Repair, Maintenance, Workshop tooling and equipment

Key figures

Millions of passenger cars (PCs)
Millions of light commercial vehicles (LCVs)
Average lifespan of a vehicle

Repair and maintenance: a durable sector undergoing radical change

Vehicle maintenance is essentially driven by a still-growing vehicle fleet. The continuing rise in the price of new vehicles, owing in particular to the incorporation of expensive new technologies (driver assistance, electrification, connectivity and digitalisation), is resulting in a lower replacement rate for the fleet each year and, consequently, in vehicles being kept for longer. The total lifespan of a car is approaching 19 years: the fleet needs more extensive maintenance operations throughout its life. Roadworthiness testing has adapted to this reality. The greater precision in measuring pollution from diesel vehicles (smoke opacity testing, 2019) means that diesel engines, which still account for more than half of the fleet on the road in 2023, will need more maintenance.

Sector talking points


Electronic maintenance

This is the systematic use of diagnostic tools connected to vehicle electronic control units. The new generations of diagnostic tools are capable of communicating using the computer protocol adopted by all manufacturers (SAE J2534). The use of dedicated interfaces (VCI or Vehicle Connexion Interface) means that any repairer can use 'Pass-thru' to access manufacturers' data servers (subject to subscription) and download updates or computer maintenance codes for the ECUs in the latest vehicles (remote coding). The repair industry will need ongoing training to take advantage of these new functions. This is a fundamental development, and one of the structural themes of EQUIP AUTO. In 2023, the arrival of a new certificate for securing maintenance operations, the SERMI, which directly concerns repairers, will be in the news at the Lyon exhibition and will be discussed during the series of panel discussions.


This is the gradual introduction into the vehicle fleet of vehicles with electric components. This ranges from the simple starter-alternator (launched on the Citroën C3 by Valeo in 2003) to the various forms of hybridisation: the 48-volt, which is now becoming widespread; the so-called mild-hybrid traction assistance motor, located between the powertrain (engine-clutch-gearbox) and the transmission; the full hybrid (such as the Renault E-Tech or Toyota HEV); the plug-in hybrid, which adds power electronics components; and finally the 100% battery electric vehicle. Throughout the transition phase between internal combustion engines and the switch to all-electric power for new vehicles (on 1 January 2036 in the European Union), repair and bodywork workshops must gradually adapt to the new diagnostic and maintenance techniques. At EQUIP AUTO, workshop equipment manufacturers will be exhibiting tools that meet the new workshop standards for electric vehicles (specific equipment for vehicles with voltages in excess of 60 volts).

Digitalisation and connectivity

This is the latest major development in the world of car repairs. Digitalisation means digitising maintenance data, enabling remote diagnostics and consultation of repair data updated in real time. It also means online workshop schedules (on the websites of all-make repair websites or repair chains), enabling remote appointment booking, as well as digital customer relations. Finally, remote training
Connectivity means that workshops can gradually become part of an ecosystem linked to their customers, suppliers (including parts and equipment distributors), vehicle manufacturers and the world of service providers (e.g. insurers) or training providers, without any loss of time or information. This is also a major change, and one of the recurring themes at EQUIP AUTO.

The sector's product categories

Repair and maintenance

Electronic diagnostics, electronic maintenance
Fluid transfer equipment
Lifting equipment 
Mechanical repair equipment  
Mobile workshop fittings 
Personal protective equipment for technicians
Test and tuning equipment 
Tools and smaller equipment
Tyre maintenance and repair 
Workshop equipment for CNG vehicle maintenance


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