVA is committed to the interests of its members in the automotive aftermarket in Germany to protect consumer rights. Its members represent around 80 percent of the turnover of the independent automotive aftermarket. As the voice of the free market, the GVA has very specific concerns about the preservation of certain rights as the basis for fair competition. These concens are outlined below.
- The free market needs comprehensive and practical access to vehicle manufacturers' technical information. Without this access, accurate spare parts identification and provision becomes almost impossible. If denied this access, the independent service market’s capacity to repair and maintain modern vehicles would be severely restricted.
- The parts industry should retain the right to supply its products throughout the aftermarket and to affix its own trademark to the parts that it supplies to vehicle manufacturers.
- The independent service market’s right to access all spare parts, including those offered by vehicle manufacturers, must be assured. This right of access is essential to ensure that repairs can be carried out entirely within the open market.
- Manufacturer-dependent service companies must also be able to obtain parts from the independent aftermarket without fear of disadvantageous conditions imposed by vehicle manufacturers.
- The vehicle manufacturers should not be allowed to discourage competition by creating OEM-mandated servicing regimes for the statutory warranty period. Neither should they be permitted to impose unfair terms and conditions on aftermarket workshops that may void a consumer’s warranty.
- The legislator must ensure that the use of protective rights, such as the design protection for spare parts, is excluded. Such measures disadvantage consumers.