Why has my car’s delivery been delayed?

You’ve done your research, spoken to a sales person, signed the documents and now you’re just waiting for your car to arrive. And now, tragedy strikes, and you discover that your car has been delayed!

We understand how frustrating this must be. After all, you’ve gone through such a lengthy process and now you find out you’re going to have to wait even longer. But, there is probably a very valid reason as to why your car is delayed.

But, we understand that doesn’t help when all you want to do is drive your shiny new car.  We have ordered thousands of cars over the years, and we’ve had our fair share of delays. So, we can soften the blow a little bit by exploring the reasons why your car might be delayed.


How Likely Is It That My Car Will Be Delayed?

The chances of your car being delayed by quite a bit are fairly low*. In my experience, about 20-30% of cars are delayed by more than a month or so. However, there is a chance that your car will be delayed by a few weeks. I would estimate that about 50-60% of cars are delayed by a week or two.

So, while delays are not unavoidable, there are ways to minimise this.

*In 2022 lead times have increased due to part shortages. You can read more about the impact this has had here.

Why Haven’t I Been Given a Delivery Date?

Your vehicle broker should have been totally honest with you when it came to the delivery of your car. And by that, I mean that they shouldn’t have given you a delivery date. This is because there are a number of things that can delay the delivery. Your broker shouldn’t make a promise it cannot keep, which is why a trustworthy broker should not promise you a delivery date.

While your broker can give you an estimate, there are so many variables they cannot accurately give you a delivery time. But we’ll talk about that in a little bit.

Got questions about your OSV vehicle delivery? Call us on 01903 538835

How Would I Know If My Car is Delayed?

It depends on who you lease your car through. Some brokers and dealers do not provide their customers with updates on the delivery of their vehicle. If they estimate a delivery time of six weeks and it doesn’t arrive, then you may have to chase them up yourselves. They will then find out where your order is and why it has been delayed.

Others, such as OSV, will provide you with regular updates letting you know exactly where your order is. We have something called a customer portal where our customers can check up on their order at any time, day or night. So, if a car is delayed, our customers will know.

Okay, we’ll stop blowing our own trumpet, let’s get back to what sort of things alter the delivery time.

What Affects The Delivery Time Of My New Vehicle?

Ordering a car isn’t as easy as ordering something from Amazon, as much as we would like it to be. It goes through a number of steps before it reaches your door. The process is as follows;

  • Build allocation
  • In production
  • Transit to port of exit
  • Pre-delivery inspection and paperwork
  • Finance agreements and delivery

And with these steps, come their potential problems. Such as;

  • The factory
  • Location
  • Shipping
  • Finance agreements
  • Driver availability
  • Problems with paperwork

As you can see, with all of these potential problems, it’s borderline impossible to give an exact delivery date. If you would like to find out how all of these factors affect delivery date then you can do so here.

How Would The Factory Cause My Car To Be Delayed?

One of the biggest things that could result in your delivery being delayed is if there are problems at the factory. The time-frame for factory orders can depend on the following factors;

  • The volume of orders
  • Factory closures
  • Problems with parts

When a manufacturer receives a high volume of orders, they will allocate a build week. This will depend on the volume of orders received, the availability of parts, and any plans the manufacturer has for new models. For this reason, the build week can be anything from in four weeks to a year.

There are also times of the year when the factory closes. When they reopen, they naturally have a backlog of orders.

How Will Paperwork Cause My Car To Be Delayed?

You have to sign a lot of paperwork before you can lease a car. A lot. And finance houses are very strict as to what is acceptable and what is not. For example, the following problems could delay your car;

  • Signing in the wrong place
    • If your signature is in the wrong place or outside of the specified box, then the documents can be rejected.
  • Your witnesses are wrong
    • Most of the documents will need to be witnessed by someone who is not a family member or someone living at the same address. If they are, then they may need to be re-signed.
  • The signatures don’t match
    • This is so important. We get that people’s signatures change over time but it is really important that they are at least a close match. Otherwise this can cause delays.
  • The documents are left too long
    • If you put off signing the documents then this can cause a huge delay. This is because they may need to be re-issued and the finance approval will need to be redone.
  • Signing the documents when you are not listed as registered director
    • The listed director must sign the documents. If they don’t then you guessed it, it can cause delays.

If you want to know what sort of paperwork you will be signing then you can find out here.


What Happens If My Car Is Delayed And I Have Another Car Going Back?

If your car has been delayed, and your old car is going back to the finance house before it will be delivered, then don’t panic.

Some finance houses will let you keep your old car on an informal basis until your new car arrives. Others, however, will let you keep it on a more formal basis. If the delay is more than a month or two then you will have to agree with the finance house how long you are going to keep the car for.

If your car is delayed by a week or two, then you yourself can delay the collection of your old car. You can do this by telling your finance house it is not ready for collection.

As you can see, there are a lot of reasons why your car could be delayed. There are ways in which you can avoid this, however, by filling in the paperwork correctly and getting it sent off as quickly as possible.

But, there are also things that can delay it that are completely out of your control. The best thing to do would be to go through a broker that gives you regular updates regarding your order. By doing this, you avoid any unpleasant surprises on the expected delivery day. 


Got questions about your OSV vehicle delivery? Call us on 01903 538835

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