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‘Suppliers Are Key Innovators,’ MEMA’s Steve Handschuh at the Washington Auto Show

Association President Extols Suppliers’ Long History as Contributions to Automotive Technology

Date: January 21, 2016

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. – Steve Handschuh, president and chief executive officer of the Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association (MEMA), promoted suppliers’ long history as key innovators in advanced vehicle technology and contributions to vehicle safety in his presentation on Jan. 21 to attendees at the 2016 Washington Auto Show in the nation’s capital.

“Suppliers have a long history of serving as the key innovators of advanced vehicle technologies and it’s being noticed,” Handschuh commented in his discussion at the Intelligent Transportation/Advanced Technology SuperHighway section of the event. He highlighted MEMA’s commitment to advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) and its study, “A Roadmap to Safer Driving Through Advanced Driver Assistance Systems,” conducted in coordination with The Boston Consulting Group. “The study estimates that nearly 10,000 deaths could be prevented, 28 percent of crashes could be avoided and more than $250 billion saved every year with greater use of these life-saving technologies,” Handschuh explained.

He noted that MEMA is using the report to educate elected officials and regulators. “At the urging of MEMA and our industry colleagues, Congress and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recently mandated updates to the New Car Assessment Program 5-Star Safety Ratings System, underscoring just how important Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) are in ensuring a safer national fleet,” he said.

Handschuh noted the association’s support of motorists’ freedom of choice for maintenance and repair. “Independent aftermarket parts manufacturers are working closely with vehicle manufacturers to find safe solutions to accessing vehicle diagnostics while addressing cybersecurity and data privacy issues,” he said.

“Of equal significance, as vehicles are getting safer and more fuel-efficient, consumers are keeping their vehicles on the road longer and longer. Because of this, motorists need an effective independent automotive aftermarket to service, repair, and maintain the more than 250 million cars and light vehicles on U.S. roads.” 

Handschuh also announced that, as part of the association’s focus on advancing the development of vehicle safety technologies, it has created a new position of chief technology officer within the association and hired Brian Daugherty, former director of global intellectual property for Visteon Corp.

He concluded his comments by noting, “The state of the vehicle supplier is strong. Working with our federal regulators, our goal is to ensure that the state of our national fleet gets even safer.”  

Click here to view a live recording of Handschuh's presentation.

About MEMA

The Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association (MEMA) represents more than 1,000 companies that manufacture or remanufacture components and systems for use in motor vehicles and equipment in the light vehicle and heavy-duty, on- and off-highway commercial vehicle markets for the original equipment and aftermarket industries. Motor vehicle component manufacturers are the nation’s largest manufacturing sector with a total employment impact of 3.62 million employees—for every direct job in the motor vehicle supplier industry, another five jobs are created. MEMA represents its members through four divisions: Automotive Aftermarket Suppliers Association (AASA), Heavy Duty Manufacturers Association (HDMA), Motor & Equipment Remanufacturers Association (MERA), and Original Equipment Suppliers Association (OESA). For more information on the motor vehicle component supplier industry, visit

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