Hyundai has introduced a seven-year warranty across most of its model range – up from the industry-first five-year coverage it introduced 20 years ago.
However, according to a confidential dealer bulletin obtained by CarAdvice, the factory-backed extended warranty only applies to certain Hyundai vehicles ordered and delivered from the beginning of October through to the end of December 2019 – with “no exceptions”.
“This is a retail offer, available for a limited time. It is not a permanent condition of Hyundai sale,” the statement reads.
It also added certain exclusions: “The seven-year warranty is not applicable to any corporate, government or rental sales … or used cars that are not (demonstrators).”
Private buyers of passenger cars will get seven-year/unlimited-kilometre warranty coverage, whereas any vehicles for commercial use plus Hyundai iLoad vans will come with seven-year/175,000km coverage.
Also buried in the detail: if a customer orders a new Hyundai between now and 31 December 2019 – but the vehicle is not delivered until 2020 – the seven-year warranty offer does not apply.
Customers who buy a vehicle on a novated lease using a corporate discount will also not get seven-year warranty coverage.
“Sometimes corporate sales are to retail customers via novated lease. Do they get seven-year warranty? No, any sale that is not (retail) cannot get seven-year warranty,” the Hyundai bulletin reads.
“Dealers must clearly explain to the customer that they can choose between National Fleet Discount without seven-year warranty or the retail sales offer.”
The seven-year warranty is in addition to the current drive-away offers on most models in the range including the Hyundai i30 hatch and Elantra sedan, plus the Kona, Tucson and Santa Fe SUVs. The iLoad van gets seven-year warranty but the mechanically identical iMax people mover does not.
According to the dealer bulletin the Veloster sports car and Venue city SUV are not included, however a Hyundai Australia representative has since contacted CarAdvice to confirm these two vehicles are part of the extended warranty offer.
It is unclear whether Hyundai will roll the seven-year warranty into the new year. Although there is a deadline of 31 December 2019 and it is described as a "limited time offer" (as the screenshot of Hyundai's homepage shows below), this is often a tactic to get people to sign before it’s too late.
For example, Volkswagen introduced a five-year warranty late last year with a deadline of 31 December 2018 – but rolled it out as a permanent offer from 1 January 2019.
With Hyundai’s temporary shift to seven-year coverage, there are now three brands offering longer than five-year warranties inside the Top 10. The other two are Kia (across the entire range) and Mitsubishi (on Triton ute).
Hyundai was the first brand in Australia to offer a five-year warranty across the range, introducing the extended coverage in 1999.
Mitsubishi was second with permanent factory-backed five-year coverage, from December 2004.
Hyundai’s sister brand Kia introduced a permanent factory-backed seven-year warranty across the range from October 2014.
Since then, all other Top 10 brands have introduced five-year coverage.
Subaru and Toyota followed with five-year warranty coverage in January 2019 while Nissan rounded out the Top 10 by adopting five-year coverage in April 2019, to coincide with the start of the Japanese financial year.
As part of its relaunch, emerging Korean car maker Ssangyong boosted warranty coverage from five years to seven in September 2018, matching Kia’s industry-leading seven-year coverage introduced in October 2014.
Citroen adopted a six-year warranty in July 2014 but that coverage was wound back to three years in November 2017 after a change of distributor in Australia.
However, following a backlash, the importer of Citroen and its sister brand Peugeot increased warranty from three years to five years/unlimited kilometres on all models except vans (which have five year/200,000km coverage) from February 2018.
Honda introduced a five-year warranty in July 2017, and has since done monthly sales campaigns offering seven-year coverage on selected models.
Jeep launched its 'There & Back Guarantee' five-year warranty in February 2017.
Volkswagen’s sister brand Skoda moved to a five-year warranty in January 2017.
Isuzu launched a five-year/130,000km warranty on its D-Max ute in January 2013 and the MU-X SUV gained the same coverage when it was introduced in November 2013.
Renault has had five-year warranty on passenger cars – but not sports models or vans – since April 2011.
In August 2018, Hyundai Australia executives told media the company was considering increasing its warranty coverage from five years, in response to other brands eroding what was once a marketing advantage.
In December 2018 Mitsubishi added seven-year/150,000km warranty to the Triton ute (up from five years/unlimited kilometres) as a special offer but it was extended to continue all the way through to the end of 2019.
In October 2019, Suzuki increased its warranty from three years/100,000km to five years/unlimited kilometres.
As this article was published, Kia remains the only brand inside the Top 10 with permanent seven-year warranty coverage across its range.
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