Insurance warranties - Jem Russell Brown
this is the gist of a Q I posed to HJ who suggested that I pose it in the Backroom :
I've had quotes from Warranty Wise and Drive Assured (Warranty Holdings, part of Ford), both found via links from, for my May 1991 registered Audi 100 Avant 2.2L petrol Turbo (seems like a very rare combination of engine & body). These are the only ones prepared to quote on a vehicle of its age & mileage (112K).
The Warranty Wise looks how I'd expect it to with specified components (& covers what I need) but the Drive Assured (Warranty Holdings) seems too good to be true - only normal wear & tear items are excluded. However it does state "Mechanical breakdown is the failure of a component, causing sudden stoppage of its function, for a reason other than wear and tear, normal deterioration or negligence". On a 10+ year old car this could be weasel words in that all components are subject to wear which just gets more noticeable the older the vehicle.
The costs for 1 year are Warranty Wise about £273, Drive Assured (Warranty Holdings) £295; for 2 years WW £483, DA £395

HJ replied "I've just had a letter from a reader whose claim was rejected by Warranty Holdings because the part was deemed to have worn out"

Anybody else got any experiences or thoughts ?
Re: Insurance warranties - Dave N
I don't reckon you'll get a lot of coverage for £300. Can't get something for nothing anymore. Knowing Audi prices, even a minor repair would cost more than the premium, so they must use the 'wear and tear' clause pretty regularly.
Re: Insurance warranties - Bob H
I suspect that with a 10 year old 112K car everthing will be 'worn out' if you try to claim.

Bob H
Re: Insurance warranties - David W
View of a realist/cynical guy......

These warranty policies will exclude all those things you will be most likely to need, consumables/servicing/wearing items. So I guess you will be forking out for routine services, brake pads/discs, exhaust parts, clutch, tyres, wheel bearings, bulbs, etc.

And they will cover? Major failure of engine/turbo/gearbox??

With modern cars these are the least likely things to go wrong if it is in decent order now and you keep up the service schedule.

And as mentioned above virtually every failure of those components could be a result of wear and tear (or twisted round to that viewpoint). Also I agree that a major failure on such a car would be financial disaster for them on such a car. They must have some method to minimise losses or they would be out of business.

Problem is once the car is stripped for inspection you're without a motor while the arguements go on, or you fork out for the repair to get the car back and find you have breached some small print which negates the claim.

Other thing is 25% of a cars trade value each year is a bit steep when you still have to pay for servicing.

Best value for your £300 would be damm good specialist servicing and an extra interim oil change.

Re: Insurance warranties - Neil Cater
I've used Warranty Wise when my wife's car's warranty ran out. Despite the professional-looking website the warranty wise people sound as though they're based in Garstang and only staffed by a few people. They're underwritten by WHA limited who in turn are part of another group.

The things that riled were the fact that they paid average labour rates - whatever they are, but they don't seem realistic. And with older higher mileage cars they'll only pay a percentage of the overall price.

We used them when the timing belt failed at about 32000 miles but had gone through a Fiat main dealer.

Although the warranty was cost-effective for such a large job I wouldn't recommend Warranty Wise. I may have seen some recommendations for Warranty Direct. . .
Re: Insurance warranties - Richard Hall
It's an Audi. If it has been properly serviced it will be just about run in at this mileage. The five cylinder turbo motor is good for 250k miles with regular oil changes. Find a good independent Audi specialist and get him to change the cambelt, brake fluid and power steering fluid (I suspect this vehicle will have the hydraulic brake servo which shares its fluid with the power steering - these systems need regular fluid changes) as well as a full service. That should leave you change from £300. Prevention is better than cure, and if you look after the vehicle properly it won't go wrong, so you won't need a warranty anyway...
Re: Insurance warranties - Tony
I would not bother with the warranty,they are in business to make money,dont expect them to pay to run your car,it wont happen.
Re: Insurance warranties - Dave N
Audi's don't go wrong??

Try a search to see if this is reflected further down.
Re: Insurance warranties - Andrew Smith
On a car bought from a dealer I want a warranty to ensure that if there are any problems with the car i've been sold then them will be sorted out.
On a car that I have owned for a period of time I am happy to take problems as they come. In the long term this will always cost you less and you don't have to argue with anyone but yourself about whether the work needs doing and who is going to pay for it.
If you have owned the car for some time then you will have a good idea of what is likely to be a problem.
Re: Insurance warranties - Andrew Moorey (Tune-Up Ltd.)
We had an instance last year with an Astra with a failed head gasket. Lady had religiously kept up servicing schedule and renewed the warranty each year. At 100K+ The warranty company which IS one of those mentioned above would only pay for the head gasket itself at a labour rate of £25 ph. They would not pay for the head refacing or the rest of the head set, stretch bolts, oil, filter or fresh coolant and INSISTED on a new cam-belt which again they would not pay for. Final nail was that they would only pay book time for removal and refitting of the head which does not take into account cleaning up the job which can easily add an hour or so or taking and collecting the head from the machine shop.
Re: Insurance warranties - summary - Jem Russell Brown
Thanks for all the feedback
the consensus seems to be that I should spend the money directly on the vehicle eg interim oil-change, use Audi specialist. I already use latter plus good local independent but will take up the interim oil change idea.
I guess that I should have added to the original note that I'd a failure of the ECU earlier this year which put paid to foreign holiday (loads of labour to confirm diagnosis then wait for 2nd hand part - well a new ECU is 4 figures I ask you !). So I'd thought that a warranty would cover ECU, ABS, etc which are £££ when they fail; the Warrantwise small print specifically states that these are covered.
Hey ho - any of you who are Audi enthusiasts may find a posting on the Audi owners club in a year or so for a 2.2 petrol turbo Avant needing a part or worse still needing a breaker. I hope not; man in love with machine - sad innit.
thanks again

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