Guidelines and Responsibilities for the
National Automotive Technology Competition

These guidelines and responsibilities are designed to inform participating Dealer Associations, Dealers, and Schools with what is expected of them by the NATC Committee.

Dealer Association 

The Dealer Association is responsible to choose a Team that will represent them for the competition. 

  • Team Selection is up to your association. The challenge is to send the finest two-person high school technician team in your area. Most associations either work with an excellent neighboring high school or hold their own local contest as a means of choosing the best the area has to offer. If you need assistance in planning your own local competition please call Carole Rogner at 718-640-2012 or email

  • Team members must be high school seniors, eligible to graduate in June of the contest year, and have not reached their 19th birthday by January of the contest year. 

    • Proof of age and photo I.D. must be presented upon request.

The Dealer Association will pick the vehicle make and model their school will be using during the NATC at the NADA conference.

  • It is the responsibility of the association representative to notify the National Automotive Technology Competition representative of any concerns about the vehicle chosen at the time of the drawing.

The Dealer Association is responsible to coordinate a relationship between a Dealership of the vehicle drawn and their NATC team.

  • It is recommended that you choose a Dealer that will be able to provide assistance to the school and students with their preparation for the competition.

  • Practice time at a dealership must be a school sanctioned event. 

    • A school’s permission trip form- signed by a school administrator and parent or guardian must be available for inspection by the dealership representative.

  • Teams should be considerate of a dealership’s willingness to allow them to practice in their service shop and should limit their practice time. 

    • Four to eight practice days at a dealership is a tolerable amount of time.  If additional days are required for training, the dealership representative and team instructor should agree upon the number of additional practice days.

  • Dealerships are not required to loan a practice vehicle to a school.

  • Dealerships are not required to loan scanners, tools, equipment or electronic reference materials to a school. 

    • Items should be available at the dealership during your practice time.  If a dealership does not have a required scanner, tool, piece of equipment or electronic reference material, contact your manufacturer representative.  Due to limited supplies, special equipment may not be available at the time of your request.   

The Dealer Association is responsible to ensure payment of the NATC Registration fee of $750.00

  • Registration fees cover operational and administration costs, tickets to The Welcome to New York Dinner Reception, 4 Tickets to the National Awards Banquet, breakfast and lunch on competition days, official competition shirt and hat for team, and much more.

    • Additional tickets to the National Awards Banquet can be purchased for $75.00 per ticket. Please contact Carole Rogner at to purchase additional tickets before March 1, 2018.

  • The registration fee does not cover travel and other expenses.

The Association is responsible to communicate NATC rules and regulations to their team.

The Association is responsible to communicate any issues their team is having with their vehicle to the Authorized Manufacturer Representative assigned to them.

Please remember that companies participating in the NATC volunteer their representative’s time, use of vehicles and equipment for the competition. Their authorized representatives merit your courtesy and respect.  

School / Instructor

The school is responsible for ensuring that competing students and instructors have all the appropriate paperwork on file for the NATC and during training sessions at the local dealership.

This includes:

  • Parental/Guardian Permission contract
  • Medical forms/Emergency contact information
  • Code of Conduct

School /Instructor is responsible to communicate any issues their team is having with their vehicle, assigned dealership, NATC rules, or any other concerns to their Dealer Association.

School /Instructor is responsible to prepare the competitors to the best of their abilities.

  • Some guidelines for students participating are as follows:
    • Good to excellent reading and comprehension skills.  Interpreting what is written on the repair orders and understanding what to do.
    • Good basic electrical diagnostic skills are a must.  Understanding how to make measurements with a volt-ohm meter and interpreting what the readings mean.  The old method of just checking / looking at all the fuses will not be sufficient.
    • The students need to learn how to work as a team.  Understand what each of their responsibilities are and following through with communication and action.
    • Understanding the 3 C’s CONCERN (what is the customer complaining about or what is wrong with the vehicle); CAUSE (diagnose the vehicle to find out what is wrong, including any scan tool results or volt-ohm meter results); CORRECTION (what is needed to repair the vehicle including any parts and/or where the repair information is found.  Additionally, the vehicle must be repaired, i.e., part replaced and rechecked.
    • DOCUMENTATION is critical.  Every year the Committee stresses this point to students and many times it is forgotten.  DO NOT wait until the end because when time is over, no time is given afterwards for documentation.  It should be written on the repair as the competition is in progress.
    • Students should not worry if a part that is requested is not available.  Make sure the name of the part is clear.  The parts department will give the students a generic answer to their request if the part is not available.  There is no penalty for this.  All that is lost is time on the vehicle.


The Dealer is responsible to provide the students access to the model of the vehicle being used in the competition. 

Assistance from 1 or more dealer technicians

Access to technical information in the form of the ‘service manual.’

Additional information on the use of the manufacturer’s scan tool

  • This includes hook up and retrieval of information. 

The dealer is not obligated to loan the school a car or scan tool to use. 

If the dealer has questions or concerns, they should contact the dealer association or the assigned manufacturer representative.

Provide the Competition Committee with the model and year of the vehicle being used in the competition. 

  • This includes any details concerning engine and/or transmission selections. 
  • While it is not easy to select which vehicle you will use, keep in mind that the students have a very short time to learn the vehicles at the dealership.  The complexity of the vehicle should be considered.  The technology of many vehicles is very advanced and the students may not have the opportunity to learn enough about it in a short time. 

The manufacturer must communicate with the Technical Committee during the year to know whatever preparation is needed.

The manufacturer will provide parts and service information during the NATC.

  • i.e., Electronic Service Manual and diagnostic scan tool that is necessary.  Also if online access will be required at the Competition site, let the Committee know this ahead of time.

The manufacturer is NOT required to provide a vehicle and/or diagnostic scan tool to the participating school for preparation. 

Assist Dealer Associations with finding a cooperating dealership for team training purposes.

Manufacturer Rep/Technical Person

Further Information

If you have any further questions concerning the National Automotive Technology Competition please contact Carole Rogner, 716.640.2012 or