Ask The Best And Brightest: Covering Your Rear (Engine Sportscar) With An Extended Warranty?

Edward Niedermeyer
by Edward Niedermeyer

TTAC commentator stephada writes:

Hello I drive a 2010 C4S, bought new, now with 42k miles and I am considering an Extended Warranty through a company called Protected Life, sold through the Porsche dealership. My service manager said they used to not offer this because they had trouble finding one that could cover things well enough, until they found Protected.

I’d like the Best and Brightest to weigh in on the specific example I’m facing. I’ve read the original B&B thread but it dealt with the issue philosophically and generally. I trust the B&B can help out again in my choices, as they did on the question of ”S or 4S?” [Ed: follow-up here].

The details in the agreement are numerous, but the highlights are, that in addition to (of course) not covering wear and tear like brakes, anything without a functional need is not covered, such as: upholstery, trim, paint, glass, belt, air bags, and exhaust emissions. Anything to do with a manual clutch is also not covered (but the PDK in my car would be covered).

They pay full rate for the high-dollar Porsche parts and labor. I would bring in the car and the experience would be the same as I now have under factory warranty, except with a $200 deductible.

The costs are +3 years/100k miles total for $5100, +4 years/100k miles for $6700, +5 years/100k miles for $7600.

This would include a tow service up to 25 miles (then mileage), tire repair, $75/day trip interruption expenses, and $50/day rental car.

What do you think? These aren’t cheap but neither is a new engine. If you just sneeze in the dealership service department, it’s a thousand bucks.

Edward Niedermeyer
Edward Niedermeyer

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4 of 38 comments
  • Segfault Segfault on Aug 23, 2011

    I would never, ever buy an extended warranty from someone other than the vehicle's manufacturer. Too many things to go wrong if it's from someone else. Also, the company that issues the aftermarket warranty could go out of business, like Warranty Gold (which used to advertise very heavily on Edmunds) and countless others.

  • Crosley Crosley on Aug 24, 2011

    I've had bad luck with extended warranties on a variety of purchases, and in almost all cases I now skip them. You will be amazed with all the loopholes they're able to exploit. Many of these warranty companies also go under, leaving you with nothing. My wife bought an extended warranty that the Lexus dealership offered, and they weasled their way out of a minor repair (window regulator) with the fine print. I've also heard stories where repairs will take MUCH longer because they have to process requests and get "permission" to make the repairs. Over your lifetime, whatever money you would spend on extended warranties, invest that money wisely and I guarantee you will come out FAR ahead.

  • Bigmiles70 Bigmiles70 on Aug 24, 2011

    You buy a Porsche 911 new and you're worring about maintenance costs?...interesting to say the least.

  • Mallthus Mallthus on Aug 24, 2011

    As others have noted...the extended warranty will, more than likely, wind up costing you more than just paying for service. The difference is that your outlay is predictable...important if, for instance, your cash flow fluctuates over the course of the year. My guess is that, given your garage choices, money (in absolute terms) isn't a HUGE concern. Back in the "old days", if you could find a legitimate extended warranty (i.e. GMPP), if made sense to hold out your decision point until the purchase cut-off window because there was often wide variations between particular cars' reliability (i.e. My parents and grandparents both had 1972 Buick LeSabres, my grandparent's car was bulletproof. My parent's car was so badly built that it had the V6 radiator with the V8 engine.). The thinking then was that if you knew your car was crap, you bought the warranty. Today, even a 911 is more reliable than, say, a 1990 Camry, so the issue comes back to one of predictability. If you're confident that, should the transmission or some other big part fail completely, you COULD pay cash for the repairs, then I think that ought to be your plan. If you might need to use a credit card to handle such a large expenditure, then the warranty might be a better bet. Just my 2¢ of course. I've actually got extended warranties on both my cars (a Subaru and a Nissan). I got the one on the Nissan because I'd heard horror stories about the CVT (only later to get a letter from Nissan extending their coverage of the CVT to 125K miles). The one on the Subaru covers tires and wiper blades, so it was easy to just role it into the loan and keep our expenses constant.