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Old 12-03-2014   #76
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Re: Catching fourth gear

Quote Originally Posted by mwcf View Post
Alsation1,

NOT good news.

200+ miles on new replacement box and rather than having improved, the shift has got worse.....totally garbage especially in lower 3 gears - as in reluctant, rubbery, notchy, 'crunchy'. Car back at dealer who's Workshop Manager totally concurs. Third gearbox on a 5 week old car anyone?!!

I'm not unreasonably singularly and categorically unimpressed and as such have decided to go for rejecting car as not fit for purpose under S14 of SoGA. For all I know, the original faulty gearbox (swarf in oil and box with some internals actually wearing circular furrows on inside of gearbox casing...) could have subtly damaged engine during running in that could have in turn contributed to problems with replacement gearbox? Whatever, I've now lost all confidence in this car's mechanical integrity and reliability and am thoroughly pissed of with the not inconsiderable disappointment and inconvenience.

Watch this space......
That sucks, feel very bad for you
hopefully it hasn't put you off too much, sounds like you just got a lemon.




Quote Originally Posted by jrkitching View Post
I'd be sorely tempted to do the same.

The car had a major mechanical fault at the time of original sale and their attempt at repair has clearly failed to rectify it; any reasonable person could justifiably claim to have totally lost confidence in both the car and the selling dealership and IMO you have sufficient grounds to reject the car right now without giving them any further opportunity to fix it.

Expect a fight but if you are sufficiently determined you will almost certainly get all your money back in the end.
I'd agree with this. They have had one attempt at fixing and it's failed. It is unreasonable to expect you to go without your car for any longer.
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Old 12-03-2014   #77
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Re: Catching fourth gear

Quote Originally Posted by Alsatian1 View Post
sounds like you just got a lemon.
Manufacturers who adopt 'best practice' QA protocols very rarely produce lemons, but their products are typically more expensive. Honda produce fewer lemons than FIAT. To some extent, you get what you pay for. That said, IMO we see more posts from folks who've had new cars delivered with faults than we should.

But however good a manufacturers QA programme, a few lemons will always slip through. What is much worse is the way that FIAT's franchised dealer network deals with these problems. There are way too many posts here from folks reporting cars not properly fixed, returned with collateral damage, disputes over warranty coverage & unacceptable delays in accessing both service and parts.

The apparent difficulty of getting warranty work done in a timely fashion and to an acceptable quality is, IMO, more of a reason to buy a different marque than the typical build quality of a newly delivered FIAT. If I didn't have the DIY skills I do, personally I would never consider buying one.
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Last edited by jrkitching; 12-03-2014 at 11:21.
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Old 12-03-2014   #78
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Re: Catching fourth gear

Quote Originally Posted by jrkitching View Post
Manufacturers who adopt 'best practice' QA protocols very rarely produce lemons, but their products are typically more expensive. Honda produce fewer lemons than FIAT. To some extent, you get what you pay for. That said, IMO we see more posts from folks who've had new cars delivered with faults than we should.

But however good a manufacturers QA programme, a few lemons will always slip through. What is much worse is the way that FIAT's franchised dealer network deals with these problems. There are way too many posts here from folks reporting cars not properly fixed, returned with collateral damage, disputes over warranty coverage & unacceptable delays in accessing both service and parts.

The apparent difficulty of getting warranty work done in a timely fashion and to an acceptable quality is, IMO, more of a reason to buy a different marque than the typical build quality of a newly delivered FIAT. If I didn't have the DIY skills I do, personally I would never consider buying one.
Luckily this varies between dealerships, as if they were all that bad nobody would buy a fiat. Unfortunately, fiat are no better or worse than the majority of mid market manufacturers for customer service. My friends Toyota aygo has been pretty bad and the service from the Toyota dealer even worse.
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Old 12-03-2014   #79
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Re: Catching fourth gear

Quote Originally Posted by Alsatian1 View Post
Luckily this varies between dealerships, as if they were all that bad nobody would buy a fiat. Unfortunately, fiat are no better or worse than the majority of mid market manufacturers for customer service. My friends Toyota aygo has been pretty bad and the service from the Toyota dealer even worse.
My local Fiat dealer - S. G. Petch at Middlesbrough - have been great so far - as helpful and courteous as one could reasonably hope for.

Let's see if the same goes for Arnold Clark from whom I bought the car as regards me rejecting the car….. The latest is that they'll be in touch soon to advise as to the options they can offer me….

Will keep you all posted good, bad or indifferent!
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Old 12-03-2014   #80
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Re: Catching fourth gear

Quote Originally Posted by mwcf View Post
My local Fiat dealer - S. G. Petch at Middlesbrough - have been great so far - as helpful and courteous as one could reasonably hope for.

Let's see if the same goes for Arnold Clark from whom I bought the car as regards me rejecting the car….. The latest is that they'll be in touch soon to advise as to the options they can offer me….

Will keep you all posted good, bad or indifferent!
Perhaps I should clarify that I bought the car from Arnold Clark's Salford (130 miles from me), Manchester dealership as they were keenest price-wise, and by a long way at that, although it turns out that's mainly since they underquoted me by a grand! Since then the car has mostly been with my most local dealer 25 miles away in Middlesbrough. I have kept Arnold Clark posted as to all the gearbox issues I've being having.
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Old 21-03-2014   #81
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Re: Catching fourth gear

Update:

Arnold Clark have agreed to provide me with a replacement car.

So in a week or so's time I'll be getting my hands on a Tuscany Green (sand and olive interior with green dash) 4x4 TA with Winter Pack, height adjustable driver's seat, 3 rear seats with 60:40 split and space-saver spare wheel - which is ironically enough pretty much bang on the colour and spec I actually wanted in the first place but wasn't able to get at the time without a long factory order wait!! It's costing me the spec difference but I'm OK with that.

I am happy with the replacement car as opposed to a full refund as there just isn't any other car out there that I'd rather have for my particular driving requirements. I just hope the gearbox behaves itself… but I don't see why it shouldn't as it's not as if the Internet is full of other Pandas with defective gearboxes - just Alsation1 and I that I'm aware of.

Cheers,

Mike
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Old 21-03-2014   #82
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Re: Catching fourth gear

I should add the following by way of further feedback that might be helpful to other forum members/Panda owners who look in here.

Arnold Clark at Salford (from whom I bought the first faulty gearbox car) have been good to deal with about this. I don't feel that they've tried to 'fob me off' at all. I feel that the Fiat Sales Manager and the dealership General Manager have always taken my calls and been willing to talk to me and let me air my grievances. Emails have always been responded to straight away or at worst the same day. So fair play to Arnold Clark at Salford.

S. G. Petch Fiat dealership at Middlesbrough (who've dealt with the gearbox problems - i.e. replaced the original gearbox and since then also replaced the new replacement gearbox too…) have been exemplary in all respects. Calls always answered and returned. Very friendly and as helpful throughout all of this as they could have been - even though I didn't buy the car from then (shouldn't make a difference but we all know in the real world it often does…). Fait Panda courtesy car provided throughout.

Fiat Customer Care…. Well…. very slow off the mark - took a week just to allocate me a case number and a further week of constant phoning before I eventually got a call back from my case manager. Whilst very pleasant, all my case manager really told me was that the contract for me buying the car was (as I already knew) between myself and Arnold Clark and that as such (and what I didn't already know, although I suppose I should have done with hindsight) Fiat Customer Care could not authorise any refund or replacement car. (Also; apparently the biggest financial gesture Fiat Customer Care can make to compensate a customer for inconvenience and disappointment and such is £250-00 which I consider rather poor.) I never received acknowledgement of receipt of any of my emails, with them further insisting a couple of my emails to them had never made it through...

I then seemed to begin to become embroiled in being in the middle of Arnold Clark, Fiat Customer Care and S G Petch all needing to confer/discuss with/between themselves with the whole thing looking like being lumberingly slow beyond belief as a result. At that point I said to Arnold Clark exactly what Fiat Customer Care had told me i.e. the contract was between them and me, and if they were looking to get support from Fiat in this matter (to cover their loss given that Fiat had supplied them with a defective car) then that was for them to sort out afterwards rather than me being further inconvenienced in the meantime. To be fair, they broadly agreed and got on with sorting this matter out as it now has been.

So; all in all, 10/10 for both Arnold Clark and S G Petch, and 4/10 for Fiat Customer Care.

So looking forward to getting the replacement car and putting all of this behind me!

Best regards to all,

Mike
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Last edited by mwcf; 21-03-2014 at 15:46.
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Old 21-03-2014   #83
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Re: Catching fourth gear

Quote Originally Posted by mwcf View Post
I should add the following by way of further feedback that might be helpful to other forum members/Panda owners who look in here.

Arnold Clark at Salford (from whom I bought the first faulty gearbox car) have been good to deal with about this. I don't feel that they've tried to 'fob me off' at all. I feel that the Fiat Sales Manager and the dealership General Manager have always taken my calls and been willing to talk to me and let me air my grievances. Emails have always been responded to straight away or at worst the same day. So fair play to Arnold Clark at Salford.

S. G. Petch Fiat dealership at Middlesbrough (who've dealt with the gearbox problems - i.e. replaced the original gearbox and since then also replaced the new replacement gearbox too…) have been exemplary in all respects. Calls always answered and returned. Very friendly and as helpful throughout all of this as they could have been - even though I didn't buy the car from then (shouldn't make a difference but we all know in the real world it often does…). Fait Panda courtesy car provided throughout.

Fiat Customer Care…. Well…. very slow off the mark - took a week just to allocate me a case number and a further week of constant phoning before I eventually got a call back from my case manager. Whilst very pleasant, all my case manager really told me was that the contract for me buying the car was (as I already knew) between myself and Arnold Clark and that as such (and what I didn't already know, although I suppose I should have done with hindsight) Fiat Customer Care could not authorise any refund or replacement car. (Also; apparently the biggest financial gesture Fiat Customer Care can make to compensate a customer for inconvenience and disappointment and such is £250-00 which I consider rather poor.) I never received acknowledgement of receipt of any of my emails, with them further insisting a couple of my emails to them had never made it through...

I then seemed to begin to become embroiled in being in the middle of Arnold Clark, Fiat Customer Care and S G Petch all needing to confer/discuss with/between themselves with the whole thing looking like being lumberingly slow beyond belief as a result. At that point I said to Arnold Clark exactly what Fiat Customer Care had told me i.e. the contract was between them and me, and if they were looking to get support from Fiat in this matter (to cover their loss given that Fiat had supplied them with a defective car) then that was for them to sort out afterwards rather than me being further inconvenienced in the meantime. To be fair, they broadly agreed and got on with sorting this matter out as it now has been.

So; all in all, 10/10 for both Arnold Clark and S G Petch, and 4/10 for Fiat Customer Care.

So looking forward to getting the replacement car and putting all of this behind me!

Best regards to all,

Mike
Well you've certainly been through the mill, I'm very pleased you have at least got the spec you wanted in the end. It's really frustrating being without a car that you are paying lots of money for, and it sounds like you have been incredibly patient. This attitude probably helped how they dealt with you, as nice people are normally treated nicer as a result.

I hope all goes well with the new car, and like you say, only you and myself seem to have had gearbox issues so I wouldn't be too concerned if I were you.
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Old 01-04-2014   #84
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Re: Catching fourth gear

Picked up the green replacement Panda 4x4 TA yesterday.

Lovely little car. Peachy gearbox/engine/drivetrain. So glad I pushed for a replacement car.

Height adjustable seat is a must IMO and so pleased this car has it!

Chuffed!

Regards to all,

Mike
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