CarBeast in Ann Arbor today launched the first app that diagnoses vehicle problems and informs about potential future maintenance and repairs needed, all based on hundreds of millions of actual records that reflect tens of thousands of technicians’ experience in servicing vehicles across North America.
“Owners are keeping their vehicles longer out of necessity, particularly given the vehicle shortage occurring right now, which is creating an increased demand for repairs as well as preventative maintenance,” says Kunal Joshi, data scientist at CarBeast. “CarBeast helps reduce the stress and inconvenience of dealing with vehicle maintenance issues and serves as a learning tool as well.”
Prior to developing the app, CarBeast surveyed the general public and found a large, though unmet, demand for access to information to help make informed decisions regarding repairs and maintenance as well as when shopping for a used vehicle.
CarBeast uses insights from vehicle service records that reflect numerous technicians’ experiences to not only help diagnose current service needs but forecast and prepare for future maintenance and repairs. New data is continuously added to CarBeast, which automatically learns of new issues and their resolutions.
Record-high prices and depleted inventory levels have contributed to the average age of vehicles on U.S. roads reaching a record 12.1 years, according to IHS Markit, which has a local office in Southfield. In addition, the average retail transaction price for new vehicles in the first quarter of 2022 in the U.S. exceeded $44,000 for the first time, according to J.D. Power in Troy.
Supported by technology and expertise from Ann Arbor, Mich.-based technology company Ubiquiti Inc., CarBeast is a web-based artificial intelligence (AI) assistant that takes the guesswork out of pinpointing root causes of vehicle issues, which helps owners anticipate what may go wrong with their vehicle, the repairs that are likely needed and their approximate costs.
“In this era of exploding technology, including a major escalation of software-related technology, there are some parts of the tech world that can have a significant impact on the average person,” says David Cole, chairman emeritus of the Center for Automotive Research and professor emeritus at the University of Michigan College of Engineering, both in Ann Arbor.
“CarBeast has brought the effective management of automotive repair data to the auto world so that average consumers can understand and make use of this information. We often hear about people doing things to their vehicles that aren’t needed and not doing things that should be done. CarBeast is an important tool that will be a game-changer in the auto world.”
CarBeast currently provides two features: CarBeast Insight and CarBeast Foresight.
CarBeast Insight provides a way for a vehicle owner to describe the “symptoms” of the issue their vehicle is currently having. The app then combs through the knowledge derived from of its large database of repair records to look for similar cases. Innovative AI uses those records to provide a list of repairs that will likely fix the problem and their approximate costs.
In addition, CarBeast Insight provides the user with a listing and contact information for nearby dealerships and service centers.
CarBeast Foresight also alerts a vehicle owner of future problems that their vehicle may have. Utilizing service records of similar year, make, and model vehicles, CarBeast Foresight identifies repairs that the owner’s vehicle may need in the future, projected costs, and whether those issues may snowball into larger problems.
CarBeast Foresight enables the user to see the total projected costs of maintenance and repairs over a selected mileage range, as well as details on each service and repair that will likely be needed.
Anticipating possible repairs helps in making better decisions regarding the purchase, ownership, and upkeep of vehicles.
CarBeast is available at www.carbeast.com for a limited-time introductory price of $0.99 a year per vehicle.