Cost of Car Repairs Vary Widely Among Brands

      December 17, 2009 09:58

      Car repair costs vary widely according to the brand of the vehicle, a new study shows, with repair bills of similar sized cars differing by as much as two times. GM Daewoo vehicles such as the Lacetti compact and the Winstorm SUV are cheaper to fix, while owners of Renault Samsung cars including the SM5 and SM3 face much higher costs.

      The Korea Insurance Development Institute (KIDI) on Wednesday released the study which compared the repair costs of 17 models launched within the past five years. For the study, it conducted crash tests in which the vehicles were smashed from both front and back.

      The least expensive compact (1600cc engines) to repair was the Lacetti Premier, which cost W1.17 million. In contrast it cost W2.68 million or 2.3 times as much to mend the New SM3 (US$1=W1,165).

      Among mid-sized models (2000cc), the Hyundai Sonata NF cost the least to fix at W2.12 million, compared to the GM Daewoo Tosca at W2.44 million, and the Samsung Renault New SM5 at W2.81 million, similar to the W2.86 million repair bill of the Hyundai Grandeur TG full-size sedan.

      Some mid-sized models such as the Sonata NF and the Kia Lotze Innovation (W2.19 million) cost less to repair than compacts such as the Hyundai Avante HD (W2.54 million) and the Kia Forte (W2.58 million).

      At W2.68 million the GM Daewoo Winstorm Maxx was the cheapest SUV to repair, compared to W3.12 million for the Renault Samsung QM5, and W3.64 million for the Hyundai Tucson.

      The most expensive vehicle to fix of all was Hyundai’s new Equus sedan (3800cc), at W3.93 million.

      "GM Daewoo has improved its car designs to reduce repair costs, including installing shock absorbers between the bumpers and car body," KIDI said. "The vehicles that are expensive to fix usually use integral-type rather than discrete-type components, which means that even if they are only partly damaged the whole component must be replaced."

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