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What is the obsession with warranties?

tigeo

Autocross Champion
Over and over you read threads where the warranty is a prominent component of the ownership experience for some. You read of folks paying to have a shop look over the car with a fine-toothed comb before the warranty runs out to hand the list to the dealer of things to fix. Nearly every mod question is prefaced with "does it void my warranty?". I have known people that trade in cars when the warranty expires and tell me "I'd never own a car that wasn't under warranty." Why? Is it just financial risk associated with having a car you don't own outright so additional cost beyond the payment (which could already be a stretch) etc. is a deal-breaker? Is it peace of mind? I'm just curious as I've never really cared much about them for any car I've owned. I've never had a major thing fixed under warranty - only nickle/dime stuff and those have been few and far between and this spans Honda, Ford, and VW models that I've owned that had a new car warranty (or a portion of it left if purchased used). All major repairs I've had on all vehicles I've owned over 30 years of driving have been out-of-warranty and would have occurred past any reasonable extended warranty ended (north of 100K miles); I keep my cars (both new and used) a long time so don't trade them in after a few years like many. Both of my current VWs have the 6/72K warranty and while nice, really wasn't a purchasing factor to me; I also never buy/never have bought extended warranties/service contracts. Just a discussion b/c I'm bored today 🤣 .
 

jimlloyd40

Autocross Champion
Location
Phoenix
Car(s)
2018 SE DSG
I think the main reason people are obsessed with the warranty is for the catastrophic possibility of a trans or engine needing to be replaced. I'm with you though I don't concern myself with a warranty because I know I'll mod it and I'm not waiting for a warranty to expire before modding it. Plus with how fast I accumulate mileage a warranty wouldn't last long anyway. Never purchase extended warranty either.
 

tigeo

Autocross Champion
I think the main reason people are obsessed with the warranty is for the catastrophic possibility of a trans or engine needing to be replaced. I'm with you though I don't concern myself with a warranty because I know I'll mod it and I'm not waiting for a warranty to expire before modding it. Plus with how fast I accumulate mileage a warranty wouldn't last long anyway. Never purchase extended warranty either.
I too am in the higher annual mileage club. My GSW was bought new in Nov '18 so coming up on 2 years of the 6 year warranty but I'll be at 45K by then so I'm thinking the 72K will be in another year at most; under most normal warranties I'd already be done. I agree; massive repair bills is the likely concern but the odds are so low. Now I'll probably blow my DSG today. ahahahahah
 

acorazza

Go Kart Newbie
Location
NYC
Car(s)
2018 GTI 6MT
I think it comes down to the fact that most people finance cars and want to avoid a costly repair when they already have a monthly payment. At that point if you can't afford to fix if something breaks you're still stuck with a payment.
 

Navi

Autocross Champion
Location
BK/NYC/Hamptons
What is the obsession with warranties? Hmm.. I wonder?

 

bentin

Autocross Champion
Location
Austin, TX
Car(s)
18 GTI SE - 3 Pedals
Yeah, when I had my 17 with the 3/36 warranty and drove about 28k miles a year, I was just planning on doing a tune right after the warranty ran out. When that car got totaled and I got an 18 with the 6/72 warranty and also dropped down to about 8k miles a year, things got more challenging. Ultimately, with Magnuson Moss, I don't really worry about it and will tune as soon I figure out which clutch to get.

For me, I've had a dozen or so cars, and one (looking at you N54 135i) had about $32k of warranty work done in three years. Most of that popped up in the first year, all of it by the end of the third. No other car has had any significant warranty work, aside from typical VW and Audi electrical gremlins (got one electrical issue that needs dealer attention now.) But I've always used indy shops for nearly all work and just visit the dealership for warranty work. It's not like an EA888 is a terribly expensive replacement cost, and there seem to be plenty of transmissions laying around junk yards if I managed to grenade the thing somehow, which seems unlikely with a fairly mild tune.
 

Gptuners

Drag Racing Champion
Location
KY
Car(s)
2019 GTI S
I've never owned a new car before this one. And although I've been happy with them, I feel like one of the only reason to buy new is too have something that offsets the additional cost of buying new. To me, warranty is like a form of insurance. So now I'm basically just going to do a couple of oil analyses, have at least one VW inspection, and feel good that I have a solid starting point for mods.

I always hated modding something and then immediately finding out I had a weak point somewhere else. That could have also been that I was less detail-oriented back then.
 

IanCH

Autocross Champion
Location
MA
Car(s)
'20 GTI
I've never had a car break or use the warranty, including my FBO IS38 golf R (well, at the time it was FBO) that died in a head on collision at 45k. Tuned since 1400miles and driven hard the entire time it was alive.

Yeah you get the warranty with a new car, but you also get the new car because the first 50k miles are like 90%+ trouble free with proper maintenance.
 

shortyb

Autocross Newbie
Location
Upstate SC
Car(s)
Felon Taxi,Dad Wagon
Everyone has different "needs" for a warranty. I can wrench most anything that I'll need to do so it's just parts cost for me. Others might not be in the same boat. Same for modding. And the answer to most modding questions is "yes, it WILL void your warranty" (or VW will find some way to void it). I just don't want to get tied to a warranty that will limit my fun with the car. Most of my warranties are done on time rather than mileage anyway and I ain't gettin any younger, so f*ck it!

I do the same strategy as I do my insurance deductibles; deposit that amount, usually $1000 (mine are high on purpose) into some sort of interest bearing account. If I don't need it, let it roll. Did the same when the GTI was new, put $2K away for a rainy day. If I don't use it, can make for a decent down payment on something else if I wanted to. Or buy a pretty sordid night of debauchery 😁.
 

240GTI

New member
Location
TX
Car(s)
2017 GTI Sport DSG
I don't want to pay for a repair that only exists because the manufacturer cheaped out i.e. the leaking thermostat issue due to plastic housing. Also a plastic oil pan? Turbo waste gate actuator getting stuck? I understand it's a $25k car but some things are just questionable.
 

jimlloyd40

Autocross Champion
Location
Phoenix
Car(s)
2018 SE DSG
I too am in the higher annual mileage club. My GSW was bought new in Nov '18 so coming up on 2 years of the 6 year warranty but I'll be at 45K by then so I'm thinking the 72K will be in another year at most; under most normal warranties I'd already be done. I agree; massive repair bills is the likely concern but the odds are so low. Now I'll probably blow my DSG today. ahahahahah

Slacker. Mine's an 18 SE with 100K miles. 😂😂
 

tigeo

Autocross Champion
Yeah, when I had my 17 with the 3/36 warranty and drove about 28k miles a year, I was just planning on doing a tune right after the warranty ran out. When that car got totaled and I got an 18 with the 6/72 warranty and also dropped down to about 8k miles a year, things got more challenging. Ultimately, with Magnuson Moss, I don't really worry about it and will tune as soon I figure out which clutch to get.

For me, I've had a dozen or so cars, and one (looking at you N54 135i) had about $32k of warranty work done in three years. Most of that popped up in the first year, all of it by the end of the third. No other car has had any significant warranty work, aside from typical VW and Audi electrical gremlins (got one electrical issue that needs dealer attention now.) But I've always used indy shops for nearly all work and just visit the dealership for warranty work. It's not like an EA888 is a terribly expensive replacement cost, and there seem to be plenty of transmissions laying around junk yards if I managed to grenade the thing somehow, which seems unlikely with a fairly mild tune.
Mag Moss won't help you with the tune and aftermarket though, it's not it's purpose. It's so VW can't deny a claim b/c you had your oil changed at Jiffy Lube with equivalent parts/oil.
 

swcrow

Autocross Champion
Location
Virginia
Car(s)
7.5
a car warranty is like that nice warm comfy blanket that you know will wrap you up well, but that sits folded on the couch and almost always goes unused. Sure, there are some times it gets cold and you may use it, but probably not. It's that warm feeling of "it exists JUST in case". I'm sure this bucket is what most fall into

I will say, it really appeals to most that aren't mechanically savvy.
 

vj123

Autocross Newbie
Location
The Detroit
Car(s)
19 & 16 GTI - sold
By having longer warranty, OEM would pay for any issues during that time frame. Why should i pay that money out of my pocket and its as simple as that.

Even though MK7 platform exists from 2015, OEMs demand certain amount of cost cutting from tier 1 suppliers every year. Even though same component is used through out a program, tier 1 suppliers are constantly making changes to their product to achieve the cost cutting demanded by the OEM.
 

jay745

track sl00t
Location
Chicago
Car(s)
2 vw's
A lot of people use their maximum monthly funds towards the payment of a car, so if anything goes wrong they're already tapped out and can't afford repairs. I never got to use the warranty on the only brand new car I ever bought, my mk6 gti. Bought it with 12 miles on it, tuned it at 7k miles, turbo swapped it at 20k miles. Nothing bad happened to it before the warranty ran out.
 
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