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Old 15th September 2012, 00:00   #1
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Exclamation Total Car Solution (Bosch Car Service Gurgaon) - Very honest, but very incompetent

In 4 years of ownership, I took my car to a non-Hyundai service centre for the first time. The last service was done at 50K kms in Kolkata, and the car had been put through a Delhi-Kolkata trip, regular commuting in Delhi and was almost touching 59K kms. Crying out for a service.

I had heard mixed stories about HASS in Delhi NCR. Some had a bad reputation (including the one in Gurgaon), some were overbooked. Work pressure was too heavy, so couldn't afford to drive over to another part of the city for service.

Ultimately chose Total Car Solution, better known as Bosch Car Service Gurgaon. Recommended by a friend who got some body work done there on his 2009 Verna CRDI. I was told they offer free pick up and drop service from your office. Here's a brief outline of events:

Monday Morning

Gave a call to the advertised number. The owner, Mr Devender Singh, picked up and spoke in a pleasant manner. Gave him my office address, and as promised, within 2 hrs a representative came to pick up the car from my Cyber City office. Had second thoughts before handing over the key. My beloved car is getting its first service in Delhi, shouldn't I see the workshop once? Requested the representative if he could take me to their workshop, and he readily agreed.

The workshop itself was well-kitted, and a very diverse range of cars was being serviced, including a Mercedes W123. Mr Devender Singh came to greet me personally, and I handed over a checklist of things I wanted to get rectified.

1. Regular service.
2. Washing and cleaning
3. Cigarette lighter socket not working (couldn't use my GPS)
4. Left ORVM cowl replacement (had been knocked off by an idiot trying to park my car)
5. RHS driving light not working
6. Bass horn not working (Verna has 2 horns, and only the Treble horn was working)
7. Timing belt check (Needs replacement at 80K kms, better get it checked at 60K).

Was about to leave when a thought struck me.

I: "What engine oil are you going to us?".
Devender: "We use the best. Castrol Magnatec"
I: "But Castrol Magnatec is a CF grade oil. The Verna CRDI engine needs a minimum of CH grade. I use Mobil Delvac MX, which is a CI grade oil. Don't you have MDMX?"
D: "Relax sir. All cars serviced here are getting the same oil. And they're running fine"
Obviously I was not going to "relax"!
I:"Look. Here's the deal. Let me go out and buy some CH grade oil. Use what I give you."

Devender not only agreed, he also sent out his representative with me. The shops close by didn't have MDMX, but found Shell HX6, which is a CH grade oil. I wasn't carrying cash, and the representative was courteous enough to pay on my behalf. He then dropped me to my office (where I repaid him) and went off with the car.

The initial experience was very pleasant, and I ignored the little oil episode.

Monday Evening

The representative came to deliver the car at 5.30 PM. He had earlier called to tell me that the entire cigarette lighter socket was short-circuited and they had replaced the lighter assembly.

I did a short check. They had replaced all the filters and given me the boxes as directed. Washing quality was good. Nice "thank you for your trust in us" paper floor mats were placed on the driver and passenger footwell. Point 4 was not addressed (sorry sir, that part isn't in stock, we'll try to get it for you later), neither was point 5, 6 and 7 (oh sorry sir, we forgot, will do it next time).

Then disaster struck. To check the new cigarette lighter assembly, I put in the GPS charger. In an instant, the whole car shut down!! The telltale lights went off, the engine wouldn't start, the climate control display was off. Only (and thankfully) the central locking system was still working.

The representative was as puzzled as I was. First he tried cranking the engine. He tried and tried until I admonished him saying (obviously) the glow plugs are not receiving charge, and he'll only wear out the starter motor if he keeps on cranking.

Then he called over an electrician, who arrived an hour later. The 2 of them sweated it out for another hour, as I watched anxiously. Then the dreaded judgement came - "Sir, your car has developed some serious electrical problem. We can't repair it here, its dark. Can be looked at only in the morning."

I: "No problem, I'll take permission from the building supervisor to leave the car in parking overnight. Come over tomorrow morning"
Representative: "Sir, tomorrow we are closed. We can have a look at it on Wednesday morning."
I: (Pleading) "You want me to be without a car for 36 hours??? Please come over tomorrow, please please."
R: "Sir, even if I come our electricians won't come. No option sir, you have to keep it here."

So "No option" sir had no option but to take special permission from DLF to keep the car in the parking for those 36 hours. What made it more irritating was that while I was sitting with the building supervisor, the representative continously kept calling me "Sir, raat ho gaya hai, can we go now?"

Tuesday went by commuting in cabs, while my beloved car sat like dead-weight in the ground floor parking.

Wednesday Morning

One call after another to the Bosch guys. Called Devender's number twice, to hear some flunky pick up "Devender Ji nahi hain, unka mobile mere paas hai. Aapka gadi aaj hi thik ho jayega." Called the representative "Sir, main abhi tak office nahi pahucha hoon, will call once I reach." I wait, and wait.

Ultimately the representative calls me and says "Sir, aapka gadi humein tow karke le ana padega. Can't do the work inside your building". I plead that it must be a minor fuse, and all it needs is an electrician who knows his job. I really don't want my beloved car to be towed 8 kms over minefield Gurgaon roads. But they disagree. Its tow, or nothing.

Then it strikes me. "Who's going to pay for the towing?". "Obviously you sir. Maine to aapko gadi hand over karke sab kuch samjha diya tha, it went kaput only after you inserted that charger of yours."
I: (fuming) "Boss I've been using that charger for 6 months now, and it's a MapmyIndia genuine product. Never went wrong till very recently, and that too it was only the GPS that stopped working. Then you guys did your magic, and the whole car stopped working. Its your fault"
Devender takes over the phone "Sir, agar aapki gadi tow karne ke paise mujhe dene pade, toh phir mera faida kya hua yeh servicing karke? I'm telling you the fault was in that charger of yours. Main truck bhej raha hoon, guarantee deta hoon ke aaj gadi mil jayegi"

I sit back and think for a while. The car is a vegetable. DLF people will not agree to keep the car another night for security reasons. If I don't agree to pay for the tow (and Bosch don't send the tow truck at all) I'll have to anyway tow it to some other mechanic. Hobson's choice.

"Ok, you can come and collect the car. I'll pay for the tow."

Half an hour later the tow truck arrives, cranks up the car and sets sail. Breaks my heart to watch Predator being hauled over minefield roads, the front wheels hanging in air, the rear bumper, err, bumping away.

Wednesday evening

Phone rings. Representative: "Sir aap ki gadi thik ho gayi hai, aake collect kar lijiye"
I: "Kya problem tha?"
R: Nothing sir, supply side pe ek chhota sa fuse udh gaya tha. Repair kar diya, pura gadi chal para"

At this point I felt like banging their heads in with a sledgehammer. The Hyundai Verna has what, 25 fuses? If the problem was only a fuse (as I had been saying all the time) couldn't their electrician find it in an hour of examination? I'm sure I would have, given the tools for the job. Why did they need to waste my 36 hours, and then tow the car in the end?

Didn't waste any further time. Refused their offer to deliver the car, went down with a friend myself and checked out the car. Of course it was running perfect now. Points 4 to 7 were still unattended to, after 2 whole days in the workshop. But by now I had lost faith in the technical capabilities of these idiots.

The billing was honest. They charged me market price for all the service items (oil filter was Hyundai, fuel and air filter Bosch). Labour cost was lower than what HASS charges. They didn't charge me for the fuse repair at all. Rs 1000 extra for towage. Paid by card ("2pct extra lagega sir", the kinda language you get to hear at garment shops) and drove out.

Conclusion

On the plus side they billed me honestly, never cheated me with anything (except that 2pct extra), agreed to the pick up and drop and even in buying my preferred oil. Devender's behaviour was courteous to say the least.

On the minus side, these people are really incompetent. A workshop which prides itself on servicing all cars, yet doesn't know what oil a CRDI engine uses is not acceptable in this day and age. The fuse fault, as I said, could have been diagnosed by any roadside mechanic who knows his job. The towage, and of course the financial (cabs in Delhi aren't cheap) and emotional stress caused to me over 36 hours was totally unnecessary. Lastly, it always irritates me to see small points I want rectified not being attended to. It doesn't take much to repair a horn, or a blown bulb. But they chose to ignore it over 2 days the car was with them, even when I wrote it down for them.

Should you go to them? Your call, if you value honesty over a workshop which knows its job. I'm certainly not going!

Last edited by GTO : 15th September 2012 at 18:01. Reason: No more than 2 smilies a post please
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Old 17th September 2012, 11:13   #2
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Default Re: Total Car Solution (Bosch Car Service Gurgaon) - Very honest, but very incompeten

Castro Magnatec for a diesel ? Good undercover sales trick. Will get the cars having engine trouble frequently so works out for long term revenue generation.
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Old 17th September 2012, 12:07   #3
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Default Re: Total Car Solution (Bosch Car Service Gurgaon) - Very honest, but very incompeten

If this Total car solutions is the one on Sheetla mata road, my recommendation is AVOID! I used to take my Accent to them for reapirs and service, it's no better than any roadside mechanic shop. Surely they may have paid for Bosch logo and invested in some more equipment but their trouble shooting skills and technical know how was limited.

I used to go there as the labour charges worked out very cheap for me, i always knew what to get done and used to buy spares on my own.
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Old 17th September 2012, 15:01   #4
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Default Re: Total Car Solution (Bosch Car Service Gurgaon) - Very honest, but very incompeten

Ditto Anshuman.
I usually go there frequently, but only for getting ourselves a shampoo and bath. They also have a Grease gun, and that is imperative for me.
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Old 17th September 2012, 15:52   #5
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Default Re: Total Car Solution (Bosch Car Service Gurgaon) - Very honest, but very incompeten

Quote:
Originally Posted by predatorwheelz View Post
At this point I felt like banging their heads in with a sledgehammer. The Hyundai Verna has what, 25 fuses? If the problem was only a fuse (as I had been saying all the time) couldn't their electrician find it in an hour of examination? I'm sure I would have, given the tools for the job. Why did they need to waste my 36 hours, and then tow the car in the end?
Why did u let it be for 36 hours and not call in a FNG/roadside electrician? Or heck, do it yourself? I would have done so myself!
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Old 17th September 2012, 16:06   #6
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Default Re: Total Car Solution (Bosch Car Service Gurgaon) - Very honest, but very incompeten

Hope Bosch takes note of this thread and realises that giving rights to use their logo and name to incompetent people will only have -ve implications for Bosch in the long run in India.

The story is really sad. To have the vehicle towed due to a blown fuse as also having to pay for the towing is indicative of poor service just being polite is not enough in todays times.
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Old 17th September 2012, 16:36   #7
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Default Re: Total Car Solution (Bosch Car Service Gurgaon) - Very honest, but very incompeten

I did not get how you stated that they are honest. They seem to be dishonest. They only thing they did right was the billing, because I think thats controlled by a computer.
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Old 27th September 2012, 16:15   #8
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Default Re: Total Car Solution (Bosch Car Service Gurgaon) - Very honest, but very incompeten

Hi Predatorwheelz,

Bosch India has dropped an email and wants to contact you to "address your concerns". Do drop across a PM with your contact details if you wish to interact with them.

Thanks
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Old 27th September 2012, 17:19   #9
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Default Re: Total Car Solution (Bosch Car Service Gurgaon) - Very honest, but very incompeten

Hey sorry to hear 'bout your sad episode.

Why din't you try to source a flat bed tow truck, or just couldn't find one? With the pot holed roads in Gurgaon, the Verna must have been brutalized with all the pulling.
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Old 27th September 2012, 20:03   #10
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Default Re: Total Car Solution (Bosch Car Service Gurgaon) - Very honest, but very incompeten

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Hi Predatorwheelz,

Bosch India has dropped an email and wants to contact you to "address your concerns". Do drop across a PM with your contact details if you wish to interact with them.

Thanks
Hi GTO,

Have PMed you.
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Old 6th December 2012, 08:55   #11
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Default Re: Total Car Solution (Bosch Car Service Gurgaon) - Very honest, but very incompeten

Would like to update this thread with a little more information. Within 2 days of posting this thread, I got a call from Bosch India. They were very keen to hear me out and address my concerns. I gave the gentleman a detailed feedback on what happened, and he promised he'd call again to fix a workshop appointment for me. He even promised to refund my towing charge!

Bosch did call in another 2 days, asking for a time slot. But unfortunately I was in a meeting and asked him to call me back. That call never came. I too lost the number and couldn't retrieve it from my phone log.

Then they contacted GTO wishing to address my concerns. I PM'ed GTO my number, told him what had happened and waited for their call. Unfortunately, that call never came either.

I'm not jumping to conclusions, but I have a feeling someone in Bosch did the "customer contacted, unable to address, case closed" drill.

No personal anguish guys, just stating facts.
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Old 6th December 2012, 10:08   #12
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Default Re: Total Car Solution (Bosch Car Service Gurgaon) - Very honest, but very incompeten

Absolutely right on your part to update because otherwise somebody reading this thread would have thought that Bosch contacted you and adressed the issue to your satisfaction.
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Old 6th December 2012, 10:47   #13
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Default Re: Total Car Solution (Bosch Car Service Gurgaon) - Very honest, but very incompeten

I've heard of their incompetence in Bangalore as well. My brother had given his Chevrolet Aveo for servicing (after the warranty period) and they completely messed up the AC, additional cost of Rs. 5,000.
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Old 10th December 2012, 15:39   #14
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Default Re: Total Car Solution (Bosch Car Service Gurgaon) - Very honest, but very incompeten

Quote:
Originally Posted by predatorwheelz View Post
I'm not jumping to conclusions, but I have a feeling someone in Bosch did the "customer contacted, unable to address, case closed" drill. No personal anguish guys, just stating facts.
Dear Predatorwheelz - this type of activity is very common. This must have been a call center guy! I sat in one call center for 3 days, trying to get some data on field issues on one of our vehicles, I finally got something when I took a couple of calls myself, otherwise nothing! If you tell their supervisor also, it's of no use, because except for "following a process" these guys understand absolutely nothing! They don't even know that there is a content to be corrected to meet the need of the process!

With all due respect for the Delhi guys, as your experience was in Delhi, be careful. I have seen a Delhi guy take 1500 bucks off an unsuspecting customer whose AC was "not cooling". I had seen that the wire to the compressor had come off. Material cost = 50 paisa (some black tape was actually applied on the slip-on connector, I told him to at least cut the connector and twirl the wires together, which he reluctantly did because I told him). Labour cost = zero. Profit = almost infinity, except for the 50 paisa tape. Good business! Understand? I hope not but your case seems to be very similar!

There is a set of what I call the "Yes Sir / Sure Sir" brigade (read "Corporate") type of guys for who everything is a business model and a business case and nothing else. They depend on the "Infinity" type of guys to do anything (if at all)! Between both of them, the first set is actually completely ignorant of the content of the process, the second set is the smooth talker + slight intimidator at the slightest provocation, botween both of them, you will become mincemeat. Please be very careful!

In the good ole' days, we used to put cigarette paper in the HT lead of the ignition coil, the engine would not stop misfiring and we would have a good laugh. Don't ask me who our "bakras" were! The "bakra tribe" existed then also. Nothing has changed! .

Best regards,

Behram Dhabhar
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Old 25th December 2012, 20:56   #15
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Default Paisa Wapas!

Within 2 days of posting the second comment, I got a call from Bosch. I was asked to call Devender and (a) Ask for a refund of my towing charges (b) Take the car to them just in case anything was missed out the first time. I chose option a ONLY.

When contacted, Devender was courteous enough to send a man to my office with the money. He never raised the question as to whether I wanted to visit him again, and I didn't either. Case closed, for good.

Thank you Tbhp. To quote the national son-in-law, we're mango people in a banana republic. At least our automotive complaints have an effective public rederessal system!

Last edited by predatorwheelz : 25th December 2012 at 20:58.
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