BMW: Are their new UK cars sold without Manufacturer’s Warranty…?

28 Feb

Last week, I popped in to a BMW Mini Dealer Franchise to do some research on the Manufacturer’s warranty for the Mini.

I explained exactly why I was there and the nice lady gave me a shiny brochure and told me that all the information I needed was inside.

Out in the car park, I double checked before driving off. It wasn’t. There was not a single mention within  the fifty scrumptious pages of any Manufacturer’s warranty.

I popped back inside the dealership.

The nice lady shared my surprise and concern. She told me to hang on while she went and checked in the store room. As I waited, I checked the other brochures. Prominently on display was one for ‘Mini Tyre Insurance’ so I took one of those. Then, I grabbed ‘Mini Shortfall’ which tells you how you can buy insurance against paying out finance if your Mini is damaged and off the road.

The nice lady came back and handed me a brochure called ‘Mini Dealer Warranty’ with a proud flourish.

“There you go!” she smiled. I thanked her but…

“This is not the manufacturer’s Warranty” I said. “This is a Dealer Warranty”.

“I’m sure it is all in there!” She smiled. I decided not to debate that point and I thanked her kindly for her help.

“No problem!” she beamed.

There was no information in the brochure on the Manufacturer’s warranty for the Mini.

Back home, I searched BMW UK’s website and found the same thing. Although their website provides huge detail on all the extra things that you can buy to protect yourself, there was no mention of any Manufacturer’s warranty, just a “BMW Dealer Warranty”. A “Dealer Warranty” is different. Legally different and fundamentally altogether different. Reading through the details, it soon became apparent that the BMW Dealer Warranty presents the new owner with the need to do some serious thinking very quickly. And, once again, there was no specific mention of what was or was not covered by any warranty. There were, however, enough special clauses, exceptions and special requirements within the terms to make for very a very complex and confusing ride for the customer.

I contacted the OFT (Office of Fair Trading) in the UK and queried whether the manufacturer BMW is allowed to wash its hands of any responsibility for handling warranty complaints for its new products.

Today, I got a reply from them to tell me that their Preliminary Investigation Team are considering my complaint.

In all fairness to BMW, I am going to hang back before launching in to any further comment on this matter right now. I shall update you as soon as I hear back from them.


***UPDATE*** For those of you wanting to find out what the OFT decided, please refer to my May 4th 2012 article:

BMW(UK) Car Warranties latest explanation. Doesn’t.

I hope you find it interesting…!

© 2012 Loop Withers

2 Responses to “BMW: Are their new UK cars sold without Manufacturer’s Warranty…?”

  1. Thomas February 28, 2012 at 11:33 pm #

    Looking forward to part 2. It’s a learning to read you posts. Lot’s of thing one don’t think about in the day to day life. But very important.

  2. Fran February 29, 2012 at 1:32 am #

    This should be interesting!

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