Following Brexit, the MVBER regime was set to expire in the United Kingdom in 2023 as well, and it was up to national authorities to decide, independently from the European Union, on any potential framework.
Following contributions from activities by the independent aftermarket, pledging for maintaining and modernising the existing framework, the British Competition on Market Authority (CMA) has adopted a new Motor Vehicle Block Exemption Order (MVBEO), which entered into force on the 1st of June 2023, in parallel to the renewed MVBER in the European Union. This MVBEO, like in the EU again, is accompanied by Guidelines that provide further details to clarify how the MVBEO should be interpreted. Historically very supportive of effective competition, the CMA expanded the framework to echo new business and technology developments.
On repair and maintenance information: According to the CMA, information on Advanced Driver Assistance Systems and Battery Management Systems should also be communicated, securing the possibility for the independent aftermarket to continue servicing the most recent vehicles. It also cross-referenced European Union’s Type Approval Regulation 2018/858, setting the requirements for access to repair and maintenance information.
On spare parts: The CMA noted that vehicle manufacturers and their networks may not agree to prevent independent wholesalers from accessing the so-called OEM “captive parts”, whose number and value are rapidly growing. The CMA also included “software” into the definition of spare parts.
On data: The CMA added vehicle-generated data and information required for interpreting this data into the MVBEO. Moreover, it considers prognostic data, which is required for preventive maintenance, as “essential input” to be made available.
This essential piece of legislation and its Guidelines will help secure that the independent, multi-brand aftermarket will still be able to compete with vehicle manufacturers until the 31st of May, 2029.