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I have bought a brand new Seat Ibiza in October 2009 from Arnold Clarke in Newcastle upon Tyne. I loved the car and enjoyed driving it. However, in early May 2010 my steering wheel started to rattle every time I would turn it on the either side and the noise got louder and louder in the next couple of days. On top of that my brakes got squeaky as well. I contacted the Seat servecing department. They asked me to pop in so they could have a look at it.
After a test drive one of the guys told me that they would need to replace the steering rack on my car and it would take them 3 days to do it. When I asked for a courtesey car I was told that I would need to pay £12/ day for the insurance. I was stunned and told them that in this circumstances I should not have to pay for a courtesy car as I pay for my car every month and so the insurance on it and the car has a manufactures fault, so why would I need to pay extra?!?! Anyway they were holding their ground, so I decided to insure myself on my dad's car as it worked out cheaper. handed my car in 3 days later I went to pick it up. They've replaced the steering rack and told me that there was nothing wrong with my brakes. While driving home my brakes kept squeaking away, so I rang them back and asked them to recheck my brakes as the car was only about 6 months old at the time and this should not happening at all!
A week later they have checked the brakes again, told me that they have cleaned the pads and the squeakes have gone away. Well, that was not the case! Anyways, with my busy schedule I simply did not have the time to bring the car in to the garage again, so I just left it.
In November 2010 I've put my car in for service and I was told that my front tyres have worn off. I received the servicing sheet where next to the ''Wheel allingment'' box they put a tick, indicating that it was OK. I was absolutely supprised to hear that after 15,000 miles I already had to change my tyres. Anyways I have purchased the new tyres (£120 each) from another dealer and fitted them 2-3 weeks later.
In may 2011 I have noticed that my front tyres have worn off from the inside again! I was shocked! I have poped to Seat again asking them why is this happening? Did they do the wheel alignment after replacing a steering rack? At that point I felt quite aggitated. The man in charge told me to book an appt, so they could look at problem and check the notes. I also told them that I was not happy paying for the alignment as this car was already costing me more that it should! The man told me not to worry and that he would speak to the manager on the day and there should not be any cost.
On the day of the appointment, I was told by the receptionist that I was booked for wheel alignment and they would swap my front tyres for the back ones so I could get more out of them and it would cost me £55. I told him that I have spoken to the man in charge a week earlier and I was told otherwise. The receptionist went out the back to the office, came back a couple of minutes later telling me that I either had to pay or go. I demanded to speak to the manager, but insted I was told that everyone was aware of my situation and I would still have to pay! When I asked whether there was any record of wheel alignment on my car, he said none was recorded on the system. However, he believed that it was done! He also added that when the car went in for a service they informed me of uneven tyre ware. I explained to him that when I spoke with the man who serviced my car he told me that my tyres worn off and I needed new ones, nothing was mentioned about eneven ware or reason given to why this might be happening...!
I have asked for seat customer service number, so I could make a complaint. Once I got the number I gave them a ring. The gentlemen that I spoke to was not very pleasant, when I described the situation. He appered to be very doubtful and questioned everything that I have told him. When he asked for the receipts for my new front tyres i told him that I did not have them as it's been 5 months since replacing the tyres. Anyways, he did not believe that I have placed a new tyres on my car, but part worn! I was stunned! At the end he agreed to contact the North East manager of Seat and update me a week later on any progress.
A couple of hours later I got a phone call from the manager, who apologised and said that I should not be having all of these problems with my car that is not even 2 years old! I explained to him what was discussed earlier and said that now I would want to have my car fully inspected, as the last thing I want is for my car fall into pieces after the manufactory's warranty expires. He told me that he was not aware of my situation (but the receptionist told me otherwise) and asked me to book an appoinment and also added that I would get a free courtesey car. I rang the reception and made an appointment.
Brought the car in on the following monday and was told to collect it at the end of the day. 2 hours later got a phone call from Seat service asking me to leave the car over night and said that someone will contact me tomorrow to collect it. I did not receive the phone call on the following day, so I decided to ring them on wednesday. When rang they told me that the car was not ready yet, so I rang them on Thursday again. The receptionist could not locate my car and did not even know where it was! He said that he will call me back. An hour later I got a voicemail on my phone saying that my ca was ready for a pick up. When arrived I noticed that the front tyres were not swapped for the back ones as was initially agreed. I have told the receptionist and he said that I did not mention it on monday when handed the car in....I have explained that that was initially agreed and it should be on their computer notes! Then he asked me and my husband to wait for half an hour while they would swap the tyres. Half an hour later we got my car back and I was told by the man in charge (the one that I spoke a couple of weeks earlier) that I should receive a full report and diagnostic through the post the following week.
On the road I tested the car by letting go off my steering wheel to see whether the wheels got aligned. I was not suprised to see that my car was still drifting to the left quite a lot. So I returned back to the garage and asked the man in charge to test drive the car! He came back from a test drive admitting that alignment was not done. This is 4 days later!!!!!!!
I jumped in the courtosey car again and went home. I got a phone call the following day saying that my car was ready for a pick up. However, I was unable to collect it until Monday due to work commitments.
On monday i collected the car and was told again that I should await for a full report within a week.
The same week I got a phone call from that unpleasant gentelmen from customer Seat service, he asked me whether the job was done and the outcome. He also mentioned that he was informed by servicing department that they carried out a full car diagnostics for free which normally would be very expensive.
A month later nothing arrived through the post, so i rang the service department again to try to get hold of the man in charge. I must have rang about 6 times leaving the message on his personal answer phone and with his collegues, but no reply. Then I managed to contact him and told him that I have left messages to call me back, in reply I was told that he never received any of my messages! Another lie!!! He then promised to call me back a couple of days later as he believed that the manager called me and dealt with the report. ????? sounded a bit strange but I agreed to wait for another couple of days. A week later I still had no news. Getting hold of the man in charge seemed impossible for another 2-3 weeks. Once contacted him I was told that the manager was ment to call me. I explained that I did not get any call nor the report! Then he said that they have lost the report. Again I was asked to pop in at any time so they can re-do it! On the day they told me that it would take about 30 min to complete it and at the end of it I received a sheet of paper that you normally receive at the end of the car service that states the tyre tread, oil level, brake fluid level etc..... So I guess it wasnt even that expensive diagnostic after all, but simple visual check! At that point I felt absolutely dissapointed and just left it at that.
So in my opinion this garage on Scotswood road in Newcastle is a total scam and full of lies! They just do not do want to do their job properly, but want your money from you! The place is a joke! Would not reccommend to anyone!