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Old 7th November 2012, 22:52   #1
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Default VW After-Sales Woes (with my Polo & Vidyut Motors)

I bought a Polo back in March just before the diesel hikes happened. I adored the car. Loved the clean, low slung styling. Loved how it looked super hot in red. Was amazed by the interior and exterior build quality. Coming from petrols, was overjoyed by the highway fuel efficiency & savings therein. Loved everything about the car until last week.

14th Oct:
We were returning from a trip to Ellora. The AC had conked off(blown fuse, learn this after the car was fixed). So had rolled down the windows and was doing 80-90ish. It was almost fully dark 7:30PM. I was trying to overtake a truck(from the left), there was a WagonR overtaking another truck a 100 meters or so ahead. There was a biker next to the truck up ahead. WagonR chap misjudges the gap and almost rams the biker. The biker panics and brakes, so does the WagonR. They stop dead on the highway. All of this is happening in a couple of seconds. I realize and brake hard, but nevertheless managed to just graze his rear bumper. Lucky chap.

I was not so lucky. We sat there stunned for about 5 seconds(I guess), and bam there is a loud crash from behind. An idiot in a Ritz rammed us at full speed from behind. We go and bump the WagonR again. I am sure that guy was half asleep or was driving way too fast. Coz that section was a straight with very good visibility. Given he rammed us a few seconds after, he should have had enough time to stop. Wife & Mom are horrified and start crying. I look around and thank heaven's everyone is okay. I get down to survey the damage. The result is a slightly damaged front bumper(scrapes) & bonnet(small bend). A walk around to the back of the car and was aghast seeing the damage. The bumper was completely torn. The dickey had cracked and gone in half a foot. A lot of arguing and police station visit followed. But that's not what this post is for. What follows is the worst service/repair experience ever in my past 7 year car ownership(Palio/i10 then the polo).

Thanks to the build quality the car was still driveable, albeit with squeaks from the rear every now and then. Returned back to Pune and registered a claim with the Insurance company. Next day took the car to the service station. They took one full day to asses the damage. Only after removing the bumper I was able to see the extent of the damage. The boot section of the chassis had gone in a foot. I was given an estimate of 75K, no surprise, as there was welding and cutting to be done and body parts to be replaced.

Followed up with the service station every other day in the first week. Had a word with the bodyshop head, he was calm as a cucumber. Said this is nothing we are working on a Passat with 12L damage. Don't worry we will make it as good as new, says he.

Another week later chap calls me and tells me car is ready. I arrive at the service station and he tells me to make the payment meanwhile he will get the car washed. I've been a teambhp follower for over 4 years now. I know better. I asked him to show me the car. We walk over and see that the bonnet & rear bumper has been painted in matt finish. No glaze what so ever. Even oil paint would look better. I ask him what the **** is this? He starts explaining about the dust and how it will shine after washing. I told him to cut the bullshit and he tells me it needs polishing. He will deliver tomorrow.

I walk out and walk in the next day earlier than he expected. What I see scares the hell out of me. Three 18 year olds are dipping a sand paper in water and scrapping the bonnet like anything. I told them to stop and hurriedly started looking for the workshop head. I find him and he tells me this is necessary after every paint job. I am like what the heck! Goes against everything I've read or experienced with my previous cars. He then pointed me to some 10L 3M cans(rubbing compound) and says it will be as good as new after polish. I knew they were going to scrape away all the clear coat with the sand paper if I let them. I told them to stop the sanding and do whatever they have to with the rubbing compound. He asks me to come in the evening.

Again I walk in early. They are almost done with the rubbing. There is some shine now, but the bonnet looks old. Like 5 years old. I ask them to take the car out into the sun. What I saw was truly amazing. It looked like a monkey had gone crazy and clawed all over the bonnet. It was completely covered in horizontal scratches. The workshop head has a new story now. He tells me this is normal with dark colored cars. I point him to the roof which is 6 months old paint is still is crystal clear and how is a newly painted surface full of scratches. He tells me take delivery use it for a week wash it a few times and scratches will go away. I mean, do these guys think customers are complete buffoons? I gave him a piece of my mind and ask him to fetch the service manager.

He does a complete about U turn now. He tells me he will get it repainted and asks to come back tomorrow. I walk in the next day, and voila the bonnet looks like from a brand new car. So obviously these buggers knew they had screwed up the paint job. They could have easily told me so and taken a day more to fix the problem themselves. I take a look all around and find three rubber supports missing, two from the bonnet & one from the new dickey. Again is there zero review of the work done by seniors? I gingerly take delivery, apprehensive of what hidden devils they have caused. In the following week I notice excess road noise from the rear. Today I pulled up the sheet that covers the stepney and tried to feel the rear of the car towards the bumper since it was not visible. There were three big cellphone sized gaps that I am sure have some rubber/plastic fitments that these people have conveniently forgotten. I will be heading out tomorrow to the A**(8 th time now) to get the holes plugged. Well done VW!!!

I've read so many VW group horror stories here but thought these are one off incidences. But now I know there are complete morons working in VW *SS. The bodyshop for sure. I know I am a little harsh with words here, but I think these guys deserve it.

VW makes excellent cars. It is this terrible attitude towards the customer that's the problem. A huge one. If this *SS problem is so widespread I don't think this is just with the dealers. The company is conveniently turning a blind eye. You get awed by the full paged ads, buy their cars and are basically screwed.

My advice to new buyers, avoid vw & skoda cars like plague. If your car is fine everything is good. The horrors start when you need to deal with the A**.

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Last edited by suhaas307 : 8th November 2012 at 12:37.
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Old 8th November 2012, 11:18   #2
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Default Re: VW *SS Woes

Frankly, after reading innumerable posts wrt the VW A**, I think you were pretty lucky.

At least you got the bonnet repainted to your satisfaction. The usual attitude is " Sir it cant be done any better." Any amount of forcing, cajoling, greasing, complaining doesnt get you the desired result.

Its is a testimony to the VW brand that people still buy VWs after all this attitude. Having to go to the A** 8 times and yet having so many unresolved problems is just unacceptable.

Wish the consumer courts were a bit more pro active in these issues. Until then we will be at the mercy of these people.

And glad that your family came out safe.

Last edited by revintup : 8th November 2012 at 11:20.
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Old 8th November 2012, 11:31   #3
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Default Re: VW *SS Woes

Surprised to see this. Was it BUB or the Vidyut? I had pretty good experience with them for around 4 years now. If this continues, VW gonna face some real threat to their image as a car maker.
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Old 8th November 2012, 11:57   #4
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Default Re: VW *SS Woes

I really want to have a poll for VW owners to see how many regret their decision and if they will every buy a VW again.

The company down to the A S S looks disinterested in handling maintenance of the car. The relationship the dealers/service stations have with the company usually reflects in their attitude towards to customers.
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Old 8th November 2012, 11:59   #5
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Default Re: VW *SS Woes

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ph03nix View Post
My advice to new buyers, avoid vw & skoda cars like plague. If your car is fine everything is good. The horrors start when you need to deal with the A**.
I am just curious as to why you included Skoda in this statement when you were detailing the experience for a VW vehicle? Why not also include Audi if you are going with the group company rationale? Have you experienced Skoda horror service first hand or were you just going by heresay? Or a VW owner can automatically comment about Skoda service and vice versa because both are same group companies?

That is not to take anything away from the experience you shared with us about a VW vehicle, but this parallax is intriguing.

Last edited by dkaile : 8th November 2012 at 12:05.
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Old 8th November 2012, 11:59   #6
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Default Re: VW *SS Woes

Not at all surprised, seriously looking at the stories this is minor i would say, and your car is still running.

Someone who i have acquaintance with, has his car is still in the service center after some water went in (God knows where), as per them the problem is still being investigated. Earlier the car did not start now as per them it starts but stops soon thereafter.

When buying VW (Skoda/Audi included) we might soon need serious divine help in keeping it running problem free.
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Old 8th November 2012, 12:24   #7
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Default Re: VW *SS Woes

The rise in the number of VW A** horror stories is appalling. I had heard good reviews of Vidyut and BUB in Pune. Can you specify the dealer too?
What else can you expect when even the bodyshop is outsourced to a third party.
In a goof-up, the A** is not pulled up by the company, we cannot expect the bodyshop to be pulled up by the A**.

And this Matte finish is surely a problem. They never give an exacting paint match, citing age, fading, robot painting in factory etc but ensure they do charge a bomb.
Its better to go to a trusted bodyshop and paintshop which has insurance tie-up.
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Old 8th November 2012, 12:52   #8
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Default Re: VW *SS Woes

Just clarify wet sanding is a common process to flatten and level out new paint. Clear coat imperfections will be removed this way.So no harm in doing this followed by buffing. The same process was done on my car. VW SCs do a acceptable job in bodywork. This has been the common feedback on the forum so far.I am no VW service fan though..!

Last edited by poloman : 8th November 2012 at 12:58.
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Old 8th November 2012, 13:04   #9
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Default Re: VW *SS Woes

How can Volkswagen think of being the biggest car maker in the world by 2018 after providing such pathetic service to their existing customers? Same is the case with the AS* stories of Skoda. I propose a ban on buying a Skoda or Volkswagen in India by all Team BHP members and also always suggest against buying a Skoda or Volkwagen. This is the only way to make these people learn that they cannot handle the second biggest car market of the world with such casual attitude.
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Old 8th November 2012, 13:05   #10
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Default Re: VW *SS Woes

Quote:
Originally Posted by revintup View Post
Frankly, after reading innumerable posts wrt the VW A**, I think you were pretty lucky.

At least you got the bonnet repainted to your satisfaction. The usual attitude is " Sir it cant be done any better." Any amount of forcing, cajoling, greasing, complaining doesnt get you the desired result.

And glad that your family came out safe.
Oh I forgot to mention, the rear bumper still wears the slight matte finish look. It's not as bad(3M buffing seems to have done the trick). I had to settle for that. They just won't agree it does not match up to the rest of the car.(Sir factory finish to factory finish hain).

Even for the bonnet repainting did not happen easily, I was arguing for over 20 minutes. During that time, the workshop head gave me his full resume of how he has 20 years experience in this area, and how I am a novice.

Quote:
Originally Posted by neoonwheels View Post
Surprised to see this. Was it BUB or the Vidyut? I had pretty good experience with them for around 4 years now. If this continues, VW gonna face some real threat to their image as a car maker.
Vidyut

Quote:
Originally Posted by dkaile View Post
I am just curious as to why you included Skoda in this statement when you were detailing the experience for a VW vehicle?
Dkaile believe me, I felt the same exact way reading multiple accounts of people having terrible experiences with these two companies right here on team-bhp. I myself brushed them off as one off experiences when I bought the car. I would have definitely bought the Rapid(Ambition variant, thought it was immense value for money) if they could have delivered the car before 31st March.

No I haven't experienced Skoda *SS first hand, mods can delete the statement if my frustration is misplaced.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mayankjha1806 View Post
Not at all surprised, seriously looking at the stories this is minor i would say, and your car is still running.
What surprises me the most is I had four other(2 on the Palio, was learning to drive then & 2 on the i10) paint jobs done through TASS & Hyundai *SS before this. Every single time the car was delivered immaculately painted with zero intervention from my side.

I mean where is the complexity in this particular case? It's just a paint job, that they do day in and day out. It is just lackadaisical attitude towards the customer.

The parent company can spend bags of money on full page ads but cannot train the *SS to match their technological superiority?
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Old 8th November 2012, 13:07   #11
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Post Re: VW *SS Woes

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ph03nix View Post
I was trying to overtake a truck (from the left), there was a WagonR overtaking another truck a 100 meters or so ahead. There was a biker next to the truck up ahead.
Mate, that is a dangerous practice, especially on the freeways. Why would you attempt to pass him from the left? Not taking anything away from your episode but when you do that, you're surrendering control to someone else. And that is usually not good. You'll be surprised how many mishaps this common (and erroneous) practice causes here in our country.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ph03nix View Post
We walk over and see that the bonnet & rear bumper has been painted in matt finish. No glaze what so ever. Even oil paint would look better.
This is quite astonishing. Did you ask them why would they have a matt finish when the rest of the car body has a metallic red paint? Beats me!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ph03nix View Post
VW makes excellent cars. It is this terrible attitude towards the customer that's the problem. A huge one. If this *SS problem is so widespread I don't think this is just with the dealers. The company is conveniently turning a blind eye. You get awed by the full paged ads, buy their cars and are basically screwed.
I tend to agree. I don't think they're equipped to handle volumes, quality has suffered heavily in the process and but naturally their servicing levels have fallen dramatically. Enough Polo/Vento stories on the forum already on that. I think the company knows this (even acknowledges it at times) but to correct it will mean having to overhaul the entire system in place currently which could mean a very costly affair. Maybe that's what makes them turn a 'blind eye' and continue to play odds.

Last edited by Omtoatom : 8th November 2012 at 13:11.
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Old 8th November 2012, 13:14   #12
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Default Re: VW *SS Woes

Quote:
Originally Posted by dkaile View Post
I am just curious as to why you included Skoda in this statement when you were detailing the experience for a VW vehicle? Why not also include Audi if you are going with the group company rationale? Have you experienced Skoda horror service first hand or were you just going by heresay? Or a VW owner can automatically comment about Skoda service and vice versa because both are same group companies?

That is not to take anything away from the experience you shared with us about a VW vehicle, but this parallax is intriguing.
With so many horror stories of Skoda & now VW doing the rounds, there is bound to be some substance in them. It is not the issues per say that owners face with the cars but the company's attitude that is a big put off.

Regarding experiencing the "now famed" Skoda service first hand or on hearsay, I would only like to say that there are two kinds of people:
1. Who learn from there own mistakes
2. And those who learn from other people's mistakes.
And I prefer to belong to the 2nd group, atleast as far as possible.
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Old 8th November 2012, 13:24   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anuragn View Post
With so many horror stories of Skoda & now VW doing the rounds, there is bound to be some substance in them.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ph03nix View Post
No I haven't experienced Skoda *SS first hand, mods can delete the statement if my frustration is misplaced.
Thank you for your honesty. But your frustrations are not entirely misplaced and the VW group service as a whole does NOT commensurate with the cost of the vehicles sold by them. I have experienced similar service experience from the Skoda ASC that I have from a Toyota ASC here in Meerut and would rate them exactly at par (or lets say equally dumb). Only thing is people expect more from these 'so called' premium brands.

I would have gone to my trusted old denter/painter rather than the ASC because in most ASC's that I have experienced, their body shops are below par.

Last edited by dkaile : 8th November 2012 at 13:34.
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Old 8th November 2012, 13:29   #14
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Default Re: VW *SS Woes

Well sad to know about the accident and hope everything's OK on that part. Coming to the After SS incident at hand, you were lucky my friend, people I know personally have had much worse from VW. And these kind of activities go on in other companies Auto workshops as well. You just have to repel the load of BS they throw out at you.
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Old 8th November 2012, 13:31   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by poloman View Post
Just clarify wet sanding is a common process to flatten and level out new paint. Clear coat imperfections will be removed this way.So no harm in doing this followed by buffing. The same process was done on my car. VW SCs do a acceptable job in bodywork. This has been the common feedback on the forum so far.I am no VW service fan though..!
I am none the wiser on this topic. What I know is what I've read here. I am fairly confident that the sand paper did the scratches. Perhaps they used one with larger grain size than they should have.

Imagine you give a child a blunt metal pin(not sharp enough to cause deep scratches) and ask him to go paint rivers on the bonnet. That's exactly how it looked. And this was after the 3M buffing mind you.
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