Many years ago when I worked for myself, after some time I found that I was getting repeat business which is a great confidence boost when you are trying to earn a living working out of a small rented garage. I knew that if I did good work and didn’t charge too much, I would get more business on a ‘word of mouth’ basis. I had a mate who would lend a hand with any big jobs involving block & tackle, dropping subframes or the like for which I always paid him cash.what is the point in buying a car with a 7 year warranty and then risking it and/or moaning about the costs involved?
We were discussing my financial situation over a couple of beers one evening and he was surprised at how little I was charging for bread and butter stuff like servicing, brakes, clutch replacement and the like. He had worked for himself for a while but couldn’t earn as much as he wanted so got himself work on the oil rigs in the North Sea which did pay good money in those days. One of the things I learned from him was that, in terms of job pricing, there is a point at which customers will simply go to a main dealer or find a cheaper independent and he reckoned 70%of the local main dealer labour rates was the absolute limit, beyond which work dries up.
After a little research, I was able to get a handle on the labour charges of several franchised dealers of different brands in my area which was a great help in pricing up work and turning a profit. Although I rarely priced work as high as 70%, I did ok undercutting dealer prices by 40%-50% on many jobs that were easy to turn around quickly.
Being able to purchase parts at trade rates on a monthly account allowed for a little more profit in the job aside from the labour. Independents survive today working on similar principles to those I employed 50 years ago but, returning to ‘Back again’s point, I don’t understand the mentality of those who spend 20K - 40K on a KIA with a 7-year warranty then quibble about the very reasonable cost of dealer maintenance, choosing to let an independent maintain the vehicle for a little less.
That 7-year warranty is worth something so if a KIA dealer is a few quid dearer than a local independent, I view that as a price worth paying for the protection afforded by that warranty.
If I can rant just for a moment, I do get p’d off with those correspondents who speak of ‘my mechanic’ in the way that some women like to describe their local butcher, fishmonger and so on, as if they were Nigella Lawson or Mary Berry, receiving the best cuts, special deals, freshest produce, particularly when most of them use Tesco, M&S or Morrison’s.
For those who think Korean cars are a poor deal and for those who criticise the warranty, just go buy a Ford or a Citroen/Peugeot/Vauxhall or any of the German brands alleged to be Premium fare. They will go wrong after 3 years and the bills will be expensive but you don’t need to take my word for that. Some of us have lots of experience of other brands and just a glance at the reliability tables from the JD Power Survey or indeed any of the other reliability surveys conducted by the motoring press is more than a little revealing!
If you only rent your car and change it every 24 or 36 months, then you will hopefully never need to lash out any of your hard-earned to get it fixed but for those unable or unwilling to change a car so frequently, those long-term warranties from the Hyundai/KIA group, SsangYong, MG and Toyota make a lot of sense.