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Central service histories portal could bring industry benefits, says VRA

Developing a central resource that provides access to the service histories of all the cars and vans in the UK car parc could help drive vehicle values.

Used cars waiting for auction

According to the VRA, around a quarter of vehicles at auction are presented without a service history

So says the Vehicle Remarketing Association, which is calling for help with work to create such a facility as it highlights that missing service histories can have an impact on the value of a car or van easily running to 5% or more.

And according to VRA chair Sam Watkins, around a quarter of vehicles at auction are presented without a service history.

Watkins continued: “On a typical vehicle, the value lost is probably counted in terms of hundreds or low thousands of pounds but on high-value, specialist vehicles, it can potentially run in a five figure sum. The only time that a service history starts to become less important is near to the end of a car or van’s life, when the condition starts to outweigh all other factors.”

She added that the information was generally electronically stored by dealers that had carried out the servicing but just wasn’t available centrally.

“Virtually every garage in the country now carefully records all the jobs that it carries out on a vehicle on some form of IT system and, in 2019, many of these use cloud storage.

“It would take a limited effort to make this available through some form of central portal that shows work has been carried out. A vehicle’s MOT is available to anyone online on this kind of basis, so why not the service history?”

Watkins added that the VRA would be keen to facilitate conversations that could help to create momentum behind a central service histories portal.

“Anyone from manufacturers to dealers to technology providers who believe they have a contribution to make to this debate would be very much welcomed.”

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 16 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.