Where Your Author Will Need Another Post-headliner Service Visit

where your author will need another post headliner service visit

Hello! We’re back again with another installment of the Golf Sportwagen Follies. In our last update, I’d dropped off the Golf for its second new headliner after a sunroof drainage issue caused some considerable water damage. Just under two weeks later (this past Friday), I received the “All finished!” call from the dealer and went over to pick it up a couple of hours later.

What I found afterward was less than impressive. Let’s have a look, shall we?

I noticed some of the issues below immediately upon checking out the car, while still at the dealer. The manager there assured me that she and another person had looked over the work, but they hadn’t spotted the issues I noticed. The headliner’s installment and fitting was less than good in several places. I know you all love seeing the details of my pain, so it’s all laid out here for you. Headliner problems first.

I noticed three total headliner issues when I got home and had a chance to get pictures. There was some particularly bad fitment around the rear driver’s side door light, and both vanity lights up front had the same sort of visible fabric edge on one side.

These were the only headliner issues noticeable enough to get a picture, but there was also some slightly wavy-looking fabric around the other interior light trims. Once I get it back I may be able to smooth that out by hand.

But the headliner issues above were not my primary area of concern. No, my primary problem was the damage caused by careless handling of the interior panels during the headliner transplant. We’ll separate the problems by color today, tan ones first. These panels were unmarked before the dealership visit, so the damage stood out pretty easily.

The first image is on the passenger side at the rear door trim, a panel between the door and the rear seat. Looks like it was gouged with a screwdriver, or drug along a sharp edge for four or five inches.

Second image is the B-pillar trim, where I suspect that the airbag logo needed to be removed to get access to a screw or fastener behind. Must’ve been difficult to remove, so just jab at it with a pointy object.

Now the damage to black plastics, all at the rear cargo area. The double scratches are along the side of the D-pillar.

Chunks were taken out along the left and right side of the cargo area as well, shown above and below. All damaged panels were most definitely caused while the car was in for this headliner swap. I was assured that they’d order new panels for damaged places, and give me a call when the parts arrived.

At the time I left the dealer I’d noticed only the B-pillar and rear door area scratches, as I couldn’t get fully investigative until I got home. I followed up with an email Friday afternoon and included these photos, but it was near the end of the day so I’ve yet to hear back as of writing.

Needless to say, I’m less than pleased that the car was returned to me with an improperly or incompletely fitted headliner and damaged panels that weren’t there prior. We’ll see if the dealer can make this right, and I’ll let you know exactly how long that takes. Meantime, the scraped-up Golf sits in the drive awaiting its new panels.

[Images: Corey Lewis / The Truth About Cars]

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  • Jeff S Jeff S on Jun 10, 2021

    I am glad I don't own a German car. Even my wife's nephew who works as a service advisor at a BMW dealership says that the newer BMWs have a lot of issues and that they are expensive to fix. Corey's VW is a nice looking wagon but I am happy that my wife has a CRV.

    • Corey Lewis Corey Lewis on Jun 10, 2021

      If there were an alternative product from a Japanese maker I'd have bought it. Had enough of Subaru for a long while, and there's no Lexus/Toyota/Acura wagon.

  • 3SpeedAutomatic 3SpeedAutomatic on Jul 03, 2021

    To add to the above misery: 1997 Toyota Camry with 4 cylinder. Took it to the local Toyota dealer to get the timing belt replaced at 75k miles. Engine knocked like crazy afterwards. Took it to a local repair shop, which stated belt was routed incorrectly and replaced with another new belt. Ran fine afterwards. Now I understand most engines use timing chains which are critical for variable valve timing (VVT).

  • FreedMike Back in the '70s, the one thing keeping consumers from buying more Datsuns was styling - these guys were bringing over some of the ugliest product imaginable. Remember the F10? As hard as I try to blot that rolling aberration from my memory, it comes back. So the name change to Nissan made sense, and happened right as they started bringing over good-looking product (like the Maxima that will be featured in this series). They made a pretty clean break.
  • Flowerplough Liability - Autonomous vehicles must be programmed to make life-ending decisions, and who wants to risk that? Hit the moose or dive into the steep grassy ditch? Ram the sudden pile up that is occurring mere feet in front of the bumper or scan the oncoming lane and swing left? Ram the rogue machine that suddenly swung into my lane, head on, or hop up onto the sidewalk and maybe bump a pedestrian? With no driver involved, Ford/Volkswagen or GM or whomever will bear full responsibility and, in America, be ambulance-chaser sued into bankruptcy and extinction in well under a decade. Or maybe the yuge corporations will get special, good-faith, immunity laws, nation-wide? Yeah, that's the ticket.
  • FreedMike It's not that consumers wouldn't want this tech in theory - I think they would. Honestly, the idea of a car that can take over the truly tedious driving stuff that drives me bonkers - like sitting in traffic - appeals to me. But there's no way I'd put my property and my life in the hands of tech that's clearly not ready for prime time, and neither would the majority of other drivers. If they want this tech to sell, they need to get it right.
  • TitaniumZ Of course they are starting to "sour" on the idea. That's what happens when cars start to drive better than people. Humanpilots mostly suck and make bad decisions.
  • Inside Looking Out Why not buy Bronco and call it Defender? Who will notice?