Cheap is not always the best: the benefits of maintaining your car at a franchised dealership


A new law has come into force, allowing motorists to service and maintain their cars at independent service providers.

NADA warns SA motorists to be careful in their actions, so as not to void vehicle warranties.

OEMs and their staff receive regular training on the best way to maintain and maintain a new vehicle.

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The Automotive Aftermarket Competition Guidelines in South Africa went into effect on July 1, 2021 – a process that took more than three years. This means that local motorists now have more choices about where they choose to service and service their vehicles, and not just at original equipment manufacturers, distributors and importers (collectively referred to as OEMs ).

They may also use independent service providers (ISPs) for maintenance and repair work.

As consumers have gained more freedom, it is important to understand that with this freedom comes increased responsibility. Any damage caused to a vehicle due to work carried out or non-original spare parts fitted by ISPs could void the warranty on the parts or the entire vehicle.

The National Automobile Dealers’ Association (NADA), the industry body representing more than 1,350 franchised dealers across South Africa, has compiled a list of five benefits that accompany service and maintenance plans supported by OEMs so that consumers can make informed decisions about future maintenance. of their vehicles.

When you choose to purchase an OEM backed plan with your vehicle, you know you’re covered up front for future maintenance and service costs. There is no need to forecast the expenses of planned work, which for those who do not diligently manage their service books can arise unexpectedly and hit wallets hard.

2 Hedge against inflation

An OEM plan built into the purchase price of the vehicle provides protection against potential increases in the price of parts in the future. The price of the service and maintenance plans is calculated on the basis of the prices of the parts at the time of sale. Motorists who pay separately for periodic servicing and maintenance are not protected against exchange rate fluctuations and inflation.

The price of coins can increase dramatically from year to year as almost all coins are imported and paid for in foreign currency. For example, the change in the value of the Rand between June 6, 2021 and September 6, 2021 resulted in a negative 6.7% change in the USD exchange rate in just 90 days.

The price of coins can increase dramatically from year to year, as almost all coins are imported and paid for in foreign currency. It can affect your monthly budget.

3 Quality manufacturing

With vehicle maintenance comes immense risk and liability that could harm the consumer if not executed and planned properly. Franchised dealerships are equipped with in-depth knowledge of your vehicle and technicians who have access to the right training and equipment. In other words, they are the ones who know your car the best, and you can be assured of safety and peace of mind with any job you perform.

Modern cars are like tablets on wheels and are getting more and more complex day by day. Today’s technically trained experts are more in lab coats and laptops than yesterday’s outfit and lappie. Just like accountants or insurance brokers, technicians need ongoing training and skills development. What worked ten or even two years ago may not apply to a vehicle sold last month. Detailed, working knowledge of your vehicle is essential for safe, efficient and reliable repairs and maintenance.

oil, mechanics, workshop

Oil change

4 Recourse

In the unlikely event that something goes wrong after the work is done at a franchised dealership, you have the backing of established companies with a strong financial position behind you. Car dealerships and their respective OEM headquarters have a much higher reputational risk than there would be with unbranded entities. Mainly because of the power of social media, franchise dealers and the brands they represent are likely to do whatever is reasonable to help customers and often do so even though they are not at fault.

5 National footprint

If an OEM plan covers your car, you have access to a much larger network of dealer workshops across the country, and sometimes even across international borders.

Over the years of ownership, you can build a relationship of trust with a nearby dealer. But when an OEM plan has you covered, you also have the assurance of the same quality of parts, workmanship, processes and procedures from many OEM-compliant franchises while traveling or after a move.

OEMs invest heavily in intensive training programs to equip their franchise technicians with the skills and knowledge to handle complex procedures and introduce new technologies. These programs are essential for ensuring the safety of vehicles and, in turn, the safety of technicians and ultimately motorists, not only in South Africa but also around the world.


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