When a new car is launched, pricing guides and leasing companies want information at the earliest possible opportunity.
This should be a positive move for car manufacturers because it means residual values predictions are set at an early stage and the leasing companies are able to offer quotes as soon as the car is available to order.
But what happens when the car is completely new right down to the last component? In this case the pressure still exists to provide an estimate, and as a car manufacturer wouldn’t win many friends by suggesting prices for major component replacement lower than they turned out to be, they tend to err on the side of caution.
It’s what happened with the Mazda6.
Its SMR information was provided to the running cost guides in October, three months before a car turned a wheel in the UK.
Since then Mazda has discovered that the cost of replacing some components during routine will be lower, but the information is still taking time to make its way into revised SMR costs among the pricing guides.
For example, in our running costs, provided by KeeResources, the SMR costs for our Mazda6 is quoted at 6p per mile over four years/80,000 miles.
This is substantially higher than the previous Mazda6 and significantly higher than the 3.4p per mile quoted for an equivalent Volkswagen Passat.
Mazda has assured us that these high SMR prices will reduce as the information filters through, and in this case was exacerbated by an estimated labour rate £10 per hour higher than estimated for work at a Volkswagen dealer.
Mazda suggests its dealer labour rates wouldn’t be any higher than those at VW dealers.
So good news for anyone who has chosen a Mazda6 so far – it probably won’t cost as much to run as the guides are currently suggesting