Cars Too Complex For Their Own Good?

hawk20

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ARE CARS TOO COMPLEX FOR THEIR OWN GOOD?

Modern cars get more complex every year. Electronics have taken over in every nook and cranny of car design. All very well while they are new or under maker’s warranty but they can be a nightmare later on. It’s not just Mercedes but all major makes.

My daughter has a Mini One, only 5 years old and just over 30,000 miles. Full dealer service history. Two weeks ago the passenger electric window stopped working. New motor and labour came to £400. A few days later and lots of warning lights start flashing. Dealer says the battery is going. Fitted a new one: cost inc labour £150.

On the way home my daughter notices the odometer is not going round. Nor the trip meter. Takes it back a few days later. The Mini dealer then suggests diagnostic testing; this is carried out and suggests that the ABS sensor must have failed. To change that costs £1,000. Now they have done that and the bills for the last two weeks total £1,550. BUT nothing is cured – lots of warning lights are still flashing as soon as the car is driven. Trip and odometer still not working. A nightmare. The dealer says he no longer has any idea what is wrong except that it clearly wasn’t the ABS sensor.
 

Howard

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She needs a w124 ..... i only have 5 lights on my dash , and they only ever come on when i start the car ( for 2 seconds ;) ) ...

I agree , too many electronics are a disaster waiting to happen.
 

evdok

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Has she had it from new? any flood damage that you know of? maybe its time to trade it in!
 

Parrot of Doom

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Sorry to tell you this but your daughter needs to develop a bit more common sense. £150 to change a battery? £1000 for an ABS sensor - I thought ABS sensors were little metal discs with holes in them.

Shes been had.
 

recycled

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she definitely has. just do a search for battery change. how much can it be? £70 for mine from the Main dealer
 

pammy

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Tell me abou it. My Dade's Mondeo is causing him one massive headache. Fuel injectors keep needing re-programming! £140 a go, might work, might not, if not new injectors at a cost of £1200, and they might last 6 weeks. It's a known problem but no fix from Ford:mad:

I told him to get shut of it and get a 124 :D
 

television

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There is nothing complex about any of the work that she has had done.

Everything on that list has been with us since 1984 or before

That dealer sounds awful
 

BTB 500

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Modern cars get more complex every year. Electronics have taken over in every nook and cranny of car design. All very well while they are new or under maker’s warranty but they can be a nightmare later on.

Yup, and not just the electronics. E.g. the A Class gets it's excellent interior space by putting the engine where it's only accessible for routine servicing. I believe that to change the starter motor the engine and transmission have to come out ...
 

Benzowner

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Whilst I generally agree there are too many electrical items on cars now, it is surely, the result of consumer drive. We wanted cars with electric windows, heated rear screens electric door mirrora heated seats etc etc.The fuel injection was probably the result of trying to acheive CO emissions as is having two sets of spark plugs per cylinder. There are still, very many many cars being driven where these things have not gone wrong, but generally we do not hear of them.
 

fredfloggle

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Sorry to tell you this but your daughter needs to develop a bit more common sense. £150 to change a battery? £1000 for an ABS sensor - I thought ABS sensors were little metal discs with holes in them.

Shes been had.

She has been no more had than people who buy a Merc only to be ripped off by dodgy servicing and repairs - I wouldn't put up with it, but as an engineer by trade I have a pretty reasonable grasp of what goes on under the rust - little old ladies pay their life savings to people who send her junk mail.

I believe that the little metal disk with the holes in it is the initiator rather than the sensor - nothwithstanding the fact hat she has probably been ripped off in any case.
 

Robbo

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She has definately been ripped off as she has paid out £1000 to the dealer to replace the ABS sensor and the problem is still there! So they obviously misdiagnised the problem.

I'd be tempted to ask for some kind of refund seing as she has shelled out £1k to not fix a problem.
 

tim.100

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ARE CARS TOO COMPLEX FOR THEIR OWN GOOD?

Well perhaps. I like the ABS and ASR on my C-Class.

However I do not despair of owning today's new car 10 years down the line. I have owned two BMW E32's, both from 1988. This model has 10 on-board computers. They both suffered from the same instrument panel fault, which was resolved by soldering new capacitors into the panel. The Internet enabled me to do this repair for pennies, becase there are people out there who know the common problems, and also know how to fix them. On this board we have Malcolm et al.... The other 9 computers were faultless. (NB. for BMW E34/E32 fans: LKM failure is actually a relay failure.)

However, the motor industry has failed to keep up. The fact that pricey dealers are seemingly the worst at dealing with the type of failures you describe simply beggars belief. Why buy a new car if serviceability is not guaranteed?
 

grober

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Says It All.

ARE CARS TOO COMPLEX FOR THEIR OWN GOOD? The bills for the last two weeks total £1,550. The dealer says he no longer has any idea what is wrong except that it clearly wasn’t the ABS sensor.

ANSWERS IT ALL REALLY!:(
 

glojo

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ARE CARS TOO COMPLEX FOR THEIR OWN GOOD?
Good point and welcome to the 21st century.

This recall refers to the 124 400E??, but I wonder if it also applies to any of the other larger engined 124's?
124.jpg

I agree with what has been said about consumer related demands and can just remember my mother's old washing machine with a hand operated mangle. :eek:

This illustration is more like a commercial option but it allows folks to get an idea of what I am describing but it highlights how things improve over the years.

laundry%20cusworth%20(6).jpg


My mother's mangle never broke, or needed repairing, but would we prefer hand washing our clothing?

We tend to view older cars with shed loads of nostalgia, but they needed far more servicing than their newer counter-parts and were also far more temperamental.

Regards
John
 

imadoofus

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it is surely, the result of consumer drive. We wanted cars with electric windows, heated rear screens electric door mirrora heated seats etc etc.

That's like the red tops saying they will keep printing pictures of no-hope wannabes in bikinis because that's what the readers want, or like the TV companies saying that they will keep churning out pointless, lowest-common-denominator drivel because it's what the viewers want.

Just because that's all there is to read/watch it doesn't mean that's what we want!

My point is that we didn't demand electric windows, satnav, heated seats etc until after the car makers started giving that stuff to us.

And frankly, some of the complex stuff is optional, and arguably is just technology for the sake of it, but people still have it.

Hence my soon-to-be-launched, and previously-mentioned-on-this-forum campaign:

"If you could park OK five years ago, how come you can't live without Parking Sensors today?"

;)
 

grober

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Not really - it is the dealership that is too simple to be in the servicing business!

I agree with what you are saying but sadly its all too common a scenario. I'm sure the dealer tried to repair the car. It's not in their interest to appear incompetent and have a dissatisfied customer on their doorstep. The problem is the complexity of the systems they have to deal with where replacement of expensive components is the only means of repair/test recommended by the manufacturer. When that doesn't do the trick maybe the sad reality is they are as powerless as the owner as to know what to do next?
 

Benzowner

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That's like the red tops saying they will keep printing pictures of no-hope wannabes in bikinis because that's what the readers want, or like the TV companies saying that they will keep churning out pointless, lowest-common-denominator drivel because it's what the viewers want.


;)

That is exactly what the public wanted, if you watched Strictly Come Dancing, the no hopers lasted until week 7, 8 and 9 purely on the back of public opinion:D :D
 

imadoofus

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That is exactly what the public wanted, if you watched Strictly Come Dancing, the no hopers lasted until week 7, 8 and 9 purely on the back of public opinion:D :D

Yes, but how many of the viewing public actually watched, and got sufficiently involved to phone up?

And, completely OT; how many of the people who do phone up, at £1 per minute, or whatever, are also the people who complain that the license fee is too high?!

PJ

PS: I haven't slept for several days, so I'm in the mood for a fight :devil: ;)
 

television

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"If you could park OK five years ago, how come you can't live without Parking Sensors today?"

;)

A few years ago we had bumpers that allowed you to bump, but they have been taken away, and we are left with bumpers that cant be used as bumpers as you will scratch the paint.

We even had over riders so when you braked when parking the front of the car went down and the over riders went behind the bumper of the car in front and you were stuck
 

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