What’s New at ASE?

March 8, 2010

By John Tisdale. In case you haven’t heard, ASE has introduced a new addition to the Automobile Technician certification test series—the Light Vehicle Diesel Engines Test (A9). The new A9 test comes as a response to industry interest in having ASE provide a certification path for technicians working on light diesel engines. Many vehicle manufacturers have plans to incorporate diesel engines in existing production automobiles and light trucks in order to enhance their lineup. The first A9 tests were offered in the May 2009 ASE Test Administration.

We’ve been working on light duty diesel engines for years in pickups and (mostly European) sedans. Advances in diesel technology in the area of emissions and fuel economy, and the increase in fuel prices, have revived the interest for diesel engines in the passenger car market in a big way. Since ASE announced the new A9 test, I’ve received a number of calls asking how this affects the requirements for Master Auto status. The short answer is: it doesn’t. The A9 test will not be required in order for technicians to achieve Master status.

What the A9 test does do is cover automobiles and light trucks equipped with light duty diesel engines up through and including Class 3 (up to14,000 lbs GVW). The test has been developed with some of the best subject matter experts in the industry to outline the test content and write the test questions. The Task List (job skills) and test specifications encompass general areas of knowledge for the A9 test, and include:

  • General Diagnosis
  • Cylinder Head and Valve Train Diagnosis and Repair
  • Engine Block Diagnosis and Repair
  • Lubrication and Cooling System Diagnosis and Repair
  • Air Induction and Exhaust Systems Diagnosis and Repair
  • Fuel System Diagnosis and Repair

Initially, the A9 test will be offered only in the traditional written testing format that ASE offers in May and November. But, like the rest of the A-Series automobile technician certification tests, the A9 test will eventually be offered in the Computer-Based (CBT) testing format as well.

It has been about fifteen years since ASE has offered a new certification test for automobile/light truck technicians, the last being the Advanced Engine Performance Specialist (L1) test introduced in 1994. Since light duty diesel technology shows the promise of a potentially broad application, particularly with existing vehicles and the expected expansion of the diesel automobile market by North American manufacturers, ASE is expanding the credentials offered to automobile technicians who desire professional recognition in this area of specialty.

2010 Automotive Service Professionals Week
Once again, ASE has declared June 7-13, 2010 as National Automotive Service Professionals Week. This year marks the fifth anniversary of NASPW, created to honor the commitment and dedication of automotive, truck and collision technicians, along with parts specialists and other support professionals who serve the motoring public. For 2010, ASE continues this recognition and has it listed in the 2010 Chase’s Calendar of Events.

Twenty-three states issued proclamations honoring National Automotive Service Professionals Week in 2009. We will once again push to have all fifty states recognize the outstanding work done by automotive professionals across the nation. If you are interested in helping promote NASPW, ASE will provide a form letter for local shop owners in each state to petition their respective Governors to mark this special week.

ASE created National Automotive Service Professionals Week to acknowledge the skill and dedication of the men and women who service and maintain the highly complex vehicles upon which we depend so much for our day-to-day transportation, and ASE is proud to help recognize these individuals for their commitment to their customers, their craft and the American economy.