Fleet News

New warranty scheme puts pressure on manufacturers

PRESSURE is mounting on volume manufacturers to introduce standard three-year/60,000 mile warranties following the launch of a new package by the country's largest provider of direct breakdown warranties. Motor Warranty Direct's FleetCover offers savings in excess of £150 in some cases on the price of manufacturers' extended warranties.

Protection is available for between one and three years, cars can be taken to any garage for service and repairs and immediate protection is available by phone. Policyholders are able to renew their agreement after 12 months. However, by taking out a two or three-year policy they are able to fix the cost over the extended period.

The package was put together partly as a result of customer demand and is further proof of continuing dissatisfaction at some of the major manufacturers' refusal to offer at least a three- year/60,000-mile warranty on all products. The biggest abstainers are leading UK fleet manufacturers including Ford, Vauxhall, Rover, Peugeot and Citroen which, despite brief forays into extended warranties by Ford and Vauxhall have no plans to offer them as standard.

The Association of Car Fleet Operators (ACFO), which put pressure on manufacturers like Vauxhall and Ford to increase warranties said Motor Warranty Direct's move could help bring a change. 'It could make a difference, but it depends how popular it becomes,' Tony Leigh, ACFO chairman said. 'But our efforts must continue to be focused on getting the manufacturers to offer extended warranties as part of the sales package. Perhaps they could buy extended warranties from a company like this and include it in the vehicle's price.'

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