United States Automotive Technicians’ Choice, 2017
This study covers the independent automotive aftermarket vehicle service technicians’ choice of tools. The survey was conducted using a computer-assisted telephone interview methodology during July 2017. Respondents represent automotive repair shops throughout the United States. Shop types include new-vehicle dealership service departments, franchised auto repair shops, and independent auto repair shops. In total, 476 automotive technicians were surveyed for this study. To qualify as a respondent, an automotive technician had to work at least 32 hours per week and physically work on vehicles on at least a weekly basis.
The various tools covered in the research include:
Power tools (tools powered by a motor)
Hand tools: Devices for doing a particular job that does not use a motor, but is powered solely by the person using it
Handheld diagnostic tools: Devices that read a vehicle's onboard diagnostic and have reporting capability, specifically provides real-time data in addition to a standardized series of diagnostic trouble codes
Pneumatic or air tools: Devices that are activated by a gas, usually compressed air supplied by a gas compressor
Tool storage devices: Tool boxes, roll cabs, cart, or other units used for storing tools
The study identifies the most commonly purchased auto tools within the last year as hand and power tools—86% of the surveyed auto technicians report purchasing them in 2016. Outcome of the survey results also establish that reliability and quality are identified as the top influential factors across all auto tools surveyed. Other critical factors include warranty, availability, order accuracy, and past experience. This research also enquires about the respondents’ choice of distributor channel for purchasing the different tools and also compares brand perception of almost all of the major brands available in the market. The global automotive aftermarket is being influenced by different trends including evolving powertrain, digitization, and eCommerce; all of these trends are also having a visible impact on the tools that are being used for vehicle servicing and repair. These segments are covered in the discussion of the various drivers and restraints pertaining to the purchase decision of the tools.
Major companies highlighted and benchmarked in the research include Aircat, Autel, Blue Point, Bosch, Channellock, Chicago Pneumatics, Cornwell, Craftsmen, DeWalt, GearWrench, Husky, Ingersoll Rand, Innova, Kennedy, Launch, Mac Tools, Macto, Makita, Milwaukee, NAPA, OTC, Snap-on, and Waterloo. Among these, Snap-on has been observed to be the most prevalent brand and its dominance in the auto tools market continues.
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