The Lotus Cars Community banner

1 - 20 of 38 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,581 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Some background info: the car resides in Monroe, NJ (near Princeton) and so I made extra effort not to go to the closest dealer and especially wanted to avoid Manhattan Motorcars (where I bought the car). I brought my car to HRM the first time back in August, 2006 for the 7000 mile checkup.

The complaints back then were:
- Clunk in steering wheel over low frequency bumps
- Rattle in drivers door/window
- AC would freeze up
- Self-destructed driver fender liner
- Paint defect on front clam (above left front wheel)

The service manager at the time was Nils (sp?), and while a nice guy, I felt I had to ride him on the phone constantly to get anything done. My car was kept at HRM for at least three weeks because they couldn't get the Lotus rep to take a look at the car and then they couldn't get the body shop to take a look at the car. The weather was still warm and I wanted my car back so I made arrangements to pickup my car and told Nils not to wash my car.

When I picked up the car, I was given the run around about how the rack wasn't damaged enough so they couldn't do anything. There were tons of fingerprints on the drivers window, which I attributed to adjusting the window, and they washed my car. I was to return in the winter to address the paint defect. When I got home and washed the car, I realized the drivers fender liner wasn't replaced, the whole car had swirl marks all over and the drivers door still rattled. Nils kept on saying how he would order a new fender, but nothing ever materialized. Basically nothing was done to the car as far as I'm concerned...other than the AC which, while still anemic, doesn't appear to freeze over and is as good as it probably gets.

So back in Feb, I realized that my warranty was about to expire and called up the service department and left a voicemail. It turns out the day that I thought about the warranty was the last day of said warranty. We had the big snow storm that weekend and there was no way I could bring the car in. So I brought the car in on the following Friday. John handled everything as Sherman (the new service guy) wasn't there yet.

The complaints back then were still the same:
- Clunk in steering wheel over low frequency bumps
- Rattle in drivers door/window
- Self-destructed driver fender liner
- Paint defect on front clam (above left front wheel)

My car was there for two weeks and I was notified that my exhaust was cracked. They said that the loudness of the exhaust was so bad that they couldn't diagnose a clunk in the steering that you could physically feel with your hands while going over low frequency bumps. Let me tell you that while the exhaust is loud, it's not deafening. The rattle in the drivers door? Yeah, still there. Paint defect? Well, they said that since the car is Chrome Orange, that the paint would have to be blended into the door. After a bad repaint experience on my M3, I just didn't think it was going to be worth it and that I'd probably end up worse off so I decided to just live with it. The fender liner? That's a wear and tear item even though Nils originally said that it would be covered. The design of how the fender liners are held in place has changed since the '05, where back then, tiny rivets were used to go through big holes. In essence, the design relied on the misalignment of the fender liner to the body to keep the rivet in place. I've worked on an '07 and the rivets are now bigger. My bill was $6x.xx for the fender liner and $165 for a diagnostic fee to try to find the clunk of the steering rack that was brought up way back in '06. This is when I met Sherman and he was definitely friendly and wanted to literally rip the exhaust off and weld it and even maybe take it for a test ride to see. He removed the diagnostic fee, but was unable to cover the fender liner. He wanted me to address the exhaust issue and then come back for a follow up. After I paid for the fender liner, I go back to my car and discover the plastic sill cover to be scratched up from people's shoes dragging across of it. *grumble* I looked at my car this weekend and see very deep scratches on the rear clam. *grumble* *grumble* But what can I do? Complain? ...and have to spend three hours to drive the car up to watch a guy try to buff it out? Worse case scenario, a body shop needs to get involved? It's almost as if the more my car is at HRM, the more likely it will get damaged and the old adage holds true: if you want something done right, you gotta do it yourself. I don't know what I was thinking by bringing my car there for the second time. I spent about ten hours in total between driving the car to and from and also sitting on the metronorth to go to and from as well. It most certainly wasn't worth the hassle and with the amount of money I lost on billable time, I could have bought a new steering rack and done the work myself. As it stands, I don't trust that anything was gone over with my car. I will still have to check the rear control arm bolts to see if those nuts are loose and the hard u-shaped tube that carries coolant. Pretty much everything.

As for Sherman, I think he's going to be a great asset. I really had the impression that he wanted to help, but it's just not worth the nine hours and subjecting my car to the careless "mechanics". Fix one thing and break something else or scratch even more of the surfaces of the car.

Chester
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
900 Posts
Why don't you give Mark, the boss a call? I am sure he will try to make things right. I had a similar experience with Nils a couple of years back- very nice guy but totally overwhelmed. HRM is a great company and I have done business with them a couple of times but they are too busy sometimes
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,581 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
I don't want to receive any special treatment just because I bitch about it. Every person who goes to any dealer should be able to expect top-notch service and attention to detail. It's why when people do reviews of equipment or cars or whatever, they make purchases anonymously so that no special treatment is given.

Would I bring my car back to try to make it right? Not when the same people who screwed up the first time would still be the ones touching the car. I'll have to go over the car more carefully, say do a full detail, but I'm afraid of what I'll find. The new scratches on the passenger rear wheel flare were just painfully obvious. There were also marks on the top above the fuel filler door behind the removable top. I just don't trust them anymore. I just hope that this serves as a wakeup call and hope they address whatever needs to be addressed before they have more unsatisfied customers.

Now that my car is out of warranty, I'll just do all of the work myself and be damned if anyone touches it. ...just have to find a place to get parts from at a reasonable price.


Why don't you give Mark, the boss a call? I am sure he will try to make things right. I had a similar experience with Nils a couple of years back- very nice guy but totally overwhelmed. HRM is a great company and I have done business with them a couple of times but they are too busy sometimes
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,273 Posts
Similar issues here with my closest dealer damaging my car at my first service. In attempting to "fix" the original damage necessitating multiple 300 mile trips to the dealership later (at the expense of my gas/tires/wear and tear/lost time at work/etc), they have created even more damage. Still trying to get things resolved with the latest damage. I am afraid to let them touch my car as it seems to get worse every time they have possession of it. Very frustrating to say the least.

I feel for you.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,221 Posts
I'm sorry about your experience. It seems like you did a lot of waiting and nothing was actually done for you.


If you are concerned, you might give Dave or Mark a call just to let them know that their workers need to be careful with the cars, not necessarily to receive special treatment. Maybe it will spare someone else's car in the future.



Again, very sorry.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,348 Posts
I thought Nial rocked. He was the kind of guy you wanted to talk to when you took your car in for service. Really friendly, eager to help. That was just my experience.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,581 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
I never said that he wasn't a nice guy or didn't want to help. You just had to ride him in order to get anything done. I felt that had I not called him to remind him to get on the horn with Lotus, another day would have passed. He was a very friendly guy, very approachable.

I thought Nial rocked. He was the kind of guy you wanted to talk to when you took your car in for service. Really friendly, eager to help. That was just my experience.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,795 Posts
You're not the only one with experience like this from your local dealer. I found tons of deep swirl marks all over my rear clam/engine cover when I took it in to get a battery issue warrantied. I don't even want to bother hearing their BS about how it "came in like that". Hope it all works out for you. I'm debating on going the DIY route for most things (oil changes etc) instead of paying them top dollar to do the work and my car is still VERY much under warranty.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,094 Posts
DIY!!!!!!!!
it just keeps sounding like the dealerships are not providing any quality customer service in the service depts. or the sales depts. these days.

perhaps it just comes with the territory of having a niche type of car?

this is #3 in just this week.

if you DIY you know its done right, and most of the stuff is easy enough that even i can do it.
have a freind show you how if you dont know, you will be amazed at what you can do yourself.
I am going to learn how to paint my formula cars........... too much to spend to have someone else do it, and then hit the dirt and ruin it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,581 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
I'm actually quite mechanically inclined and have dropped the tranny out of my E36M3, installed a LTW flywheel, changed the suspension, pulled the head to replace the head gasket, set the VANOS timing, etc. I even have access to a tire changer and wheel balancer and probably do a better job than any tire monkey. I just wanted them to cover the steering rack, but, in retrospect, I should have just bought a quicker rack from eliseparts or something. I have no doubt that had they changed out the rack, they would have just undid the tierods, dropped the rack and put in the new one and connect everything back.... Alignment? Yeah right!

You're not the only one with experience like this from your local dealer. I found tons of deep swirl marks all over my rear clam/engine cover when I took it in to get a battery issue warrantied. I don't even want to bother hearing their BS about how it "came in like that". Hope it all works out for you. I'm debating on going the DIY route for most things (oil changes etc) instead of paying them top dollar to do the work and my car is still VERY much under warranty.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,581 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
You're preaching to the choir. Why do you think I have a rotary compressor at home? =) I used to like it when I took off the defective parts on the M3 when it was still under warranty and just brought it to the dealer and told them to give me a replacement part....they could keep whatever labor they were reimbursed by BMW.

DIY!!!!!!!!
it just keeps sounding like the dealerships are not providing any quality customer service in the service depts. or the sales depts. these days.

perhaps it just comes with the territory of having a niche type of car?

this is #3 in just this week.

if you DIY you know its done right, and most of the stuff is easy enough that even i can do it.
have a freind show you how if you dont know, you will be amazed at what you can do yourself.
I am going to learn how to paint my formula cars........... too much to spend to have someone else do it, and then hit the dirt and ruin it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
440 Posts
And I was thinking about brining my car for the futures services to HRM.
Yeah they seem to be really busy sometime to take care of customers.
The new car inspection wasn't done properly on my car when I picked it up... blown passenger side taillight bulb, loud creaking noise, paint defect on the rear clam, swirl marks all over the car.... sigh...
I haven't checked but my deposit money I charged on my credit card never got credited back... am going to check tonight again, but if its still not credited back.. i would be pissed since I'm paying interest on it... :mad:
As for the service wise, I haven't used them yet, so I will give them a try. Will see how my first service comes out when time comes. :(
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
119 Posts
The new Service & Parts Director is changing alot! New policies and procedures are being put into place! Resume's are being accepted.
I want to be the go to Dealer. I've got a door sill cover with your name on it will ship tomorrow! Did you, or are you going to weld the exhaust? can you come up on a saturday? we'll wetsand/buff the scratches! weld the exhaust and repl the sill! you should have let me know about the scratches ect. before you left. Listen everyone. HRM service and parts is transforming. Call me at 914-939-7200 or email me at [email protected] I cant be in the forums durring the day because obviously I have to concentrate on cleaning up and restructuring everything. But if anyone has any issues contact me or stop in and I'll make things right. I promise to change the way you all feel about traditional car dealerships!! Give me a shot. Mark and Dave back me 100percent.
Looking forward to meeting you all in person.
Sherm
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,348 Posts
The new Service & Parts Director is changing alot! New policies and procedures are being put into place! Resume's are being accepted.
I want to be the go to Dealer. I've got a door sill cover with your name on it will ship tomorrow! Did you, or are you going to weld the exhaust? can you come up on a saturday? we'll wetsand/buff the scratches! weld the exhaust and repl the sill! you should have let me know about the scratches ect. before you left. Listen everyone. HRM service and parts is transforming. Call me at 914-939-7200 or email me at [email protected] I cant be in the forums durring the day because obviously I have to concentrate on cleaning up and restructuring everything. But if anyone has any issues contact me or stop in and I'll make things right. I promise to change the way you all feel about traditional car dealerships!! Give me a shot. Mark and Dave back me 100percent.
Looking forward to meeting you all in person.
Sherm
Great first post Sherm... Ed was nice enough but didn't really seem to be in to the cars from an enthusiasts stand point. I certainly never saw him post on the forum...

Mark and Dave have always been great. The HRM complaint posts are certainly far outnumbered by HRM thank yous.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,430 Posts
Sherman is fantastic. He was a really great addition to our staff. Just as my addition was made to help out and revamp sales, Sherman is on board to do the same for service. We need to be conscience that he's only been there for a bit over a week. He's cleaning up things quickly. I also ask that if for any reason you have a problem and can't get ahold of Sherman, you call me (my personal cell is on my signature). I will get it resolved myself.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,273 Posts
Sherman is fantastic.
+1.

Chester,
Call Sherm and give him a chance to fix the problems. I've had personal dealings with him in the past. He is a top notch person with excellent customer service. I really believe he will do everything he possibly can to remedy this for you. I think you (and your car) will be in good hands with him.

Robert,
You do have a great addition to your staff with Sherm. Treat him well and make sure he takes good care of his new pen (if he still has it) ;). You can send him back down south anytime...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,519 Posts
I picked up my car from him today(Sherman),He kept me informed along the way,went out of his way to install some upgrades, did some warrantee work, and when I picked up my formerly filthy Elise it was nice and clean.
Thumbs up for a good job.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,297 Posts
Sherman is fantastic. He was a really great addition to our staff. Just as my addition was made to help out and revamp sales, Sherman is on board to do the same for service. We need to be conscience that he's only been there for a bit over a week. He's cleaning up things quickly. I also ask that if for any reason you have a problem and can't get ahold of Sherman, you call me (my personal cell is on my signature). I will get it resolved myself.
Could you ask Sherman to ask Ed to reply to my email from yesterday? I realize I'm only trying to buy $300-$400 worth of parts from HRM, but I don't really think I should have to call Mark to make that happen.
-poke-

I wouldn't have emailed, but no one answered the phone when I called.
:(
 
1 - 20 of 38 Posts
Top