General Motors innovation could rewrite service business

Imagine a customer arriving at a dealership’s service drive with the diagnostic work completed, the faulty part identified and the warranty repair approved before a service writer even greets the driver.

You don’t have to imagine it. It’s happening.

This spring, General Motors quietly introduced a new feature for its OnStar connected car technology called Proactive Alerts. The program’s goal, says Steve Holland, GM’s chief technologist for vehicle health management, is to detect and correct a potential vehicle-stopping issue before the check-engine light comes on.

“Let’s take the battery,” Holland explains. “We collect data every time the car is started and transmit it to the cloud via the car’s 4G connection, and we run our proprietary algorithms there.

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