While it could be argued that one car is much like another, it's important to understand that different makes and models have different service requirements, and European vehicles in particular come with a number of features that can need specialist service.
Many of the most popular vehicle manufacturers are located in Europe and for many years most new automotive trends have originated there. These include features that we take for granted today, like fuel Injection and anti-lock brakes.
With these ongoing changes in technology and innovation come different service requirements, that your mechanical workshop needs to be trained to properly service your European car.
The short answer is no. With constant technological updates and unique features, the latest scan tools and workshop equipment are required to properly service your new European car.
Your local Repco Authorised Service centre has access to all the latest service and repair information and specialist equipment to ensure all the on your vehicle is completed as per the Manufacturers specifications.
Your European vehicle should always be serviced as per the log book service schedule. In addition, European driving conditions are not as harsh as ours here and service intervals are less frequent. However, in Australia, these long intervals don't always suit our climate and the higher number of km's we travel. As such we recommend following the advice of your trained workshop professional to advise on the service schedule for your driving style and conditions.
An important point to note is that braking systems on European vehicles have to comply with European standards. While the braking performance is usually superior to vehicles from other markets, braking components such as brake pads and brake rotors wear much faster. As the wear is greater it is usual practice to replace both the brake pads and rotors at the same time. This is done to ensure the best possible braking performance and optimal service life of the braking system.
Later model European cars can provide a superior ride and precise steering. Australian roads are tougher than most around the world, and this can impact steering and suspension components. Not only do these systems provide a smooth ride they are also critical to the safe steering and stopping capabilities of your car. Regular inspections of steering and suspension systems are required to maintain the "European Feel", maximise tyre life and ensure that you and your family are traveling in safety.
It's no surprise to any Australian that our environment can be tough. Your European car can have extremely complex transmission and cooling systems, both of which have to work much harder here than they do in Europe. Some vehicle manufacturers claim that these systems are "Sealed For Life", however in the harsher Australian environment these systems need to be serviced for longevity and reliability.
Safety systems like adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning and collision avoidance are now very common in many vehicles. While these systems are generally robust and reliable, sometimes components fail or require adjustment to ensure all the vehicles safety systems are performing at the highest possible level.
Australia has one of the most diverse vehicle fleets in the world, meaning not only can you purchase a wide range of vehicles to suit your needs, but Australian mechanical workshops have to be equipped to service all these as well!
This means that along with expert training and specialist equipment, your workshop needs to have access to quality parts to service and repair your European vehicle.
For nearly thirty years, Welch Auto Parts has been a leading supplier providing quality parts to the automotive aftermarket for European car service. We spoke to them to see what they had to say about upcoming trends and things to keep an eye on when it comes to European vehicles...
Electric Vehicles (EVs) will become more prominent in Australia in the coming years. While there is no traditional petrol or diesel engine to be serviced, electric vehicles will still have suspension, steering bigger cooling systems and braking components that will need to be maintained.
As the level of electronic control in vehicles increases, we are now moving into a phase where steering, accelerating, and braking are starting to be controlled by the vehicle. This is known as Partial Driving Automation. Welch expects to we will continue to see higher levels of vehicle system automation and increased vehicle complexity.
Another thing to be expected is smaller engine sizes. For example, fifteen years ago a BMW 328i was a 3.0 6cyl, now it's a 2.0 4cyl with Turbo charger.
Larger engines with more cylinders tend to be smoother. However, smaller turbocharged engines are easier to fit under the bonnet, use less fuel, weigh less, and most importantly are more efficient and emit less emissions.
The downside of this is that fewer cylinders are not as smooth, run at higher operating temperatures, and experience overall increases of NVH – Noise, Vibration and Harshness. To combat NVH, vehicle manufacturers employ many high tech components, such as additional water pumps, oil-filled and electric engine mounts, and suspension components, to disguise these shortcomings. This makes for a superior driving experience but significantly increases complexity and servicing requirements.
Your local Repco Authorised Service centre is fully trained and qualified to service all makes and models of European vehicles, no matter what or where you drive.