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Old 24th January 2014, 13:42   #1
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Default Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor service


The title of this post is the result of my most recent experience with my three year old Land Rover Discovery 4

2nd of December 2013.

It was late in the afternoon and I was heading south on the eastern freeway. I was following the curve of the road near the salt pans when suddenly my steering wheel refused to center and it locked. I panicked, braked hard and just managed to stop the vehicle before I drove off the freeway.

The instrument cluster display flashed a message - 'Steering Column Locked'.

“It is terrifying because if i hadn't managed to stop the discovery i would gone over the side of the elevated road and right into the BPCL fuel storage tanks . " Thankfully i also managed to avoid hitting other vehicles which also could have resulted in horrible accident .

Instrument cluster 'Steering Column Locked' warning message
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I couldn't get in touch with Jaguar Land Rover India RSA because there was no cell phone reception. I tried turning the car on and off a few times which seemed to reset the system and I managed to get the car back to my office.

The following day when JLR personnel came to pick up the Discovery 4 there was a suspension fault message on the instrument cluster.

Instrument cluster 'suspension fault' warning message
Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor service-img2013120500771.jpg



The car has now been in the workshop since 3 December .
So far, no one at JLR has been able to explain what happened that day or what exactly is the fault with the vehicle.

The last time I checked on the vehicle in the workshop, this it what it looked like:

Driver side dashboard dismantled
Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor service-img_4499.jpg

Driver side dashboard dismantled
Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor service-img_4500.jpg



As of today, the vehicle is still at the TATA owned Jaguar Land Rover workshop.

Last edited by GTO : 6th March 2014 at 17:08. Reason: Adding your latest image to the opening post
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Old 24th January 2014, 13:42   #2
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This is not the first time I've had a problem with the Discovery...

Some stats on my Discovery 4:
  • Just over three years old
  • Run only 34,000 kms
  • 6 Services completed
  • On my third set of brake pads
  • Four break downs . Two outside Mumbai in remote area's
  • Almost 250 days spent in the workshop due to various faults and breakdowns
  • 10 (yes TEN) different loaner cars in the last three years
Year-wise breakup of major problems faced

May 2013

One evening ,On my way back from Kalamboli the discovery's engine just completely shut off .All electronics and also the power steering just went dead .
At the time I was doing close to 80km/hr on a busy main road. Luckily I was able to stop the car on the side of the road without getting rear ended by another vehicle .Such sudden loss of power on a highway would surely have resulted in a fatal accident .
Got in touch with the JLR workshop who arranged for vehicle recovery .

JLR India has outsourced RSA activity in India and the people who showed up after 4 hrs to recover the vehicle had no knowledge On how to recover An automatic air suspension equipped vehicle . They couldn't even locate the front tow point on the discovery and i had to stop them from pulling it up onto the flatbed by tying a chain to the lower suspension arms .
Even worse, they did not have the correct straps to secure the discovery on the flatbed .
Somehow the discovery made it to the TATA JLR workshop located at worli .

Instrument cluster warning messages
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Finally on the flatbed
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Discovery 4 waiting for the pump to arrive from the UK
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The problem was later diagnosed as a secondary fuel pump failure . The discovery spent more than 50 days in the workshop out of which most were spent waiting for the parts to arrive from the united kingdom .

The workshop did receive a new pump from the UK after a few weeks of ordering but that also turned out to be faulty and another one had to ordered .


Even after numerous followups and emails Jaguar Land Rover India has not provided the reason for the fuel pump failure .


October 2013

On the night of 1st October i was driving to the airport when suddenly the airbag warning light came on in the instrument cluster .

Instrument cluster airbag warning message
Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor service-01102013-2212hrs-32901kms-.jpg

i stopped the car and switched it on and off a couple of times but to no effect .
i was unable to locate the JLR RSA number in the vehicle manual or as a sticker anywhere on the vehicle .
The RSA number was not even on the JLR India website and i even drove to the service center but the security guard did not even have it .
The vehicle manual clearly stated that in case of an airbag warning one should seek assistance from JLR right away and so
i decided to abandon the vehicle and resort to public transport for the night .

Next day i finally managed to get through to a couple of senior JLR personnel and they were kind enough to send two technicians the discovery's location .

SDD connected to the discovery
Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor service-dsc_9463-t.jpg

Airbag fault message on the SDD

Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor service-dsc_9461t.jpg

They connected up their diagnostic equipment to the car but were unable to find the source of the fault .
The car was taken to the workshop where it spent a week .
The Wiring harness and airbag modules were checked but since they could not find any fault the vehicle was returned with the following statement "The Vehicle has been found to be working as per specification"

October 2013


I drove to Kalamboli for some work. I finished my work off in the day, and when I decided to leave in the evening I pressed starter button, the car cranked for half a second and then died. The airbag light came on, and the car refused to start. I was stuck in the middle of nowhere about a 100km outside Mumbai. Thankfully after the last incident I was given the RSA number, I called them luckily it was answered. After waiting for 5 hours and lots of calls the RSA person, on a motorbike showed up.

RSA technician after he had confirmed that the vehicle was actually not starting
Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor service-dsc_9488.jpg

The only thing he could do was put the car in Neutral so that it can be towed, and the flatbed would come the next day along with the Tata people who would load it on.

JLR technicians preparing the car for loading on to the flatbed
Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor service-20131015_171026.jpg

Discovery 4 once again on a flatbed ; 24hrs after the break down
Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor service-20131015_212731.jpg

The car was towed the next day almost 24hrs after the breakdown and taken to their Panvel stockyard, where they managed to start the car and they had tracked down the issue to a fault in the airbag system. It took them about a month to sort it out!

April 2012

So one morning, the car refused to start. I called up JLR, and they sent someone with a big battery starter, started the car and asked me to let it charge and that the car was fine. I drove out of the city since it was a weekend, about 300km away and the next morning the car refused to start again. I called up JLR only to be told that recovery outside city limits is not available, and I would have to deal with a recovery company myself. So I had to call for a car from home with a cable to jump start my car.


Instrument cluster low battery warning message
All settings like date date and time had gotten reset

Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor service-img2012043000957.jpg

JLR technician jump starting the Discovery 4
Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor service-img2012042800941.jpg

Using a Ford Fiesta to jump start the Discovery 4
Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor service-img2012043000953.jpg

Then the next day when I spoke to the dealership I was told they would require the car for 3 days for test if the battery had actually failed. I also asked if they had a loaner battery to put in my car while they tested my battery, which they denied.

I then escalated the matter to senior people in customer services, and after a lot of correspondence and time wastage they finally replaced the battery with a new one on the same day.

December 2011

I had been feeling a shudder during braking, and the car was pulling to one side. I had been feeling this for a few weeks. I took the car to the Tata workshop, and they acknowledged the problem but their workshop was extremely small with only a handful of bays and so they did not have place to accommodate my car. They asked me to come back after a few weeks.

JLR TATA workshop Job card
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Instead of waiting and risking an accident I decided to take the car to Navnit motors, the other dealer in Mumbai. They test drove the car and assured me they would fix the problem. A day later they sent me an invoice for brake pad and brake disc replacement, which I paid. I took the car back and after a couple of days on the Land Rover forum I found out there was a service bulletin for this problem. I spoke to Navnit and they said they could not do anything about this. I then escalated this to JLR customer service, and then after a lot of calls they got Navnit motors to refund the money and replace additional parts which were part of the service bulletin like the steering rack and front suspension. During this time the switch on the steering wheel also stopped working . It took over two months for Navnit motors to replace the part and even the replacement part was a mismatch .
Discovery 4 being inspected by Navnit staff before they take it in for repairs .The bumper had gotten damaged the during the incorrectly chrged brake change job at the workshop

Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor service-img2012011300548.jpg

With Rear panels removed
Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor service-img2012011700574.jpg

Last edited by Mad Monkey : 24th February 2014 at 04:37.
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Old 24th February 2014, 09:55   #3
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Default Re: Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor servi

Thread moved from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section) to the Technical Section. Thanks for sharing!

Sorry to hear about your experience, Mad Monkey, but am really glad that the steering lock & other breakdowns on the road didn't result in an accident / injury! It could have had a catastrophic outcome.

Shameful for JLR to sell such cars that keep on failing. Who suffers? Only the car owner on account of being stranded, waiting long periods for repairs and the time wasted in all the co-ordination with the workshop.

If you can't build a reliable damn car in 2014, you clearly haven't done your homework. Such incidents destroy brand loyalty & reputation....and rightly so. I find it amusing that a Maruti Alto or Hyundai Santro owner enjoys years of reliable service, but a Rs. 70 lakh SUV owner is driven up the wall with breakdowns & failures.

Last edited by GTO : 24th February 2014 at 09:58.
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Old 24th February 2014, 10:22   #4
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Default Re: Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor servi

It is shocking that after spending around 70 lakh for an SUV, the owner is expected to spend considerable time at workshops running behind the technicians and service advisors.

Do we start assuming that if one has to buy a luxury SUV then apart from considering all other aspects one should bear in mind that he/she will be expected to spend a lot of time at service stations to ensure smooth running of vehicle. Also, you need to have alternate arrangements for your regular commute as you are not sure if the part that has to be sourced from the parent company which is outside India will reach in a week's time or may take a month or even more.

Off late, I have seen that majority of these luxury SUV or cars encounter these problems during the initial years of ownership.

These issues that have been reported are serious in nature and can result in serious causalities if the vehicle would have been running in some hilly area at the time of component failure.

This is a result of poor quality control and the company should address this issue with the seriousness it deserves.
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Old 24th February 2014, 11:05   #5
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Default Re: Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor servi

The discovery is at present priced at Rs. 1,44,50,710 on road mumbai
AND Yes that is correct it is priced at Rupees 1 crore 44 lacs

Official price list for Jaguar Land Rover India Discovery 4
Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor service-disco4-pricing.jpg

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post

If you can't build a reliable damn car in 2014, you clearly haven't done your homework. Such incidents destroy brand loyalty & reputation....and rightly so. I find it amusing that a Maruti Alto or Hyundai Santro owner enjoys years of reliable service, but a Rs. 70 lakh SUV owner is driven up the wall with breakdowns & failures.
Quote:
Originally Posted by mints21 View Post
It is shocking that after spending around 70 lakh for an SUV, the owner is expected to spend considerable time at workshops running behind the technicians and service advisors.
This is a result of poor quality control and the company should address this issue with the seriousness it deserves.

Last edited by Mad Monkey : 24th February 2014 at 11:07.
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Old 24th February 2014, 11:33   #6
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Default Re: Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor servi

For such an expensive low volume car, JLR in India is not really covering itself with glory. Here is an older thread on the woes of Salman Khan (no less)

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/indian...breakdown.html (JLR India PR disaster! Salman Khan tweets his frustration over Range Rover breakdown)
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Old 24th February 2014, 11:36   #7
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Default Re: Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor servi

Absolutely ridiculous. And to think after spending that much on a car it almost gets you killed, twice! I don't understand how they can have such a poor attitude towards their customers, by not diagnosing faults properly. JLR really needs to get its stuff together. Sure Mercedes and BMW aren't known to provide top class service, but those are certainly far, far better the nonsense JLR is providing customers.

And this is not just with your car, I have seen issues on so many JLR cars right from air suspensions going bust many times - This happened on a friends RR Sport Supercharged, and the air suspension had got totally spoilt, but of course the tiny JLR workshop didn't have any place to take it in and told him to continue driving the car with the suspension completely collapsed and all kinds of noises coming from it.

People thought Skodas were bad, well at least Skodas don't try and kill you. This is the new benchmark in my eyes when it comes to poor service and poor customer response.

I've seen what Mad Monkey has gone through, and wait for his next 1-2 posts about customer service, its shocking to say the least!
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Old 24th February 2014, 11:46   #8
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Default Re: Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor servi

This is awful! My sympathies. I was reading some stats about car reliability stats (UK) the other day and was not at all surprised to find out JLR to be bottom ranked in almost all the surveys. What surprises me more is that even though everyone knows about their unreliability, still people oft make beeline to buy these so called 'hardy' machines.

Related link - http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/c...ufacturer.html
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Old 24th February 2014, 11:47   #9
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Default Re: Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor servi

Reading through, my mind kept blinking with the Fiat/VW Monogram!! Very similar to stories that we often read on Laura/Fiat threads. Sad to know you are having the same experience with a car that costs 10 times more!!

Isn't there any effective legal option in India after someone faces so much of pain/distress just because he decided to pay for a car!

Last edited by gemithomas : 24th February 2014 at 11:48.
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Old 24th February 2014, 11:55   #10
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Default Re: Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor servi

It is really saddening to go through your ownership experience.

Also you are lucky to be saved in those tricky situations of steering lock, engine shut down while car was running

Land Rovers globally have always taken a hit & been a joke when it comes to reliability. Being a UK brand then too Land Rover is revealed as the UK's least reliable car, as > 70 % cars break down at least once a year.

I'm sure you would have lost complete faith in this car & would've demanded a complete 'replacement' coz that would be the only solution to this as that can be the only form of cover up as im not sure if they can give you back the money you spent buying this car ?

Also how long was the warranty period ?

Last edited by karan561 : 24th February 2014 at 12:17.
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Old 24th February 2014, 11:56   #11
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Default Re: Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor servi

Gosh! A 1.5 crore vehicle breaking down so frequently and on top of it, a traffic hazard. Also for the owner! That is unacceptable. If these companies cannot give a reliable vehicle even for 1.5 crores I don't think there remains any credibility in their name. What could be the basic problem making these cars so unreliable? Over engineered?
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Old 24th February 2014, 12:13   #12
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Default Re: Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor servi

Jeez, that was a close call. Glad you or anyone else did not get hurt with the steering issue that just chose to pop up while you were driving.

Furthermore, reading about all the issues you (and many others in various other threads) faced in all the years with this car, I can only say that the consumer is still not the king in our country.

After spending almost a crore and a half, one has to scream his lungs hoarse to get issues sorted, that too for a band aid fix.

Hope your car is back on the road soon. If I were you, I'd sell this as soon as it was back on the road and get a more reliable car. One thing I really hate is a vehicle that just gives up in the middle of nowhere and the company guys have no clue what to do.

All the best
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Old 24th February 2014, 12:24   #13
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Default Re: Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor servi

Your story is quite shocking. Old Lancia cars were famous for their reliability or rather the lack of it. Land Rover is trying to compete with Lancia. THEY ARE NOT YOUR COMPETITORS!! (are you listening JLR?)

Discovery is one of the finest SUVs around and happens to be my all time favourite, but unfortunately after hearing so many horror stories from owners of Range Rovers and Land Rovers my love for this very capable machine is changing. Land Rovers are supposed to be reliable.. you should have the confidence to travel across continents without having to worry about the car.

If your car is still under warranty you must demand a replacement if that is an option or drag them to court!

Last edited by n_aditya : 24th February 2014 at 12:58. Reason: formatted to meet posting rules.
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Old 24th February 2014, 12:24   #14
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Default Re: Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor servi

Its really unfortunate to see such a high end product suffering reliability issues.
All products from JLR are overprices when compared against German counterparts. Still they cant provide quality, is serious issue.
Also besides luxury most of these are not fun to drive like Germans, nor reliable like Japs.
Hope your problems get sorted by manufacturer at the earliest.
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Old 24th February 2014, 12:55   #15
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Default Re: Land Rover Discovery 4: A near death experience, continuous problems & poor servi

What a ridiculous and frustrating experience it must be for you Mad Monkey. Any company that cannot make a reliable car and provide acceptable customer service (forget about making cars that make you feel good) is selling nothing but a piece of junk. I hope this car is not your daily driver. I also hope that Jaguar Land Rover get their act together. Its very disheartening to see a company with such heritage as theirs treat customers so badly especially after knowing that its the customers that have pulled them out of the mud just a few yrs ago. I doubt their behavior would be acceptable in any other country. I think you should not accept anything but a full refund, this car is clearly not road worthy. JLR needs to put this car out of commission immediately. If I was on the freeway with a Discovery hurtling toward me out of control, I dont know what I would do.
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