Photo Credit:
Photo Credit:

Because of my job, I always need to have a pulse on what’s happening in the enterprise and consumer technology spaces. To that extent, I spend a good amount of time reading news and analyses or listening to dedicated podcasts. Actually, the real reason I do all that is because I’m a full-on nerd but that’s a topic for a different conversation.

This week, my tech news-reading obsession led me to discover [Change Lane]( Maybe you’ve heard of it, but if you haven’t, Change Line is sort of the Uber of oil change. From my point of view, and the one of many savvier observers, the automotive industry is more than ever ripe for disruption. At the moment Google, Tesla or Uber are making the headlines but Change Lane might be the next player to use a combination of technologies to make our lives easier when it comes to maintaining our cars.

Here is how [PandoDaily]( describes the service:

So how about this for a crazy idea: take the automotive maintenance industry, pack it into a series of Optimus Prime-looking trailers, and make it entirely mobile, offering on-demand service at homes and offices around the country. That’s exactly the vision laid out by Minneapolis’ Change Lane, which earlier this week debuted the first prototype of its service trailer to a crowd of 40,000 people, at the same time launching its pilot service in the Twin-Cities area. The company also signed its first enterprise contract, with an unnamed local employer reserving the trailer one day per week as an employee perk.

Like most startups the company is starting small (i.e. $1 million series A funding, limited geographic reach) but it plans to significantly grow operations starting in 2015 with their “Oasis Car Clubs”:

Initially, Change Lane will offer basic services like oil changes, fluid flushes, tire rotations, and simple inspections. But the company also plans to build out a network of regional brick-and-mortar mega-service centers called Oasis Car Clubs, where it will complete more involved repairs. Keeping with the on-demand and low friction theme, Change Lane plans to pick up vehicles from their owners’ home or office, while at the same time dropping off a loaner vehicle.

Well, yes, this is not very innovative but don’t tl;dr on me just yet. The software part of Change Lane’s offering is the most interesting bit in my opinion:

But the company’s biggest innovation may not be these vehicles, Harig says. Rather, its the proprietary software that will deliver automated service instructions to Change Lane’s mechanics based on vehicle type and history. The company will also introduce a consumer mobile app that will include the Uber-like ordering functionality, but will also help vehicle owners monitor their service needs – think of it like the 21st century version of the classic oil change window sticker.

So what do you think? Will Change Lane help drivers save time and (finally) gain transparency on their car repairs? Let us know in the comment section below.

PS: For those who never used Uber before – and you should really give it a try – here is a [$30 coupon](