By on June 4, 2009

What do you do when your £50,000 ($82,000) Range Rover requires, in the span of 42,000 miles, the following repairs?

  • Six front ball joints;
  • Four front arm bushes [bushings?];
  • One new seat base;
  • Front and rear [near side?] struts;
  • Air conditioning system;
  • Anti-roll bar bushes; and
  • A “full” suspension unit

According to the Daily Mail, if you’re a Colchester, Essex, UK, man, you invest a bit of money in some vinyl decals, adorn your POS Range Rover with them, park it in front of the dealer and leave it there for any and all dealership visitors to see. And, because you’ve parked it on a public street, the dealership has no recourse to have the vehicle removed!

Workers at the dealership refused to identify the owner of the lemon. A spokesman for Jaguar – Land Rover says that all the repairs for the Range Rover have been performed under warranty and adds, “However, we are disappointed this customer’s experience has been unfortunate and as such we have made a goodwill offer towards helping him into a new vehicle.”

A generous offer on the face of it, but what about the man’s time and aggravation? Is that only worth a new Jaguar or a new Range Rover? Good luck to Mr. Anonymous.

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54 Comments on “Sign of the Times: Badvertising Edition...”


  • avatar
    romanjetfighter

    He could afford to have an 82k car sitting around acting as a billboard? He’s either REALLY rich or one of those spiteful types. He should’ve gotten an LX570. People diss Lexus but you know the luxury market would be pretty crappy without cars that are both prestigious AND reliable.

    By the way, there’s a Kia Rondo like this floating around the internet.

  • avatar
    don1967

    So they fixed the car, offered to buy him a new one, and still he does this.

    Talk about your anger management problems.

  • avatar
    AdamYYZ

    I figure there is no way to make him happy short of them taking the vehicle back even-Steven. He is probably upside down on it if he tried to sell it. And I’m pretty sure he doesn’t want another one. He is pretty much SOL.

    Hopefully he is a reasonable guy and wont drag this on forever. It’s not the dealerships fault he bought a frivolous monstrosity.

    He should be taking it up with the Manufacturer directly, or bringing attention through the MSM.

  • avatar
    KatiePuckrik

    When I read stories like this, it adds credence to a theory I have.

    I hear a lot of people say the same stupid thing:

    “Ford helped Jaguar and Land Rover improve their quality”.

    Well, if that’s the case, how come (consistently) Jaguar and Land Rover (who share the production facilities and parts) are always at opposite ends of reliability surveys?

    My guess is, Ford actually did naff all and Jaguar just naturally became more reliable (Case in point, on the Ford Mondeo platform, the Jaguar X-Type is MORE reliable than the Ford Mondeo, the car on which the platform was designed for!).

    Romanjetfighter

    Maybe the guy wanted the Range Rover for off-roading purposes? If that was the case, then a Lexus RX (never heard of an LX) would be no good as it’s a CUV not an SUV. CUV’s (by the manufacturers own admissions) aren’t designed for off-roading. I suppose the guy could have got a Jeep….? (Insert your own comment here).

  • avatar
    TonyJZX

    look at the tyres on that

    they are as suitable for offroading as Corvette

    that’s a rich area so no doubt this guy has other cars and plenty of time for griefing

    a ‘good will offer’ to a new vehicle is obviously paying him market value (ie. 50%) for this 2007/08 LR… obviously he doesn’t want to make the up the difference to a ’09… nor would I

  • avatar
    NulloModo

    Katie – The Lexus LX is the Lexus version of the Land Cruiser, perhaps you don’t get those in the UK.

    Range Rovers are far more reliable than they once were, those old ones would leak oil if you looked at them funny, but they still aren’t perfect.

    The guy is directing his anger in the wrong place however. The dealer doesn’t know if a car is going to have repair issues when they sell it. Very few vehicles will ever show huge problems within the first 100 miles, which is about the upper limit of what a non-demo might reasonably get on the dealer’s lot from test drives before it is sold. Does the UK have a lemon law? If so this guy needs to take his recourse there, or with the manufacturer.

  • avatar
    OldandSlow

    Coventry, Longbridge and Solihull have long been the source of vehicles which need to be sorted out by either the dealer or the second and maybe third owners. Judging from the photo, the owner is even more high maintenance than the vehicle.

  • avatar
    windswords

    KatiePuckrik:

    ““Ford helped Jaguar and Land Rover improve their quality”.”

    Kinda reminds me of how Dumbler helped Chrysler. But, at least their reliability overall is still better than VW, Land Rover, Jaguar, Suzuki, Scion, Saab, Mazda, Pontiac, Hummer, Saturn, and Isusu.

    http://www.autoblog.com/photos/2009-jd-power-vehicle-dependability-study/1439579/

    (for original owners of three-year-old (2006 model year) vehicles.)

  • avatar
    commando1

    Hard for me to sympathise with anyone owning an $82k SUV.

    Really, really hard…….

  • avatar
    skor

    When I was a kid, a local man did the same with a diesel Cadillac. “GM Makes Defective Cars”, was painted on the Caddy. This was long before the net, so he had fliers printed that listed his troubles with the car, the dealer, and GM. He’d hand out a flier to anyone that asked about the car. As I recall, GM never did repair his car, or offer to buy it back.

  • avatar
    johnny ro

    six ball joints? four bushes? two front struts?

    I don’t know that front end, but sounds like more than one set of ball joints.

    There must have been some underlying problem which they kept addressing by changing wrong parts and moving car out to receive area.

    I sense dealer incompetence.

    The owner might be some decent guy affronted by dealer attitude. Might be nice dealer with crank owner.

    I bet a search for Range Rover forum would reveal any common front end defects and correct repair. I bet there i such a forum and that dealer ignores it.

    My local Boston Mazda dealer never heard of Miata.net, except for the one Miata fan on staff who wears face jewelry.

  • avatar
    Detroit-X

    I don’t think Range Rovers are even close to being worth the money; I don’t think Ford/GM are even as close to being as bad (today) as the public thinks. This example shown here is a very effective revenge technique by a frustrated owner. What else can you do against a big, stupid, corporation?

    Put simply, all mechanical things will have days/lives like this, no matter what brand. I’ve seen it over and over. Sajeev Mehta’s Piston Slap column often features imports with nutty problems I never had on GM vehicles, and yet, their reputation gets a free ride.

    Back in the late ’70s I knew a woman who had one of those (1960s?) International-brand SUVs (Scout?); totally dependable and loved by her. When it finally died on her yearly trip from Michigan to the Mardi-Gras, she found another one (used), and it was a money-pit nightmare.

    Funny story about her: She was a nice-figured, homely-faced lady. One morning I noticed two handsome guys were installing a new roof on her house, all sweaty and shirtless. Next thing I notice is her drinking a rum and Coke, chatting wildly with them, following them around as they worked, trying to get her nerve up and to get these guys interested.

  • avatar
    bryanska

    All the dealer has to do, is call the cops and tell them they know of someone living a decadent lifestyle. Then they’ll impound the Rover.

    In Britain, can’t you do that now?

  • avatar
    superbadd75

    Anyone purchasing a Land Rover that doesn’t expect problems clearly hasn’t done their homework. The only hope I ever had for Landy was when BMW owned them, and they didn’t hang on to them long enough to have any kind of impact.

    The thing that sticks in my mind the most about Land Rover is from my used car days. We had a Freelander that had been sold to a customer and started overheating. It went in to the shop once under warranty and then twice more after the warranty before we finally found out that the cylinder sleeves had slid down inside the block and Land Rover wasn’t going to do anything about it. This is evidently a well known problem for them. This vehicle had less than 35,000 miles on the odometer and was 2 months out of warranty (with reports of trouble before it expired!) and they just threw up their hands and walked away. It was at that time that I decided Land Rover would never get my business, and I would never recommend one to anyone else.

  • avatar
    210delray

    Why am I not surprised? It is a Land Rover after all.

  • avatar
    Jason

    “So they fixed the car, offered to buy him a new one, and still he does this.”

    You’re giving them credit for warranty repairs? They’re obligated to do that.

    You think they’re being nice by offering him a new one? They want him to go away, it’s highly doubtful they made this offer before he did his display. Also, of all the vehicles in the world, why would he want another Land Rover?

    “Sorry about your shameful piece of crap. Here, here’s another shameful piece of crap just like it.”

  • avatar
    rpol35

    I was always told that when you bought one of these things, you had to really buy two. You know, so you could drive one while the other was being fixed.

    This is no surprise to me; actually sounds like this guy got off lightly if this is all that went wrong.

  • avatar
    Richard Chen

    @KatiePuckrik, Nullomodo: specifically -
    US Lexus GX -> UK Toyota LC3, LC4
    US Lexus LX -> UK Toyota LC V8

    The other Lexus not sold in EU (nor Japan, interestingly) is the Camry-based FWD ES350. It’s very popular in in the US, and also sold in China.

  • avatar
    PartsUnknown

    Interesting. I’ve owned 20+ cars in my life, all imports – mostly European, some Japanese, including 2 Rovers (plus a ’68 Series IIa). Those Rovers – a ’96 Disco I and an ’02 Disco II – were literally the two most dependable vehicles I’ve ever owned. The ’02 threw a CEL at about 35,000 miles; otherwise nothing but maintenance, which I did myself. Small sample size I know, and the Discos were farm tractors compared to this guy’s RR, but still. Actually, that was probably it – the Disco was old-tech and a direct descendent of the can’t-kill-em Rovers of old. The newer ones seem too dependent on electronics. And six (6?!?) ball joints…

  • avatar

    To naff? Please define. this verb hasn’t made it to this side of the pond yet (to my pretty decent knowledge).

  • avatar
    Brendon from Canada

    We’re on our second Land Rover; the first was a Freelander which my wife loved and was actually reasonably reliable. It was definitely in the shop once or twice a year, and we kept it only until our extended warranty was about to come due, though more because I wanted a newer vehicle then any real problems; the shop visits were either for the sunroof (3x) or something somewhat suspension related (bushings/control arms/ball joints/tie rods). We drove for ~80k miles on it.

    Our current Land Rover is an LR3 (Disco3 for Katie!) and has been extremely reliable. It’s only seen the inside of the shop for oil changes (which I’ll take over as soon as the warranty expires). Granted, it does require new bushings right now at 45k miles, but I’m attributing this mainly to the softer material used in the NA market (EU LR3s/Disco3s apparently have a slightly firmer ride that was deemed unacceptable in NA).

    The RRS pictured above is in fact a more expensive yet smaller LR3 with a different shell on it – the underpinnings are identical. In the UK theres a chap pushing 300k miles on his Disco3 that is used daily for hauling and he hasn’t done ANY repairs other then wear & tear (brakes/tires) so they can last a good distance (and makes me wish we had the TDV6 here!). From my experience on various forums it seems the dealership’s servicing department is really what makes or brakes the experience – apparently many simply can’t fix simple issues; I know that probably often weren’t really diagnosed on our Freelander – it was simply a case of wholesale part replacement; speaking with shop guys, this was a pretty common method of operation at LR shops…

    If you happen to know of a good dealer near you, these vehicles are a bargain used in the US – think 60-70% depreciation in 2 years! Buying one new becomes a different proposition…

  • avatar
    psarhjinian

    Yes, but it has heritage.

    It’s a funny thing about luxury brands. People harp on Lexus or Infiniti for having no “heritage”, forgetting that said “heritage” of a storied European marque consists of more glitches per mile than an equivalent mid-eighties Hyundai or Lada.

    The next gem of wisdom is that “the engine can go over two hundred thousand kilometers!”. Which is true, if you replace all the various pumps, hoses, electric subsystems, suspension parts and such. Oh, and you have to be fastidious about maintenance. Meanwhile, a Corolla can get treated like a red-headed stepchild and make the same mileage.

    I know things are better now, mostly, but Land Rover’s reliability has been terrible for something that’s supposed to be rugged. You could excuse Jaguar or Alfa for being mechanical princesses, but it’s harder to take from what ought to be a hard-core offroader.

  • avatar
    tedward

    “we have made a goodwill offer towards helping him into a new vehicle”

    haha, this does not mean that they’ve made him a worthwhile offer. In fact, I’d bet anything that their offer entails the purchase of a new car with their profit margin nearly intact.

    Frankly anyone selling a product that costs more than $5k should fully expect to be held accountable for defects. If this gentleman confronted every potential customer in person I’d consider it appropriate.

    Unfortunately for him, buying a 80+k SUV does automatically make him a douche. Sorry.

  • avatar
    allegro con moto-car

    I know exactly what this customer is going through, because I went through this with Pontiac. I do not believe this anonymous customer is trying to get something for nothing; long before it gets to this stage, the customer repeatedly has tried to get the dealership/manufacturer to either replace the lemon or receive a refund. Most jurisdictions have a lemon law, which is in effect (replace or refund) for a fixed time and mileage (around 1 year or 12k miles). The dealers/manufacturers work to delay to get past this time/mileage criterea. After the initial period, I believe the refund is pro-rated on the clocked mileage on something like 100k miles.

    Most people know early in the lemon law’s window of opportunity when they are stuck in a lemon. This customer probably knew that in short order, but the dealer/manufacturer delayed and delayed and now that the initial time/mileage criterea has expired, they are going to offer him a “goodwill offer”. They know that people get tired of:

    a) multiple trips to the service dept. to fix any one of these problems,

    b) trips to the service dept. that results in other things broken while the original problem does not get fixed, and

    c) having their life revolving around service depts.

    The delaying tactics are geared to wear the customer down, and get him/her to trade out of his headache in some competing brand’s dealership, with no full refund to the customer. In a very perverse way, the managers of these offending car companies look at this as a win-win for their brand.

    I got good and fed up enough of not having a usable trunk in my Pontiac because of the Dahon fold-up bicycle in the trunk, and the endless trips back to the dealer on a hook, so I did what they wanted me to do all along— take my headache to some other branded dealership and trade out of it, with no compensation from Pontiac.

    I remember reading in the news about a Pontiac customer who received a full refund, and the chief of Pontiac was quoted saying something to the effect that “Pontiac is committed to complete customer satisfaction.” My experience was that Pontiac had no such commitment.

    Commando1: Really, really hard to sympathize with anyone owning an $82k SUV?

    I have no trouble sympathizing. The price and type of vehicle has nothing to do with this. You paid your money in good faith for a new and reliable vehicle, and you end up with multiple trips to the service dept. to fix any one of these many problems, or possibly other items/systems getting torn up in the process. Why is this experience excusable if the vehicle costs $82k, but not excusable if the vehicle costs $28k?

    I fully support what this anonymous customer is doing and I hope he/she will receive a full refund, which is probably what he/she asked for originally some time ago, and what SHOULD have been done.

    By the way, does anybody remember the 60 minutes segment on lemons? It was some years ago when it originally aired. 60 minutes found out that when manufacturers take back their lemons, they sometimes get marketed as used vehicles to the unsuspecting public at the same brand’s dealership in some other state. This is how they build brand image?

    I would think the best policy is to satisfy the customer with a full refund or replacement, and crush the lemons. But hey, I’m not running a car company.

    My 2¢ worth, no more and no less.

    allegro

  • avatar
    indi500fan

    What’s with all the suspension problems?
    I thought (theoretically) these things were designed as off-road monsters.
    I’m doubting this guy was running the Baja?

  • avatar
    RayH

    Good for this man. Whatever his financial situation, it’s good he’s doing this out of principle.

    “60 minutes found out that when manufacturers take back their lemons, they sometimes get marketed as used vehicles to the unsuspecting public at the same brand’s dealership in some other state.”

    Probably over half the time they don’t leave the state, and close to half the time, they don’t even leave the dealership.

  • avatar
    yankinwaoz

    So they fixed the car, offered to buy him a new one, and still he does this.

    They didn’t offer to buy him a new one. They offered to SELL him a new one. Read it again “…a goodwill offer towards helping him into a new vehicle.”

    What that means is that they offered next to nothing for his trade in toward the purchase of a new car. Rather than do the right thing, they are trying to screw the guy twice.

    I remember in the 70′s a guy with a similar problem. He took his car to a paint shop and had them paint lemons all over it. Then he parked it infront of the dealership.

  • avatar
    "scarey"

    Sounds like a car that I bought once. A Merkur XR4Ti. Bought new, owned 24 months. In the shop overnight 24 times under warranty. They never did figure out all its problems. It must have fallen off the boat on the way over. I finally traded it to a dealer for next to nothing to get rid of it. Too bad. It should have been such a good car.

  • avatar

    They probably offered some sort of “trade assistance” against a new Range Rover. Do they really think that after he’s been burned by Land Rover, he’s going to want to buy another one?

  • avatar
    KatiePuckrik

    Mr Holzman,

    “Naff” is just a more polite way of saying “F**k”.

    i.e “Naff off”, “Naff all”.

    However one CAN’T go “Naff” oneself. Or be a “Mothernaffer”.

    Naff is also a way of describing something as “lame”.

    i.e. This Chrysler Sebring is really naff.

    Hope this helps.

  • avatar
    jrlombard

    On a similar note, some friends here in the Bay Area just purchased a new supercharged LR. It has been in the shop all but 3 days of the first 35 days that they’ve owned it. They’ve been really patient and understanding with the dealer–not sure how, I would have lost it long ago.

    On the other hand, I hear from another friend who owns a Jag that his 2006 XJR has been amazingly reliable. However, he’s owned Jags since 1986, so he may just be punch drunk from decades of poor reliability. :-)

  • avatar
    26theone

    Just take five minutes and look at any April (Annual Car Issue) of Consumer reports from the last decade. The Land Rover SUV’s are so unreliable Consumer reports literally had problems displaying the LR score on a chart correctly. The LR problems per number of vehicles was so bad they had to cut the chart off and just list a number because it wouldnt even fit in the graphic correctly.

    Also Car and Driver or Motor Trend did a review a few years ago and literally had components falling off the car during a review.

    Worst Cars Made.

  • avatar
    salhany

    On the other hand, I hear from another friend who owns a Jag that his 2006 XJR has been amazingly reliable.

    Based on the discussion from the YSE Used Jaguar thread, the consensus seemed to be that the post-2004 XJ and XJR were in fact pretty reliable vehicles.

    Out of curiosity I checked CR’s (I know, I know) reliability report for the XJ, and for the only 2 years for which they have sufficient data (2004 and 2005) they have it rated as average reliability.

    So, my plan to talk the wife into letting me get a used XJR has just entered stage 1. :)

  • avatar
    John Horner

    “It has been in the shop all but 3 days of the first 35 days that they’ve owned it.”

    Sounds like enough to get a lemon law refund on that POS. Any vehicle that bad in the first month of ownership is probably going to be an ongoing headache. Some years back we got a 100% refund on a Chrysler T&C minivan under the lemon law. The secret: Hire an attorney who specializes in lemon law cases. Never fall for the arbitration trap.

    Does the UK have lemon laws?

  • avatar
    salhany

    It has been in the shop all but 3 days of the first 35 days that they’ve owned it. They’ve been really patient and understanding with the dealer–not sure how, I would have lost it long ago.

    I would think that would qualify the vehicle as a lemon under the current lemon laws. I’d have to check California’s statutes, but generally 30 days in the shop like that soon after purchase makes it a lemon and eligible for buyback.

  • avatar
    noreserve

    We leased a 2006 Land Rover LR3 HSE in Dec 06. What a complete piece of unreliable shit. It had its merits as an incredible off-road machine – mainly confined to my hilly wooded lot out back, but still, that thing is a monster performer off-road. We did the Land Rover Experience twice in Biltmore and had a blast.

    TonyJZX :
    June 4th, 2009 at 6:29 am

    look at the tyres on that

    they are as suitable for offroading as Corvette

    Actually, apart from very sloppy mud, even the 19″/20″ wheel models with stock tires will perform incredibly well. I would advise swapping out for 18″ to get more sidewall cushion and go to a more aggresive tread. Still though, we went places off-road with the stock tires in a LR-provided LR3 that would challenge most any vehicle. The LR3′s electronics, HDC, air suspension, and inherent design are no gimmick. The vehicle will keep up with anything stock and even lightly modified Jeeps/older Landies. If you don’t believe it, search Youtube for clips showing stock LR3 suspension articulation and off-road forays. That thing is a mule.

    It is also a tank. It weighs 5,800 lbs and gets 13/18 MPG. We got hit from behind at around 40 MPH by a Jetta and were able to drive away. Jetta was totaled. LR3 had minimal damage. We took a closer look at the Jetta the next day at the towing company and the guy couldn’t believe that the LR3 took that hit and was still drivable. Apart from a sore neck that evening, my wife and I and one of our sons (4-year old) were unharmed. If my wife and I had been in the Corvette, I might not be writing this today. That is definitely one of the safest vehicles out there. Weight, height, boron steel and the like make for a nice cage. Thanks for that LR3.

    Now, on to the bad stuff…

    Here’s the list of problems that I had the LR3 into the dealer for in the span of the 30 month lease:

    * fuel tank replacement (recall)
    * middle sunshade won’t stay latched (never fixed properly after three times)
    * new powertrain ECU software update to fix lurching
    * POS Goodyear Wrangler tires replaced after uneven wear from early model year suspension geometry problem from factory (replaced with Pirelli Scorpions at half price “goodwill” effort)
    * nav screen flicker “fixed” with new ECU software download (never to my satisfaction after three tries)
    * low coolant warning problem fixed with new coolant expansion tank (faulty level sensor)
    * sunroof leak fixed by opening the drain tube outlet more (headliner replaced)
    * tailgate squeak
    * passenger speaker rattle (resecured speaker grille to bracket, but never completely fixed)
    * transmission range change not available error message (did not reappear)
    * third-row seat handle plastic cover came off twice and replaced
    * Land Rover hood letters flaking (replaced)
    * black plastic cowl trim faded and worn badly in first year (lived with it)
    * vehicle had to be towed in to fix second fuel tank assembly
    * replaced front and rear brake pads and flushed brake system at 20K for $621
    * recall on steering column rotary coupler wiring (fit foam pads and spacers)
    * steering wheel delaminating on top (replaced steering wheel)

    On top of all of the service problems, I recently turned it into Land Rover Capitol at the end of the lease and they would not budge on charging me $720 for a completely new wheel that had only a cosmetic scrape (I had them dismount the wheel and I loaded it in my Accord prior to signing the lease turn-in papers. I had them put the damn spare on. I will sell it on ebay or give it to a homeless person to use as an endtable before I’d turn it back to LRC)

    We have decided to do the Land Rover Experience at Biltmore in the future if we need another off-road fix. Much cheaper in the long run. Glad to turn that thing in. There is a reason why we have only a Honda Element and Accord in our driveway now.

  • avatar
    Rastus

    To all of you who say “there will be problems….just remember that when you get on a flight to go across the Atlantic or Pacific.

    The fact there are problems does NOT make it right…regardless of how wealthy this individual is.

    Good for this man I say…at least he isn’t rolling over playing the boot-licking sissy.

    And if you say he should direct his hostility towards the company and not the dealership- well, he bought it from this “dealership”….this “dealership” (since they should represent both the customer’s and RR’s best interest) SHOULD be his first approach.

    >>>Granted, RR’s ARE known to be pieces-o-sheit …so anyone willing to plop 82-large on one of these things really OUGHT to know what he is buying. If he want’s status over reliability- well, he got it. :) He should have bought a Toyota Land Cruiser.

  • avatar
    Dave Skinner

    “60 minutes found out that when manufacturers take back their lemons, they sometimes get marketed as used vehicles to the unsuspecting public at the same brand’s dealership in some other state.”

    These resale cars fall into three categories:

    1) A stupid fault the dealer missed once or twice that qualified the car for a lemon law buyback in a state with owner friendly lemon laws. If the manufacturer fixes the fault prior to resale, there’s no reason to send the car to a crusher.

    2) A customer that used lemon laws to solve “buyer’s remorse”. Dealership techs can tell you tales of cars rolling into the shop with spurious check engine lights for just this reason. On OBD II equipped cars, the computer records conditions present when the light illuminated. If a car shows up five times in a row with a check engine light that set at idle (car stopped with the hood open…), odds are the owner disconnected some electronic sensors in their driveway, just to create a problem. Once again, the car is perfectly fine for resale.

    3) True lemons. In most cases, these vehicles can be identified based the reliability of the model in the marketplace. As so many commentators have already said, “If you buy a Land Rover, you get what you pay for.” Frankly, if the manufacturer is already a purveyor of lemons, there isn’t any real reason to keep these cars out of the resale market. They may be lemons, but knowledgable buyers already know this.

    I don’t have any kind of data showing the break out for each of the three categories, but I guarantee you Land Rover has far more vehicles in category three (as a percentage) than most manufacturers.

    In my experience, 60 Minutes (and really, most news outlets) presents automotive stories using a bias that best suits their needs, typically using the “What an evil corporation” bias. As in so many things in life, it ain’t that simple.

  • avatar
    zerofoo

    Good for this guy!

    Lots of the comments here sound like a battered wife justifying her husband’s actions:

    “he didn’t do his homework – he bought a land rover”

    “the dealer fixed the problems under warranty”

    “they made him an offer on another car”

    All of these excuses defending the manufacturer are crap. This guy spent big bucks on a luxury SUV – isn’t he entitled to a reliable vehicle?

    Car companies need to realize that reliability is not an option. It needs to be a “standard feature” on every car regardless of price or purpose.

    It seems, the only way to get manufacturers to make quality products these days is to SHAME them or sue them.

    If we could only do the same to software companies…

    -ted

  • avatar
    Rastus

    zerofoo,

    Re :“he didn’t do his homework – he bought a land rover”

    Don’t you see it IS the responsibility of the individual at some level? Hell, I’ve known people to spend 3-months researching mountain bikes before they will spend 800-1K on one.

    Range Rover sucks…they are damn near always at the bottom of the quality ratings….always.

    He really should do a little research. If this were a Yugo (same quality index w/out the leather)- you would not blame Zastava, would you? No- you’d say “My God…he/she SHOULD have known the Yugo was a POS!!”.

  • avatar
    tedward

    “2) A customer that used lemon laws to solve “buyer’s remorse”.”

    Fascinating, I’ve never heard of this before. It might not be the most honest solution to a problem, but I’ve heard of several stories where (if it was me) I would probably consider doing this myself.

  • avatar

    Good show, ‘ole chap!

  • avatar
    Lokkii

    “So they fixed the car, offered to buy him a new one, and still he does this.”

    Yeah – It’s so British to say

    “Thank you, sir! May I have another?”

    Another one is exactly what he wants after months of unrepairable problems with the one he already has.

  • avatar
    VerbalKint

    Vehicle obviously shares DNA with my ’03 Explorer…

  • avatar
    AKM

    That is definitely one of the safest vehicles out there.
    (…)
    * fuel tank replacement (recall)

    noreserve, I agree with you. Just pointed to point out that gem as it comes to safety ;-)

    And yes, spending 80k+ on a vehicle does not automatically mean that one is entitled to a great experience. Just like some $200 a night hotels can still be horrible. Be responsible and do your own research. My wife and I took the risk to buy a 2002 VW golf because we like the way it drives and the interior, but were ready for higher than average repair costs. They didn’t quite happen, but could (should?) have.

  • avatar

    Thanks Ms. Puckrik.

  • avatar
    Airhen

    No matter what, no one expects to spend that much money on a vehicle that is such a POS. I would be mad too having to go through all that. It’s shocking, and good for him! Just by this thread, he is still getting his money back. LOL

  • avatar
    Dave Skinner

    tedward :

    “Fascinating, I’ve never heard of this before. It might not be the most honest solution to a problem, but I’ve heard of several stories where (if it was me) I would probably consider doing this myself.”

    While all my evidence is anectdotal, many manufacturers service reps have seen a suspect lemon law case come through the system.

    Lemon law requirements also vary GREATLY from state to state. In some states, if a customer brings a vauge complaint to three different dealers, and they all determine “NPF” (no problem found), the car qulifies for a buy back under that state’s lemon law guidelines, long before the manufacturer even knows there is a problem car in the system.

    Tightly defined lemon laws may create a playground for unscrupulous owners, but I wouldn’t want to point my finger exclusively at owners. Sending a car back with “NPF” on the service order is often used to avoid working on cars that requires repairs undefined by the factory flat rate manual. It’s also a great way to create an unhappy customer who now considers their car a LEMON. Because of this, a good service department is still the manufacturer’s best defense.

  • avatar
    don1967

    This guy spent big bucks on a luxury SUV – isn’t he entitled to a reliable vehicle?

    Correction: He spent big bucks on a Land Rover.

    That entitles him to a reliable vehicle just as much as a 1973 AMC Pacer entitles its owner to a date with Beyonce.

    Besides, it’s not like the car burned its way through 4 transmissions and spent a year in the shop. Most of this guy’s bitching is about high-wear steering and suspension parts, and we ARE talking about an off-road machine with 42,000 miles on the clock. Meh. My 2004 Nissan Quest went through just as many parts in 30,000 miles, and it rarely drove on anything rougher than a pool table.

  • avatar

    I can recall a guy in Seattle who put similar wording all over his car. It seems that Jiffy Lube had done some damage and the guy was really PO’ed. So he covered his car in maniacal ranting about the big evil Jiffy Lube corporation. I always laughed when I saw him and thought “what a frikkin’ lunatic… what did you expect? it’s Jiffy Lube!”

    –chuck

  • avatar
    tedward

    Dave Skinner

    “a good service department is still the manufacturer’s best defense”
    absolutely agreed

    I was think along the lines of salesmen screwups as well. I heard of a case where some crap BMW dealership attempted to force delivery on a customer (who’s deposit was already down) for a car not matching his specs. (I believe it was the tranny, the guy wanted manual and the dealer claimed the auto option was value added). This was an internet story though so…large chunks of salt.

    Or a more realistic example…I know a guy (not very smart or knowledgable) who bought an Expedition at a huge markup years ago. That’s not so bad, what really sucked was his financing deal was perhaps the most abusive piece of paperwork I’d ever seen. He was going to end up paying nearly double the cars value. Now, I’d normally just say, “you’re an idiot and should just refrain from making decisions” but this was really past that, and basically boiled down to a scam (they didn’t explain the loan terms to him accurately, he says (did I mention he’s an idiot?)). Faking a Lemon would have been justified here by my standards.

    Or, I’ve been in dealerships and had them totally misrepresent product before. I was shopping sports cars for someone and the Pontiac guy swore up and down the G6 was RWD and the Stolstice FWD…repeatedly and eventually angrily. I just wanted to smack him, but I could easily see a customer being led astray by that kind of persistence from a supposedly knowledgable source. Someone mislead into a sale like that would have no way to prove the lie occured and would be justified defrauding the OEM.

  • avatar
    Bimmer

    I would love to hear what would data of True Delta says about Jags and LRs.

    Sounds like this person has same luck with his car as I have with Seagate hard drives. First failed in 9 month. Guess what they send me? Refurbished! And how long did it last? Whole THREE month! Way to retain customers! Would never purchase another product from Seagate /Maxtor (same company) as, I’m sure, this person would not want another TATA product.

  • avatar
    JohnHowardOxley

    @ Bimmer:

    While the “C” in TTAC is for cars, not computers, my experience with Seagate HDD has been so bad [the other brand to avoid, pretty easy, because they don\'t make them any more, was the Yugo-quality IBM \"Deskstar\" SCSI drive, fondly known as the \"Deathstar\", which ate up years of my data] that to this day, whenever purchasing computers or parts, I insist that the brand not be Seagate/Maxstor.

    Which makes me wonder, what brand is the HDD in my BMW that supports the nav system?

  • avatar
    Nicodemus

    Reliability is a funny thing that is more based on perception and expectation than it is on statisics. It’s a strange thing that Toyota always rate at the top of consumer quality, but seem to have as many if not more safety recalls as anyone else.

    http://www.recalls.gov.au/content/index.phtml/itemId/952855/fromItemId/952839

    I think people overlook a lot of stuff that goes wrong with Toyotas.


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