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Old 12-04-2002, 20:04   #1 (permalink)
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Open Letter to Ford Customer Service

Dear Ford Customer Service,

I have the regretful decision of having to write this letter but I believe my message must be heard. I ordered my car on the 21st of August 2001 and took delivery of it at the end of October.

From approximately 8000km I started to near a whine which to me sounded like the differential/gearbox. This was successfully diagnosed at my 15,000km (06/06/02) service (1st service) as the service manager mentioned that it was not causing damage just noisy and if I could bear it hold out until then, which I did to have it properly looked at.


On the 14th of August (21378km) my drivers window fell inside the drivers door and could not be rescued by myself. So I dropped my car into the service center to be dealt with. At this point I also complained in regards to a coolant leak. The system was pressure tested and the radiator was supposedly leaking - I found this interesting as my car had never left any marks on my driveway or work car space. The radiator was replaced and tested and deemed good.

As I check my coolant and vital car fluids fortnightly when I wash my car I noticed that the coolant tank was below the low indication point. I dropped my car into the service center after making a booking on the Sunday (25/08/02), so I topped up the fluid with water as advised by a service person for the time being.

Tuesday the 27/08/02 at 22691km I was advised that the levels of coolant were not down. I was not happy about being disregarded as such. And my new tailshaft was finally fitted. Fixed the noise issue. At the service center the technician involved basically accused me of confusing the Window Washer bottle with the engine coolant bottle. Was not overly happy with the service - but otherwise okay.

Finally it had to happen. Beyond my control my car ran out of coolant on a drive in the country. Luckily I had taken to the practice - out of necessity now - to carrying 2 x 2litre bottles of water around in the boot of my car for just such an emergency. I filled up and drove very cautiously back to Melbourne. I didn't book my car in immediately - however I was concerned - so I monitored it again every day before I got in the car and when I drove home.

To my surprise one Thursday night driving home I heard the radiator fan go into overdrive and the engine temperature going skyward. I quickly shifted into neutral and pulled over. The coolant tank was 1/2 full but boiling like mad. I left it to cool down for 10 minutes and then drove home very cautiously not taking the car above 3000rpm.

18/10/02 at 25946km Friday my car was serviced without a booking - however with a letter to the service manager saying that I no longer had faith in my car and every precaution needed to be taken for me to accept my car back. My car was serviced found that the heater core was leaking into the heater box. The service technicians removed the dash and all trim in my car replaced the car and fixed the problem. I hated that it came to this that my car overheated so badly that it ran out of coolant completely and a second time in the same week that the temperature went skyward.

Upon being told that my car was ready to be picked up I was dismayed to find the following problems with the service:
The new carpet did not have the plugs to lock the XR mats into place
There were obvious grease stains on the roof carpet and the plastic drivers A pillar trim.
The passenger A pillar trim has been scratched.

The first two points have been solved - however should not have required a customer to point them out. The last one - I am still waiting for the service department to give me a call to get it replaced.

Now to today. My car leaks. And I don't mean a little, I mean a lot. Driving in the rain my car leaked an amazing amount of water all over the drivers pedals making them slippery and my socks are sodden with water.

I called up the service center and they will be taking my car in for a service on the 16th of December to address this issue - and fortunately my car is close to its 30,000km service so that will be performed at the same time.

However this is where I get to my point of this letter. I have lost faith in my car being of a good build quality plus its longevity. With water seeping in from the outside world and from the heater core this has done currently unknown damage to circuits and components which may only show itself in 4 years time - obviously after the warranty has expired.

With the cooling issue - I now have limited faith in being able to enjoy driving my car for fun as rpm's above 3000 may cause my problem to come back.

Plus I don't know what is going to go wrong in the next 2 years of warranty or the next 3 years which my financed period is for.

Some people might say, why is this a problem its obviously a car that you use for company purposes. Well I am a fairly honest person - if I sell my car privately I will show all service documents, not just the normal service ones and I will indicate all the problems I have had. I don't want to be deceitful to the prospective buyer. Why not trade it in? similar problem - however beyond my control.

All I can suggest is that in the most likely occurence now that have to bring my car in for an extra-ordinary service once again I am going to start talking about getting a replacement car.

RRP on a BA XR6 5spd manual with the options I have on my AUII XR6 costs $40,025 and my AUII RRP was $39775. Clearly a difference of $250. I will be happy to pay the difference plus the depreciation on my AUII XR6 as if it was a perfectly healthy car which would be my approximation of amount $7000.

Therefore if Ford really wants to keep my happy i'd be happy to receive the quotation for a $7250 change over price for a new replacement car. Otherwise, COTY or not I will not be happy with my current car, won't attend another V8 Supercar race (yes since i've become a Ford supporter i've been to Adelaide, Canberra, Philip Island, Winton, Sandown).

I certainly know this is not normal policy - but I hardly think my car is a normal car. In fact I have to deal with people at work calling my car a lemon. I have requested that they stop but they still smirk about it.

If any person of your management team would like to get in contact with me, my fordforums user id is my actual name, and I am sure that I am on the books somewhere as I get promotional material from Ford/FPV.

Sincerest regards,

Ian McGinley
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Falcon Killer (if you believe what Ford Service Departments have to say about me)
AU II XR6 - October 2001 ~ December 2002 - RIP
BA XR6 - December 2002 ~ Soon to disappear if Ford CRC can't fix it....

45,000km service coming up - and i'll be asking for a sizable list of fixes:
* Gearbox (3rd time)
* Steering click (5th time)
* Brake Shudder (2nd time, and has the applied "Fix")
* etc...
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Old 12-04-2002, 20:17   #2 (permalink)
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Yeah, i hate to say it but most of us have had problems with our AU2's, including myself, and no matter how hard you try Ford won't do anything for you. I have contacted Ford Australia, and Geoff with a private mail message, nothing happened. Personally i think you just have to hang in there and keep taking the car back till it is right, or even take it to a different service department.
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Old 12-04-2002, 20:17   #3 (permalink)
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Sounds like the service centre is no good. Can't you take it to a different dealer?
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Old 12-04-2002, 20:23   #4 (permalink)
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Personally i'm of the belief that I shouldn't have to. Besides gives me extra reason to be able to squeeze a free extended warranty out of them.
__________________
Falcon Killer (if you believe what Ford Service Departments have to say about me)
AU II XR6 - October 2001 ~ December 2002 - RIP
BA XR6 - December 2002 ~ Soon to disappear if Ford CRC can't fix it....

45,000km service coming up - and i'll be asking for a sizable list of fixes:
* Gearbox (3rd time)
* Steering click (5th time)
* Brake Shudder (2nd time, and has the applied "Fix")
* etc...
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Old 12-04-2002, 20:24   #5 (permalink)
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My own personal solution was to trade the car in and lose about 19000 grand on my trade in. My AU2 is gone as of tomorrow.
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Old 12-04-2002, 20:27   #6 (permalink)
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Unfortunately I cannot afford to do that. Dare I ask what you got in return?

Besides the fact that many people bought AU2's and having problems with them - mine was made side by side with AU3's - however due to the order date its classified as an AU2.
__________________
Falcon Killer (if you believe what Ford Service Departments have to say about me)
AU II XR6 - October 2001 ~ December 2002 - RIP
BA XR6 - December 2002 ~ Soon to disappear if Ford CRC can't fix it....

45,000km service coming up - and i'll be asking for a sizable list of fixes:
* Gearbox (3rd time)
* Steering click (5th time)
* Brake Shudder (2nd time, and has the applied "Fix")
* etc...
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Old 12-04-2002, 21:57   #7 (permalink)
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I wouldn't have made this a "Dear Geoff" thread. This type of post is uncalled for and I believe the policy is that no one is allowed to make the title geoff or david or xxxxx specific.

You obviously have some serious gripes and I would be slitting my wrists at the treatment described. However, I had problems as well and at the end of the day they were solved at Dealer level. You need to get above the service advisor level and get a hold of the service manager at the dealership. If you don't get help call Ford customer assistance asking for an escalation.

As for the swapover, don't expect an easy out like that! Ford's job is to fix your car and make things right. After they do you'll forget about the bad things and enjoy the car all over again.

Good luck mate!
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Old 12-04-2002, 22:06   #8 (permalink)
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Hiya AP,

I appreciate your input and and I can understand that direction.

Personally - all I want is my car fixed and enjoy 15,000km service intervals.

But really i've been shafted in this car and I purposefully didn't put in the dealers name - but that can be easily found out from my previous posts, where I didn't have any issues apart from the noisy tail shaft.

For my first ever car - i really do feel at the moment i've got a lemon.

I mean how the frig does rain get into the drivers foot well and all over my feet?!
__________________
Falcon Killer (if you believe what Ford Service Departments have to say about me)
AU II XR6 - October 2001 ~ December 2002 - RIP
BA XR6 - December 2002 ~ Soon to disappear if Ford CRC can't fix it....

45,000km service coming up - and i'll be asking for a sizable list of fixes:
* Gearbox (3rd time)
* Steering click (5th time)
* Brake Shudder (2nd time, and has the applied "Fix")
* etc...
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Old 12-04-2002, 22:13   #9 (permalink)
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My AU11 VCT is sweet!! Heater core leak sounds very uncommon and most of your other problems sound like service department misdiognoses and stuff ups.
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Old 12-04-2002, 22:36   #10 (permalink)
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Yeah i got a new BA Futura by the way, and ive still got my AU3 XR6 ute, which i havent had any problems with really, except for the tyres. Mate i would just keep trying to sort it out with your delear, and my first contact would be the service manager, just be nice and im sure they will take your problems and make sure they are fixed next time! Good luck!
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