Having previously leased a VW Golf R, the customer wanted a performance car for a further two years which would offer an enjoyable drive but with some added comfort and practical features. With additional boot space and room for passengers, the Audi S4 saloon presented itself as the better option, particularly when some of the competitor models you would select were somewhat more expensive – the Mercedes C43 Saloon and BMW 340i M Sport.
One of the great advantages to being a credit broker in the automotive industry, is that as we are not fixed to a certain manufacturer, we can move with fluidity to where the better deals are for our customer. Once they have provided a qualified analysis of their next car, we can present suitable options to them for review.
One of the points which arose during this transaction was the question of servicing; in particular the question – should I include servicing and maintenance with my lease car? There is no right or wrong answer to this question. This is very much about reviewing the contracts available to the customer and, depending upon their perspective, choose the one which is most apt for them. To confirm, nearly all of the cars and vans we supply are brand-new. This means that a warranty is offered to the customer from a manufacturer and this will allow 3 years (or more in some cases) protection against any defects or defaults which arise in the vehicle through no fault of the customer.
A warranty DOES NOT provide any assistance to a customer for the general upkeep of the vehicle, this is very much down to the customer to organise.
When do I need to service my car (or van)? Every vehicle will have what is referred to as a service interval. This is a period set in time or miles, which essentially tells the customer when they need to arrange a service for example every 2 years or 15,000 miles, whichever lands sooner. For low-mileage customers on a 2 year contract hire, there may an opportunity to use a vehicle and return it without the need for servicing. For longer-term contracts of 3 and 4 years or for high-mileage users, it is likely you will have to service the vehicle a number of times. If you decide to maintain the vehicle yourself (or your business decides to do this), then you will elect to take a driver-maintained agreement. In the alternative, if you want the provision for serving to be included, you need to take a funder-maintained agreement.
Unlike the retail aspect of our industry, we rarely offer “service only” packages.
If you do service the vehicle yourself, then the main question you need to ask you credit broker or finance company is where can you service your vehicle at? By this we mean, do you have to service the vehicle at main-dealer/franchised dealer OR can you take this to VAT registered garage using genuine manufacturer parts? The answer will always depend on the finance company you use for the transaction. Some finance companies will allow you to utilise the cheaper option of using a non-franchised service centre, whereas as others will enforce that you use a franchised dealer. In either case, you need to ensure that you have the service/warranty book appropriately stamped and recorded, as this will need to be presented to the collection agent at the end of the contract. Failing to service your vehicle properly can invalidate the warranty.
In addition, you also have to consider your approach to tyres. It is your responsibility to replace any worn or damaged tyres with the same factory specification as originally supplied with the vehicle. Please ensure you replace all tyres with the correct size and speed ratings for the vehicle and keep tyre pressures in line with the manufacturer’s recommendations.
If you decide to go the driver-maintenance route, all of the above is your responsibility and you need to ensure this is carried out.
When you return a lease vehicle the tyres are inspected for this and any tyres which are not appropriate, for example because their tread falls below 2mm, will result in charges. If you use funder-maintenance, then all finance companies will include the cost for changing a tyre under fair, wear and tear,. However, some finance companies will, within this arrangement, include the cost of all tyre repairs and replacements for punctures. If you want to go for a “no quibble” tyre policy, do check with your broker or finance company before proceeding.
Finally, you have to consider breakdown recovery on the vehicle. Most new cars are covered for at least 1 year from the date of registration (this is relevant in cases of pre-registered vehicles). In some cases, the manufacturer will offer 3 (or more) years cover and so you will have all of the breakdown recovery included for the duration of the lease. If you have a 4 year contract hire agreement, you need to make your own arrangements for breakdown recovery if you have a driver-maintained agreement. If you have a funder-maintained agreement, most finance companies will include the recovery for the duration of the term.
In terms of the car shown, the Audi A4 Saloon S4 Quattro Petrol 4 door Tip Tronic (Auto), this is based on the following configuration:
· Matador red – Special Paint
· Fine Nappa leather – Black
· 19″ 10 spoke V design alloy wheels
· Air inlets in titan black with chrome inlays
· Audi Virtual Cockpit – 12.3″ LCD instrument cluster
· Privacy glass with front acoustic glazing
· Comfort and sound pack with rear view camera – S4
As standard the car includes LED interior light pack, 19” alloys, brake callipers painted in black with the S4 logo, 4-way electric lumbar support, electric adjustable front seats, Audi sound system with 10 speaker system, heated front seats, cruise control, high beam assistant, towbar preparation, rain and light sensors, enhanced braking system, hill hold control, traction control, Audi smartphone interface, voice control system, pre-sense collision avoidance, multi-collision braking, auto boot lid operation, MMI navigation, DAB radio, body coloured externals, rear spoiler, LED daytime lights, LED indicator, nappa leather upholstery, 3-spoke flat bottomed steering wheel, extended interior pack, heated front seats, space saver spare wheel, Thatcham Cat 1 alarm, keyless start, anti-theft alarm, super sports front seats and cruise control. In terms of additional factory options on the S4, consider – privacy glass, electric folding mirrors, head up display and virtual cockpit.
On the technical-side company car and business drivers can note the P11d at £45,840.00 and CO2 at 174g/km. The 2995CC 8 speed auto engine delivers 36.7 combined MPG, 354ps and 0-62 times of 4.7 seconds. More than impressive!
Find the webs best leasing deals for the awesome Audi S4 available now with free nationwide delivery from CarLease UK