[Resolved] Renault SA / lack of customer care and feedback on reported issues
E-mail sent 09th January 2019.
Dear Renault Customer Care
RE: Vehicle Registration No: CPX 367 NC
I hereby wish to convey my utter disappointment in my current Renault Duster - to date 18 months old with 17 800 km on the clock .
I previously owned 2 x Sandero Stepways (newly purchased from your Kimberley branch) and would consider myself an ambassador of your brand, but only until I took ownership of this particular (new) Renault Duster from your Knysna Branch in June / July 2017.
The vehicle / model came highly recommended since I live in a remote area in the Northern Cape (Tswalu Kalahari Reserve, located 480 km from the nearest Renault dealership in Kimberley) for which a slightly more all-terrain vehicle is required to handle the odd distances of gravel roads I need to travel. However since purchasing the vehicle I have experienced an incredibly frustrating 18 months, incurring considerable costs, stress and inconvenience due to continued technical/mechanical faults and breakdowns which to date have not yet been resolved.
I attach previous e-mails for reference purposes. I would hereby urge you to please investigate these matters - not only regarding the defective vehicle which I believe I was sold but also around the registration surprises I experienced.
If not for my benefit - I think it may be in your best interest to be aware of the way your dealers / dealerships are treating your "valued customers". With this being said, I can only commend the 2 members of the team at the Kimberley branch - Madelein Lubbe and Johan Swanepoel - who have been unsurpassed in their support, going out of their way to assist me through all the issues and frustrations experienced. They have tried their best - but after the 10th visit to the workshop we can all agree that the vehicle I received is not up to standard or what one expects when purchasing a new vehicle. And the lack of interest and concern by Renault SA is alarming, to say the least.
From the day of purchase (as mentioned in the mails) the idling of the vehicle was irregular and fuel consumption disturbingly high with loss of power whilst driving. I did not expect to have to gear down to 4th and switch off the aircon to pass a vehicle at 120 km per hour - not with this model. In September 2017 (2 months after purchase) the throttle control body was replaced and reprogrammed. Since then the car has been back to the service agent on numerous occasions as the problem persisted. Again I urge you to call up the records on exactly how many times I had to visit Johan for this reoccurring issue. May I again remind you that I live 5 hours away from Kimberley and have limited time to travel the distance for these extended periods of time to fix a brand-new vehicle.
On the service agent's recommendation, I altered my festive season plans so the car could be checked in for another thorough inspection to see if the problem could be resolved. The vehicle was checked in for 2 days on 27th and 28th Dec 2018. It was indicated that the injectors may be dirty and not functioning correctly. During the course of the service the question was raised if the injectors cannot be replaced immediately. The answer of the service agent was that they first need to follow procedure by cleaning the injectors. If the problem persisted, then only would the injectors be replaced. The cleaning was done and we were positive that the issues experienced had been resolved, only to find that after a 80km drive engine lights began flashing, and with no means of getting the vehicle back to Kimberley it had to be towed in on Saturday the 29th Dec 2018.
The vehicle spent the following week at the Renault Service Centre in Kimberley and after many discussions they finally agreed to replace two of the injectors, not due to any significant dirt or fault on my part, but because the injectors were faulty from the start, thus under guarantee. Once again alternative arrangements regarding work, leave and accommodation had to be made because I did not feel comfortable driving the distance with an unreliable vehicle - once again incurring costs and inconvenience on my behalf.
The excitement to receive my newly repaired vehicle on 04 January 2019 was short lived as the error codes again presented themselves on a 40 km drive out of Kimberley. The service agent arranged for my vehicle to be collected and swopped for a Nissan Micra as a courtesy car, which is greatly appreciated - but in all honestly not suitable for the terrain where I reside. Thus the courtesy vehicle is not in use and I had to inconvenience family members to borrow a suitable vehicle for my return to work which could not be delayed- once again incurring costs and inconvenience on my behalf.
As I am sending this mail, my vehicle is still in the Kimberley workshop - with no idea of what is wrong or when I will have my vehicle returned to me. Although the car is under warranty the problem is not being resolved. This situation is undeniably unacceptable. Quite frankly the vehicle is a "DUD" for the lack of a better word. Being in the service industry myself, I would have expected Renault head office to contact me when they noticed the frequency of the visits for this particular vehicle to offer some sort of solution for my dilemma. If this was any other new product purchased, on grounds of the consumer act, a replacement product or refund would be in discussion by now.
In conclusion, this is my 5th new vehicle, my 3rd Renault and I have never experienced issues with any of my other vehicles like I have with this particular Duster. I live a fair distance away from the nearest towns or dealerships, I almost always travel alone as a single female, and therefore invest in new vehicles which I trust will be reliable, safe and trustworthy.
I would like to afford you the opportunity to revert and look forward to resolve on this matter. However, I will gladly seek legal advice going forward should this be required. I hope you can understand my disappointment and frustration in this regard and look forward to your feedback soonest.
Should you wish to discuss telephonically, you are welcome to contact me on [protected] during office hours or on [protected] after hours, but would prefer a written reply.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Thank you & regards,
Customer care service did everything in their power to resolve this complaint. All attempts to contact the complainant have failed. Therefore, this complaint has been annulled and must not be considered where image of the company in question and it's services are concerned.
Renault Customer Care's Response, Jan 27, 2019
Dear Customer (Jeanine Engelbrecht),
We’ll surely forward this to the concerned country head. They will get in touch with you to assist you further in this regard.
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