Ford Signs Up The AA To Help Its Customers From A To B

Ford drivers will enjoy peace of mind on the road at home and abroad thanks to a new partnership between market leader Ford of Britain and the AA, UK's largest roadside assistance organisation.

Roadside assistance, which comes as standard with every new Ford vehicle, will now extend to the European mainland. This means no longer having to organise extra cover for Ford drivers taking their car on holiday or other trips abroad.

Coverage across Europe is one of a range of benefits stemming from the three-year deal signed by Ford and the AA. Ford offers 12 months roadside assistance with all new cars and 36 months cover with commercial vehicles. The service becomes invaluable in the event of an accident or breakdown. Around 90 per cent of stranded motorists' vehicles are fixed at the roadside by the AA.

From October 2005 the AA's 3,500-strong patrol force will respond to calls from new Ford vehicle owners. Part of the AA's plan is to develop a team of technicians dedicated to responding to calls from Ford owners. They would be Ford specialists - only attending to the needs of drivers of 'blue oval' vehicles in a Ford Transit or Transit Connect commercial vehicle.

Assistance in mainland Europe will be provided through the AA's European partner ARC Transistance. Vehicles needing to be returned to the UK can be repatriated from any of 18 countries in Europe.

John Cooper, Ford customer service director, said: "Together with the AA, it makes sense to use our combined strength across Europe to come to the rescue of Ford drivers who are unable to continue their journey, wherever they may be.

"In Britain they can be assured the usual high standard of Ford service from AA patrols. As part of this new partnership, commercial vehicle operators will benefit too from the assistance of truck specialists familiar with their specific issues. We look forward to working more closely with the AA."

Onward transportation and delivery of loads Europe-wide is part of the cover for Ford of Britain's important commercial vehicle owners - who have helped Ford Transit remain top selling commercial vehicle in Britain for its entire 39-year lifetime.

David Wallace, director, AA Business Services, said: "I am delighted that we have won this pan-European roadside assistance contract with Ford.

"As ARC Transistance’s UK partner, the AA will provide Ford's customers with the reassurance of being assisted by the UK’s largest roadside organisation."

Our previous supplier, RAC, remains a key Ford customer and business partner. RAC's roadside assistance and windscreen repair services run almost 2,500 Ford vans and cars between them.

Engineers from RAC carry out inspections of Ford vehicles before they are sold under the Ford Direct used car brand and RAC is involved in providing independent quality inspections and support services for Ford's aftersales activities.

Published 8 May 2005 Melanie Carter

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