Hoping some of you will be able to help here.
I bought a 2003/53 VW Lupo GTI from a fully authorised Volkswagen main dealer on 12/03/10. It is/was a HPI clear car; and was put through a full VW PDC before I picked it up.
I bought it based on numerous pictures and information send to me via e-mail and I didn’t see the car until collection day. I picked it up just as it was going dusk. Me and my Dad looked round the car and spotted a few minor scratches, but the car had just been polished, and to be honest it looked pretty good for a 7 year old car! I had screwed them right down on price too (£800 off list price) so I wasn’t going to grumble.
However, the excitement of the new car was immediately dampened though when I left the dealer forecourt, accompanied by a coolant warning light on the dash.
The service department had closed as it was getting on for 7pm. With no body around to look at the car, the salesman simply turned the car off and on again. We waited 5mins and the warning light did not re-appear. Convinced that it was a one off problem, he then told me it would be fine to continue on my 2hour drive home.
15 miles down the road, the coolant light came back on again. I pulled over and discovered a brand new bottle of coolant in the boot (coincidence? I think not!). Just so I was 100% covered, I called out the RAC (under the VW assist scheme) and they topped the car up. I got back home with no further problems, and I have to say… I was loving the car.
Upon complaining on the very next day, I was told the car had been fitted with a brand new radiator and they must have forgotten to top it up before collection. OK, I thought. mistakes happen. I was given a £100 cheque for the trouble and I was happy.
So, flash forward to 2 months down the line. I was cleaning the car for the first time over the BH weekend (bad I know!) and I noticed some rust on the drivers side rear wheel arch. I also
noticed in the bright sunlight that the rear bumper and lower rear quarter was covered in ‘orange peel’ and in places the paint didn’t even seem to have any metallic flake in it at all. It looked really dull.
So, today I have been to my local VW dealer to get the rust looked at under the 12 year anti-corrosion warranty. This is where the saga starts.
In short, my local dealer told me that they would not touch the car under its warranty. The service rep checked the paint depths and it ranged from 170 through to 280 on ONE PANEL. He told me that the rear bumper has been fully re-sprayed, and parts of the rear quarter have too. The more he pointed out the imperfections, the more obvious it became.
So, I got straight onto the phone to the supplying dealer (miles away in Hull). They were really keen to have it checked over by their sister dealership in York, who have a full body shop on site. I arrived there, and the body shop manager came out to look at the car. Obviously he deals with these things everyday but he actually told me its one of the worst repair jobs he has seen.
His assessment was that:
The rear quarter panel is literally FULL of filler
The window seals are all cracked from the previous repair
The rear bumper needs flatting down and polishing or fully repainting
The area around the petrol filler cap is a totally different colour
The drivers door shut line is exaggerated, because they have not re-shaped the rear panel properly.
I’m gutted to say the least. They have promised to get in touch with me tomorrow with plans to repair the car. He thought the above would be around £900 worth of work, but said he’s 99% sure they will agree to cover all costs.
I guess the question is: Where do I stand with all this and what are my rights?
I’m out of the VW 30 day change of mind / cooling off period and the car has no finance, so I can’t even get a finance company involved with the matter.
For those questioning how I never noticed it before now, I have no idea.