Law & Order

European Court Rules Automakers Can't Use Cybersecurity to Block Sharing of Vehicle Repair Data

By the SEMA Washington, D.C., office

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) issued a ruling that automakers cannotEU use cybersecurity to limit access to critical vehicle repair data in the European Union. The international court victory reinforces the importance of a fair and competitive market for the automotive aftermarket. 

SEMA is monitoring the impacts of the ECJ ruling on our efforts to pass legislation domestically codifying the right to repair and modify motor vehicles in the United States. As many vehicle manufacturers are limiting access to critical repair information and advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS), SEMA remains steadfast in ensuring that the automotive aftermarket and consumers have the right to choose where they can have their vehicles repaired or modified in the future. 

The lawsuit was filed on behalf of Carglass Germany, a subsidiary of Belron, and A.T.U., Germany's largest chain of auto repair shops, against Fiat Chrysler, which became Stellantis after a 2021 merger, in German court. The lawsuit was then referred to the ECJ since it focuses on a United Nations (UN) regulation of cybersecurity after Fiat Chrysler argued they were bound by the UN regulation that requires manufacturers to have cybersecurity defenses in their vehicles.

A key consideration for the ECJ was the importance of cyber security. The court's decision confirms that vehicle manufacturers can adequately address cybersecurity issues without imposing restrictions on the aftermarket, providing the aftermarket industry with legal certainty throughout the European Union.  

The ECJ ruling will have a larger global impact on car manufacturers since 53 other countries follow the UN cybersecurity rule that requires vehicles to be equipped with cybersecurity defenses before they are allowed to be sold in their respective markets. The United States does not enforce the UN regulation domestically, but the ruling may advance SEMA and our coalition partners in our legislative efforts to codify the Right to Repair federally. H.R. 906, REPAIR Act, addresses similar cybersecurity concerns that automakers have used against right-to-repair efforts. 

You can read more about SEMA's efforts on the Right to Repair by visiting