The best new-car warranties for 2020 come with free maintenance

May 22, 2020

Peace of mind doesn’t come easy or cheap. Yet some automakers offer peace of mind through long-term warranties to lure shoppers into showrooms. 

A good warranty can go a long way. Hyundai in 2000 offered a 10-year/100,000-mile warranty that revolutionized the way people looked at that brand. Its South Korean counterpart, Kia, followed. It also helped Hyundai sell more cars, fix its broke-budget car reputation, and come to be trusted for quality. Kia, Hyundai, and its luxury Genesis subbrand, consistently rank in the top three spots in J.D. Power’s Initial Quality Study, which measures consumer satisfaction in the first 90 days of ownership. 

Mitsubishi has followed a similar track to shore up sagging sales and flagging interest, while Volkswagen launched a 6-year/72,000-mile basic and powertrain warranties to regain consumer trust after the Dieselgate scandal. It has since been rolled back. 

Every automaker offers them, but with different terms. Before we list the best warranties on the market, there are a few things to cover. 

The Car Connection’s threshold for a comparatively good warranty is at least 4-year/50,000-miles basic warranty that includes scheduled maintenance. Mostly luxury automakers qualify for that extra point in our Features section, but mainstream automakers have begun adding service, roadside assistance, and longer-term warranties to reassure buyers. 

We’re going to avoid the temporary extensions to existing warranties prompted by the coronavirus pandemic, and stick to what’s being offered for 2020 models, and 2021s where available.

Every warranty is different, and policies are fraught with potentially confusing disclaimers, so it’s recommended to check exclusions and exceptions with the dealer or the owner’s manual. Some warranties are transferable beyond the original owner.  

Basic coverage: Sometimes called comprehensive or bumper-to-bumper coverage, applies to everything except typical wear-and-tear items such as batteries, tires, filters, and wiper blades. Electronic and HVAC systems, for instance, are covered under basic warranties. Some emissions equipment must be covered by federal law, such as an 8-year warranty on catalytic converters. 

Powertrain warranty: Covers engine and transmission systems, but could exclude starter motors, sensors, and other ancillary equipment. 

Corrosion coverage: Sometimes called anti-perforation, includes body panels and chassis parts from holes caused by rust. 

Roadside assistance: If your vehicle fails and you end up stranded, some automakers include a knight in rolling armor to come to your rescue. 

Complimentary maintenance: Mostly limited to luxury vehicles, dealers will perform regularly scheduled maintenance such as oil changes and fluid flushes at no extra charge to the owner. 

Additionally, many hybrid and plug-in vehicles come with 8-year/100,000-mile battery warranties. 

Hyundai/Genesis

Basic coverage: 5-year/60,000

Powertrain: 10-year/100,000

Corrosion: 7-year/Unlimited 

Roadside assistance: 5-year/Unlimited

Mitsubishi

Basic coverage: 5-year/60,000

Powertrain: 10-year/100,000

Corrosion: 7-year/100,000

Roadside assistance: 5-year/Unlimited

Kia

Basic coverage: 5-year/60,000

Powertrain: 10-year/100,000

Corrosion: 5-year/100,000

Roadside assistance: 5-year/60,000

Jaguar

Basic coverage: 5-year/60,000

Powertrain: 5-year/60,000

Corrosion: 6-year/Unlimited

Scheduled maintenance and roadside assistance: 5-year/60,000

Infiniti

Basic coverage: 4-year/60,000

Powertrain: 6-year/70,000

Corrosion: 7-year/Unlimited

Roadside assistance: 4-year/Unlimited

Volkswagen 

Basic coverage: 4-year/50,000

Powertrain: 4-year/50,000

Corrosion: 7-year/100,000

Roadside assistance: 3-year/36,000 

Scheduled maintenance: 2-year/20,000

BMW and Mini

Basic coverage: 4-year/50,000

Powertrain: 4-year/50,000

Corrosion: 12-year/Unlimited 

Roadside assistance: 4-year/Unlimited

Scheduled maintenance: 3-year/36,000

Volvo

Basic coverage: 4-year/50,000

Powertrain: 4-year/50,000

Corrosion: 12-year/Unlimited 

Roadside assistance: 4-year/Unlimited

Scheduled maintenance: 3-year/36,000

Lincoln

Basic coverage: 4-year/50,000

Powertrain: 6-year/70,000

Corrosion: 5-year/Unlimited miles

Roadside assistance: Unlimited for original owner

Scheduled maintenance: 4-year/50,000 (Black Label trims only)

Cadillac

Basic coverage: 4-year/50,000

Powertrain: 6-year/70,000

Corrosion: 4-year/50,000

Roadside assistance: 6-year/70,000

Scheduled maintenance: 1-year/12,000

Alfa Romeo

Basic coverage: 4-year/50,000

Powertrain: 4-year/50,000

Corrosion: 5-year/Unlimited

Roadside assistance: 4-year/Unlimited

Scheduled maintenance: 1-year/10,000

Lexus

Basic coverage: 4-year/50,000

Powertrain: 6-year/70,000

Corrosion: 4-year/50,000

Roadside assistance: 4-year/Unlimited

Scheduled maintenance: 6-month/5,000

Acura, Audi, Fiat, Land Rover, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, and Tesla vehicles come with 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranties, but without complimentary scheduled maintenance.


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