Overland Park, Kan.—Universal Underwriters Group has announced the addition of Road Hazard Tire and Wheel protection to its line of F&I products. Road Hazard Tire and Wheel provides coverage in the event of damage to tires or wheels from road hazards. Also included, is emergency roadside assistance.

The program presents a variety of benefits including:

Tires: In the event a covered tire is damaged as a result of road hazard, Universal Underwriters will repair or replace the damaged tire.

Wheels: Wheels that no longer seal air after tire damage will be repaired or replaced.

Mounting, balancing, valve systems and taxes: The cost of parts and labor for mounting, balancing, valve stems and applicable taxes is covered in conjunction with covered repair costs.

Emergency roadside assistance: Customers receive the benefits of roadside assistance 24/7. This includes towing, battery service, flat tire assistance, gas and fluid delivery, lockout or frozen lock and concierge service.

"Dealers are seeking more ways to turn a profit; customers are seeking more protection for their cars," said Bill Stoothoff, Universal Underwriters vice president of finance and insurance. "New products cropping up is a definite trend. One that helps to meet the needs of both segments."

Universal Underwriters offers both Standard and Premium Road Hazard Tire and Wheel plans, with price point reflective of the services provided. Additional program features include:

No deductible, maximum number of occurrences or mileage limitations.

All vehicle tires are covered for as long as they have at least 3/32” of tread at the time of damage.

Transferable to the next vehicle owner.

One-to-five year terms available.

According to Stoothoff, Universal's wheel and tire protection plan is unique because coverage is offered on both new and used vehicles; most manufacturer’s programs offer this type of coverage on new vehicles only. Universal's program also offers multiple benefits levels and a ‘sign and drive’ emergency roadside service.