The Vehicle Manufacturer Body Repair Council has been disbanded and incorporated into the SMMT working group framework.
The move is intended to give the group a stronger presence within the industry.
It is now called the SMMT Vehicle Manufacturer Body Repair Group or, for rather less of a mouthful, the VMBRG.
Its remit is to act as a single point of contact for the Association of British Insurers and research centre Thatcham.
It will also provide SMMT members with technical advice and will interact with governments in the UK and abroad.
â€œThis new initiative is a real step change within the accident repair sector,â€ said Andy Lawlor, who will chair the Group.
â€œNow that it is led by the Society, the vehicle manufacturer repairer community has a structured frameworkâ€¦ to positively influence at government level.â€