The prolonged incompetence with auto makers and their franchise owners.

imwjl

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Part of our keeping at least one vehicle under warranty is my job. Managing infrastructure means times when I really do have to drive.

Now it's my turn to have a vehicle where staff and parts got me a July 27 appointment on July 2. There are no loaner cars available. So far they refuse getting me a rental. I'm being told to drive a vehicle with an error code that says don't drive it. The way franchises are often awarded to same groups and families, I have to drive 1 to 1.5 hours to get a different dealer.

Several associates I know have had this occur without regard to the make. I can't help but think of my friend who had Tesla bring the loaner to his driveway, and especially so because a Tesla could not have an ignition problem.

My assistant at work joked the lack of a rental or loaner could be from people like her friend who waited 6+ months with a disabled vehicle waiting for parts. My cousin in dealer service admin says they've had waits either side of a year for a few vehicles. We waited nearly 5 months to get a new key.

If my industry - food and food delivery - were this incompetent this long we'd probably have riots in the street. I told the service manager to stop blaming the can't talk about it here - their excuse for other minor service issues that got aggravated by parts and staffing issues.
 

sixstringbastard

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Getting mad at individuals for the Charles Foxtrot world we all live in doesn't make sense.
Unless that dealership has got 3D printers, forges and a machine shop, the local dealer is helpless.

The world is in a greedy mess right now, with no hope on the horizon. Times have changed and they're not ever going to be the same again.
 

imwjl

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Getting mad at individuals for the Charles Foxtrot world we all live in doesn't make sense.
Unless that dealership has got 3D printers, forges and a machine shop, the local dealer is helpless.

The world is in a greedy mess right now, with no hope on the horizon. Times have changed and they're not ever going to be the same again.
I don't share your hopeless view knowing how my own industry and our vital vendors and suppliers have reacted.

I'm very respectful of first line workers. I support them by the hundreds. However, I am frustrated by what seems like no ability to work out something like get me alternate transportation for part of the time or put the car on a flatbed to dealers who might not be down close to 1/2 their certified mechanics.

My guess is we have lots of DIY and pro mechanics who know the answer is indeed with the recipe for the error I have via the OBD port scan with a pro grade tool.
 

boris bubbanov

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Buy a Bosch, Made in Mexico code reader. Read the code, and find the gist of the code online and then cancel the code and drive. The Suits always advise the Car Company to tell people not to drive with a CEL, but most of the time it is not a big deal. If everyone whose car pulled a code, parked it and sought a rental, we'd all be sunk overnight. You gotta P1457? Get over it.

Sixstring is right, and now is the time for people to get a grip on themselves and stop relying so heavily on all things microchip. We once functioned without them - shouldn't we at least try to cope before throwing in the towel?

+

Nothing personal, Imwjl, but the food and food service people have tumbled a bit as well.
I used to go out to get the best meal of the week. Now, we accomplish this at home.
 

unixfish

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This is nothing new with dealer franchises. In the past in Northeast Ohio, Ford dealers used to have a bad reputation for this. If your car died on the side of the road and could not move, most dealers would schedule you 3 to 8 weeks out. This was back in the 1990s, way before chips and epidemics. I have no idea if it has gotten better - I never went back to the brand. This was a well known issue at the time, not just my experience.

I had a friend who dropped his conversion van off for warranty work (2005). When he got it back the next week, it had 1500 more miles on it, there were empty beer bottles in the back, and the jack and built in vacuum were missing. When he complained, the dealer put him on the "Do not service" customer list. Nice.

Part of the reason that Japanese cars became so popular is that you did not get this kind of BS from their dealers. Not the only reason - just part of it. Why do you think Saturn became a new brand? Because the GM business model with the dealership network was so broken.
 

bgmacaw

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Because the GM business model with the dealership network was so broken.

Don't get me started on GM.

I suspect a lot of it does go back to how good the dealer (or their dealer network) is. Too many are focused on quick profit maximization instead of building long term customer and community relationships. Most can't even keep the same sales and service teams for more than a few months.
 

Killing Floor

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On a micro level the electronic components in your dashboard or under the hood are the same as in your amp, pedals, office lights, TV, and phone. Some of those items are crystals. Piezoelectrics, display components, oscillators and many other parts of electronic devices are "grown" and in some cases have up to 16 month lead times. Assume those factory complexes were offline for 6-8 months. All the production today is satisfying wholesale demand from 18-24 months ago (6 months offline + manufacturing time + shipping).
It may not be your dealer being incompetent.
During the era which shall not be named many "non-economic" agencies made economic decisions in response to a non-economic event. It may take 8-12 more years to normalize because demand stayed consistent independent of supply. Doing my best to not get this flagged.
 

Killing Floor

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And FWIW my wife needs a new car. We bought one as what would normally be stock, off the lot. But it won't be delivered from the US assembly plant until at least 2 months and we had to pay around $2,000 above normal published list price because she needs it for her job and there are not many used cars either. On the other hand, we traded in a high mileage car with bald tires for nearly double Blue Book value because the dealers can't get used cars to sell.
 

Jimclarke100

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Buy a Bosch, Made in Mexico code reader. Read the code, and find the gist of the code online and then cancel the code and drive. The Suits always advise the Car Company to tell people not to drive with a CEL, but most of the time it is not a big deal. If everyone whose car pulled a code, parked it and sought a rental, we'd all be sunk overnight. You gotta P1457? Get over it.

Sixstring is right, and now is the time for people to get a grip on themselves and stop relying so heavily on all things microchip. We once functioned without them - shouldn't we at least try to cope before throwing in the towel?

+

Nothing personal, Imwjl, but the food and food service people have tumbled a bit as well.
I used to go out to get the best meal of the week. Now, we accomplish this at home.

Better if you have a tame mechanic with the computer as that’ll be better than anything you can buy for cheap, and the mechanic can apply knowledge to interpret it properly.
My van has had an error flagged up for a couple of months now. My brother is a mechanic and his machine tells us it’s the brake light switch. But the brake lights work fine so you need to have knowledge of how that feeds into the ECU so you can decide whether you can drive or no.
 

unixfish

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Better if you have a tame mechanic with the computer as that’ll be better than anything you can buy for cheap, and the mechanic can apply knowledge to interpret it properly.
My van has had an error flagged up for a couple of months now. My brother is a mechanic and his machine tells us it’s the brake light switch. But the brake lights work fine so you need to have knowledge of how that feeds into the ECU so you can decide whether you can drive or no.

Most major auto parts stores have a ODB reader and will read your code for free, and give you a printout of what the issue is, how to fix it, and what parts you will need.
 

imwjl

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Buy a Bosch, Made in Mexico code reader. Read the code, and find the gist of the code online and then cancel the code and drive. The Suits always advise the Car Company to tell people not to drive with a CEL, but most of the time it is not a big deal. If everyone whose car pulled a code, parked it and sought a rental, we'd all be sunk overnight. You gotta P1457? Get over it.

Sixstring is right, and now is the time for people to get a grip on themselves and stop relying so heavily on all things microchip. We once functioned without them - shouldn't we at least try to cope before throwing in the towel?

+

Nothing personal, Imwjl, but the food and food service people have tumbled a bit as well.
I used to go out to get the best meal of the week. Now, we accomplish this at home.
Areas in the food business have slipped too but the auto business at manufacturer's level and some of the dealers seem extraordinarily messed up by comparison for 2+ years now.

I borrowed a pro grade scanner to see if it's same error. The service manager is probably right as are you on the drive or don't drive matter, but I don't want to make the 176 and 400+ mi trips I have to do in the next week knowing cylinder #3 is getting intermittent misfiring. My getting home Saturday showed around a 2 MPG drop for the trip when I was driving easy on the throttle. I can hear the turbo more than usual likely a hint to making up for a misfire problem.

This is not a reason to stop relying on the technology that makes the vehicles much better. It's a first real problem in 2 years of ownership. The problem is the single firm owning all the franchises in my area doing poorly and the manufacturer not yet breaking their rules that in essence only tows it to them. The maker's CSR gets it and was trying to get it towed, get me a loaner, or a rental.

@unixfish I went to a parts shop with a pro grade scanner to back up my DIY work.
 

unixfish

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Don't get me started on GM.

I suspect a lot of it does go back to how good the dealer (or their dealer network) is. Too many are focused on quick profit maximization instead of building long term customer and community relationships. Most can't even keep the same sales and service teams for more than a few months.

We had a 1999 Oldsmobile Bravada. Major POS. Every time we had something that needed warranty work, we went through the same process:

* I take the car in. Parts are not in stock and need to be ordered.
* A week later, I call. Parts are not in.
* A week later, I call. Parts are not in.
* Repeat another week or three.
* I forget to call for a week or two. I call back. Since I never called when they were in, they were returned and they want to charge me a 10% restocking fee. I tell them to get them back, then need to fight with the owner to get the restocking fee removed from my account.
* A week later, I call. Parts are not in.
* A week later, I call. Parts are not in.
* Repeat another week or three...

I had parts returned twice for the same repair. You would think they would be able to notify service when the parts arrived and get me scheduled. Nope. Every time a major POS. I did this at least 6 separate times.

When the car was 6 years old and had 60,000 miles, I estimated the repairs it needed, which was over $6,000. Yeah, no. In 2006, we traded that car for a 2003 Lexus ES 300. We had very little issues with the Lexus for the next 12 years and 90,000 miles.
 

Toto'sDad

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On at least two occasions in the mountains during my hunting with hounds days, I had failures with the front end assembly of the vehicle I was driving (not the same vehicle.) On one occasion, I pirated parts from under the bed of the truck and got the front assembly back together well enough to get the vehicle down off the mountain and home for a better repair.

The second time, unable to scavenge parts to pull the front end back together, I used a set of snow chains, and some bolts from the frame to pull everything back in line to travel. I hate to think that vehicles have become so complicated that you can't find a way to get them from A to B somehow. I think necessity is often the mother of invention.
 

Toto'sDad

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As far as the excuse offered by dealers. With the many legitimate excuses they have, and ones they could easily make up in part from the real ones, I don't think they are going to lack for an excuse for why they can't fix your vehicle.
 

Toto'sDad

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When my son the professional engineer is faced with what seems like an insurmountable problem, he usually says, there is always a solution, I just haven't processed enough data to arrive at it yet.
 

imwjl

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On at least two occasions in the mountains during my hunting with hounds days, I had failures with the front end assembly of the vehicle I was driving (not the same vehicle.) On one occasion, I pirated parts from under the bed of the truck and got the front assembly back together well enough to get the vehicle down off the mountain and home for a better repair.

The second time, unable to scavenge parts to pull the front end back together, I used a set of snow chains, and some bolts from the frame to pull everything back in line to travel. I hate to think that vehicles have become so complicated that you can't find a way to get them from A to B somehow. I think necessity is often the mother of invention.
When my son the professional engineer is faced with what seems like an insurmountable problem, he usually says, there is always a solution, I just haven't processed enough data to arrive at it yet.
It's a relatively simple fix but I didn't buy the new car for me to do what I'd do if it was one of the out of warranty cars we have. I bought it for speed and convenience so I can best do my job.
 

Toto'sDad

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It's a relatively simple fix but I didn't buy the new car for me to do what I'd do if it was one of the out of warranty cars we have. I bought it for speed and convenience so I can best do my job.

I understand really, I do. I just marvel at the inconvenience that is often brought on by the promise of convenience.
 

hdvades

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Edit...I see #3 cylinder intermittent misfire. Could be a bad coil pack, sensor, maybe ECU related. In these times, for reasons I'm not allowed to mention, a three-week wait isn't bad.
 
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bgmacaw

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When my son the professional engineer is faced with what seems like an insurmountable problem, he usually says, there is always a solution, I just haven't processed enough data to arrive at it yet.

You should get him this t-shirt.

engineerwhyrighttshirt.JPG
 




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