Porsche Warranty Questions & Issues
The following message is brought to you by the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA). If you would like our guidelines on what to do if your new car warranty is denied, check out the Warranty Denied? section of our web site.
Consumers Bill of Rights
Your Rights to Personalize Your Vehicle
You have the Right to buy high-quality, reliable aftermarket performance and specialty parts, accessories and styling options.
You have the Right to use high-quality aftermarket parts and know that your new car warranty claims will be honored. In fact, your vehicle dealer may not reject a warranty claim simply because an aftermarket product is present. A warranty denial under such circumstances may be proper only if an aftermarket part caused the failure being claimed.
You have the Right to install and use emissions-legal aftermarket performance parts without incurring hassles and onerous procedures during state vehicle emissions inspections.
You have the Right to actively oppose any proposed (or existing) laws or regulations that will reduce your freedom to use aftermarket automotive parts and service or will curtail your ability to take part in the automotive hobbies of your choice.
You have the Right to patronize independent retail stores and shops for vehicle parts and service. The U.S. aftermarket offers the world's finest selection of performance and specialty parts, accessories and styling options. These aftermarket products satisfy the most discriminating customers seeking personalized vehicles for today's lifestyle.
One of the most frequent subjects that is brought up when talking about aftermarket performance upgrades are warranty concerns. Many people wish to know if installing a performance upgrade will void or affect the warranty. This is a very legitimate question.
The fact is you have very specific rights granted by Federal Antitrust laws and the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act that you must be aware of to keep from being "stonewalled" by a Dealer or Manufacturer.
Under Federal Antitrust Laws, the use of parts or accessories that were not purchased from and installed by the Dealer do not affect the vehicle's warranty. Manufacturer's and their authorized representatives, may not condition a warranty on the use of their own parts or service, unless the parts or service are provided free of charge. Also, they may not refuse to honor a warranty unless they can show that an aftermarket part or accessory is the cause of a particular malfunction otherwise covered by the warranty.
In other words, warranty coverage cannot be denied simply because such parts are present on the vehicle or have been used. The warranty coverage can be denied only if the aftermarket parts caused the malfunction or damage for which warranty coverage is sought. Normally, these issues boil down to facts and technical opinions, rather than interpretations of the law.
Any denials of warranty should be received in writing from the Dealer. The Dealer must describe both the failure and how they believe the aftermarket part is responsible.
SEMA's website has some useful information about this that can be found at
the SEMA official website
Here is how the act reads as per the SEMA (Specialty Equipment Market Association) website (www.sema.org ).
Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, Title 1, __101-112, 15 U.S.C. __2301 et seq. This act, effective July 4, 1975, is designed to "improve the adequacy of information available to consumers, prevent deception, and improve competition in the marketing of consumer products . . .." The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act applies only to consumer products, which are defined as "any tangible personal property which is distributed in commerce and which is normally used for personal, family, or household purposes (including any such property intended to be attached to or installed in any real property without regard to whether it is so attached or installed)." Under Section 103 of the Act, if a warrantor sells a consumer product costing more than $15 under written warranty, the writing must state the warranty in readily understandable language as determined by standards set forth by the Federal Trade Commission. There is, however, no requirement that a warranty be given nor that any product be warranted for any length of time. Thus the Act only requires that when there is a written warranty, the warrantor clearly disclose the nature of his warranty obligation prior to the sale of the product. The consumer may then compare warranty protection, thus shopping for the "best buy." To further protect the consumer from deception, the Act requires that any written warranty must be labeled as either a "full" or a "limited" warranty. Only warranties that meet the standards of the Act may be labeled as "full." One of the most important provisions of the Act prohibits a warrantor from disclaiming or modifying any implied warranty whenever any written warranty is given or service contract entered into.
This means that, under the provisions of the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act of 1975, an automotive dealership/carmaker cannot void your warranty because your vehicle has been modified with aftermarket parts. They (the manufacturers) have to prove that the failure was the direct result of the installed aftermarket part. Unfortunately, too many folks have gone to a dealer to have warranty service performed on their modified vehicle only to have the dealer refuse to cover the defective items. The dealer usually states, that because of the aftermarket parts installed, the warranty is void (without even attempting to determine whether or not the aftermarket part caused the problem). This is illegal...period.
An article on the topic by Tom Torbjornsen, Maintenance Editor, AOL Autos
Read discussion and experience among Porsche owners