NADA Advocates trust in vehicle purchases amidst shifting automotive landscape

In the face of economic and political uncertainty and continued financial strain on consumers, establishing trust becomes paramount for consumers and businesses alike.

As the second quarter of 2024 nears, the National Automobile Dealers’ Association (NADA) emphasises the pivotal role of trust in an automotive landscape filled with choices.

"Trust plays a pivotal role in the current automotive marketplace, brimming with options. Consumers should exercise caution in their choice of dealerships, as those with established reputations of trustworthiness are better equipped to deliver outstanding service," says Brandon Cohen, National Chairperson of NADA.

NADA, representing nearly 1500 members, most franchised motor dealers in South Africa, goes beyond its conventional role as an industry association. Actively engaging in discussions, shaping legislation, and collaborating with key industry players, NADA addresses pressing issues affecting dealerships within the automotive sector.

“At the core of NADA's mission is the assurance of recourse for consumers transacting with our trusted franchise dealerships. Our affiliated dealerships embody transparency, integrity, and consumer-centric values," states Ryan Seele, an executive member of the NADA National Executive Committee.

Trust is not only critical for attracting new buyers but also for retaining existing customers. NADA-affiliated dealerships take pride in supporting manufacturers’ warranties and offering comprehensive after-sales support through highly trained technicians, fostering enduring relationships built on trust.

Skilled Resources:

Dealerships affiliated with NADA boast technicians who understand both the brand and technology. These professionals undergo continuous training to meet international standards, ensuring they are well-equipped to handle the evolving automotive landscape.

Warranty Benefits:

NADA-affiliated dealerships generally offer warranties on parts that surpass the CPA rule of six months. This commitment provides customers with peace of mind and ensures that during the warranty period, repairs are conducted at no additional cost, demonstrating dedication to quality and safety.

Safety Focus:

NADA members supply and install OEM-approved parts during warranty, repair, or service-related work. This commitment to using original parts safeguards the highest standards of customer safety. Additionally, the disposal of waste follows stringent environmental requirements, reinforcing the responsibility of NADA-affiliated dealerships.

Consumer Empowerment:

NADA actively advocates for the protection of consumer rights throughout the entire ownership journey. By choosing to transact with a recognised NADA dealership, consumers gain access to a network committed to adherence to strict guidelines and standards, ensuring a higher level of customer satisfaction and an added layer of protection through the association's commitment to ensuring fair and transparent transactions.

"The enduring relationship between consumers and dealerships not only facilitates informed decision-making but also fosters a sense of confidence in selecting a vehicle that aligns seamlessly with individual needs and preferences, ensuring peace of mind," says Cohen.

“The influx of new vehicles with cutting-edge features has heightened the desire for a hands-on experience before making a purchase. Trusted dealerships, serving as the bridge between consumers and the latest automotive innovations, understand the importance of this tactile engagement. They can provide consumers with the requisite advice and selection of features for their budget and needs,” says Cohen.

In an era marked by technological advancements, the assurance and advice provided by knowledgeable retailers hold substantial value for customers navigating the vast array of choices. Physical dealerships will continue to be an essential element in their buying journey, contributing significantly to customer confidence and satisfaction.

In recognising the substantial investment made in physical dealerships and their pivotal role in customer interactions, NADA underscores the importance of a robust framework of recourse for customers facing challenges with their vehicle purchases. This framework not only acknowledges the significance of a seamless buyer-seller relationship but also emphasises the enduring commitment to customer satisfaction.

"Fortunately, South Africa has many dealerships that can compete on the world’s stage in all aspects of running a successful retail motor business and who have built up and maintained wonderful reputations of trust.

“NADA and its members stand unwaveringly as advocates for adherence to the NADA and the Consumer Protection Act's Codes of Conduct for the Automotive Industry. Serving as the esteemed voice of the dealer in South Africa, NADA plays a pivotal role in upholding the standards essential to the automotive sector's integrity and success,” concludes the NADA Chairperson.

NADA is a constituent association of the Retail Motor Industry Organisation (RMI).