Imagine a car that knows it’s got a problem. A self-diagnosis programme identifies the issue. But instead of leaving the driver with a flashing light on the dashboard and an unnecessary headache, the vehicle automatically books itself in for a service.
It sounds so logical that you wonder why someone didn’t think of it before. The good news is the technology exists now. And in the future – well, who knows what might be possible? With the advent of self-driving technology, the car could well drive itself off to get fixed in the middle of the night when it’s not needed.
At a recent event for Castrol’s top distributors in San Francisco, I was able to show off some of the present-day technology that is revolutionising the world of car maintenance.
We like to work with our partners to show them the pioneering work that is being done around the world that could help both them and their customers.
Castrol has invested in Zubie, which connects your car to the internet. A plug-in device monitors data such as your car’s location and engine diagnostics, sending the information to your smartphone. If something goes wrong, Zubie detects it and lets you know.
With customer permission, it can also schedule service appointments and transmit information about any faults to the repair shop ahead of time.
It benefits both car dealers and their customers, making life easier for both. Customers are excited to learn about it. They tell me they can see how it increases service retention and customer loyalty.
We have also invested in a service in Malaysia called Carama, which helps drivers find a trusted workshop nearby and agree a fair price for the work that needs to be done in advance.
And CarVue is one of our investments that provides a real benefit to workshop owners. It’s free online software that provides all the tools you need to manage a workshop. You can maintain customer databases, manage jobs and send invoices.
They are all examples of the commitment we are making to developing technologies.
Technology is revolutionising every industry and we are determined to help our partners benefit from the rapid pace of change.