I think the stereotype goes all the way back to the early days of cars. The very type of garage that the Gomer character is in in the shows is still a view most customers have of the auto service industry.
They think it’s just a machine of nuts and bolts that any hick with a wrench can take apart and put back together.
They remember the days ( but don’t notice the currenent lack ) of a service station on every corner that did in fact service cars and not just sell gas. There were six downtown, now you have to drive a mile in either direction to find gas.
Come with me on a trip down US route 66…’‘you see Amarillo , and Gallup New Mexico’’…that’s me, and as we drive down the ten miles of rt66 that is Gallup NM you will either see empty lots or buildings that were those service stations. Selling gas AND belts, hoses, tires, sealed beams, wipers, antifreeze, oil, …AND checking under your hood, the tire psi, and cleaning the windshield !
If the buildings are still there they do something else now like glass, trading post, sound systems, detailing, etc. or the service bays are blocked up to be mini marts.
But too many car customers STILL believe their servicing should still be just as easy and how dare we attempt to pursuade them that it’s much more complicated than that now.
so they still think that back shop mechanic is nothing more than a wrench turning ‘‘Gomer’’ type and not a schooled, trained technician.