Q&A Saturday. Yesssss!
"We bought our Nissan Navara D40 in 2013. We purchased an extended warranty (total of 5 years warranty). In the first three years we had numerous things go wrong with the vehicle: torque converter, heater core, EGR sensor, etc. These were fixed without any complaint. We only made one extended warranty claim (lower control arms).
"To date we’ve spent over $6k in servicing and over $1800 on the extended warranty. Now we’re told the turbo needs replacing. Quoted price is over $4k. The vehicle is just out of warranty and has under 100,000km on the clock.
"The dealer has denied an out of warranty claim, even though we have had the vehicle serviced by Nissan at the one dealership, as per the schedule. Our next step was to raise a goodwill claim with Nissan Australia. We felt we had a case, but this too was denied."
Extended warranties are a complete scam. Do not buy one or agree to one. The ASIC is absolutely scathing about extended warranties.
In fact, extended warranties give you no greater protection than the legislated ‘Acceptable Quality’ consumer guarantee, which you get for free because it’s a law.
In a nutshell, if a component is not reasonably durable: ie if it fails earlier than a reasonable consumer would expect it to last, then the manufacturer is legally obliged to replace it free, regardless of the vehicle’s warranty status.
In my view your matter has nothing whatsoever to do with goodwill and everything to do with Nissan’s legal obligations to support the product. And they are firmly in the corporate shithead camp on honouring their consumer law obligations, if you ask me.
If the car’s been serviced properly and on time, and not abused, then it is categorically unreasonable for a turbo to fail in five years and under 100,000km.
Instead of asking those cocks for help, however, write them a formal demand using the ACCC’s ‘complaint letter tool’ (Google will find that for you). If that doesn’t work, get your solicitor on it, and ask them to write a proper demand.
"I see Audi A8s heavily depreciated and they seem like an attractive purchase, same as high level CLS Benz. Is this too good to be true? Am I missing something here? Also, can you do a small FAQ on whether you need to balance your wheels every time you rotate them? I don't think you do, but try telling a tyre retailer that!" - Antony S
7-Series, A8, CLS, etc., they all depreciate fairly heavily. This does make them seem attractive, used. Unfortunately the cost of spare parts, service and repairs - keeping them on the road - does not depreciate in line with the cars themselves.
$15-20k for a replacement transmission; that kind of thing… Too common.
So, in a nutshell, it’s all good until something goes wrong. But even normal items that wear out regularly, like tyres and brakes, are very expensive.
If you can’t afford a new one, you probably can’t afford to keep an old one on the road if something goes wrong.
On wheel balancing: No - you don’t need to balance the wheels and tyres if all you do is change their position on the car. If the car starts shaking - especially at a particular speed, and it goes away at other speeds - then that’s nature’s way of telling you you need a wheel balance.
"I recently refinanced a car with a novated lease through my employer - I’ve been trying to sell the car since I bought it (it's one of your lemons) and the financier knew this. Having bought the finance on the car for $18k - the payout figure from them now includes the balloon figure - a profit of $8k plus interest payments in less than 6 months. Does that make sense? I was thinking of contacting the finance ombudsman…" - Imogen D
This is why it’s so important to align your objectives with the finance you buy. A lot of finance contracts provide substantial penalties for early payout - mainly because the financier doesn’t get ahead until later on in the term.
So if you pull the rug out from under them, early, they reciprocate.
Basically when you put that pen on the page and sign your name, you agree to all the fine print - which many people do not read. And then, when your situation changes, such as by selling the car and needing to get out of the contract early, the financier inserts its ice-cold speculum into your … ahhh … bank account.
And you think that’s a violation, but it’s not because you said that was OK - in the fine print, which you probably did not read.
Check all the details with your accountant - but on the balance of probabilities I think you’re stuck with it. If they are bending you over, over and above the terms of the contract you agreed to, refer it to the ombudsman.