Volkswagen offering three years of service free with each new car

David Yochum

Volkswagen owners will now be able to get BMW-like maintenance service at a fraction of the cost.

Actually, at zero cost.

Volkswagen of America has announced a new no-charge Carefree Maintenance Program for its entire 2009 model lineup. Under the program, customers are not charged for scheduled maintenance described in each Volkswagen's maintenance booklet for the length of the new vehicle limited warranty -- three years or 36,000 miles, whichever occurs first. The Carefree Maintenance Program launches in Spring 2008 with the introduction of VW's all-new Tiguan crossover utility vehicle.

Similarly, BMW already offers a carefree, new vehicle maintenance program called BMW Ultimate Service. However, the BMW program features a lengthier zero-cost maintenance plan, valid for four years or 50,000 miles.

Mark Barnes, VW of America chief operating officer, said VW's Carefree Maintenance Program is a way to improve owner loyalty for the brand, as well as increase consumer consideration. Putting VW in BMW's company appears to be a great way to do just that.

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