Fleet News

VW launches variable service interval option

VOLKSWAGEN has launched a new variable servicing option offering fleet customers the chance to choose their own maintenance patterns. For 2001 model year Golf, Bora, Beetle, Passat and Sharan cars, customers can choose between extended servicing or variable servicing to replace the traditional 10,000 miles or 12 months' schedule.

The scheme will also soon apply to TDI PD models. These cars are set to run on an extended service regime which means a vehicle requires an oil change every 10,000 miles or 12 months and a major service every 20,000 miles or 24 months.

Where traditional service schedules require an oil change and inspection every 10,000 miles or 12 months, the extended service schedule allows them to be staggered. Although oil changes would be carried out every 10,000 miles, major services can be carried out on a 20,000-mile schedule.

However, a variable servicing option is now also offered for these cars, similar to the system operated by Audi. The move is a result of new engines which can be used with the latest generation of long-life oils.

Rather than having fixed servicing intervals determined by mileage, a range of engine sensors electronically monitor the vehicle's oil temperature, oil pressure, oil level and brake pad wear to establish when a service is needed.

It means major services could be carried out almost half as frequently as on a traditional service schedule. Using long-life oil means the vehicle no longer requires the traditional oil change. It is now possible to drive for up to 19,000 miles or 24 months on petrol models and some diesels can reach 30,000 miles or 24 months.

A Volkswagen spokeswoman said: 'The option will not benefit everyone, so fleet managers need to talk to their Volkswagen dealer before deciding what to do. If a car covers a lot of motorway miles there could be savings, but cars used only for short journeys would not benefit. There are also environmental benefits with less oil being disposed of.'

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