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Old 4th February 2010, 16:25   #1
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Default Hyundai Acc(id)ent!

Hi Friends,

I am sharing my experience with a road accident that happened to me a month ago.

BACKGROUND:

Old airport road in Bangalore was undergoing a repair work past midnight, so one side of the divider was completely blocked and vehicles plying both ways were on the same side of the divider. There was a Ford Fiesta going about 8-10 metres in front of me (the distance is an estimation made when I look back at the events – may be more though!). The next thing I remember is that the Fiesta’s come to a halt – didn’t even have much of a chance to see the brake lights. I braked but that was not enough. My car’s front banged the Fiesta’s rear. No one was hurt.

There was steam coming out of my bonnet. My car being an LPG one, I was a little worried. I immediately turned off the engine and got off. Then I realized that the Fiesta in front had been banged from the front by a matador and its front part was badly smashed. The matador guy had run away. While the Fiesta guy took to the side and I called the cops, the Fiesta guy also slipped away. But I had taken down his no.

DAMAGE:

The bonnet front part, the bumper, the radiator, the condenser, the headlamp assembly, the metal rods inside the bumper (what are they called?) were all smashed. The photos are here.

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This happened at 1AM. With the radiator leaking, whether I could drive it from the site or would I have to get it towed? Some auto guys offered to tow the car. Also, since my house was a little in the interior, I knew that it would not make sense to take the car home. Hence I should kinda decide on the garage. With no ready answers to the queries, my first thought was whether I could call Jaggu (of team-bhp) at that hour. With a heavy heart, I called him past midnight for advice – ASC or private garage? Jaggu said that since radiator and condenser were involved, Hyundai ASC was a better bet. I called my local mech Fairoz (on JC road) who said that he could do the job but insurance claim would then be a pain.

RADIATOR: Fairoz said I could drive the car slowly turning off the engine on slopes and could do like 2 kms without damaging the engine. (Is this right?). I did it and got the car to Trident Hyundai (Intermediate Ring Road).

ASC EXPERIENCE: Next morning, at Hyundai, I was told that they don’t have relation with Shriram General Insurance and in any case, I would have to tow the vehicle to their workshop on Hosur road and give it there. The estimate (rough one) given at the showroom was:

Radiator and condenser: 16,000
Bonnet: 14,000
Bumper: 8,000
Headlight Assemblies: 6,500 (both)
Inner Bar: 4,000
Grill: 1000
A few other things and labour all adding to Rs. 58,000.

Since my car was 9 years old and my insurance company would pay me on the depreciated value, I would get only about half of the amount. On labour, I would get 100%. But I would have to run my own claims. My heart shrank at the thought of a Rs. 30,000 loss borne by my pocket.

WHO’S FAULT: Parallelly, I was wondering why the Fiesta guy went off from the scene – whether he was drunk etc. Anyway, I filed a police complaint, traced him, spoke to him etc. Since it was also my fault that I hadn’t maintained the right speed and distance, I did not press any claims against him. On this issue, I still am not sure whether it was my fault. He could stop immediately because he hit something, I couldn’t … till I hit him! At the same time, there is also the thought that if I were super cautious like the grey haired retired uncles driving at 40kmph even at 1 AM, this would never have happened. What are your thoughts?

OUTSIDE GARAGE OPTION: I called up a pal who is a shock up distributor. He told me that he could direct me to the right distributors and get the parts at prices which were like 40% of the ASC price. I have always observed that if done outside, parts and fitting can usually be done at about 40% of the ASC prices. My experience with the bearings, the rear shocks etc have ALWAYS proved that ASC is about 2.5 times costlier than outside market purely because the parts are more expensive. I called up Jaggu again to discuss the ASC prices – Jaggu suggested Sai Colorium.

SAI COLORIUM: I called up Ananth of Sai Colorium. He seemed very confident about processing the insurance claim and repairing the vehicle. He sent an undercover agent Moosa to come to Hyundai (where the car was parked overnight). Moosa and I went through the vehicle and Moosa said that the bonnet and the bumper could be repaired. The radiator and condenser may be repaired depending on whether there is leak in condenser and the extent of damage to radiator. The headlight assemblies (HLAs) and the grills were gone. Since most parts were repairable, I would get a 100% claim on labour. Hence my loss would be lesser. The thought of repairing the bonnet and the bumper were the clinchers. Lancer_rit was very helpful and gave me his views on Sai.

TOWING: I got a guy from Roshan Auto Garage - Syed (9845175901) to tow my car for Rs. 900 from Hyundai to Sai. He saw the car and said that he could repair it. But since I had heard good things about Sai, I decided to get it to Saiin JP nagar.

RADIATOR - to repair or replace: The top left knob holding the radiator in place was broken and hence the radiator was leaking. While Roshan towing guy had told that he could easily melt the plastic and remould it and fit the knob thereby sealing the radiator, Sai told me they would refrain from doing it as the hot coolant can anytime melt the patchwork and it is not worth the risk. I agreed. (Your thoughts on this?) Sai said they could source the radiator for Rs. 3700 and the HLAs for 1850 each of Depo make. Original HLA from Hyundai would cost more. I sourced the radiator of MVC or MLC or such make, with 1 year warranty, straight from the distributor for Rs. 3100. I will confirm the brand later.

HEADLIGHT ASSEMBLY - penny wise pound foolish: Since Lumax is the OE for Accent and has not yet launched the HLA in the aftermarket, the options were buying from Hyundai or going for Depo or cheaper stuff. My pal called one of his customers – a retailer called Santosh Automobiles off JC road – who offered ‘imported’ headlights for Rs. 1100 and chrome and normal grill for around Rs.700. I am very particular about headlights and adjustment. I run 100/90. Against my gut feel, I thought if I could save about 1500 bucks on 2 HLAs, why not go for this instead of Sai’s Depos! Sai had told me the fit and finish in local ones won’t be up to the mark. But I was not worried about the Fit and Finish. I was more interested in its functioning and once I confirmed that it would be adjustable, my thought was why not! When fitted, the finish was very average – there were some gaps between HLA and the bumper – Not Sai’s fault as they had warned. The HORROR was that the HLAs could not be focused! I swore to change it and hounded Santosh Auto – who was rather cooperative (after a heated conversation) and sourced (hopefully and seemingly) genuine Hyundai OEM left HLA for Rs. 1750. The left HLA fitted perfectly! Right hand side, they could not source. They agreed that I can order it in Hyundai and they would take back the part for refund and I could run the part till I get the replacement. I think it is kind of them. I am awaiting the delivery of the part from Hyundai and hope it fits perfectly - Hyundai has said it would take 7 days to source the part!

WHAT HYUNDAI DOES on the HLA is that they have two part nos in the HLA – one with the wiring and the holder and the other without it. They insist and push the one with the wiring and holder costing Rs. 2450 over the one without it costing Rs. 1750. They even deny the existence and availability of the bare HLA. That is what Trident Hyundai was trying with me but Amit of Santosh Automobiles knew their tricks, spoke to them, told them the exact part number and ordered for it by telling them to order and source the parts as soon as they can. And HLA is one part where Hyundai ASC is not 2.5 times as costly!

My lessons on this: HLA is an important part and go for the best one – at least not for totally unknown brands!

CONDENSER: Sai straightened out the condenser, which was holding the AC gas properly, and fit the same in the car. The AC is running fine with God’s grace! That saved a lot of moolah.

BONNET AND BUMPER: The bonnet and bumper were brought into shape and repainted. They repainted the right hand side fender as well to remove an earlier dent under the insurance claim itself. The bend in the apron was removed and the vehicle was pulled and straightened.

HORN: One of the two horns has conked off and went unnoticed by Sai. I will use this opportunity for fixing Hella Redgrills with Ankit Ahuja’s knowledgeable guidance!

BILL: Sai handed me a bill of Rs. 12,500 for the labour. The radiator cost me Rs. 3,100, the grill around Rs. 700. The HLA will eventually cost me around Rs. 3,500 but my folly in trying to save some pennies cost me a lot of headache with the HLAs. All in all, I spent around 20,000.

INSURANCE CLAIM: I am just back on my seat after receiving a satisfactory amount on my insurance claim. Shriram General Insurance was the insurer. They have compensated me for my time as well

DURING REPAIR PICS:

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POST REPAIR PICS:

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I would be happy to add more post repair pics if required.
Cheers,
Harsha

PS: Thanks Jaggu, I know I owed this post for a long time now!
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Old 4th February 2010, 16:29   #2
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Woah, Nasty accident. A good write up. Thankfully nobody was hurt.

Time to get a new number plate done.

Last edited by Jaggu : 4th February 2010 at 16:46. Reason: Avoid typing like.... this....
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Old 4th February 2010, 16:40   #3
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Default The Bill

The handwritten numbers are the actual amounts charged.
The printed numbers are the estimated amounts.
DOC001.PDF
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Old 4th February 2010, 16:44   #4
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Glad to know that it worked out well Harsha. And yes car looks great after the work, all you need is a new number plate at less than 1/3 the initial estimate and great results you should be grinning ear to ear.

The main reason i wanted Harsha to post was to bring out the fact that Hyundai repair and service are not as cheap, as we believe it to be! I have been using (baby sitting rather) an accent for the past few months and recently saw one of the rear brake cylinder spring a leak.

Took it to HASS and brake work + general check up + wash came to 1400 bucks! Please note that they were smart enough to charge each and every job separate. And i was foolish enough to assume that wash (350 bucks!) will be covered in general check up (another 350 bucks IIRC).

Harsha was the first person who argued with me regarding the obnoxious pricing for the parts at dealership. He has time and again proved that one could save upto 40% cost on spares, using genuine stuff from outside, ie if one has lil more patience.

So here is the proof, dont be fooled by general notion that Hyundai, Honda and Maruti vehicles are cheap to maintain. They are not for a common joe, and there is a huge cut which dealership and manufacturer make. Be it Jap, Korean or European. Only the % vary
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Old 4th February 2010, 16:45   #5
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Very detailed post HArsha, glad to know that your ride is all back to normal now. And yes, you could have avoided the Fiesta if you drove like the retired greying uncles. Personally, if the gap was 8-10 meters, you should have been able to stop unless you were really speeding. What speeds were you doing that you did'nt even get a chance to see his brake lights in time?

Good to know that your insurance experience was satisfactory and alls well thats ends well. Drive safe.
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Old 4th February 2010, 16:57   #6
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Good Job Harsha, I think your Accent has very well regained its original form. 20 k for this kind of job is really cheap. With so much money saved, may be you owe a treat to Jaggu for screwing his one nights sleep.

And Jaggu, thanks to you for making Harsha capture his experience here on T-BHP.

Regards,
Deepak
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Old 4th February 2010, 16:58   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lalvaz View Post
Very detailed post HArsha, glad to know that your ride is all back to normal now. And yes, you could have avoided the Fiesta if you drove like the retired greying uncles. Personally, if the gap was 8-10 meters, you should have been able to stop unless you were really speeding. What speeds were you doing that you did'nt even get a chance to see his brake lights in time?

Good to know that your insurance experience was satisfactory and alls well thats ends well. Drive safe.
Thanks Lalvaz! By the way, no offence meant to the elderly here - hopefully with experience and maturity, i too will slow down.
Having said that i think i was doing around 50 kmph. Surprisingly, even my copassengers did not see the car coming to a halt. They said one moment all was going fine, next moment they felt me braking and coming closer to the fiesta. It could be (very unlikely though) that the Fiesta would have had brake light problem. More likely though is the fact that it came to an immediate halt after hitting the matador! Also, frankly, I did not really notice or remember the distance maintained also - it may be more, could be lesser too. I recollect that i was tempted to overtake the Fiesta a couple of times but I held myself back knowing that it is stupid to do that when one side of the road is blocked!

Thanks guys, I have fitted the new no. plate! and of course, happy to treat Jaggu anytime!

Last edited by harsha.cs1 : 4th February 2010 at 17:06. Reason: more posts
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Old 4th February 2010, 17:29   #8
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That was a nasty bang up. Glad to see the help extended by Jaggu. This is what amazes be about TBHP.

They dont flinch to help out a fellow member. Kudos !

Please change the front number plate ASAP
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Old 4th February 2010, 17:40   #9
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very neat job for 20K!

Hyundai quoted 58K for repair!! that is too much. Hyundai A.S.S had estimated 14K for bonnet? was it for repair or replacement.

I am sure, you were riding with seat belt during the accident!
Drive safe.
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Old 4th February 2010, 18:06   #10
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Congrats pal to have restored your vehicle at 1/3rd of the original quote. Thank God there's was no injury to anyone.
By the way, what happened to the Fiesta & Matador guys? Did you file any FIR after you called the cops?

Last edited by aargee : 4th February 2010 at 18:06. Reason: Add more contents
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Old 4th February 2010, 18:23   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by recshenoy View Post
very neat job for 20K!

Hyundai quoted 58K for repair!! that is too much. Hyundai A.S.S had estimated 14K for bonnet? was it for repair or replacement.

I am sure, you were riding with seat belt during the accident!
Drive safe.
Thanks. Yes pal, the seat belt was on!
Hyundai *** said all parts would have to be replaced.

Here I'd like to point out that the Hyundai quotes came from Trident Hyundai on Dell IRR. However, they said that the exact quotes would be given by the Hyundai body repair shop on Hosur Road. But they said that all these parts were to be changed. Perhaps some hard talking with the Hyundai body repair shop might have resulted in the repair of a few parts and consequent lower expenses - unlikely though! They just love changing parts.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaggu View Post
Harsha was the first person who argued with me regarding the obnoxious pricing for the parts at dealership. He has time and again proved that one could save upto 40% cost on spares, using genuine stuff from outside, ie if one has lil more patience.
Jaggu, I have maintained that generally you can save 60% of the cost, that is, source it for 40% of the cost. I have experienced it with front bearings when I went for Fag for bearings, which are of good quality and Monroe for struts, which is the OE.

That apart, on parts like silencers where you may normally get slightly lower quality ones and on parts like bonnet and bumper, where there is a chance that you may get marginally lower quality ones (IMHO with no difference to the ownership experience whatsoever), the savings are much greater.

But I must admit that it requires some patience and interest to first find out online who the OEM is, then find out the distributor and then finally source parts from the distributor himself or his preferred retailer. This is important because there are millions of duplicate items floating around in the spares market. If we can prepare a database of distributors in different cities for various brands, that would be very useful for all of us. I can add my 2 cents for sure!

Last edited by harsha.cs1 : 4th February 2010 at 18:26. Reason: Afterthought
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Old 4th February 2010, 20:10   #12
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that is a pretty decent job and you've got it done for almost nothing.
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Old 4th February 2010, 20:13   #13
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A typical accident on City roads!
The secret is to drive sedate & keep a safe distance esp in night.

Good to know you got it repaired at 1/3 of the HASS quote!
Only if OEM spares are available over the counter or after market, we could avoid the ASC & their exhorbitant charges alltogether.
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Old 4th February 2010, 20:57   #14
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Awesome stuff man. Really like your perseverance - your beauty is back in form!
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Old 4th February 2010, 21:08   #15
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Very detailed indeed!

When you told me about this over the phone, I didn't know you went through ALL this, but I'm just glad you have her back shining like new!

A.S.S. does not believe in doing anything right the first time, but then you can't blame them for wanting to replace every damaged part.

Get new plates and you're welcome regarding the horn!
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