New technology unlocks opportunities

The future of the Middle East’s automotive aftermarket is on an upward trend, with changes in new technology expected to increase business for regional and global industry players, a recent survey has revealed.

A market survey of 1,308 auto aftermarket professionals showed that 66% of respondents expressed optimism in the future of the regional auto aftermarket, while 37% believed that new technologies, predominantly related to electric, hybrid, and autonomous mobility, will open considerable new business opportunities in the region.

The survey, answered by auto aftermarket distributors, manufacturers, importers and exporters, wholesalers, retailers, consultants and service providers, further revealed that 42% of respondents had already received customer requests for products and services related to the non-petrol or diesel powered internal combustion engines.

Nearly half of the respondents also believed there’ll be notable changes in the regional auto aftermarket within the next five years due to technology changes, with electric vehicle and hybrid vehicle technology presenting the main challenge to diesel and petrol technology.

Ahmed Pauwels, CEO of Automechanika Dubai’s organiser Messe Frankfurt Middle East, which also conducted the survey, said, ‘The Middle East Automotive Aftermarket Outlook survey was conducted to ascertain the current situation in the regional aftermarket, where it’s headed, and where the potential opportunities are in the Middle East.’

Tellingly, 44% of respondents of the survey believed there’d be fully autonomous vehicles on Middle East roads within the next five years, underlining the rapid transformation regional governments, particularly in the UAE, are gearing towards in the coming years.

The extensive survey was conducted ahead of Automechanika Dubai 2018. The full report and findings will be revealed on the first day of the showpiece event, which opens from 1 – 3 May at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre.