A Closer Look at Zurich’s Extended Warranty
Zurich’s extended vehicle warranties are a great value — if you can get one.
Headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland, the aptly named Zurich Insurance Group is the largest insurance company in Switzerland,. Along with its subsidiary companies — Farmers Insurance Group and MetLife — it’s one of the largest insurance companies in the world. Zurich provides a wide range of insurance products, including life insurance, commercial business insurance, financial services, general liability, home insurance, and even extended warranty policies for automobiles.
An extended car warranty or vehicle service contract from Zurich may not be the first option that comes to mind when considering additional coverage for your vehicle, but the company does offer fairly comprehensive coverage options. Use this guide to see if a Zurich extended car warranty is right for you.
Zurich Extended Warranty Overview
Zurich’s extended warranties are part of a large suite of auto protection products the company has to offer. Unfortunately, Zurich’s website makes it difficult to learn more about options for various vehicle service contracts. This is likely due to the fact that the only way you can purchase a vehicle service contract from Zurich is through an approved auto dealer at the time you purchase your vehicle. If you’re looking to switch coverage or you have purchased your car privately, an extended auto warranty from Zurich might not be available to you unless you had the policy transferred to you by the vehicle’s previous owner.
Zurich does offer several levels of extended warranty coverage through approved local dealerships. These include comprehensive, standard, powertrain, and select levels of coverage.
- Comprehensive: This covers almost everything in your car except for cosmetic damage, torn upholstery, broken glass, and flat tires. It includes the interior and exterior of your vehicle, the cooling system, electrical, heat and air conditioning, steering, brakes, suspension, drive axle, transmission, transfer casing, and engine. It even includes roadside assistance, trip-interruption protection, and rental-car reimbursement.
- Standard: Covers all of the same components that the comprehensive plan gives you minus the car’s interior, exterior, and cooling system.
- Powertrain: Covers components involved in delivering power to your vehicle’s wheels, including the engine, transfer case, transmission, and drive axles.
- Select: This is a budget-friendly and customizable plan that covers windshield repair, cosmetic damage, tire damage, and alloy wheel damage.
Zurich also offers a variety of other adjunctive service plans, including gap coverage, key protection, maintenance plans, Universal Security Guard theft protection, and more. Unlike many extended auto warranties, Zurich’s vehicle service contracts can be taken to any ASE-certified repair shop in the country of purchase, although they charge a small deductible. Each extended warranty policy includes benefits for trip interruption, 24/7 emergency roadside assistance, and a rental-car allowance. Zurich extended warranties are also fully transferable to the vehicle’s next owner.
While Zurich does not list deductibles on their website, typical costs can range from zero up to $250, depending on the monthly fee you prefer.
The cost of the extended warranty plans themselves ranges between $1,000 and $4,500 per year, depending on the level of coverage you choose. Costs can also be influenced by the age of your vehicle, its make and model, and whether it’s a new car or a used car. The only way to find out definitively what kind of costs you’re looking at is to get a quote from your auto dealer.
Things We Like About Zurich’s Extended Warranty
Zurich’s vehicle service contracts are pretty customizable, allowing you to pick and choose which aspects of coverage are most important to you within your budget.
The company offers the same benefits with all of its warranties, including:
- Emergency roadside assistance: This includes tire changes, towing, gas and fluid delivery, frozen lock and lockout services, and jump-starts, up to $100 per expense.
- Trip interruption coverage: Reimbursement of food and lodging expenses up to $100 per day for up to three days if you break down more than 100 miles from home.
- Rental car reimbursement: Up to $30 per day.
You can purchase only these benefits without a full extended car warranty if that’s what suits you best.
Zurich offers coverage plans for motorcycles and powersports, and they have an extensive list of ASE-certified dealers and repair facilities that can service your vehicle. Each policy is fully transferable to the vehicle’s new owner, which is also a nice touch and may help you sell your car more easily.
Things We Don't Like About Zurich’s Extended Warranty
One of the biggest drawbacks to having an extended auto warranty from Zurich is the limited ways in which you can actually purchase one. Having to use your dealer as a middleman is a pain. Without going through an approved dealership, the only other way to get extended warranty coverage from Zurich is if you purchase a car from an owner who already has an existing plan and they transfer it to you.
Another aspect of Zurich’s extended auto warranty that we don’t love is the fact that while the policy does allow for rental car reimbursement, it’s extremely limited, only approving $30 per day for up to six days.
One of the biggest frustrations with Zurich is trying to navigate the company’s website to learn about your coverage options. The Zurich North America website should be much more user friendly when it comes to outlining extended auto warranty plans and options. Once you find the plans, the details of each aspect are still pretty vague.
Zurich Customer Reviews
A great way to learn about any company’s products is to search for online customer reviews. Zurich has hundreds of reviews you can read through. With its A+ rating and accreditation from the Better Business Bureau and its 4.1-star Consumer Affairs rating, there is no shortage of happy customers. As with any corporation, however, Zurich isn’t able to make everyone love them. Here’s a taste of what a small percentage of consumers have to say about Zurich’s extended auto warranty program:
“It was a quick, hassle-free experience. I couldn't have asked for better service. I would buy Zurich coverage for all my vehicles in the future if I can. Even fully covered my rental for the few days I was without a car.” — Jared, Sidney Center, New York, via Consumer Affairs
“I have had to use the service contract three times now. Each time has made me immensely happy that I purchased it. So far, the comprehensive service contract has lived up to what I was expecting when purchased, covering the costs of all needed repairs as well as rental cars two of the times when necessary.” — Sean, Poulsbo, Washingto, via Consumer Affairs
“You suck. Just had a heater issue with my truck. I paid more than $3,000 for this stupid policy. Turns out my heater hoses are the issue. It cost $800 for a replacement. Never again. I wouldn’t recommend this place to anyone. They will find any excuse to stiff you. I will make it my life’s work to make sure no one buys into your scam.” — Frank R. via BBB
“Claim was settled right away so repairs could be made quickly.” — Kurtis C. via BBB
“The company who came to assist with a dead battery was more than an hour later than scheduled, so that was inconvenient. But they did arrive and were able to jump-start the car. The coverage for our damaged tire was great. The dealership replaced the tire (pothole damage) completely.” — Donald, Washington, D.C., via Consumer Affairs
You have questions. The Drive has answers.
Q. What does Zurich’s extended warranty cover?
A. An extended vehicle warranty from Zurich can cover as much or as little as you need, depending on the type of plan you purchase. Exclusions to coverage are limited and reasonable and include exhaust components, brake drums and rotors, catalytic converter, shocks, and the throttle body assembly (except injectors).
Q. How much does a Zurich extended warranty cost?
A. Of course, the cost of a vehicle service contract depends on the make, model, and age of your vehicle, along with the level of coverage you choose. That being said, the average cost ranges from $1,000 to $4,500 at the time of vehicle purchase.
Q. How can I get a Zurich extended warranty?
A. The only way is to purchase a vehicle from a dealership that carries Zurich warranties or to privately purchase a vehicle that already has transferable Zurich coverage.
Q. Is an Extended Warranty from Zurich Worth It?
A. Zurich has a good reputation for being easy to deal with and paying out claims fairly quickly. Additionally, the company has a long history as a viable and stable corporation and has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau, which speaks highly to its reputation. The customizable levels of coverage are great, but the difficulty of obtaining coverage is a huge drawback. If you’re working with a dealer that offers Zurich products, they’re definitely worth your consideration.