Back in 1979, I remember attending a Ford training class on the much-awaited EEC III computer system. It was the replacement for EEC II and was loaded with new features including the ability to mate up to the new AOD transmission. Of course, it was heralded by us factory types as the end-all in new features for the upcoming model year of 1980.
I vividly remember one little feature called a “crank shaft position sensor” that was buried back by the flywheel. Many of us who had repair experience lamented that they would be getting rid of that thing in a year since serviceability and durability would be compromised by its location. Seen any cars lately without one?
Of course, we were right that the location was bad, but thinking that this technology would go away was absurd. They moved the thing in later revisions, and it has stayed with the industry ever since. There’s just no better way of seeing where the crank is so the ignition system knows when to fire. The point is, whether you agree with the technology or not, get ready because it may just be around for years to come.
Evolving technology is a way of life in the automotive business, and it’s our job on the repair side to stay up on it. It’s a daunting task to try to stay current on all the manufacturers and all of their models. Cycle times on models are so short these days that it’s hard enough to stay up on how models look, let alone how they work. Unfortunately, for those of us in the collision repair business, information trickles to us slowly and is hard to come by.
Fear not, the 2011 Automotive Service & Repair Week (ASRW) and International Autobody Congress & Exposition (NACE) have come to the rescue! The exposition, held Oct. 5-8 in Orlando this year, is an excellent opportunity to get caught up on all the latest repair techniques, equipment, industry trends and changes. It has been a long time since the show has been over here in the East, and it’s an excellent place to enjoy it. Orlando is a great venue and easy to get to for many of us over here. Take the time to book your trip and ensure that you stay up on today’s changes in our great industry. See you there!