Valvoline has announced a new pilot program to roll out electric vehicle service and maintenance offerings in a number of its retail stores. The company is calling this move “the next step in advancing Valvoline’s strategy to extend its world-class preventive auto maintenance service model to EV owners, OEMs and fleets.”
The Valvoline retail service centers will be providing state-mandated safety inspections (where applicable) and maintenance-based services such as brake and transmission fluid replacements (yes, some BEVs do have transmissions), 12-volt battery replacements, tire rotations and replacements, cabin air filter replacements, and windshield wiper replacements. Many of these services have already been offered by Valvoline’s retail locations in the past, but will now be specifically offered with a focus on electric vehicles as a “phase one.” Phase two, meanwhile, is expected to include even more EV-targeted service offerings (likely to be focused on cooling and HVAC system services) beginning this summer at select company-owned stores.
“For 150 years we’ve been bringing innovation to the automotive aftermarket,” said Heidi Matheys, Chief Marketing & Transformation Officer at Valvoline. “As Valvoline continues to transform its retail offerings and extend its existing offerings to EV owners, we are able to offer our quick, easy, trusted approach to automotive maintenance regardless of a vehicle’s power source.”
News of Valvoline’s pilot program closely follows the recent announcement from ride-hailing and electric delivery van company Arrival, which named Valvoline as an official service partner and provider for the growing fleet of Arrival vehicles. “Our nearly 1,500 service centers across the US offer exceptional service that will quickly and efficiently meet the needs of Arrival’s clients,” offered Matheys. “We are thrilled to see the Valvoline-Arrival partnership come to fruition.”
Wait — Electric Cars Need Maintenance!?
Yes. And, I know, there are many people out there who still wrongly believe that electric cars don’t require maintenance because they don’t have an ICE engine that requires oil changes. If that’s you, you might be wondering what other kind of services your BEV might need — the good news is that we covered this in some detail in one of our Electric Car FAQ articles a while back. You can check out that article by clicking here.
In the meantime, suffice it to say that you’ll start seeing more and more independent (translation: not affiliated with a dealership) service centers begin to offer products and services targeting EVs in a bid to remain relevant. That’s especially critical now, because EV buyers have been much more likely than ICE buyers to take their cars back to the dealer for service, a trend which is being met by increased investment from automakers like Volkswagen and Ford to get their all the departments at their dealerships — not just sales — ready for the coming wave of EV customers.
What do you guys think – does Valvoline have a shot at earning EV buyers’ service business, or will electric car buyers keep going back to the place they bought the car from to keep it going year after year? Scroll on down to the comments section and let us know!
Sources | Images: Valvoline, Arrival, via PR Newswire.
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