Wondering why German cars are so expensive in spite of being hard to work on? Stay on this page to discover 6 insightful reasons.
We have explored the German automobile market and research deeply into most of the automakers to unearth the reasons for their higher cost prices. You’ll also discover genuine reasons why their cars are so hard to work on.
Here are 6 reasons most German cars are expensive and hard to work on:
1. They Are Built With Precision Engineering and Close Attention To Detail
If you’re familiar with most German cars, you must have noticed mechanics’ aversion towards working on them. German car manufacturers are notable for precision engineering and attention to detail, which makes it hard for external mechanics to work on their vehicles.
This also means that most of the components of these cars are often tightly integrated and coupled in complicated manners.
When you open the trunk of vehicles like BMW, for instance, you may find it frustrating to locate some of the bolts used to fix the engine components.
In most cases, working on these cars often requires specialized tools and knowledge. That is why most German automakers always suggest taking their vehicles to an authorized dealer to get them worked on.
Consequently, German vehicles attract higher maintenance cost, since you can hardly find a cheap mechanic to work on them. Also, the precision engineering dedicated to producing them makes them unique, but more expensive than many other rivals.
You may want to read about 9 typical issues with German cars.
2. Their Vehicles Often Embrace Advanced Technology
German automakers are renowned for their dedication towards advancement, innovation, and improvement in the automobile industry. In fact, according to Nesfircroft, a third of Germany’s expenditure is dedicated to research and development.
This explains why many auto enthusiasts see the Germans as pacesetters in automobile technology. From the key, to the stereo, engine, and a vehicle’s overall performance, German automakers often incorporate advanced technologies such as electronic systems and sophisticated safety devices.
This eventually makes their cars more complex to work on and expensive to manufacture.
For example, some models may feature advanced safety systems such as adaptive cruise control and lane departure warning, which require specialized sensors and software to operate.
Aside from the fact that the introduction of technologically-enriched vehicles often impacts the selling price of a car, it becomes hard for many external auto technicians to work on innovative technologies they hardly see around.
3. They Feature High-Quality Materials
You’ll agree that most German cars are luxurious rides. Even when these automakers make entry-level vehicles, they often embellish them with loads of premium features to make them stand out.
From premium leather and wood trims to sophisticated cabin equipment, German car makers often use high-quality materials in their vehicles. This is why the like of BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, and Audi have remained top players in the automobile industry.
For example, the Mercedes-AMG EQE comes with a highly alluring infotainment system that enhances the cabin experience remarkably. It offers either a hyper-screen, a single glass dashboard, and a standard dashboard with a striking touchscreen.
This car also offers ranges of exciting seat options in traditional or synthetic leather with optional massaging or ventilating functions. You can also opt for sport seats with firmer side cushioning. This first-class cabin experience is also available for users of the Audi A8.
Moreover, the Mercedes-AMG EQE also offers a personalized infotainment display that focuses on the passenger and detracts the driver’s eyes through an eye-tracking camera.
Similarly, the BMW i7 Sedan features Amazon Fire TV on the rear seat, with an impressive 8k resolution.
While these materials can add to the luxury and comfort of the car, they also increase the manufacturing and repair costs. That said, make sure you read about why German cars are so expensive.
4. German Automakers Prefer Proprietary Software and Diagnostic Tools
Most modern automakers embrace Google as their operating system. This allows them to incorporate a series of digital technology into their vehicles.
However, many German automobiles, especially Mercedes-Benz, pride themselves in using their proprietary operating system, like the Mercedes-Benz Operating System (MB. OS). Meanwhile, there’s still some level of reliance on Google for the provision of in-car data and navigation.
Aside from Mercedes-Benz, Volkswagen is also bent on using its own proprietary OS. As noted by Pymnts, “a new software operating system, to be known as VW. OS will be introduced in VW brand electric cars from 2020 onwards”.
Besides, Volkswagen has dedicated a staggering $4 billion plan for the development of a proprietary software operating system which they intend to spend through 2025.
In an industry where most other automakers opt for the already established and cheaper Google OS, attempts to develop some personalized software and operating systems will only lead to expensive vehicles.
Moreover, German automakers also work with some personalized diagnostic tools which are often unique to them. All these seem to be attempts to create some unique vehicles that won’t be easily tampered with by any unauthorized professionals.
This is why most external mechanics find it difficult to access the information they need to perform repairs and diagnosis on some of such vehicles. And it can result in higher repair costs as well as longer wait times for repairs.
5. The Cars Are Product of Extensive Research and Development
Another reason German cars are so expensive and hard to work on is the extensive research that many German auto engineers engage in before building their cars.
From the foregoing, it has already been established that most German automakers invest heavily in research and development. They prioritize innovation than following norms. This is why they devote high resources to creating cutting-edge technology and advanced cabin designs.
Could this be why German cars are so fast? Read to find out!
Mind you, the cost of the research and development that goes into creating German cars usually reflect in the eventual selling price. This is why their vehicles usually come with a higher price tag.
For instance, while these automakers might spend years developing a new transmission or infotainment system, the cost of the long years of research often results in a higher price point.
Moreover, a vehicle that emerges from a result of extensive research will normally take a hard time for an external mechanic or an untrained auto professional to work on.
6. They Attract Brand Premium
Finally, German cars often come with a premium price tag simply because of their reputation for quality and performance.
The already established reputation the automakers have created for themselves has built a segregated market share that favors those who value premium over affordability. Well, ‘affordability’ is a relative term.
Usually, consumers are willing to pay more for a car that they perceive as being superior to other options in the market. As long as they can afford it, they care lesser about cheaper options.
This makes it easier for car dealers to quote higher price for most German cars even when their real price is somewhat lower. Agreed?
Obviously, most German cars are quite expensive and hard to work on because they are actually built to be so. In spite of the fact that most of these cars are quite unreliable in the long run, they are much coveted for their quality, comfort-inducing features, and overall performance.
That said, rather than buying one of these cars outrightly, you can actually lease them and drive them for a few years. This way, you get to save yourself some bucks while avoiding possible future problems.
Otherwise, you can also buy an extended warranty plan that saves you possible high costs of repair and maintenance.
A Brief History of German Automotive Engineering | Nesfircroft
Volkswagen To Launch Connected Vehicle Software | Pymnts