Volvo Increases Warranty and Maintenance Coverage
By Kevin Miller
Yesterday, Volvo Cars of North America (VCNA) announced an extension of its new vehicle warranty and factory scheduled maintenance programs, valid for all 2009 Volvo vehicles sold by VCNA retailers between June 2 and June 30. The program, called “Volvo Safe + Sound Coverage Plan”, provides additional time and mileage on warranty repairs and roadside assistance coverage, enhances wear item coverage and extends factory scheduled maintenance coverage.
The Safe + Sound Coverage Program includes 5 years/60,000 miles of:
* Scheduled Maintenance (Eight scheduled maintenance visits)
* Coverage on Wear Items (Brake pads, brake rotors, windshield wiper blades)
* Manufacturers Warranty
* Roadside Assistance (Volvo On Call program, unlimited mileage)
Volvo’s Safe + Sound Coverage Plan extends each of the above services to a term of 5 years/60,000 miles, from the previous 4/50,000 warranty coverage and 3/36000 factory scheduled maintenance. The enhanced plan, which is transferable to subsequent owners of the vehicle, also adds wear item coverage for items like wiper blades and brake pads, which previously weren’t covered by Volvo’s maintenance plan. The plan also extends the term of Volvo’s roadside assistance program to five years, with no mileage limitations.
Until now, the benchmark in new vehicle warranty and maintenance coverage has been BMW, which offers 4 year/50,000 mile warranty and maintenance (including wear items) on new vehicles. Volvo’s enhanced program exceeds the term offered by BMW’s coverage.
“This is best-in-class coverage,” said Tassos Panas, VCNA Executive Vice President, Sales Operations. “Today, consumers are looking for value and Volvo has built an overall coverage program that adds value and peace of mind to their ownership experience.”
According to Volvo, the program is designed offer a premium ownership experience by expanding and enhancing services to Volvo owners. Late last year, VCNA surveyed luxury buyers to ascertain how the economy was impacting their lives. The corporation found that two major points were likely to influence future purchase decisions: The need for durable, high quality products and concern about maintenance expenditures. This study also drew out their concern for strong warranty support and their belief that scheduled maintenance coverage would be an important part of their decision criteria.
“Volvo has always been about personal safety and security. Our Safe + Sound Coverage Plan offers exceptional value and financial security that goes beyond crumple zones and airbags,” Panas said. “This is a security of ownership program that is very Volvo.”
In this time of slow vehicle sales, manufacturers are smart to adjust their warranty and maintenance programs to heighten the perception of value provided by their products. For example, Volkswagen added standard scheduled maintenance on their 2009 models (though they also reduced the overall warranty term on their cars from 4/50,000 to 3/36000). Volvo’s Safe + Sound Coverage Plan will surely reduce ownership costs for the owners of Volvo vehicles, though for now the plan is only being offered on 2009 cars sold by VCNA retailers from June 2 through June 30, so potential buyers will need to learn about the limited time program and act quickly- or hope Volvo extends the program. Evaluating Volvo’s sales numbers this time next month will show whether the program enticed buyers into the Swedish brand’s showrooms.
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