"The good times will never end!"
Then computerized diagnostics came along and half the repair shopsfolded up.
Reading through some magazines I see huge new repair facilities with lobbies like hotels and garage floors you can eat off of. They think the good times will never end and that they will see enough brakes, tires and suspension to pay for the $5 million dollar facility.
Yet, I really wonder how much of us will still be here in 2030. How much business would we still have if the brake job went the way of the carburetor?
PureForge is a company that is making lifetime rotors for police cars. They never need to be lathed or replaced. Why? There is a thin layer of metal on the outside that is so tough that brake pads and the heat they generate will not wear it off. The result? The rotor effectively lasts forever.
And haven't you noticed that dealer brake pads last over 50,000 miles on many vehicles these days? I have a customer with an 2008 Chevy Express 2500 who owns a vending machine company. The heavy truck has experienced tons of inner-city stop and go traffic. He had his brake pads changed at 80,000 miles, and his pads still had more than half their life left. We only did them because the rotors were warped.
Those dealer brake pads were made by Akebono. So, if Akebono can make brake pads that can last 100,000 miles of abusive driving, what's it to stop technology like that and PureForge's from advancing to the point that a brake job occurs once every 300,000 miles?
Cars don't usually last that long. But, they will. Heavy Duty trucks regularly have 1 million mile powertrain warranties when new. If the technology is there for a truck to last that long now, that technology will eventually translate into other vehicles.
The technology is already here in 2013 for brakes. In the future, we may have to find something else to make us money.