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      06-08-2012, 05:22 AM   #1
omaragha
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Advice Please / Sytner and BMW GB

Dear All,

My car 335d E92 is out of warranty but only has 24,000 miles on the clock. This week I had the red light steering wheel lock failure come on.

I know this is a common fault and I am sure they will try the usual software update and then when that doesnt work they will suggest replacing the stering column.

I want to try and get a 'good will' on this and have phoned BMW GB who were utterly useless.

The problem I cant get my head around is the diagnositics that BMW want to run. They want to change me 90 for diagnostics (even though I know what is wrong) after this they then apporach BMW GB re the good will request. Only at that point will BMW GB decide whether or not they will offer good will.

There seems to be no way of avoiding the 90 charge - it is like I have to spend 90 on giving BMW GB the opportunity to decline my good willl request.

Can anyone offer some advice on how to deal with this ??

I must admit my local dealer Sytner Maidenhead seems to be beyond rubbish. As an example of this My wife has an E93 330d which is under warranty - we had some issues with the seals on the roof meachanism which were orginally changed by Listers BMW in Norfolk this was done by the previous owner. Sytners did NOT want to take my car in (I live about a mile away) and I had to arrange for a transporter from Listers to take back the E93 to resolve the issue in Norfolk - they also dropped off a brand new mini in the interim as well. To be honest Listers BMW have been fantastic and how I expect a marque vendor to treat the consumer.

I am on my 12th BMW and I am finding Sytners in Maidenhead beyond useless. They cant offer me a courtesy car for 3 weeks - they cant even offer a pick up and drop off service (remember I live 1 mile away) for 10 days !!!

Shocking.
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      06-08-2012, 05:30 AM   #2
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Goodwill is just that.

It is based on having a good relationship with your dealer and them pushing BMW on your behalf to keep you happy and spending with them in future.

Sounds unlikely that they will goodwill this and make you pay in any event. Go to an independent.
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      06-08-2012, 06:36 AM   #3
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Hmmm...quite tricky...would have been "easier", if you had the BMW Extended warranty....even with that, BMW like to try to "get" out of any claims...and some dealerships charge diagnostic fees even tho you have BMW warranty...which i think is a bloody rip off....

In your case, i would go independent....as you haven't got any bmw warranty anyways...i mean, up to you....you could gamble the 90 diagnostic fee and if BMW UK gives you the goodwill...then you're laughing...but if they refuse then you're 90 out of pocket!...
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      06-08-2012, 06:37 AM   #4
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Best of luck with getting this sorted. Any idea if this would be an MOT failure? I've been driving around with this red light on the dash since December, the cars works fine and I don't want to waste 800-1K.
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      06-08-2012, 07:11 AM   #5
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Sytner not being able to drop you off back home if its only a mile is shocking. Well done to the other dealer for travelling the distance and lending you a courtesy car, I know who I would be giving my business to when it comes to car buying time.
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      06-08-2012, 07:23 AM   #6
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Talk to Anneka - she seems to have a roving customer service brief and is very good at it.
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      06-08-2012, 08:11 AM   #7
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If its any comfort sytner Nottingham is worse, it's really bad they have such a monopoly, theres no competition to give them the kick up the arse they need!
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      06-08-2012, 08:16 AM   #8
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Sytner, in fact all BMW dealers, are obliged to investigate faults on car still under warranty. They may charge a diagnosis fee if no fault is found. (I am talking now about your wife's car). If they have refused they should be reported to BMW UK.
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      06-08-2012, 08:19 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phil200tdi View Post
Goodwill is just that.

It is based on having a good relationship with your dealer and them pushing BMW on your behalf to keep you happy and spending with them in future.
Nail on head Phil,my dealer has organised 'goodwill' on several of my cars in the past,I have been using the same dealer since 2003,so a good relationship is firmly in place.

Quote:
Originally Posted by omaragha View Post
I am on my 12th BMW and I am finding Sytners in Maidenhead beyond useless. They cant offer me a courtesy car for 3 weeks - they cant even offer a pick up and drop off service (remember I live 1 mile away) for 10 days !!!

Shocking.
Geez,that is abysmal!

Personally,I'd go into the dealer (of the two you prefer) and ask (don't demand) to see the dealer Principal.
Prepare a reason to see him,other than what we are discussing here

If you do get to see him,remind of the fact that you are now on your 12th BMW,throw some figures at him in terms of your overall spend, and ask for his support in your far from unreasonable request for a goodwill gesture from BMW UK.

Remind him of the fact that the steering column fault is very well known,by dealers and the more aware Joe Public, and should not happen - period.

Bear in mind that a 'goodwill' gesture comes from BMW UK,and a dealer will be able to recoup the cost of parts and labour direct from the Ivory tower, so it can work in favour of the dealer asking for 'goodwill',as it makes their books look a bit better.
Gift horse springs to mind!

Assertive persistance works in my experience,being aggressive has the opposite effect.

Good luck.
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      06-08-2012, 09:46 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CraigUK View Post
Best of luck with getting this sorted. Any idea if this would be an MOT failure? I've been driving around with this red light on the dash since December, the cars works fine and I don't want to waste 800-1K.
I'm quite sure that with the new regs it is. Any warning light showing that relates to ABS, Brakes, Steering or air bags is a fail.
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      06-08-2012, 09:59 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CraigUK
Best of luck with getting this sorted. Any idea if this would be an MOT failure? I've been driving around with this red light on the dash since December, the cars works fine and I don't want to waste £800-1K.
Best case you have to get it rectified before MOT. Worst case is much worse - imagine the steering locking up at 60mph and the potential consequences!

Get it sorted!
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      06-08-2012, 10:11 AM   #12
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It's a frustrating situation, but that's insurance for you. When I pay for extending my warranty I don't want to be subsidising those that didn't bother and took their chances. Its a complex 40k car.
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      06-08-2012, 10:19 AM   #13
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Thanks for your response guys, its a shame but over the years I have seen BMW customer service decline massively (unlike their prices).

My course of action here is probably going to swallow the 90 cost to see if I can get some good will - If I dont then indepedant here we come.

Its a shame that a household with 2 high end 3 Series cars is treated like this. To get what I want, I know it will be a battle which it shoudlnt have to be!!

Ironically the car drives, starts, sterring wheel locks and has zero issues other than the red light on the dash - maybe a pulling a fuse is easier and cheaper :-)

Ill keep ya posted !!
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      06-08-2012, 10:49 AM   #14
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Are you best not trying another BMW dealer even one that's 10-15 miles away as the local crew sound shocking
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      06-08-2012, 11:04 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wheelie good View Post
Are you best not trying another BMW dealer even one that's 10-15 miles away as the local crew sound shocking
You know something after thinking more about this - why should I even contemplate giving Shtyner my time !!!
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      06-08-2012, 12:38 PM   #16
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Well I only had my BMW a few months and never used a dealer before, if you search on BMW site then find each dealers web page. This in turn you can look at the service history & comments of previous customers. Try this and find one with 4.5 outta 5. Also look if many 1-2 stars and if so avoid would be my advice
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      06-08-2012, 12:54 PM   #17
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Without wanting to cause offence to a much liked frequenter of these boards, the very fact a main dealer choose to keep a watch on this site for complaints about their service speaks volumes. I appreciate how this came about and the 10% blah, blah forum discount (you can normally get anywhere I might add) they seem to be a recurring theme for customer disappointment.

I'm sure there are worse dealers out there but I certainly wouldn't be visiting a Sytner for anything anytime soon.

Couldn't even post out some door pillar surrounds when I was gathering parts for my stereo install as they were "too big and bendy". Cooper-BMW seemed to have no problems doing the same.

Anyway, the expiry of a warranty does not absolve liability for something that was not fit for purpose, take it elsewhere.
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      06-08-2012, 01:09 PM   #18
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I personally would never give any Sytner dealer any of my money, I know a lot of people who have not had anything positive to say about them, I also used to work for another BMW Franchise dealer and people came to us who were disillusioned with Sytner service.

I'd give Wood in Hampshire a try, there based in Hook now in there brand new state of the art showroom (next to BMW Financial services), Tracey or Emma are very helpful.
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      06-08-2012, 03:08 PM   #19
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[quote=B33M3R;12118880]Without wanting to cause offence to a much liked frequenter of these boards, the very fact a main dealer choose to keep a watch on this site for complaints about their service speaks volumes. I appreciate how this came about and the 10% blah, blah forum discount (you can normally get anywhere I might add) they seem to be a recurring theme for customer disappointment.

............ and in the process ignore the other customers who have had bad service but don't publicise their experiences. Crazy business model where they prefer to employ someone to tidy up the messes rather than invest more in ensuring that customers don't have bad experiences. They must be missing so many people who are unhappy but don't post on forums, appears these people aren't as important to them as those who give them bad reviews on the Net.
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      06-08-2012, 04:11 PM   #20
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I found from past experience BMW will want to know that the car has been serviced by main dealers before considering any goodwill.. so full BMWSH does help.(Although mine did have one indy stamp in)

I've asked for out of warranty goodwill at Sytners twice in the past..
Once for a HPFP replacement and once to replace three faulty door actuators.

On both occasions they managed to get the parts as goodwill but I had to pay their labour costs + the 90 diagnostics..(so not too bad)

You dont get anything in writing stating BMWs decision on goodwill so for all i know they could have agreed to pay for everything but Sytners still charged me for the labour anyway (wouldnt put it past them)..!
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      06-09-2012, 07:11 AM   #21
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My local Sytner garage only cares about grabbing your money. Everytime I've phoned up to enquiring about things it's almost like I'm asking them to do me a favour. The one time I did actually end up taking my car there I was treated like a idiot, and when I enquired about additional work on the car (BMW powerpack) I was promptly greeted by the 'computer says no' response and a blank expression of total disinterest. Ended up with me asking for my keys back and taking the car else where for service.

Compare this to my local independent whom has just serviced my car, started chatting with the owner of the garage, ended up with him looking up how to fit downpipes and talking about his sons 335d. The independent might not have a massive reception area, 'free' coffee machines, or a fleet of loan cars but actually seem to genuine care/excited about cars, which in my book is a fundlemental requirement of a good garage. The actual mechanics at Sytner might be very good but theres just too much window dressing in the way at my local Sytners....no wonder they charge 90 a hour for labour!!

Last edited by gangzoom; 06-09-2012 at 07:25 AM.
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      06-09-2012, 11:45 AM   #22
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I bought my RS4 from a Sytner dealer. It was just 3 years old and so had just had an MOT. When I checked the paperwork a week or so later they'd managed to put a mileage on the certificate that lots more than was on the car. When I complained they were totally uninterested. Manchester Audi (good people btw) ended up taking it up with Audi UK for me and sorted it. Wouldn't walk into a Sytner showroom ever again.

It's a pity that while I'm sure there are some great people across the Group it only takes one or two idiots to really damage a brand! And then there's the knock-on effects on others too eg Sytner poor service does nothing for other dealers of BMWs as most customers will only see the logo not the franchise, in the same way as BMW UK being useless won't help the cause of other good dealers out there and vice versa.

Oh and re the Audi above, I know I should've just checked everything before I left. Just with it being 'Approved' I thought itd be straight. Lesson learnt!
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