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Aftermarket Pros Talk Tesla [RR 552]

Matt Fanslow is the diagnostic tech/shop manager at Riverside Automotive in Red Wing, MN. His primary responsibilities are to diagnose driveability and electrical/electronic issues, and perform most all programming, coding, initializing, adoptions, etc. Basically, if it needs to be figured out or has wires, it goes to Matt. He’s been a tech since 1996.

Matt is also a subject matter expert for ASE and has instructed at Vision Hi-Tech Training and Expo.

Matt has participated on 18 ASE technical committees for the ASE Practice Test, A6, A7, A8, and L1 tests. He’s also done case studies for Standard Motor Products.

Fanslow’s goal is to do everything in his power to improve the overall level of professionalism within the automotive and light truck repair trade and also raise the level of its public image. Matt Fanslow’s Previous Episodes HERE.

Scott Brown is an ASE Master Certified Automobile Technician with over three and a half decades of professional service industry experience. He and his wife own Connie & Dick’s Service Center Inc., a 57-year-old independent shop in Southern California.

With a strong focus on engine performance and electronics, Scott began collaborating with other industry professionals, online, beginning in the early 90’s. Since 1995, he has been an instrumental resource in the development of the largest online community of automotive service professionals, the International Automotive Technicians Network — iATN where he once served as company president. Additionally, he serves on the NASTF Board of Directors and is a member of the following associations: ASCCA, CAT, ETI, I-CAR, & SAE.

Scott is the founder of diag.net. Find other episodes that have featured Scott HERE.   Diag.Net HERE

Seth Thorson has specialized in the service of European automobiles since 1999. First, in Michigan and now at his current location in New Brighton, MN.

Seth was educated at a UTI in Chicago where he was at the top of his class. He then went to BMW Step to finish the master’s program. Thorson was hired in at a BMW dealership in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.  From there he moved to an independent shop in Waterford Michigan and learned VW Audi. Seth’s passion remained with BMW and he was offered a chance to buy an existing shop in New Brighton, Minnesota near where he grew up.

He is the owner of Eurotech which specializes in BMW, Mercedes and Audi cars.  He is a firm believer in using factory tools to ensure proper repairs and coding. His team of highly trained and certified technicians are able to diagnose today’s complex vehicle systems! His second location, Green Garage, works on all makes and models.

Seth also owns and runs a BMW tech support company called LMV Bavarian that provides support and programming to a growing network of over 200 shops via remote diagnostics.  He also teaches national seminars on BMW diagnostics. Seth has also partnered with SSF auto parts in their unique ‘hands-on’ training program.

Seth belongs to AASP in MN, BIMRS as well as NASTEF.  He is also a member of Cecil Bullards (Institute for Automotive Business Excellence) 20 group. He believes idea sharing and networking with other shop owners has helped grow his business. Listen to Seth’s previous episodes HERE.

Key Talking Points

  • Seth and Scott are working on Tesla vehicles
    • Suspension failures
    • Door handles
    • Northern climates, you’ve got to pull the calipers (a brake service)
  • Hybrids need brake work that many are not looking at
  • Where do we get service information and access to scan tool information
    • Seth: Tesla is taking an aggressive stance to keep their information close
  • Newer models are showing with OBD II port on model Y and 3
  • Tesla will charge you an upfront diagnostic fee when you make a service appointment for a warranty issue. If it is legitimate you get a refund.  
  • Tesla has mobile units for remote service
  • Seth had a friend with a noise
    • He was able to diagnose the problem and told his friend what the problem was
  • Tesla’s service and distribution model is not like the franchised dealerships
  • You can only buy parts from Tesla
  • MCUs are failing
    • They upped their warranty to  2/24 on that component
  • How do you look up parts and know what part number you need
    • Seth purchased Tesla Service Info.com from tesla for $3,500 per year
      • A result of the clean air act in Massecusits. Available nationwide
    • You can look up your parts get a number and then call them
    • They don’t have a retail parts ordering system
    • They create a service invoice. You pay it via the app and then you pick up your part
    • You have an APP because you are Tesla owner
  • Seth is active in a Minnesota Facebook forum on Tesla
    • Weeks wait for service
  • Scott is doing tire rotations and cabin filers on his customer base
  • Eventually, BEV will need to pull an emissions report
    • The vehicle will need an OBD port to get the data
  • Scott generates his own energy at home and uses it to fuel his Tesla
  • Scott ordered the upgrade for his Tesla (3.0)
    • The unit is 21x the computing power of the previous version
  • Scott recently got a software upgrade that gave him more features on his camera
  • Seth got a ‘brick’ episode when he did an upgrade.
    • He got Tesla to help him, with a router reboot and then reinstalled the software
    • He also rebooted the car twice
  • Other OEMs are moving to Over The AIr (OTA) updates
  • MCU: Main display. The heart and soul of the vehicle
    • All the charging goes through that
    • They provide a $1,500 refurbished unit if it goes bad
    • Seth is working on training courses and rebuilding MCU units to sell in the aftermarket
      • These are out of warranty units
  • If you are going to work on Tesla, you can market through social media groups
  • 70% of vehicles get repaired in the aftermarket. Tesla needs to help get their cars repaired by the professionals so more people will want to buy one

Link to AAPEX Service Awards HERE.

Resources:

  • Thanks to Seth Thorson, Scott Brown and Matt Fanslow for their contribution to the aftermarket’s premier podcast.
  • Link to the ‘BOOKS‘ page highlighting all books discussed in the podcast library HERE. Leaders are readers.
  • Love what we do, buy a cup of coffee HERE.

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This episode is brought to you by AAPEX, the Automotive Aftermarket Products Expo. AAPEX represents the $740 billion global automotive aftermarket industry and has everything you need to stay ahead of the curve. With 2,500 exhibiting companies, you’ll see the latest products, parts, and technologies for your business. As a result, the event also offers advanced training for shop owners, technicians, warehouse distributors (WDs) and auto parts retailers, as well as networking opportunities to grow your business. AAPEX 2020 will take place Tuesday, Nov. 3 through Thursday, Nov. 5, 2020 at the Sands Expo in Las Vegas. Therefore, more than 48,000 targeted buyers are expected to attend, and approximately 162,000 automotive aftermarket professionals. They will be from 135 countries which are projected to be in Las Vegas during AAPEX 2020. For information, visit aapexshow.com

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About the author, Carm Capriotto, AAP

Carm is the founder and host of the Remarkable Results Radio Podcast; the only one of its type in the automotive aftermarket. Carm calls on his 35 years’ experience in the aftermarket to bring engaging stories from his guests.

Listen to raw, unfiltered, honest, and sincere stories that include insights, trends, best practices and expertise. Each interview brings an opportunity to learn one new thing through the stories of personal achievement. Many podcast guests tell their story of transformation from working in their business to working on it.

As host, Carm uses his enthusiasm and passion for the aftermarket especially the service sector to take his listeners on a journey showcasing successful service professionals’ path to Remarkable Results. He also enjoys interviews with aftermarket industry thought leaders who bring their industry perspectives to his listener.

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