Chrysler extended warranty: cost, coverage and plans
They’re about as expensive as the repairs they’d cover
In the past few years, Chrysler has narrowed its lineup to just three vehicles: the 300, the Pacifica and the Pacifica Hybrid. These also happened to be Chrysler’s most upscale vehicles before it pared down, with prices for the cheapest 300 starting at well over $30,000.
As a result, Chrysler owners might consider purchasing extended warranties to protect their investments. But is Chrysler’s extended warranty program the right choice? Keep reading to learn what Chrysler’s extended warranties cover, what they cost and whether they’re worth it compared to your other options.
- Chrysler’s official factory-backed extended warranties are called Mopar Vehicle Protection Plans.
- There are multiple plan options available, but the vast majority of buyers choose the bumper-to-bumper-equivalent Maximum Care because it offers more relative value.
- Maximum Care plans for Chryslers cost around $600 to $800 per year of coverage, which is slightly more than the average cost of expected repairs. That makes them hard to recommend unless you want extra insurance against surprises.
- You may find similar protection for a better price from a third-party warranty provider.
Chrysler extended warranty coverage
Chrysler technically doesn’t operate its own extended warranty program. Instead, Chrysler’s factory-backed extended warranties, which are more accurately known as vehicle service contracts, come from a brand called Mopar. Mopar has the same parent company as Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, Ram, FIAT, Alfa Romeo and Wagoneer, which is why it’s the official parts supplier for those automakers.
Mopar calls its extended warranties Mopar Vehicle Protection plans, and like all extended auto warranties, these plans only cover the cost of fixing factory defects. They don’t cover damage, regular wear and tear or parts that fail due to negligence or misuse.
Mopar has a large variety of coverage options available, including specialty coverages for things like tires and wheels, but it splits its traditional extended warranty options into two categories:
- Mopar Vehicle Protection plans for “new” vehicles are available for Chrysler vehicles that are still within their Basic factory warranty period (three years/36,000 miles). These plans don’t require a dealer inspection to activate, and terms last anywhere from five to eight years and 60,000 to unlimited miles.
- Mopar Vehicle Protection plans for “pre-owned” vehicles are available for any Chrysler under 10 years old that passes a dealer inspection (usually about $150 and not included in the cost of the warranty). Terms can last anywhere from one to five years and 12,000 to unlimited miles.
It’s critical to note that Mopar new vehicle plans start from the vehicle’s in-service date (i.e., the date it was purchased by the first owner), while pre-owned Mopar plans start from the warranty purchase date.
To illustrate the difference, let’s say you have a 2022 Chrysler Pacifica that’s still under factory warranty. If you buy a five-year/60,000-mile Mopar Vehicle Protection plan, you’re not getting five years of additional coverage starting today — you’re getting five years of coverage that starts retroactively from the date your Pacifica was sold to its first owner with zero miles on it.
Double-check the start date of your warranty before you sign on the dotted line.
Because your Chrysler’s Basic (aka bumper-to-bumper) factory warranty has you covered for your vehicle’s first three years or 36,000 miles, your “five-year/60,000-mile” new vehicle warranty really only provides additional coverage for two years or 24,000 miles. (An extended powertrain warranty would be even more limited, considering your factory powertrain warranty has you covered for a full five years or 60,000 miles.)
With a pre-owned Mopar Vehicle Protection plan, on the other hand, your term starts the moment you purchase the extended warranty. So, a four-year/50,000-mile pre-owned Mopar Vehicle Protection plan really does provide four years or 50,000 miles of extra coverage starting today.
» LEARN: What does a car warranty cover?
Chrysler extended warranty plans
Both new and pre-owned Mopar Vehicle Protection plans come in three coverage levels: Powertrain Care Plus, Added Care Plus and Maximum Care. You can choose a deductible of $0, $100 or $200 with each plan.
Somewhat oddly, there’s also a fourth plan option just for pre-owned Chryslers called Added Care, which offers coverage somewhere between Added Care Plus and Powertrain Care Plus. However, according to multiple reps we spoke with, virtually nobody buys it. In fact, the vast majority of Mopar Vehicle Protection plan shoppers end up choosing Maximum Care.
Let’s look at the chart below to see why.
|Component group||Powertrain Care Plus||Added Care (pre-owned only)||Added Care Plus||Maximum Care|
|Engine cooling and fuel||Some||Some||Most|
Put simply, Maximum Care covers nearly six times the parts of Added Care Plus for just 10% to 40% more cost. We asked the reps we spoke with if the other, less comprehensive warranty options only existed to make Maximum Care look like a better deal, and they confirmed as much.
Chrysler extended warranty benefits
In addition to covering the cost of repair bills, Mopar Vehicle Protection plans also come with some additional benefits:
- Rental car allowances of up to $45 per day (maximum $225 or five days total) to help with the cost of a rental car (or taxi rides) while your Chrysler is with the mechanic for a covered repair
- Roadside assistance of up to $100 per occurrence that includes 24/7 towing, jump-starts, flat-tire assistance (assuming you have a spare), fuel deliveries (up to two gallons) and locksmith services
- Trip interruption protection of up to $1,000 to help with the cost of food and lodging if your Chrysler needs to visit the mechanic over 100 miles from home for covered repairs
Overall, these are above-average benefits for a manufacturer’s extended warranty. Other brands often limit their car rental allowances and trip interruption protection to $35 and $500, respectively, so it’s nice to see Mopar step up.
Chrysler extended warranty cost
One nice thing about Mopar extended warranties is that you can buy one online in under two minutes. In contrast, most manufacturers’ extended auto warranties have to be purchased from dealerships that may tack on hidden fees.
Mopar Vehicle Protection Plan costs
Here are some of the quotes we collected for Chrysler vehicles from Zeigler Auto Group, a licensed wholesale retailer of Mopar Vehicle Protection plans. (In our experience, Zeigler’s prices tend to be about 40% less than dealerships’.) Note that these prices do not include tax and are based on a $100 deductible.
|2023 Chrysler Pacifica||Added Care Plus||7 years/100,000 miles||4 years/64,000 miles||$1,710|
|2023 Chrysler Pacifica||Maximum Care||7 years/100,000 miles||4 years/64,000 miles||$2,620|
|2023 Chrysler Pacifica||Added Care Plus||8 years/125,000 miles||5 years/89,000 miles||$2,375|
|2023 Chrysler Pacifica||Maximum Care||8 years/125,000 miles||5 years/89,000 miles||$3,780|
|2020 Chrysler 300||Added Care Plus||7 years/100,000 miles||4 years/64,000 miles||$1,995|
|2020 Chrysler 300||Maximum Care||7 years/100,000 miles||4 years/64,000 miles||$3,110|
|2020 Chrysler 300||Added Care Plus||8 years/125,000 miles||5 years/89,000 miles||$2,810|
|2020 Chrysler 300||Maximum Care||8 years/125,000 miles||5 years/89,000 miles||$4,530|
|2017 Chrysler 200||Added Care Plus||3 years or 36,000 miles||3 years/36,000 miles**||$1,465|
|2017 Chrysler 200||Maximum Care||3 years or 36,000 miles||3 years/36,000 miles**||$2,070|
|2017 Chrysler 200||Added Care Plus||5 years/60,000 miles||5 years/60,000 miles**||$2,365|
|2017 Chrysler 200||Maximum Care||5 years/60,000 miles||5 years/60,000 miles**||$3,380|
Based on these quotes, Maximum Care plans for Chryslers tend to cost a pinch above the average cost of an extended auto warranty, but are they still worth it? Before making a final call, let’s look at the finer details of Mopar’s warranty agreements.
Chrysler extended warranty terms and conditions
We looked at the provisions for Mopar Vehicle Protection plans to find any potential issues or anomalies, and what we found were some pretty standard terms for extended car warranties. We’ve broken down some key things for you to be aware of below, but just remember that it’s almost always a good idea to read a warranty agreement line-by-line before signing.
- You have to get — and keep proof of — all of the scheduled maintenance listed in your Chrysler owners manual to keep your coverage active. That means getting oil changes, brake inspections and other services at regular intervals and keeping your receipts. (Mopar may ask for records proving that you’ve been keeping up with maintenance before approving any claims.)
- Missed maintenance intervals, negligence and misuse of your vehicle can all result in denied claims.
Mopar Vehicle Protection plans also don’t cover:
- Normal wear-and-tear items (e.g., clutches, brake pads and wiper blades)
- Repairs needed due to collisions or weather
- Cosmetic components
- Aftermarket parts
Mopar can’t legally void your warranty just for installing an aftermarket part, but if that part causes a covered part to fail (e.g., a lift kit causing suspension issues), claim denial is very likely.
Also, while it’s fairly common for extended warranties to not cover cosmetic components, that doesn’t mean it’s a nonissue. Wendy, a ConsumerAffairs reviewer from Michigan, wrote: “Leased a Chrysler 300S AWD in Sept. 2017 for 39 month/49000. The sales rep. suggested I purchase an extended warranty to cover the vehicle after the manufacturer (36 month/36000) warranty expired so I did MOPAR maximum care for $381.
“Mid-summer 2020 I noticed my door panels were warping and rising up. Almost like the glue holding the top edge had failed. … I returned the vehicle a week early to have this addressed. A few days later my sales rep called and told me this is a cosmetic problem and is not covered under my extended warranty. I was furious! This isn't as much cosmetic as it's a defective material/design...I started looking online and guess what??? 1000's of customers are, or have had the same problem.”
- Preexisting conditions
- Mopar Vehicle Protection plans don’t cover preexisting conditions, which is normal for an extended auto warranty. What’s less normal is that if you’re buying a pre-owned vehicle plan, Mopar requires you to get a dealer inspection to activate it.
That may feel like a burden, but it really serves both your and Mopar’s best interests. Other extended warranty companies may not require this step, but they may also deny claims on the basis that you can’t prove certain issues weren’t preexisting conditions. That’s why it’s generally good practice to have a dealer inspection report done in tandem with a warranty purchase anyway; it establishes a baseline and protects you from such technicalities.
- If you sell your Chrysler while your Mopar Vehicle Protection plan is active, you can transfer your leftover coverage to the new owner by contacting Mopar and paying a fee. (This fee is usually $75, but it may be different in your state.)
- Cancellations and refunds
- Assuming you haven’t submitted a claim yet, you can cancel your Mopar Vehicle Protection plan within 60 days of purchase for a full refund. If it’s after 60 days or you’ve already filed a claim, you can still cancel your warranty for a prorated refund, though.
Is a Chrysler extended warranty worth it?
So, is a Chrysler extended warranty worth it? It’s close, but probably not. Let’s explain why.
Usually, an extended car warranty is more likely to be worth the cost if any of the following are true for you:
- Your vehicle has below-average expected reliability.
- The cost of the warranty is less than the cost of expected (covered) repairs.
- A surprise repair bill could be financially disastrous for you.
- You don’t mind paying a significant amount of money just for extra peace of mind.
We’ll focus on the first two points since the third and fourth points are subjective and dependent on your personal situation.
Take estimates of annual repair costs and frequency with a grain of salt. Everyone’s experience is likely to be somewhat different.
For starters, Chrysler vehicles are frequently ranked below average for expected reliability. J.D. Power ranked the brand 25th out of 32 automakers in its 2023 survey, and while Consumer Reports lacked sufficient data to include the brand in its overall rankings in 2022, it did label the Chrysler Pacifica hybrid as one of the single least reliable vehicles on sale at the time.
That being said, data from RepairPal indicates that Chryslers aren’t too expensive to get back on the road. According to the data aggregator, Chrysler vehicles cost their owners just $608 in maintenance and repairs each year. (The industry average is $652 per year across all makes.)
They also visit the shop less frequently than the industry average (0.3 times each year compared with 0.4 times), and those repairs cost about $2,000 or more just 12% of the time — which is right at the industry average.
Given that the cost of expected repairs and the cost of a Mopar Vehicle Protection plan are about the same (roughly $600 to $800 per year), it might make more sense to simply put that money in a savings account and pay for repairs as needed.
Before we wrap up, though, let’s see if a third-party warranty company can offer a deal that’s easier to say yes to.
Chrysler extended warranty alternatives
We collected quotes from two other extended auto warranty companies (olive and Endurance) to see how they compared with what Mopar offered us. The quotes we included below are for a Maximum Care-equivalent plan with a $100 deductible and don’t include tax.
As expected, Zeigler offered some pretty good deals on Mopar plans — but in select cases, the dedicated warranty companies offered better rates. That’s why it’s always best to get multiple quotes from several different providers before committing to an extended warranty.
- Article sources
- ConsumerAffairs writers primarily rely on government data, industry experts and original research from other reputable publications to inform their work. Specific sources for this article include:
- J.D. Power, “Vehicle Dependability Improves Despite Continued Problems with Technology, J.D. Power Finds.” Accessed April 11, 2023.
- Consumer Reports, “Who Makes the Most Reliable New Cars?” Accessed April 11, 2023.
- RepairPal, “Chrysler Reliability Rating.” Accessed April 11, 2023.
You’re signed up
We’ll start sending you the news you need delivered straight to you. We value your privacy. Unsubscribe easily.