For years, owners were obligated to service or repair their new cars at the dealership that facilitated their purchase. When they attempted to receive assistance from an independent provider, their motoring plan would automatically become void. However, these rules are now no longer applicable. From 1 July 2021, the Right To Repair campaign is putting more freedom in the hands of consumers, allowing them to seek servicing and repairs wherever they desire. While these rules will largely benefit owners, there are a few potential downsides that are certainly worth considering.
The Choice Is Yours
The quickest explanation of Right To Repair is that owners can now service or repair their cars at any independent provider. You can still go to the approved dealership if you want, but you also have the option to seek services from a provider of your choosing. On top of this, the factory warranty will remain intact no matter what you do. You can return to the original dealership after undergoing repairs elsewhere and they will still be obligated to maintain your car.
Furthermore, individuals are no longer forced into a maintenance or service plan from the dealership. With the new rules in place, these programmes have become optional. Also, you will be able to obtain a plan from any provider of your choice. At its core, Right To Repair is aimed at supplying consumers with an extra layer of independence. Having said that, it is also important that we consider the potential negatives of a more open system.
Freedom at a Price
Modern cars are complicated machines. They are made up of thousands of components that need to operate in precise harmony. The original dealership has the technology and tools required for intricate servicing that an independent provider may not. If a mechanic is even slightly unsure of a repair they are conducting, it can cause huge problems down the road. A similar issue may arise when it comes to parts. While aftermarket components are often developed close to the OEM specification, they are not the real thing.
When a consumer visits an independent provider for servicing or repairs, they will often do it because it is cheaper. Of course, price often doesn’t equal quality and the results could affect the driver’s safety. With all this in mind, the original dealership will still be required to adhere to their warranty and assist the owner, no matter the service history of the vehicle.
With the new rules in place, Right To Repair is already making a massive impact within the South African motoring industry. As we all adapt to the changes, iX will be here to keep you up-to-date and well-informed. For more information on how iX can help your service department thrive under these new conditions, contact us today.