A first time event aimed at supporting the local automotive industry, was attended by over 150 people from 75 automotive businesses recently.

The ‘Future Ready’ information session evening at MTA’s headquarters in Adelaide, was a joint effort with RAA to bring the vehicle repair sector together to support the industry’s preparation for the rise of hybrid and electric vehicle (EV) technology. Providing a window into the future of the automotive industry, guests gained practical insights on how to best prepare for both challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.

Motor Trade Association CEO Darrell Jacobs said, “While we know EV won’t overtake petrol and diesel tomorrow, the MTA are delivering quality training that will both build an EV skilled workforce and upskill existing automotive technicians to enable this inevitable transition.”

“The automotive sector is in the midst of the most significant innovations to mobility and transport seen in living memory, and helping the automotive industry prepare for new vehicle technology is a primary focus.”

MTA invited members from their automotive dealers, automotive repair and engineering specialists, automotive dismantlers, body repair specialists and tyre dealer's divisions as well as other industry stakeholders, and RAA invited their Approved Repairers.

Guests heard from industry experts and senior leadership from the RAA and MTA and tour innovative MTA training facilities. 

RAA Future Technology Expert Simon Halford said, “EV sales are doubling year-on-year and soon there are going to be thousands more on our roads needing to be serviced and maintained,”

“The ‘Future Ready’ event featured informative presentations on topics like the current vehicle market outlook, vehicle batteries, battery recycling and more.

“Ultimately, it’s about making sure our Approved Repairer network is ready for the EV wave, so we can continue to provide the level of service that our 815,000 members expect.”

“The Motor Trade Association (MTA) is heavily engaged with government at all levels on the transition to Zero and Low Emission vehicles,” Jacobs said.

“Assisting Automotive Business transition and reskilling our workforce of over 15,000 Automotive technicians is a key priority.”

The MTA has upskilled its trainers and adapted its offering. It is now regarded as a national leader in EV training and has one of the best EV training centres in Australia it says.

New pathways for qualified technicians means they’re not away from the workshop for months on end, learning at trade school. A combination of recognising all of their previous qualifications, self-paced delivery, on-the-job assessment and training means they learn alongside qualified technicians, rather than apprentices.

In addition, shorter one- and five-day safety courses are geared towards entry-level technicians and apprentices working with electric vehicles.

The MTA is also developing a pathway for apprentices starting out in the industry.

“We work closely with the SA Skills Commission and developed a dual trade for apprenticeships, for heavy and light, and combined that with auto-electrical. It allows apprentices to develop the skills for today, and for the future,” Jacobs said.

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