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2011 Honda Pilot Touring (Honda)
2011 Honda Pilot Touring (Honda)

Rob's Garage

Should you buy rust protection from your dealer? Add to ...

Hi Rob:

My wife and I just purchased a new Honda Pilot and are considering the rust, paint protection program. Is it advisable to purchase this package?

I have been told by my saleswoman that this is perfect for long Toronto winters.

We pick up the car next month so any help with this will be appreciated.

Thanks, Barry Wong

Great question Barry - I like to refer to this conundrum as Deal or No Deal, for a variety of reasons.

First of all, these add-on packages can be a deal maker or breaker because many car dealers rely on these purchases to boost traffic through the showroom. Typically, advertised vehicle prices can be all over the map when compared to the MSRP - Manufacturers Suggested Retail Price - due to the loss-leader principle.

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Hard to imagine, but in most cases there is not as much profit in the sale price of a car/truck as there used to be, so the dealers are now counting on add-on packages to boost their bottom line.

To your question Barry, the answer is a definite maybe. Sounds like fence sitting but here is the question you have to ask yourself: do you plan on keeping the vehicle for a long time?

With undercoating (that is usually what the rust plan includes); the time to do this is when the vehicle is brand new. Any time the car is driven, dirt and muck builds up under the car and finds its way into every little nook and cranny. Applying undercoat to a vehicle with kilometres on it will only seal in the dirt as well as any moisture contained in the dirt…not a good thing. What happens next is corrosion. Over time, this moisture has nowhere to go so it begins reacting with the metals that are next to it.

This is actually one of the arguments against undercoating.

As far as paint protection is concerned, keeping the car clean and waxed on a regular basis will provide many years of protection in its own right. Not to mention, this will give you an excuse to spend time outside catching rays. Depending on how much bending over you do, you'll get tan lines in places that you wouldn't normally.

My personal opinion is No Deal - slam the cover over the red button! But if you can justify the expense by amortizing it over many years of ownership, then press the red button and yell DEAL!

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