Arnold Clark faulty car

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    • #133693
      kirsty henderson

      I bought an Audi A1 S-Line on the 21st of April 2018 from the Arnold Clark Volkswagen branch in Stirling. Within a week of having the car, I was experiencing problems with the engine and power steering. When I phoned up to book it in the only date they could offer me was the 29th of May, a full 5 weeks from my initial logging of the issue.

      On the 21st April, I was driving along the A1 when I lost my power steering with completely no warning of this going to happen. I pulled over to let my car cool down so I could take a look at it. I immediately noticed my radiator fluid was below minimum and my radiator had been leaking. This is something I have had to fill up on a daily basis for me to get from A to B. My power steering came back on once my car cooled down but it has since happened on several occasions.

      I had two engine management lights on my dashboard a week after buying the car which proved to be temperamental as they never stayed on for long.

      My car was booked into Arnold Clark SEAT garage in Seafield, Edinburgh and I was informed after delivering my car to the branch I would have a courtesy car. However, there was no courtesy car for me. I had to go to Arnold Clark Car & Van rental, also in Seafield, to get a vehicle. On arrival, they didn’t have any paperwork or know anything about me collecting a car. I spent the majority of my morning waiting around for a car when I should have been at work and I was given a vehicle that didn’t facilitate my needs whatsoever.

      I feel the customer service is extremely poor within Arnold Clark. To compound this, not once did anyone pick up the phone to call me and update me on my car, I was constantly chasing various employees to get an update.

      When I finally got an update it was to tell me that my car had a puncture and had lost 3mm of inner tread since the time I had bought it. This can’t affect the power steering at all and I find it extremely hard to believe you can go through that amount of tread in five weeks. When I purchased the car my tyres were Yokohama Paradas Spec-2 which are quite costly tyres, however, they replaced my tyres with standard budgets tyres at a cost of £39 each, which I don’t find fair at all as I assume the cost of my car was higher due to the tyres already installed. I phoned up to query this issue and was told the car didn’t come with those tyres however I can assure you they were the tyres on my car as I have been to a tyre garage and had the tread matched. My tyres were in good condition and they should have been swapped like for like, if not better.

      I finally got my car back on the 4th of June and was told everything was sorted in regards to my tyres and power steering. Nothing was mentioned about my radiator or engine management lights. I was then told after this date that my car would have to be recalled by Audi for the engine problems. When driving my car home I lost my power steering again after being told it was all fixed. I phoned the Stirling branch to inform them and I was told I’d get a call back. I had to keep chasing for an update on what was going on as my car wasn’t safe to drive.

      They advised me it needed to go to an Audi garage for the recall and it would have to be the Wishaw garage. It was collected by an employee of Arnold Clark Stirling on Friday 1st June to be taken through. I received a booking confirmation on its arrival to say it was booked in for the 28th of June.

      During this time I have suffered a loss of earnings as I have had to take days off work as my car hasn’t been able to get me there and the hire car I was then provided doesn’t meet my needs. I can’t fit any of my equipment in the car to carry out home treatments which has resulted in me turning down clients. This has left me in a very unstable situation. I put down quite a large deposit on the car and pay the HP monthly. I refuse to pay my monthly payments as I have not had the use out of the vehicle and I would quite happily hand the car back to Arnold Clark because in my eyes given the situation and problems I don’t feel it is going to be safe at all.

      The problems I have had since buying the car have caused me nothing but stress. I bought the car with a full year’s MOT and service. I highly doubt this was done given the problems faced after a few weeks of driving it. The customer service from Arnold Clark has been absolutely horrendous and personally, I wouldn’t recommend or return to Arnold Clark. When I bought the car I was given 60 days warranty, I spoke with the branch manager who advised my warranty would be extended however they are now saying my warranty has expired and any works my car needs I now need to pay for it.

      I have phoned on several occasions to find out how I can sort this situation as I don’t feel the car will be safe when returned. Given the price I paid for it, this is the last thing I would have expected.

      I got my car back Wednesday the 20th of June, I drove it to work and back the Thursday and my engine management lights came back on. I phoned Arnold Clark and they advised me to drive my car over 60mph for 10 miles to let my car have a proper run. This didn’t work at all so my car was taken back to Arnold Clark on the Monday.

      I still don’t have my car back and it has been a week. I phoned Arnold Clark today and was advised I had no reason to have proof of what works were carried out on my vehicle. I contacted my finance company who advised me they have been in contact with Arnold Clark but they can’t get any information in regards to my car.

      I asked if I could hand the car back as I am out of pocket and paying for a car that I haven’t had the chance to drive. They told me there’s nothing that can be done and I am stuck with the car.

      Can you please advise me on what I can do or give me any advice?

      Much Appreciated

      Kirsty Henderson

    • #134279
      Stuart Masson

      Hi Kirsty. Unfortunately, Arnold Clark has a pretty terrible reputation for customer service (particular aftersales support). We get more complaints about Arnold Clark than any other dealer group.

      If you can’t get any sensible information or service out of the dealership, you will probably have to speak to a solicitor about your issue and see if they can assist.

      You can try contacting Volkswagen UK about the behaviour of their dealership, but given that you bought a used car they’re unlikely to care too much. And in any case, Volkswagen, Audi and SEAT don’t have a sterling reputation for honesty and customer service these days either…

    • #141429

      2 weeks ago I got a car on hire purchase from Arnold Clark, the next day there was a horrible creaking noise whenever I pressed the brakes and a chip on the windscreen I hadn’t noticed.

      I got Autoglass to come out to repair the chip as I was unsure if it was there on purchase but once they came out they told me it had already been filled and had gotten worse so it would need replaced as they couldn’t repair it.

      I contacted Arnold Clark who denied any knowledge of the chip and after a lot of hassle they suggested as a goodwill gesture I claim my insurance and they will refund the excess. I didn’t mind doing this so have booked for this to get done. I also got permission to take the car to my local Ford Arnold Clark dealership regarding the creaking.

      They have since told me that it needs new brakes and pads due to the ones currently not being genuine Ford parts and this is causing the noise however on looking up this noise most people have said it is the brushes, a sticky caliper or suspension.

      I’m booked in for my brakes and pads next week however if this is not the issue and they refuse to do the work free of charge (due to it being an issue the car came with) could I return the car and get a refund?

      An MOT was carried out on the 7th and I got the car on the 9th. Getting quite frustrated that they are not taking ownership of the issues.


      • #142142
        Stuart Masson

        Hi Susan. Did you test drive the vehicle before purchase? If you test drove the car prior to purchase, the creaking noise should have been noticeable and you probably would have noticed the chip in the windscreen, so you should have demanded that these be rectified prior to taking delivery.

        If you did drive the car and didn’t notice either of these things, it’s difficult to argue that they were present at point of purchase. In the first 30 days of ownership, the onus is on you to prove that a fault was present at point of sale if you want to reject it under the Consumer Rights Act.

    • #164621

      I reject a car from Arnold Clark as it’s faulty in various things gearbox and some other smaller things, I talked with manager he said that Monday I can bring back the car with the keys and the v5 and refund the deposit, should I accept that and trust them?

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