Operations

Publisher's Page: It’s Time to Look at the Dealer’s Side

Posted on July 1, 1998 by Sara Eastwood-McLean

We’re always providing tips for operators on how to run better businesses.  In this issue, our cover story presents ideas on how to get the most out of your service facility and dealership.  While our editor was hard at work contacting operators for information, I thought it’d be interesting to call a few dealerships to solicit their take on working in our industry.

The number one issue service centers and dealerships mentioned were warrant claims.  The consensus is that there’s an ongoing abuse of warranty claims made by the end-user.

Vehicles are man-made products, so problems will naturally arise.  The dealer, coachbuilder, and factory acknowledge this by providing warranty packages.  A limousine comes with two basic warranties – one from the factory and one from the coachbuilder.  For example, a factory warranty on a new Town Car is three years/100,000 miles.  This warranty will cover the base unit parts.  A standard coachbuilder warranty covers the conversion, electrical system, rear interior, and other conversion parts.  The typical coachbuilder warranty covers two years/24,000 miles.

The general agreement among dealers is that, while there are legitimate claims, most vehicle problems do not stem from defective parts.  They are caused by driver and passenger misuse.

For instance, a common scenario in our business is a limousine that sits idle for several hours with the air conditioning and the stereo on, while the chauffeur waits for his or her client.  However, vehicles are not designed to sit idle for long periods of time.  This puts undue stress on the electrical system, which may cause a fuse to blow or a bulb to break.  In this case, the operator should not expect a new fuse or bulb to be covered under his or her warranty.

Dealers told me that when items break, operators will almost always try to claim them under their warranty.  Further, the dealer is expected to resolve the problem.  One dealer said, “No matter the problem, the onus is always placed on the person who sold the vehicle to fix it.”  Dealers claim they are often pressured by threats to push claims through to the coachbuilder or factory.

Because factories and coachbuilders are inundated with warranty claims that are all too often false, they tend to over-scrutinize them, which slow the process down.  Many are simply rejected.

What would dealers like to see change in their relationships with operators?  They’d like to have a more honest alliance with their customers.  “There needs to be a heightened level of trust between the dealer and the operator,” said another dealer “This begins with operators taking responsibility for wear and tear on vehicles that are put under intense use.”  Warranties are designed to cover defects in equipment and manufacturer installation errors, not a smashed vanity mirror that was damaged by a rowdy passenger.

The next time you bring your vehicle in for service; try to let your conscience be your guide.  I bet you’ll get the true service you deserve.

View comments or post a comment on this story. (0 Comments)

More News

Prevost Offers Online ABA Driver Training Courses

The luxury motorcoach OEM and trade group address one of the industry's biggest challenges.

Luxury Line Run Motorcoach Service Adds Another Texas Route

Vonlane, which calls itself a private jet on wheels, now connects Austin and Fort Worth.

Uber Loses License To Operate In London

The TNC's license will expire Sept. 30 as it claims to have some 3.5 million users and about 40,000 drivers in the city.

Transportation Future, Driverless Vehicles Hot Topics At BusCon 2017

The show featured nearly 135 exhibitors and close to 60 vehicles, and some of the latest technologies available to operators.

Taxi Drivers, Chauffeurs More Likely To Die From Violence

CDC data shows they are the most likely workers to die on the job because of violent crime risks.

See More News

Facebook Comments ()

Comments (0)

Post a Comment

Submit

Blog

See More

LCT Store

LCT Magazine - September 2017 $12.95 MOTORCOACH / BUS ISSUE COVER STORY: * Irizar Racks Up A Good Rookie Year * *



Connect

Experience the three annual industry events for networking for business, showcasing vehicles and products, and getting the tools for success.

Read About Your Region

What’s Happening Near You?
Click on any state to see the latest industry news and events in that region.

More From The World's Largest Fleet Publisher

Automotive Fleet

The Car and truck fleet and leasing management magazine

Business Fleet

managing 10-50 company vehicles

Fleet Financials

Executive vehicle management

Government Fleet

managing public sector vehicles & equipment

TruckingInfo.com

THE COMMERCIAL TRUCK INDUSTRY’S MOST IN-DEPTH INFORMATION SOURCE

Work Truck Magazine

The number 1 resource for vocational truck fleets

Metro Magazine

Serving the bus and passenger rail industries for more than a century

Schoolbus Fleet

Serving school transportation professionals in the U.S. and Canada

Please sign in or register to .    Close