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Auto group wants warranty limits lifted, says competition healthy for workshops

MAIA said remove restrictions on car warranties would give owners more options when it comes to servicing their cars and also create healthy competition between authorised workshops and independent ones. — Picture by Choo Choy May
MAIA said remove restrictions on car warranties would give owners more options when it comes to servicing their cars and also create healthy competition between authorised workshops and independent ones. — Picture by Choo Choy May

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 24 — Putrajaya should look to Singapore and emulate its decision to remove restrictions on car warranties, the Malaysia Automotive Industry Association (MAIA) said today.

The group said that such a move would give owners more options when it comes to servicing their cars, and in turn create healthy competition between authorised workshops and independent ones.

“The Malaysia Automotive Industry Association (MAIA) urges the government as well as the Malaysia Competition Commission (MyCC) to review the restrictions on the warranties of new cars by all dealers to buyers.

“Right now, car owners are obligated to send their cars to official service centres to be services, and risk losing their warranty if they do not do so,” MAIA said in a  statement.

On December 11 last year, the Competition Commission of Singapore (CCS) announced that major car dealers in the country had agreed to removing restrictions on warranties and related documents.

The CCS had found that previous restrictions had resulted in car owners being deterred from using independent workshops and this affected the ability of these centres to compete effectively with authorised workshops.

With the changes in Singapore, car dealers there will only be allowed to void warranties if the damages to be claimed under the said warranty was caused by the independent workshops.

“In fact not only in Singapore, in year 2003 the European Commission (EC) passed a law allowing vehicle owners the freedom of having their servicing and repairs done at their chosen workshop.

“It’s unfair to the car owner to be tied up to official dealers...with the condition that the vehicles must be serviced by them,” MAIA chairman Deric Teh told Malay Mail when contacted.

He added that the government as well as the MyCC should study the matter and come out with a fair policy for car owners.

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