Many automakers are considering or already have dropped their free maintenance programs in an effort to cut costs and boost their bottom lines. Free maintenance began in the 80's with luxury cars and has since spread as far down the food chain as Toyota's Scion brand. Company's either downgrading or eliminating free maintenance include Volvo, Mitsubishi and Mercedes-Benz. Audi is still deciding whether to nix the freebies and Lexus has scaled their program back a bit. Some carmakers still consider free maintenance a must, like BMW who still offers free maintenance for four years or 50,000 miles.
I don't think the availability of free maintenance would sway my purchasing decision for anything but a high-cost luxury car. I'll change the oil in my Scion, but if I put down a bunch of greenbacks for a luxury car then I expect some other guy to do it for a few years.





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