Repairing my accident-damaged Speed 400: Triumph service experience

I hope Triumph India and their dealers focus on expanding their service network to handle the sudden increase in the volume of bikes.

BHPian adarsh14 recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

I am writing this post to share my recent experience with my bike and Triumph service centre. This might be a long post but I'd like to share some things not mentioned often here.


I have previously posted about my issues with the immobilizer on my bike. You can check it out here (Triumph Speed 400 Review) and how it was resolved (Triumph Speed 400 Review).

TLDR: My Bike had a faulty immobilizer preventing it from starting occasionally. The solution was to get a new key lock set.

Since my bike wouldn't start occasionally, The service advisor suggested I opt for RSA and asked me to pay for the same. After paying, I was told it would take a week to activate. I was initially told I would get assistance the same day. I was a little frustrated but I went and dropped it off myself after managing to get it to start and told myself the RSA might come in handy one day (foreshadowing).

An unfortunate accident

I had a crash on my bike on the morning of December 16th, 2023 on a rainy day. I went beyond my limits without even realising it (I was not used to the power yet, having ridden just 600 km on the bike and upgrading from 150 cc). I took a corner and could not turn fast enough. I target fixated and braked, ending up hitting the crash barrier on the highway. This was fully a lack of skill and fear of not having enough grip in the wet as the bike could have made the turn at that speed (around 80kmph on a wide highway) with no issues if I didn't panic and just leaned over more. Luckily, I wasn't hurt much since I was wearing gloves, shoes and of course a helmet (asking everyone to invest in and wear proper gear). No other vehicle was involved and I fell on the side. The bike however faired much worse as it had collided head-on with the barrier. The headlight was completely broken, the instrument cluster was damaged, one mirror was broken from the fall and a dent in the tank. The wires from the cluster had completely ripped off as the cluster was dislodged from its place. So the bike was essentially dead although there were no issues with the engine or the rear section of the bike. The upper crash bars did a good job of protecting the bike and the engine. These were the damages that were visible at the time and I left for the hospital to get first aid since it was more of a priority than getting my bike towed. In the end, I am glad I was okay and it was a lesson learnt. I will be back riding safer and smarter from now on.

RSA nightmare

Now I would like to come to my experience with the Triumph RSA.

This is being handled by a company called Europ Assistance India. Their helpline was mostly automated and getting to talk to a real person was in itself a task. I called them after my crash and was told my bike was not registered with them and they couldn't do anything about it. I was shocked by this and told them I had paid for it over a month back. I shared the receipt for the same which was shared with me by the service advisor. I was still told the same response and that they couldn't help me. I called the service advisor who just so happened to be on leave that day and could not do much from home. They took payment from me and did not submit it for further processing with the RSA provider.

I called Europ assistance and told them my situation and that this was frustrating after an hour or so of back and forth they asked for details of my bike and agreed to send assistance and registered my bike in their system. I am not clear on whether they checked with the dealership or just agreed after insisting. I got a call from a local provider who said they wouldn't be able to come for at least another 2 hours.

If the bike was in the system, the said 2 hours would have already elapsed and it would be on its way to the service centre. I was frustrated at this point and called for a truck through the Porter app. They arrived in about 10 minutes and took the bike to the service centre and I cancelled my RSA request.

If you have opted for RSA please make sure to check your bike is registered with the RSA Provider to avoid this situation in an emergency!!

I received a call about a month later from Europ assistance asking for feedback. I explained the situation to them and confirmed that my vehicle was now registered in their system. To be fair, I wouldn't fault them here as it was the dealership that didn't process my RSA payment and they had no clue.

Service centre experience in accident repair

I headed to the service centre after getting home to check on my bike and learn details about the insurance formalities. I saw a lot of bikes overflowing in their lot and could see they were operating way beyond their capacity. I am from Chennai and owing to the floods in December a lot of flooded bikes were present. I was told the same and that they were handling way too many vehicles. But the issue is not just the flooded bikes. Ever since the 400s launched, Triumph has expanded its showroom network far more than the service network. Especially in cities which already had service centres. There are only 2 service centres in all of Chennai (1 newly opened in November 2023). They were already operating past their capacity after the 400s launched since they were previously used to very few bikes given the low volume sales. Now in addition to that, floods caused a huge backlog of bikes just waiting. I knew it would be a month before they got to mine. The date was 16th December (day zero). I asked them to create a job card and was told they were facing a server issue and they would create it once it was resolved.

I followed up on WhatsApp and over the phone with the service manager. Every time I got the same response that they were occupied with the flood vehicles that were given before mine. I asked them to at least look at my bike and create an estimate so I could send it to the insurance surveyor. This back and forth continued till the end of the month and I asked him to give me a practical deadline on when they could get to my bike. He replied saying only after January 10th. But fair is fair and I stopped the frequent follow-ups.

One more shocking discovery was when I was told United India Insurance Company (Provided by the dealership) does not provide cashless claims for 2-wheelers at all. This meant I had to foot the bill and wait for the reimbursement adding to the woes of the situation. The process too I felt was downright primitive. They requested hardcopies of every document to be couriered to the surveyor's address and softcopies would not suffice (Mind you these were just photocopies and not original documents). I am not sure if this is how every provider is since I don't have experience with that. No online documentation was available. Only that I received a claim number through text after sending an email to the company and the surveyor's contact details. Everything else was to be handled by the surveyor and they would submit it back to the company after the completion of repairs.

After the new year rolled around, I asked my service advisor if they had made any progress. I was told the estimate was ready. I asked them to send me a copy but never received it.

I called him again requesting the estimate to be sent and I was assured he would send it but I never received it after ending the call.

On January 5th, I got a call from a different person at the service centre, telling me he was the service advisor appointed to handle my bike. This was the first time I got a call from them instead of the other way around up until now. I was optimistic that they would start and finish the repairs soon. I requested a copy of the estimate again and did not receive it. The follow-ups continued and no progress was made. On January 16th I called the manager, highlighting a few points of frustration:

It had now been a month since I had given my bike and no progress was made

The Job card was not yet created even after multiple follow-ups. Essentially, my bike had been lying idle there with no proof of it being there.

Accident vehicles and old models waiting for parts have been stowed away openly in a different compound adjacent to the service centre which caused me more concern.

Repeated assurance that a quote had been created but never sent to me. I wasn't sure if they were even telling the truth.

After this call, I got the estimate which was dated 28th of December. I do not understand why it wasn't sent to me earlier if they had it ready for over 2 weeks.

The job card was still pending. I am not sure how they created the estimate before assigning a job card first. I raised a complaint in the app (the app lists "job card not created" as one of the options available to select to raise a complaint) I went in person the following weekend and asked for the creation of the job card and made sure it was done in front of me. I asked him if it was possible to pre-date it to the date I had given my vehicle and he said it was not possible. The job card means nothing in reality. But it is essential documentation that may be required in the future and this is why I was very insistent about it.

He assured me that he would place the order for parts on the same day and that he would receive them in a week. So I asked him if 2 weeks was a realistic deadline to finish the work after receiving the parts. He confirmed the same and told me I would get it by the end of the month (15 days from this conversation).

From now on, I visited the service centre whenever I was in the vicinity to keep following up on the work. To my surprise, I was told they still had bikes from the flood waiting to be attended and my bike was still lying collecting dust.

I could empathize with the service reps since they were not equipped for such volume. This is why I have been very patient from the start. But who is to blame here? The dealer for not expanding service centres? Triumph India for not focusing on expanding its service network? When the price barrier to a brand is suddenly a quarter of what it used to be and with all the hype, how could they have not seen this coming? Or did they choose to ignore it and focus on marketing and sales?

I digress.

January 31st rolls around, and no sign of the work being started yet. I was told some of the spares hadn't arrived yet. I asked which ones hadn't arrived yet. I was told minor stuff like footpegs (which weren't damaged in the first place, not sure why it had been ordered). This sounded like an excuse to me so I asked them to proceed with the parts available and that I would get the pegs replaced later on if needed as it wouldn't be a huge task. I was assured they would start the following week.

February 1st week went by and work wasn't started since other accident vehicles and flood vehicles were being handled. I had now been visiting every Saturday to follow up in person like a weekly ritual. So on February 10th, I again went to check and they told me they would start the work the next day.

On February 13th, work had finally begun. I received a picture of my disassembled bike from my advisor. I was finally relieved. The next 2 days, my advisor was on leave so I did not get any updates. On February 16th, I asked him for an update and I was told the bike was up for water wash and that the work had been completed. I was surprised by how quickly the work was completed once it was taken up. I went to check it the next day and everything looked great.

In case anyone is curious, I'll list some of the major parts that were replaced and the approximate prices for the same:

  • Upper engine bars - 1k
  • Lock set - 7k
  • Front master cylinder and assembly - 2.5k
  • Instrument cluster - 7.5k
  • Forks - about 5k each
  • Fuel tank - 9.3k
  • Handlebar - 3k
  • Bar end mirror - 1k (for one piece)
  • Headlights - 11.7k

I did not take delivery on this day, since the final insurance inspection and invoicing were still pending. I also needed to get the first service done (Yep, I crashed my bike before the oil change ) and get a few accessories fitted.

I received the invoice after 3 days and shared the same with the surveyor. The first service is to be done after invoicing since a new job card is to be opened for that.

I am writing this on the 23rd of February and I hope to pick my bike up tomorrow after the first service which is still pending but was told will be completed tomorrow.

I will share an update once it's back.

The bike was in the service centre for over 2 months and I am finally getting it back.

I would like to end by sharing a few positive notes here about the service centre:

They always picked up my calls even when I was following up too many times.

All the advisors were friendly and communicative.

I cannot fault the quality of work done in any way. (Will update on this once I am back riding)

I would like to reiterate that my post is in no way to fault the advisors or the service managers at Triumph Service. It is more of an organisation-level problem, the brunt of which is borne by the service advisors and managers who have been doing their best from what I could see. I hope Triumph India and their dealers focus on expanding their service network and hiring more people to handle the sudden increase in the volume of bikes.

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