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Old 29th December 2019, 14:51   #16
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Default re: What happens before you do your PDI? The innocence of new car buyers

What Ram pointed out is not just limited to the post production plant, but also the service centers. This is more noticeable in places like Hyundai ASS where a large number of cars arrive at any given day. The way the mechanics cum drivers handle your car is enough for your heart to rise to your mouth; for them it's "just another car". But what can we do?

On a slightly more OT debate, my dad and I are really cautious with handing strangers (store employees etc.) our phones too, unless otherwise unavoidable, for fear of getting them damaged. After all, it's our property and when we can ensure its safety, it's wise to do so. If damaged, the other party is just going to shrug and say sorry!

Last edited by TheHelix0202 : 29th December 2019 at 15:14.
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Old 30th December 2019, 12:18   #17
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Default Re: What happens before you do your PDI? The innocence of new car buyers

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Originally Posted by deehunk View Post
I thought of penning down my experience as more such cars can be sold before the BS-VI deadline. I advise new car buyers to spend money on electronic paint gauge and do a check on paint thickness during PDI.
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Originally Posted by deehunk View Post
The intent of this thread was to expose the other side of PDI's a prospective buyer may do before the delivery. The buyer may be doing a PDI on a car which has been ripped apart before booking itself at the dealership. This is not to be confused with a PDI the buyer does at the time of booking. The odometer readings are tampered after driving a car between stock yard and bodyshop. The dealer ensures that everything is perfect before a buyer does the PDI.
Thanks @deehunk for sharing your experience / information. The reality is indeed scary. Like you have mentioned, it will be very helpful for people like me who are looking for new cars with an eye on fat discounts on Year end/ BS-IV vehicles. Wish I had this info when I bought my last car.

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Originally Posted by TheHelix0202 View Post
Nice to know indeed. Always wondered how showrooms were able to “fix” any sort of small to medium bodge job on the day of delivery and act as if it were no big deal, poor is the chap who takes home the donor car.
I bought a Nov'10 built Tata Manza in Feb'11. The car had small dents on the door and a few KMs on the odo. The dents were rectified same day and the car was delivered to me in the evening. I brought it home like any other unsuspecting customer. Luckily for me, it did not turn out a lemon.

Thanks to @ram87pune for providing the insider information.

While this can happen to freshly minted cars as well, but stockyard cars are definitely more susceptible.

After knowing all this, I think I should wait for the BS-VI cars to roll out. Unless, of course, I get a discount deal that is too good to refuse.
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Old 30th December 2019, 13:00   #18
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Default Re: What happens before you do your PDI? The innocence of new car buyers

Only Skoda gives juicy discounts, when they speak about warranty for after market accessories, it looks childish.
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Old 30th December 2019, 13:16   #19
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Default Re: What happens before you do your PDI? The innocence of new car buyers

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Originally Posted by ram87pune View Post
...................I have worked with a renowned OEM based near Pune in the production department for 5 years. I worked in the repair area after the car rolls out at the end of line. So let me shed some light on what goes on inside the production facility
.......................
Haha. The manner and order in which you have put the various tests and the hammerings all remind me of the OEM you're talking about. Once one has worked for an OEM they can never un-see what has been seen.

Every time I go to a showroom, I can see all the green, orange and red stickers on various components and the pencil markings as well.

Yes owning a car or a bike is a prestige point and the manner in which some OEMs show their production line also makes up our minds that what we own is something special. End of the day it is also a business like any other and anything damaged or out of order would mean losses. Everything has to be sold. That is the final word in every business.
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Old 30th December 2019, 14:41   #20
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Default Re: What happens before you do your PDI? The innocence of new car buyers

Continuing on from where I left. I told you what happens inside the plant legally, that is as per the standard operating procedure. Now let me be honest and tell you the things which we(white collar officers) used to do under some extreme circumstances which were purely done so as to make our lives easier and that of the end customer hell(in rare cases)

Since we were given strict targets as to how many cars we can have in the float daily I.e. between the end of line and the point where the cars are green tagged to be sent to the stockyard, we would many a times commit some jugaad so as to keep this float under check. I am sharing some examples with you below

1. Many times we would do duplicate wheel alignment for cars which were borderline cases. That is cars which were "just" out of the set limits.

2. Same with the emission test. Since the takt time of the emission test was very less and there was a constant back pressure of cars coming out of the roller we would do duplicate prints for emission tests too. What we would do is keep one car for emission test and take multiple prints from the same car and paste these prints to other cars. This happened for many years until after the VW emission scandal the OEM changed the emission testing equipment and thus we now needed to scan the barcode on the history card of the car and then only the test would begin. The result print would bare the chassis number of the said car.

3. Even in roller test I once did a duplicate test on an LHD sedan which was going to be exported to the Europe simply because the ECU was not recognizing the 5th gear being engaged and rework for the same would take a lot of time and we had to ship the cars before that at any cost. Of course I hope the end customer would never notice this because mechanically the car was sound. Mind you this duplicate test was done after approval from higher up.

4. I remember once there was this badly damaged sedan whose rear member which is behind the rear bumper was badly damaged because an intern who did not have the authority to drive inside the plant chose to drive it nevertheless and crashed it into a pillar while reversing it. It took more than a week to pull out and repair the said portion and remove the dents. Still it did not look like defect free piece and the management decided to fit the rear bumper on it and pass the car to the customer. If that customer does see the inside of his car if the rear bumper is removed, can't imagine the look on his face.

5. We would use soap water to remove the noise that the power windows would make while going up and down. But the issue was that this was only a temporary solution and the windows would again start making the noise once the soap solution dried out. The issue was later resolved by going in for a softer window rubber beading.


These and many other jugaads we did only because if we didn't do these things to pass the cars from our respective areas then we would be required to work extended hours sometimes double shifts. I am guilty of admitting this here but none of us had any other option but to do such things so as to make our lives easier at the cost of making those of the end customer lot more troubled.

At the start even I used to sincerely attend to the defects and try my best to get them repaired in the correct way. But when I realised that doing so is only making my life a living nightmare, I also decided to go with the flow. Again I am not generalizing such practices for all the manufacturers but sharing my personal experiences.

Sorry guys if I have hurt any of your feelings by bringing out the harsh reality of the shop floor.
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Old 30th December 2019, 19:01   #21
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Default Re: What happens before you do your PDI? The innocence of new car buyers

Few from my side:

* In an attempt to meet the high demand (Read >10K monthly sale) a leading manufacturer clear cars with poor weld quality. These things cannot be identified during PDI but surely affect structural strength and safety.

* Once I was at the car wash area of a dealership and saw cleaning boys driving a brand new car very dangerously inside the premise. They ended up damaging the rear bumper and started their jugaad fix as it was scheduled for delivery on the same day. I ignored it first but they had daily delivery details displayed in the showroom. I could identify the future owner of the damaged car and managed to get the contact number without anyone noticing. I called the owner and informed what just happened with his car.

* Another scary part is the amount of corruption in these companies. This include big multinational companies as well. Adjustment with vendors, bribe, having stake in vendor companies through benamis, big tickets gift from vendors, managing their kids higher education admission through vendors etc. are few. Result is low quality/higher price components getting in to new cars.

Last edited by Latheesh : 30th December 2019 at 19:03.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 11:00   #22
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Default Re: What happens before you do your PDI? The innocence of new car buyers

Very insightful and knowledgable.
However I beg to ask a few questions:
a) How many vehicles suffer serious damages that can be classified as MAJOR ones during transportation from the factory to the dealer outlet ?
b) Who classifies what needs to be sent back to the factory and what can be repaired at the dealer end ?
c) Aren't the manufacturers hand in glove with the dealers knowing very well that a damaged product has been delivered to the customer post repairs.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 11:12   #23
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Default Re: What happens before you do your PDI? The innocence of new car buyers

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Originally Posted by Thermodynamics View Post
Every stock yard has at least two certified tinkerers. I personally know one such tinker whom I use to get original paint job at a fraction of the cost. factory.
Happy New Year! Shall I DM you? I've a minor dent on the front left door and would like to get it repaired?
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Old 3rd January 2020, 11:15   #24
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Default Re: What happens before you do your PDI? The innocence of new car buyers

Very useful information. I always used to wonder what happens to your car after it is made and before it is handed over to you. The kind of abuse it goes through and the damages inflicted on it during testing and transit. I have a better idea of what to look for while purchasing a new vehicle.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 11:44   #25
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Default Re: What happens before you do your PDI? The innocence of new car buyers

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Every stock yard has at least two certified tinkerers.........back to factory.
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Originally Posted by ram87pune View Post
This so called "virginity" we are talking about is at the dealer's end.......I am not generalizing this for everybody else.
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Originally Posted by ram87pune View Post
Continuing on from......Sorry guys if I have hurt any of your feelings by bringing out the harsh reality of the shop floor.
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Originally Posted by Latheesh View Post
Few from my side....quality/higher price components getting in to new cars.
I work closely with the automotive industry and I have been a witness to almost all of the above mentioned points. I would quote a friend who said, "If one ever sees how automobiles are made, neither he or she would never buy one nor would be able to ever trust a manufacturer or dealer again." The number of so-called 'jugaads' and workarounds per vehicle is much more than what one may expect. The care we have for our vehicles is sometimes seen as a shock if you question the contractual drivers/yard managers about the poor condition in which vehicles are transported and kept post manufacturing. In addition to this, no amount of thorough PDI by the customer will be sufficient to find out all the possible issues, no matter how trained or how experienced he or she is.

Last edited by Researcher : 3rd January 2020 at 11:47. Reason: Added information regarding PDI
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Old 3rd January 2020, 11:53   #26
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Default Re: What happens before you do your PDI? The innocence of new car buyers

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Originally Posted by drive1987 View Post
Happy New Year! Shall I DM you? I've a minor dent on the front left door and would like to get it repaired?
Sure you may pm me, will help you out.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 12:36   #27
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Default Re: What happens before you do your PDI? The innocence of new car buyers

I just threw-up in my mouth a little, having just done the PDI for my XUV3OO yesterday.

What couldn't be discovered during PDI might/might not cause me problems in future. Fingers crossed now.

As a consolation, I took tons of photos of every component of the car to be on safe side yesterday. Anything visible to the naked eye with a number was clicked on. However, things like under the bumper etc are the places that got me worried now.

Anyways, thanks for the eye openers, honesty and the apology. I am sure given a second chance, Ram or anyone else wouldn't want to do what he/they did/was/were forced to do.

Keep revving!!

Last edited by DevilzzzzOwn : 3rd January 2020 at 12:38. Reason: Grammatically incorrect statement was corrected.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 12:47   #28
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Default Re: What happens before you do your PDI? The innocence of new car buyers

A Ford dealership in Palakkad had closed operations and was able to get a mouth watering deal on a freestyle titanium for my cousin. I did the pdi on the car and had to reject 2 cars in the yard for the poor condition. One had a ding on the roof and another had a mis-aligned hood.
We noticed sales pamphlets in cars too. Which indicated some we're used for sales promotion and probably test drives.
But since we did the pdi before registration and the car that we selected was also available we could finalise the deal.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 14:09   #29
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Default Re: What happens before you do your PDI? The innocence of new car buyers

I don't trust dealer level PDI. Period. Heck, I don't trust any dealer. The only way out is refusing delivery if anything looks off, even if they say they will fix it at first free service.

Few experiences:

My friend got a new Baleno back in April last year, at the time of delivery he noticed a big dent on the left front door with a scraped paint. The Dealer promised to deliver the car after it was 'fixed', but the paint job was so shoddy that my friend had to create a ruckus there, he asked the dealer to return the car to Maruti which they denied as the car was registered and everything was done. So the only option was to replace the door from another car, which the dealer did after getting an earful from my friend. They actually did this hack job on a brand new car in their stockyard in front of my friend (as he had rightly lost all trust in them).

My brother's Fiat Linea bought back in 2010 had few issues before delivery:
- The seat belt bolt was loose, I could remove it after a few turns with my finger Got fixed at first service. How can such a important part be loose ?
- Bumper was repainted like a kid applies nail polish on his own nails. Got the whole bumper repainted two days after delivery.

Wife's Honda Brio:
- Front Wheel was completely misaligned and no balancing was done. First drive on Outer ring road of Bengaluru and the car was pulling towards left and steering was vibrating. Got it rectified within one week of delivery.

Maruti Ertiga:
Very slight paint chip on rear bumper, got it painted but not satisfactory. Left it as it was too small to notice. But the sad part is dealer could not handle car properly.

All the above experiences have made me lose trust in dealerships as a whole. Its always a good idea to build relationships with service managers and sales representatives in order to extract good work from them.

Last edited by NiInJa : 3rd January 2020 at 14:15.
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Old 3rd January 2020, 15:09   #30
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Default Re: What happens before you do your PDI? The innocence of new car buyers

Thank you for the insight 'deehunk' and 'ram87pune'.

Although I am not surprised with the points you have provided it is a good reminder. Most of the customers across the globe would not even be aware of this stuff. They would just buy the car as an untouched unused object.

I have watched the National Geographic documentaries on Supercar manufacturing. Even manufacturers like Ferrari, Lamborghini and others in that segment give a very thorough test to the engine before it is installed in the car and then again when the car is assembled. If one gets time please do check out the documentary of making of a Rolls Royce, these cars also have some minor paint work adjustments done post production. There might be exceptions though to the one-off models they make.

Just wanted to say that it is not just the mass production manufacturers who do this high revving testing. But yes, with the tight timescales on which this work is done in mass production, there is a chance that some of the quality checks might be skipped.
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