AudiSmart Service is the smartest choice
Audi offers an intelligent, economical solution to keep owners’ vehicles running optimally
SA motorists will agree that service and maintenance plans offer great assurance when purchasing a new vehicle. But what happens when the stipulated mileage and age limitations have been reached?
At this point, most would consider trading in their vehicle out of concern for unforeseen upkeep costs — or consulting non-approved workshops beyond the network of the manufacturer. Not so for Audi owners, who now have a compelling reason to keep their vehicles for longer.
This is thanks to the introduction of a new programme designed to ensure affordable running costs, in addition to guaranteeing that parts and workmanship honour the same exacting standards met by the vehicle the day it left the factory.
“AudiSmart Service is an innovative package available for all Audi models that are outside their Audi Freeway plan and are between six to 13 years old,” says Hassan Salie, head of aftersales and dealer development at Audi SA.
• Audi first introduced standard service and maintenance plan in the 1990s.
• Every new Audi is sold standard with a comprehensive Freeway Plan, with a five-year/100,000km duration. It absorbs all maintenance and service costs, with the exception of between-service top-up fluids, fuel, cracked or broken glass, and tyres. There’s no limit in terms of claim value or individual parts. It includes 24-hour roadside assistance.
• Once this period ends, the Audi Freeway Plan extension plan offers coverage for up to 10 years or 300,000km.
• Customers can used the new online calculator at www.audi.co.za for an immediate cost estimation on an extension to a service or maintenance plan to be based on mileage (km) or time (years).
“A consumer has a much longer relationship with a brand after the point of sale, so our interests with our consumers are very much invested in our aftersales portfolio.
“This is where servicing and customer support through our service and maintenance plans, either in the short or long term, play a vital role in differentiating our brand in the market. It also builds customer loyalty, which is equally important for our business.”
This is evidenced in the case of a 1996 A4 1.8 E owner, Salie says, who recently submitted a claim through the group’s warranty and maintenance department. “It’s a 26-year-old car, now that’s something! And it’s one of many interesting stories about legendary Audi models on our roads and looked after by passionate and long-standing Audi customers.”
AudiSmart Service covers two oil changes — at a significantly discounted price — and is valid for two years or 30,000km, whichever parameter comes first. Comprehensive roadside assistance is included at no extra cost.
AudiSmart Service will appeal to consumers who don’t want to commit to a longer-term service or maintenance plan extension but want to take advantage of a competitively priced service plan over a short-term period.
“This plan is a premium offering to its price point, as there is confidence in knowing your car is being fitted with Audi genuine parts by experienced Audi technicians, which is perceived to come a much higher price point,” says Salie.
He describes AudiSmart Service as a more sensible proposition than the alternative of using aftermarket outlets. “There is direct value and assurance in knowing your particular premium vehicle is being serviced and maintained by trained and well equipped brand custodians, instead of using a more cost-effective alternative.”
Salie takes great pride in the breadth of the Audi network and its parts business departments, adding that stock levels are carefully planned, with easy importation from Germany should certain items not be available locally.
“The Audi parts business is managed through two warehouses based in Gauteng and Cape Town, along with a footprint of 39 Audi dealers including Windhoek and Gaborone. With daily deliveries to our dealer network, customers can be assured that every effort is taken to ensure that our customers’ vehicles are back on the road as quickly as possible.”
Pricing starts at R4,800, which applies to the Audi A1, A3, A4, A5, A6, A7, Q2, Q3, Q5, Q7, Q8 and TT. Adding an AudiSmart Service plan to any of the performance models in the Audi S and RS models will cost R6,000.
Meanwhile, the package for the flagship Audi A8 and S8 costs R7,850 and R9,350 on the Audi R8. Additionally, there are top-up options for requirements beyond a basic oil service.
“There are various packages that could be offered to customers by the dealer, dependent on what is required, such as brakes, wipers filters and more. Customers can be assured that with sound diagnostics of the vehicle, the trained Audi service team will give them the best advice to keep their vehicle in good running order,” says Salie.
*Based on Audi Freeway Plan extension sales, the most popular Audi models in SA are the Audi A3, A4 and Q3. The brand forecasts a similar trend for the AudiSmart Service plan uptake.
This article was paid for by Audi SA.