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ffis34
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Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Fri Jan 04, 2008 7:01 pm

I have owned a 1996 mercedes benz c-280 for 6 months and was recently in a 20 days span was hit for a 2000 dollar wiring harness and sevice B 550 dollars. Then right after i got it out of the shop a drunk woman slid her 200X accord down my driver side causing 3000 in damage

brad


I am sure this is nothing, surprise me.
 
pencrypted
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Fri Jan 04, 2008 7:25 pm

In the last eight months my 2006 MB smart has been in for repairs ten times. Three of those instances were because the traction control, stability control, ABS system, power brakes, power assist would all just shut off for no reason at all WHILE the car was in motion. The mechanic told me I could drive the car anyways, even after I informed him that the manual says not too, as the brakes could lock up at any moment due to a brake system failure. He informed that was just in there for MB to cover their butts.. Turns out that the brake lights weren't even working when all these systems failed, so the mechanic had advised me to drive a car with inoperative brake lights :headbang:
-Maty
 
57AZ
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Fri Jan 04, 2008 7:30 pm

Back when I was in junior high, we had a 1988 Lincoln Continental which was a hangar queen. The car had several problems that were inherent and ongoing, including the keyless entry and alarm system shorting out and not working properly. The final straw was when it experienced a minor engine fire-didn't damage anything of real importance. It looked beautiful, but it was a real lemon.
"When a man runs on railroads over half of his lifetime he is fit for nothing else-and at times he don't know that."
 
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United_fan
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Fri Jan 04, 2008 7:37 pm



Quoting 57AZ (Reply 2):
Back when I was in junior high, we had a 1988 Lincoln Continental which was a hangar queen. The car had several problems that were inherent and ongoing, including the keyless entry and alarm system shorting out and not working properly. The final straw was when it experienced a minor engine fire-didn't damage anything of real importance. It looked beautiful, but it was a real lemon.

Having worked at a Lincoln dealer 1990-2007,I can attest to what a peice of $hit the 88-94 Cont's were.....
"Suspicion is a matter of opinion"
 
ACDC8
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Fri Jan 04, 2008 8:12 pm

1993 Pontiac Sunbird, was in the shop every second weekend for something. One week the ABS system wouldn't work, a couple of weeks later the PVC boots on the axle ripped open, a couple of weeks later the 4th and 5th gear wouldn't engage, a couple of weeks later the rear window defrost would turn on by itself and not turn off unless you turned off the ignition, the interior dome light would stay on after you lock the doors, the automatic door looks (the kind that lock once you hit a certain speed) would lock/unlock constantly, the front windshield kept fogging up with some film (was told that it's from the plastic dashboard), the front passenger seat would not lock in place and kept sliding forwards, light for the radio controls kept burning out, and there was more.

Needless to say, the car was brand new and that was just in the first 6 months of ownership.

My 1998 Honda Accord had some serious stereo issues, the CD changer would not shuffle the CD's or play another CD unless you turned the car off, shuffled the CD and started the car again. Pain in the ass, having to pull over and turn off the car just to change the CD. It took almost a year, countless visits and several head unit/changer/handshake unit changes for Honda to finally rip the stock Alpine deck out and replace it with a Sony I had chosen from a local store.

The 2007 VW Golf I have now was hit by a lady about 4 weeks after I bought the car, causing slight dent and scratch to the rear wheel well. I got it out of the shop (which took almost 2 months to get fixed because the body shops are completely booked up) and a week later someone decided to ram their shopping cart into the drivers door causing a nice dent and chipping the paint off. Again, taking another 2 months to get fixed.
A Grumpy German Is A Sauerkraut
 
jafa39
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Fri Jan 04, 2008 8:24 pm

Mrs Jafa scraped her 1997 Mazda down the side of my wood-gathering trailer, it went to the paint shop and they fixed it up on the insurane ($300 excess), as she drove it out of the paint shop (on friday 13th) she scraped it along the stop-bank beside the entrance and did more damage than it had gone in for!!! Sad Sad
We, the undersigned, do hereby consent.....
 
PHLBOS
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Fri Jan 04, 2008 9:17 pm



Quoting United_Fan (Reply 3):
Quoting 57AZ (Reply 2):
Back when I was in junior high, we had a 1988 Lincoln Continental which was a hangar queen. The car had several problems that were inherent and ongoing, including the keyless entry and alarm system shorting out and not working properly. The final straw was when it experienced a minor engine fire-didn't damage anything of real importance. It looked beautiful, but it was a real lemon.

Having worked at a Lincoln dealer 1990-2007,I can attest to what a peice of $hit the 88-94 Cont's were.....

That 3.8L V6 engine it had didn't help either. This is the same engine that doomed the Windstar.
"TransEastern! You'll feel like you've never left the ground because we treat you like dirt!" SNL Parady ad circa 1981
 
57AZ
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Fri Jan 04, 2008 9:30 pm



Quoting United_Fan (Reply 3):
Having worked at a Lincoln dealer 1990-2007,I can attest to what a peice of $hit the 88-94 Cont's were.....

Spot on! Ironically, the fellow that bought it from the Lexus dealer was an ex-firefighter. The car we traded it on was sweet-brand new LS 400 and this was back when Lexus was first starting to break into the US market.
"When a man runs on railroads over half of his lifetime he is fit for nothing else-and at times he don't know that."
 
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LTU932
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Fri Jan 04, 2008 9:42 pm

The 1991 Renault 19 we used to have always had a kind of a whistling sound coming from the oil tank whenever the car as at idle. I don't recall whether it was from the oil tank or from the cooler, but that thing sounded each and every time until it got eventually fixed.

The other car we had, a Peugeot 205 Diesel, had a constant problem with the rear view mirror. It's one of those mirrors that would be glued to the windshield and ours just didn't want to stay in place. At some point, it always falls off and needed to be put back in place.

Finally, we used to have a Peugeot combi car (I believe a 305 or 405), a pretty old car that didn't even have break pads. I recall a day when we were on the Autobahn and my father had to hit the brakes really hard. The screeching from the break discs were beyond annoying, and we later got rid of that car for the Peugeot 205 Diesel with the rear view mirror problem.
Sometimes the only thing more dangerous than a question is an answer. - Ferengi Rule of Acquisition 208
 
sunshine79
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Fri Jan 04, 2008 9:45 pm

I drove into a lampost on my way to see a customer in a hospital totalling the VW polo. The car was already badly scraped and had a few bumps by another rep who had it as a company car. Luckily, I was just shaken with a slight friction burn on my hand from the air bag.
Formerly alcregular, Why drive when you can fly?
 
skywatch
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Fri Jan 04, 2008 10:18 pm



Quoting Jafa39 (Reply 5):
Mrs Jafa scraped her 1997 Mazda down the side of my wood-gathering trailer, it went to the paint shop and they fixed it up on the insurane ($300 excess), as she drove it out of the paint shop (on friday 13th) she scraped it along the stop-bank beside the entrance and did more damage than it had gone in for!!!

 Wow! That sucks!

Well, I guess I am just an accident waiting to happen, because I was born on a Friday the 13th. Big grin Worst luck I've had (I've only been driving for less than two years) was a rear-ender accident while I was waiting to turn into my neighborhood. Guy on medications slammed his Nissan into my Chevy S-10 (at a dead stop). He was doing around 40mph. Talk about a jolt! Completely his fault....my blinker was on, and it's a four lane road, so he could have passed on my right. Amazingly, his hood went up under the truck and hit my spare, which flew across the road, but also absorbed quite a bit of the impact. I had a little bit of a sore neck for the next couple days, but the worst thing about it was the death of my truck. The frame was bent up and to the right. The pickup bed pushed against the cab and caused some wrinkling in the structure there. Luckily, the truck, only worth around $1100, fetched me $3400 from the insurance company. I'm about to seal the deal on a '98 Dodge Dakota, which I'd say is a pretty good upgrade from a '90 S10! I do landscaping, tree trimming, and lawn mowing, so my few months without a truck has been a pain.

---Skywatch
------Forever Watchin' The Sky------
 
redngold
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Fri Jan 04, 2008 11:55 pm

I had a 1996 Ford Escort that I was given roughly in 2000. It had a bad speedometer. Despite having the speedometer cable replaced twice, it never worked properly above about 35 mph. The needle would jump to about 10 mph over the actual speed and then waver back and forth roughly 5 mph on either side of the high indication, making a hissing noise. After we determined that the cable was not "binding" (the assumption based on the sound and type of error), the local Ford dealership told me that the only option was to replace the entire speedometer head, which would necessitate removal of the steering wheel and dashboard; it would cost about $3000. I never did have it replaced, and instead calibrated the high indication myself every few months by driving a measured mile on one of our local interstate highways at several different speeds and timing it.
Let me add that during the time I owned the vehicle I was still driving it 2 hours north to get it inspected in New York, because it was titled there under my parents' name. Each and every time I went up there it was in need of a replacement spring somewhere on the front suspension. Believe you me, I asked to see the springs which ran about $300 with a total of $500 charge including labor. Each time, the guy up there shook his head, and the last time I made the trip he told me that he thought Ford should issue a recall on the springs because they broke so often. (Anyone in the Fredonia/Dunkirk area who is interested in knowing where I went should p.m. me, because I highly recommend the place for its honesty and customer service.)

Early in my life our family owned a Mercury Monarch, probably a late 1970s model. It was truly a lemon. The brakes were constantly in need of repair because the shoes would go out of alignment, cause grinding noises and excessive wear. I think we had the car for about three years before we gave up. One of the worst episodes was when we were headed out for a camping trip and got to the interstate just in time for the brakes to start grinding. We had to have the car towed home including a tent trailer, unpack the car, repack the other car, reattach the trailer and finally get back on the road about three hours later. This happened in roughly 1982 or 1983. Our other car? A 1972 Chevy Nova, still kicking.

[Edited 2008-01-04 16:03:26]
Up, up and away!
 
MCOflyer
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Sat Jan 05, 2008 3:48 am

My 00 Suzuki was hangar queen for the last months i owned it. The dealer where I bought it knew nothing about the a/c and kept refilling the freon hoping it was the freon. I traded it for an 07 Caliber which has had no issues. Big D is a good girl as long as I treat her right.

Hunter
Never be afraid to stand up for who you are.
 
bagpiper
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Sat Jan 05, 2008 4:03 am

Lets see...

My parent's 2002 Chrysler Town and Country...

In May '07, the AC compressor blew out while I was driving it, lost all power; steering, brakes didn't work at all - had to use the emergency brake to slow down and finally stop. Almost took out a car while turning into a parking lot. It blew out on a downhill stretch, red light ahead with tons of traffic backed up. My only choice was to turn right ASAP into a parking lot, which had a guy taking his half out of the middle, or smash into a ton of cars. I'll bet you couldn't have fit a penny between the two cars when I made the turn at 25+ MPH. In a minivan.

Well, the compressor shifted the engine block 6 inches to the back, and sent metal fragments through the AC system. Over $7K to fix the whole shabang.

A few weeks later, the brakes went nuts, and it had been in and out of the shop every 3 weeks or so up until October, when the transmission died. Got it fixed. A few weeks ago they got the brake pads replaced, but the brake place (Just Brakes) did it horrible job, and almost caught the car on fire. We were headed to the freeway, but decided the car wasn't acting right, and thought something might be wrong when we saw smoke and the brakes smelled horrible, only going 35MPH. At 70MPH - who knows what would have happened.  Wink

The next malfunction is due within 2 weeks, if history repeats itself.

Can you say "time to ditch the car"?
 
JAGflyer
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Sat Jan 05, 2008 4:45 am

Nothing yet although I was driving today on Leslie near 7 and a plane was taking off from YKZ. I turned my head to look for a second and the guy in front of me braked so the truck ahead of him could turn right into a driveway. I was going about 60kph and the guy in front of me slightly slower. Within 2 seconds the guy in front of me had stopped (to let the guy ahead of him turn). I floored the brake, ABS came on and I stopped a few inches short of the guy's bumper in front of me. I definitely got a good scare. My mom always said don't look at planes while driving. oops. Thank god it was just me in the car. Next time I'm not looking at an airplane while I'm driving.

[Edited 2008-01-04 20:47:22]
If you flew today, thank a Flight Dispatcher!
 
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Jetsgo
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Sat Jan 05, 2008 5:30 am

My girlfriend bought a 2003 Volkswagen Jetta from Carmax in 2005. At the time it only had 17,000 miles on it, so it was still fairly new and reliable. All was well until one day the shit hit the fan. Seriously. September 29, 2007. A day that will live in infamy at the Abbott household. While she was driving the car home from the mall, I got a call from her saying that the engine was overheating and that she had pulled over into a parking lot. I figured nothing too big, probably just low coolant. So I went out and got some, only to find there was in fact a penny sized hole in the coolant reservoir. Ok, not VW's fault or hers, just bad luck. So we send it into Carmax the next morning to have them take a look. They claim that we needed a new reservoir along with of course coolant. We pick up the car at around 3pm and begin to drive it home. Half way home, the car overheats, only now it overheated BIG time. Smoke, red lined tach, the hole nine yards. We call Carmax and inform them of the situation. They send out a tow truck and bring it back to take a look. By this time, the day is coming to an end, so I requested a loner vehicle, which turned out to be a Chevy Equinox. We get a call the next afternoon saying that some moron forgot to hook things up right and that the engine was fried. Since this was directly their fault and the warranty they have for their service covered this, we had two options. They could either order a new engine, install it, or since this was such a hairy mess, they would offer to buy the car from us. We chose the second option and they cut us a $10,500 check, a little more then KBB had it. Went out the next day and bought a brand spanking new 2007 Hyundai Elantra, loaded, out the door $16,100. Haven't looked back since.

Moral of the story? Carmax is great to buy cars from, but their service department is for lack of words, shit. At least they had a proper warranty to cover the work they performed.
Marine Corps Aviation, The Last To Let You Down!
 
TSV
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Sat Jan 05, 2008 5:38 am

Our 1998 Nissan Patrol 2.8 litre Turbo Diesel blew it's Turbo at 432 kms. At that time on that model it was only the second know blown Turbo under Warranty. A couple of years after that we found out it was more the norm rather that the exception with that that first batch of that model of Patrol to blow the Turbo (one remote Dealer had a pallet load of blown Turbos!). I heard two stories later on that it was either a batch of dodgy bearings or incorrect machining of the housing.

Apparently too that wasn't the only known problem with that model other problems included losing fourth gear and low kilometre failures of the dual mass clutch (anything from 8 000 kms with most between 60 000 and 120 000!). Our dual mass clutch went after 110 000 kms and after one repairer stuffed up the replacement (at $ 5 000 a pop) I had it converted to a conventional arrangement however it's never been the same so I'm thinking something else is wrong with it as it just doesn't seem to transmit the power.

The next model apparently had problems with the 3.0 litre Diesel itself. One capital city Dealer told me he had done over 180 changeouts in four years.

We are now in the market for another one / replacement but haven't really looked seriously at the contenders yet. Needless to say we will be researching much more thoroughly than last time and definitely not buying a completely new model.
"I told you I was ill ..." Spike Milligan
 
hangarrat
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Sat Jan 05, 2008 6:36 am



Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 6):
That 3.8L V6 engine it had didn't help either. This is the same engine that doomed the Windstar.

My dad had a '94 Taurus he bought used out of a fleet with a 3.8L V6. It was an unusual engine for the car, but the car hauled butt. Someone told me that version was designed as a police car. My brother drove it until the engine died at something like 95k mi, and they had it replaced, and then twice more under the replacement warranty. The replacements must have been out of Windstars.

My two personal worst:

I had an '89 Camry All-Trac, which was a beautiful car and ran wonderfully for me for about 70k mi. However, I took it in for an oil change at a tire and lube place, and the dork working on it put the lift on the floor rather than the jack points. In the process, they punched two holes in the driver's and passenger's side foot wells, broke the exhaust just aft of the second catalytic converter and messed up the alignment on the prop shaft, although I couldn't get anyone to bother fixing that. I just lived with this slight but irritating vibration. The car generally was never the same because the Toyota shop didn't align the exhaust properly when they fixed it and the pipes would rattle against the undercarriage when it idled with the AC on. Also, I'm convinced I got CO poisoning driving it until I could get it into the shop. Dumb and annoying on all fronts.

Second, I had a 2000 Subaru Impreza 2.5 RS, which was a hot car, but also a POS. First, I went through a handful of O2 sensors, then the head gaskets failed (they were failing all along, but more on that in a moment), then the day I took it from the shop after the head gaskets, the radiator popped. A couple of months later, I got a recall notice that the car needed a cooling system additive to protect the head gaskets. I went to my shop and had the recall done and asked for the O2 sensors to be reimbursed on the (credible) theory they failed due to glycol in the exhaust. They refused. Everything else was covered by my used car warranty, the best $1,000 I ever spent. It saved me from paying for at least $3,000 worth of work. However, I traded the car to my dad for a '98 Acura 2.5 TL, which is still ticking along nicely. He traded the Impreza for a Turbo Legacy.
Spell check is a false dog
 
huskyaviation
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Sat Jan 05, 2008 8:34 pm



Quoting JetsGo (Reply 15):
My girlfriend bought a 2003 Volkswagen Jetta from Carmax in 2005. At the time it only had 17,000 miles on it, so it was still fairly new and reliable.

I had (all too briefly) a new 2002 VW Jetta 1.8T that went through 6 ignition coils, two power window motors, and a new transmission, all in the space of 15 months. Each time something happened, it was on a weekend, where I was stuck without a car, and VW's service depts. in the mid-Atlantic are notoriously bad. I eventually sold it to Carmax--I hope it wasn't the same one dude!  Silly

VW eventually lost a class-action suit over the ignition coil problem.
 
andz
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Sat Jan 05, 2008 8:44 pm

Through 12 years and 4 BMWs I have no bad stories to tell  Smile
After Monday and Tuesday even the calendar says WTF...
 
redngold
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Sat Jan 05, 2008 9:26 pm

I have a bittersweet story to add. I also had a 1989 Toyota Camry without the all-trak mentioned above, but it was a great car. The bitter part is that I nearly totalled it on I-80 going through the eastern foothills of the Appalachians in Pennsylvania. The sweet part is that the car drove like a tank, and despite $3500 worth of body damage, it was deemed safe to drive back to Cleveland, Ohio. I thank God that I was in that car because I know the Escort mentioned above would have been toast. I had been sideswiped by the rear end of a semi trailer, did a 360 spin, went across the left lane and carommed off the left guardrail with both the front and back drivers' side. Neither I nor my passenger were injured in the crash, the axles were intact, and the body damage did not affect the wheel wells. I also remember the wonderful acceleration that car had, even though it was relatively heavy. What finally did it in was the loss of the engine shield, three years later, because it was too expensive to replace; I had it cut off, knowing that the car would only last me part-way through the next year considering the amount of salt used on our roads. A leaky gas tank is eventually what made it unsafe to drive, with corrosion extending through most of the engine. It was still handling well but of course I didn't want to risk an explosion. It's the only car I've ever cried over when it was towed away.
Up, up and away!
 
zotan
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Sat Jan 05, 2008 9:27 pm

I took my car into the shop after I got rear ended. I was driving home from the shop, and got rear ended again.
 
ScarletHarlot
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RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Sat Jan 05, 2008 10:48 pm

Mr. Harlot's 1999 Boxster blew its engine in April of 2007. He was on his way home from work when suddenly there was a screech and the steering became stiff. He thought he had blown a tire, and started trying to make his way to the shoulder of the freeway, when he noticed that the whole dash was lit up. He got it safely off the road, and tried one time to restart the engine. Nothing happened at all. Of course, his cell phone batter was dead, so he hiked up to the gas station a mile or so away and called me. We had the car towed to the Porsche dealership, but it was closed, so we left the keys in the box and asked them to have a look and call us.

They started looking at it, and we had to go to Kansas City a couple of days later. We were not pleased to get off the plane and check voice mail and have a message from the dealer that one of the cylinder walls had failed and the engine was toast. A replacement refurbished engine would be $15,000. The car had only 58,000 miles on it. There is no way that an engine should fail at 58,000 miles. The car's resale value at the time was about $20,000 so it was difficult to justify putting $15,000 into the car.

We did some research online and found out that a batch of early Boxster engines, with build at Valmet in Finland in late 1998 - early 1999, had experienced some issues in the casting of the block. They were deemed fixable and a sleeve was put into the faulty cylinders, but if the sleeves were not installed perfectly the cylinder could fail. Some people had experienced exactly the same thing our Boxster did. They had gone to Porsche and made the point that this was unacceptable, and Porsche had agreed to split the cost of the engine with them. We went back to our dealer with this information, and they talked to Porsche and got Porsche's agreement to pay half of the cost. It ended up costing us $8000. Now we have a two year warranty on the new engine.

We were satisfied with Porsche's response and have since bought another car from them.
But that was when I ruled the world
 
bagpiper
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Joined: Mon Nov 13, 2006 11:24 pm

RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Sat Jan 05, 2008 11:13 pm



Quoting ScarletHarlot (Reply 22):
We were satisfied with Porsche's response and have since bought another car from them.

Mind sending some of your spare cash this way?

Two Porsche's... wow!


 Wink
 
huskyaviation
Posts: 912
Joined: Mon Aug 27, 2007 4:38 am

RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Sat Jan 05, 2008 11:16 pm



Quoting ScarletHarlot (Reply 22):
They were deemed fixable and a sleeve was put into the faulty cylinders, but if the sleeves were not installed perfectly the cylinder could fail. Some people had experienced exactly the same thing our Boxster did. They had gone to Porsche and made the point that this was unacceptable, and Porsche had agreed to split the cost of the engine with them. We went back to our dealer with this information, and they talked to Porsche and got Porsche's agreement to pay half of the cost. It ended up costing us $8000. Now we have a two year warranty on the new engine.

We were satisfied with Porsche's response and have since bought another car from them.

Wow--knowing that they had a problem during manufacture and a lame attempt to fix it, and then charging you half of the replacement cost--there's no way I would have been happy with that result.
 
Duff44
Posts: 1561
Joined: Fri Apr 21, 2006 11:48 am

RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Sat Jan 05, 2008 11:30 pm



Quoting Pencrypted (Reply 1):
Three of those instances were because the traction control, stability control, ABS system, power brakes, power assist would all just shut off for no reason at all WHILE the car was in motion.

Good thing it didn't have active suspension... that would be one hell of a ride!

Quoting LTU932 (Reply 8):
Finally, we used to have a Peugeot combi car (I believe a 305 or 405), a pretty old car that didn't even have break pads.

Was it designed to run without pads, or were they just not installed?  scratchchin 

I've had a couple buckets in my day...
In my high-school days I drove a 1983 Buick Regal 2-door, which was actually my dad's car (I used it the most, though). It had bad shocks in the back, badly cracking and fading maroon paint, a 3-spd auto which was terrible at best (I later lost reverse), and had awful electrics. One night coming home from a friend's house, it just shut off at a traffic light and wouldn't restart. I had to call my dad at 11:45 at night to come give me a jump start right in the middle of the street.
At the time we had a '64 Chevelle project car sitting in the garage with a built 350 and a 4-spd auto, that my dad seriously considered dumping in the Buick (he knows how to do that stuff). Eventually, the Chevelle got sold and the Buick got traded-in towards a 1997 Civic.

The other car nightmare I had was a 1990 Oldsmobile Calais. My sister actually won this car at her high-school graduation gathering (the school obtains a cheap used car, has the school's auto shop fix it up and they give it away at the grad party). My sister and I shared the car until she went to college, and it became mine by default. One year, on my birthday of all days, I was driving to pick up my sister at the train station so she could come to my party. In the middle of the highway, the cruise control disengaged and a misfire started. I limped to the local Target parking lot to call for help, and of course I had forgotten my cell phone. So I managed to coordinate the car getting towed (my mother had AAA, and she was the listed owner even though I drove it) and get my dad to pick up my sister begging people for change and using a pay phone.
Exactly one year later, again on birthday, I was driving to work and the car just shut off waiting at a traffic light. It would do this many more times before it finally got traded in, but two straight years I had my car die on my birthday.

The Olds later got signed over to me, and I used it as a trade in for my new 2002 Civic Si, which I still have.

(Notice both bad car stories ended with getting Honda Civics... freaky)
I'll rassle ya for a bowl of bacon!
 
ScarletHarlot
Posts: 4251
Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2003 12:15 pm

RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Sun Jan 06, 2008 12:47 am



Quoting Bagpiper (Reply 23):
Mind sending some of your spare cash this way?

Two Porsche's... wow!

With two Porsches we have no spare cash!!  Wink

Quoting HuskyAviation (Reply 24):
Wow--knowing that they had a problem during manufacture and a lame attempt to fix it, and then charging you half of the replacement cost--there's no way I would have been happy with that result.

In most cases, the repair during manufacture was just fine and the cars had no trouble. It is a small number of Boxsters that had this problem. The car was no longer under warranty - it was eight years old - so they didn't HAVE to do anything for us. The only thing that bothered me about it was that they had no intention of telliing us about this known problem - we had to figure it out ourselves. But then, it's in their best business interest not to speak up, and as soon as we said "hey, what about this", they made us a deal. We were both comfortable with putting $8,000 into the car. $15,000 was not acceptable. In the end we were satisfied.
But that was when I ruled the world
 
Leezyjet
Posts: 3544
Joined: Sun Oct 14, 2001 7:26 am

RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Sun Jan 06, 2008 1:11 am

The first ever car I bought for myself was a 1987 Ford Orion 1.4 Biscayne. The day I collected it from the garage, I drove with my Dad to a supermarket on the way home. During the drive, I could not find 5th gear. It was not where it was supposed to be according to the gear knob, but we thought we would look at it when we got home. At the supermarket, I had driven into the space, and when I tried to reverse out, the car would not more backwards at all, so my Dad had to push us out of the space. When i got home, I called my g/f's Dad who was pretty good with Ford cars and he came to look at it, and couldn't see the problem so he called a mate of his who worked at a Ford dealers who came that evening to look at it. Turned out that the gear box didn't have 5th or reverse in it for some reason !!. took the car back the next day to the garage I got it from, and was then threatened with the owners large guard dogs and basically told to F' Off and not come back. I then had to take the car to a repair place and fork out £300 for a new gear box !!. Once that was all sorted, the car developed a problem where it would just cut out for no reason, and one the engine cooled down, it would drive again until it got too hot. Spent months trying to find out what was causing it, had the fuel system and tank removed and checked, new carb and still the problem persisited. It wasn't until closer inspection of the carb showed that the little valves in the pipes from the carb were installed the wrong way round that the problem ceased when we turned them round !!.

My current car broke down on the way home from the dealers. It had only driven 30 miles in the previous 6 months before I bought it. Ended up going back to the dealer on a recovery truck and it turned out to be the igniter that had failed (which I found out later was a common problem on that engine). A few months later, I was blasting down the M4 just past LHR when there was a small pop and the oil light came on. I stopped and topped up the oil, and for the rest of the way home, there was an awful clunking noise from with-in the engine. On the way to the garage the next day, the engine let go comletely and blew a hole out through the casing, so I had to have a new engine. The car ended up going to a place that I found in the Exchange and Mart magazine, they put a new engine in for me at a cost of over £1,000 and I had to keep taking it back to them for servicing to keep the warrenty in check which was costing me a small fortune. After a few months, the inlet manifold gasket went, but they refused to fix it saying it was nothing to do with them, as they hadn't fitted it. I asked how they could re-build an engine without fitting one which they could not answer - it ended up costign me £140 at another garage to get that fixed.

Approx 1 year later the head gasket went and I took it to a family friend this time to get it fixed. He said the engine I had been sold was basically a complete lemon and I would be best to get a new one. I decided to take the previous garage to court to get my money back, and got the AA to do an inspection first. 2nd new engine was then sourced and fitted at another £1,000 and when I contacted Trading Standards about the first place, they knew all about them and suggested I would be wasting my time and money taking it futher as the place already owed over £1/2 million in unpaid CCJ's that people had taken out against them. Turns out they had also been featured on garages from hell on ITV !!! The car being a convertable, also eventually needed a new roof, and this cost me another £800

So I've not had too much luck with cars, these have been cars I have bought from 1 man band type garages rather than main dealers. I have since taught myself what to look for (even though I had a reasonable idea before) and when I next buy a car I will be looking to buy from a main dealer, but I might take a chance and go to the auctions to cut out the middle man and what I save can be used to repair it if there turns out to be anything amiss !!!

 Smile
"She Rolls, 45 knots, 90, 135, nose comes up to 20 degrees, she's airborne - She flies, Concorde Flies"
 
DLOnur
Posts: 243
Joined: Thu Jun 21, 2007 2:56 pm

RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Sun Jan 06, 2008 1:11 am



Quoting TSV (Reply 16):
Our 1998 Nissan Patrol 2.8 litre Turbo Diesel blew it's Turbo at 432 kms. At that time on that model it was only the second know blown Turbo under Warranty. A couple of years after that we found out it was more the norm rather that the exception with that that first batch of that model of Patrol to blow the Turbo (one remote Dealer had a pallet load of blown Turbos!). I heard two stories later on that it was either a batch of dodgy bearings or incorrect machining of the housing.

Apparently too that wasn't the only known problem with that model other problems included losing fourth gear and low kilometre failures of the dual mass clutch (anything from 8 000 kms with most between 60 000 and 120 000!). Our dual mass clutch went after 110 000 kms and after one repairer stuffed up the replacement (at $ 5 000 a pop) I had it converted to a conventional arrangement however it's never been the same so I'm thinking something else is wrong with it as it just doesn't seem to transmit the power.

The next model apparently had problems with the 3.0 litre Diesel itself. One capital city Dealer told me he had done over 180 changeouts in four years.

We are now in the market for another one / replacement but haven't really looked seriously at the contenders yet. Needless to say we will be researching much more thoroughly than last time and definitely not buying a completely new model.

Since you have a choice in Oz, I would prefer the 105 series Land Cruiser or the new 200 series Land Cruiser with the Twin Turbo...

Seriously, though, the Patrols, while they have a good structural build quality, are pretty much clones of the Land Cruiser.

By the real thing and bypass Nissan.
What you believe is what you see.
 
TUNisia
Posts: 1515
Joined: Thu Aug 19, 2004 3:24 am

RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Sun Jan 06, 2008 2:46 am

98 Volvo S70 & 01 Volvo S60 .. both had ABS module failures (my dad rebuilt the one on the 98 thankfully). Both had numerous suspension issues which were never fixable (tons of rattles and metal against metal noises). Power steering leaks on both as well. Both also had oxygen sensor issues (every few months). They also both ate light bulbs. I got rid of the 01 just as the transmission was dying. The ECM went out on the 01' S60 and the sunroof always leaked eventually flooding the pax side of the car and damaging a lot of electronics. Never will I get a Volvo again.

I now happily lease a 07 SAAB 93!
Someday the sun will shine down on me in some faraway place - Mahalia Jackson
 
sccutler
Posts: 5843
Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2000 12:16 pm

RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Mon Jan 07, 2008 6:25 am

I had a Honda Civic which vigorously disproved the notion of Honda's infallibility. It was wretched, with periodic refusal to start, flaky transmission and a tendency to overheating.
...three miles from BRONS, clear for the ILS one five approach...
 
N231YE
Posts: 2620
Joined: Tue Jul 25, 2006 9:24 am

RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Mon Jan 07, 2008 2:15 pm

None here, but from my family over the years:

My mother's former 1997 Jaguar XJ6L.

That piece of junk constantly had something wrong with it. My mother sold it upon learning about a growing problem that would cost at least $3000 to replace. Transmission problems, starter problems, water pump problems, stalling, etc.

My grandmother's old 1991 Ford Taurus.

That car had a transmission design worth crap. Every Ford engineer behind the transmission should have been fired. I think she went through 3 or 4 transmissions (besides various repairs left and right) before she finally got smart and disposed the lemon.

Father's former 1990 Chevy S10.

Oh jeez, where do I start...numerous alternator replacements, a new transmission at 24,000 miles, "mystery" noises, etc.
 
jetstar
Posts: 1420
Joined: Mon May 19, 2003 2:16 am

RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Mon Jan 07, 2008 4:35 pm



Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 6):
That 3.8L V6 engine it had didn't help either. This is the same engine that doomed the Windstar.

Was this the engine that kept blowing head gaskets.

A friend of mine had 2 late 90’s Mercury Sables, both cars had head gasket problems, they would average about 17,000 to 20,000 miles before the head gasket leaked. Ford kept replacing them under warranty until the last head gasket when Ford refused to replace it under warranty because of the cars mileage. He had it fixed at a local garage and took Ford to small claims court, but lost. He finally sold both cars right after this and bought a Toyota and a Lexus.

Morale of the story, he will never buy a Ford product again, Ford knew of the problems with these engines, but never corrected them, even the Federal Government was after Ford to recall and correct the problem, but Ford extended the engine warranty instead and this kept the Feds away.
 
PHLBOS
Posts: 6520
Joined: Thu Apr 01, 2004 6:38 am

RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Mon Jan 07, 2008 10:26 pm



Quoting HangarRat (Reply 17):
My dad had a '94 Taurus he bought used out of a fleet with a 3.8L V6. It was an unusual engine for the car, but the car hauled butt. Someone told me that version was designed as a police car. My brother drove it until the engine died at something like 95k mi, and they had it replaced, and then twice more under the replacement warranty.

The 3.8L was indeed used on the short-lived '90-'95 Taurus police package. Every Taurus owner I've known that had the 3.8L in it had reliability issues. Needless to say, 3.8L engine option and the police package were both dropped when the restyled '96 Taurus rolled out.

In contrast, the base 3.0L engine (which was offered through the 2007 model year) was very reliable. My brother's old '95 wagon had about 195k on it before he go rid of it (the engine was fine but everything else was breaking down). Another friend of mine has one (inherited from his father) that has 215k on it and is still going.

Quoting Jetstar (Reply 32):
Was this the engine that kept blowing head gaskets.

A friend of mine had 2 late 90’s Mercury Sables, both cars had head gasket problems, they would average about 17,000 to 20,000 miles before the head gasket leaked.

As I stated, the 3.8L engine was dropped from the Taurus/Sable's option list after 1995. My brother presently has a '98 Sable wagon with 80-90k on it. To my knowledge, he hasn't had any head-gasket issues since he's owned the car; then again, he's only owned the car for 2 years.
"TransEastern! You'll feel like you've never left the ground because we treat you like dirt!" SNL Parady ad circa 1981
 
Arniepie
Posts: 1454
Joined: Thu Aug 04, 2005 11:00 pm

RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Tue Jan 08, 2008 1:04 am



Quoting ScarletHarlot (Reply 26):
In most cases, the repair during manufacture was just fine and the cars had no trouble. It is a small number of Boxsters that had this problem. The car was no longer under warranty - it was eight years old - so they didn't HAVE to do anything for us. The only thing that bothered me about it was that they had no intention of telliing us about this known problem - we had to figure it out ourselves. But then, it's in their best business interest not to speak up, and as soon as we said "hey, what about this", they made us a deal. We were both comfortable with putting $8,000 into the car. $15,000 was not acceptable. In the end we were satisfied.

I'm off course happy you got a large sum back to cover the costs but still this sounds like questionable service practise IMHO.
Over here when something like that happens which is clearly a known issue the VAG group which includes Porsche over here will cover the costs no matter how old the car is even if you bought it second-hand through an official Porsche dealership, provided it was always serviced by an official Porsche-dealership.
Certainly if you take into account the relative low mileage on the car they should have just picked up the bill.

Even BMW (ok not Porsche but also an upper class brand ,so comparable) still picks up the bill for older 3 series whereby part of the rear suspension points came loose even if they are years over their warranty limit simply because they know it was a design/fabrication issue.

I wouldn't just have settled for half the money, this is clearly theirs to pick up.
[edit post]
 
ScarletHarlot
Posts: 4251
Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2003 12:15 pm

RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Tue Jan 08, 2008 3:38 am



Quoting Arniepie (Reply 34):
I wouldn't just have settled for half the money, this is clearly theirs to pick up.

You have a good point but from what we read, customers who pushed too hard to have Porsche pay for all of it ended up with Porsche retracting their offer to pay for half. We figured half was better than none, and we weren't going to sue them or anything.
But that was when I ruled the world
 
jafa39
Posts: 4320
Joined: Wed Mar 23, 2005 2:14 pm

RE: Lets Hear, Automobile Nightmare Stories!

Wed Jan 09, 2008 9:40 am



Quoting Leezyjet (Reply 27):
when I contacted Trading Standards about the first place, they knew all about them and suggested I would be wasting my time and money taking it futher as the place already owed over £1/2 million in unpaid CCJ's that people had taken out against them. Turns out they had also been featured on garages from hell on ITV !!!

I remember them! They used to steal cars and sell the engines to people as rebuilt too!!
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