• Report: #176453

Complaint Review: VOLKSWAGON OF AMERICA

  • Submitted: Wed, February 15, 2006
  • Updated: Fri, February 17, 2006

  • Reported By:Houston Texas
VOLKSWAGON OF AMERICA
Internet U.S.A.

VOLKSWAGON OF AMERICA RIPOFF DANGEROUS SUNROOF IMPLOSION-PROOF WITH PHOTOS, POLICE REPORT-VW DOESN'T CARE - DEFECTIVE CAR - RUDE CUSTOMER SERVICE - DANGEROUS SITUATION - REFUSE WARRANTY COVERAGE - NO CONCERN FOR DRIVERSInternet

*Consumer Comment: I Love It

*Consumer Comment: LG I feel your pain!!!!

*Consumer Comment: Made In Mexico

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I am appauled with Volkswagon of America and will NEVER purchase another volkswagon in my life. I cannot wait to get this Jetta out of my hands - and am frightened for my life to even drive it again after what happened to me this week.

As I was driving 65 mph on a freeway, I experienced hearing an extremely loud (explosion-like) noise. As I finally came back into reality after shock - I looked around as if to figure out what had just happened to me.

Out of the corner of my eye - I notice my sunroof was completely shattered and a huge hole engulfed it. My first reaction was to think that someone had shot at me with a gun (loud noise, shattered glass).

I was terrified to say the least - I continued to drive in complete shock and unaware of the road and my driving - my mind was spinning trying to figure out what was happening to me. I thought maybe someone had thrown something from an overpass at my vehicle. I had glass on my arms, hands, lap, hair, drivers seat and floor and passenger area.

I immediately drove to my work and contacted the police. Upon the police arriving to investigate - his immediate response was that the glass from the sunroof was very odd-looking. The sunroof glass was completely missing in the center, however, the surrounding glass was in tact but shattered to the edge rims of the opening. However, the glass was pointing in an upward direction (towards the sky). The police officer immediately knew that what had happened was from interior to exterior (an implosion). He throughly checked the interior of the vehicle for items that may have come into the car. He thought that this was the oddest thing he had ever seen. He felt confident that nothing had struck the vehicle and suggested that I contact Volkswagon immediately due to defect.

I contacted Volkwagon of America immediately, my first question: "has this ever happened?", secondly, I spent a great deal of time reporting yet another "odd" nuisance and made sure that I told the customer care representative exactly what had happened. Her name was Lauren.

She informed me that roadside assistance would tow the vehicle to the nearest dealership (which happened to be about 30 miles away). My immediate concern was that by the time the vehicle would arrive to the dealership, the "upward glass" would fall off and there would be no proof of what had happened.

Therefore, I had someone take photographs for me. Additionally, upon the Volkwagon roadside assistance wrecker arriving, I made sure that I informed him of the entire incident, showed him the window, asked that he explain to the dealership upon dropping off the vehicle.

I immediately contacted the dealership and informed someone in the service department of the situation, I asked if he documented the information and asked him to speak to a manager to also explain the situation. But was not able to.

He asked me to close the sliding interior of the sunroof - upon attempting to do so - and by using the dial - unfortunately, the sunroof opened and I heard the glass breaking off into the slot. It would be very important for me to follow up with the dealership.

That evening, I checked my cell phone messages and had messages from the dealership inquiring on whether the sunroof was open or closed when the incident happened.

Ok. I am confused. How does a sunroof implode or even crack if it is open? Secondly, it is winter, why would I drive with my sunroof open?

So, that evening, I left, yet another detailed message about the incident. The following morning, I contacted the dealership. I was told at that time that I am a priority and that the service manager would be contacting me immediately.

Upon contacting me, he began the conversation with informing me that this is the "oddest" thing he and the other service reps have ever seen. That there would be no way, the sunroof was struck with something. That when they closed the sunroof, the glass was still aiming in an upward position. That they took photographs of the sunroof and sent them to Volkswagon of America. He explained not only did he forward it because they have to have authorization to cover the issue with warranty but so that Volkwagon would be aware should this be a defect and for future problems with other drivers.

He then explained that Volkswagon of America reviewed the damage (I am assuming by email) and that this was "odd" and since it was something they had never seen before - that it had to have occurred from an exterior source. Therefore, it would not be covered under warranty.

Hmmm. Well, being that Volkswagon of America is the only party involved in this situation that has not seen the vehicle nor damage in person, this is quite interesting that they are so sure this was caused by exterior sources.

The police officer felt differently. The 20+ eyewitnesses felt differently. Volkswagon Clear Lake felt differently. But, not Volkswagon of America.

So, Volkswagon Clear Lake suggested that I contact Volkswagon of America once again and request to speak to upper level management and to be "persistent" because this should really be covered by warranty. They understood my frustration and agreed that I have the right to be angry and demand warranty coverage.

Immediately, I contacted Volkswagon of America. Lori (her name was Lori also) answered the line. I immediately requested management. At this time, Lori informed me that "regular customer care" reps have the same empowerment as management and there would be no need to speak to them. After several requests and no success, I began my story again.

The conversation was decent until Lori said, "So, VW Clear Lake declined warranty coverage?" I said, "No, they said that VW American declined coverage. Lori said, "So, they denied coverage?" After three times of saying, "No VW American declined coverage", Lori said, "I am confused, you said they denied coverage - did they deny coverage or not?" as if she wanted the words out of my mouth for evidence of something.

I said to Lori, "you are asking me to state something that is not the truth. I have told you several time and just explained to you for 20 minutes - VW Clear Lake believes this should be covered - they said to me that VW America will not cover under warranty and they suggested that I call VW America, request to speak to management, be persistent with you until I get what I want - which, Lori, by the way, is why I am calling - to report this and to speak to management, are you still denying me the right to speak to management?"

Lori said, "hold please."

Finally, Hillary in management spoke to me. She began very friendly. She expressed concern and told me that she wasn't sure what she could do - but that she would work on this for the day and get back to me before the close of business and let me know what their decision would be. She also, thought this was "scary".

In the meantime, VW Clear Lake contacted me to let me know that if it were not resolved the cost of the sunroof would be $2,095.00 (RIPOFF)

Hillary finally called back - Now VW of America's story was this. "VW has reviewed this incident and they have come to the decision that the sunroof implosion was caused from interior sources and it will not be covered by warranty."

So, I say to Hillary, "So, VW thinks that I struck the sunroof from the inside and this is how this happened?"

Hillary said, "I am not saying that, I am just stating that it was caused from some source inside." So, VW America, the only party that has not seen the vehicle in person originally stated it was caused from an exterior source - but now they believe it was interior related? Ok, who is this genius?

I asked Hillary to send me a letter in writing denying warranty coverage and the reasoning. I also requested that she send me records of all my reference numbers of every call and complaint that I have made in the past of this "defective" car. Hillary informed me that she is not able to give me this information and that I must have this information subpoened.

So, I contacted VW Clear Lake and asked them not to touch the sunroof - that I need my proof because I will probably be contacting an attorney.

My issues with VW began from the beginning.
1. My husband and I had never used the back car doors, upon finally attempting to do so, they would not open. From inside or outside. We took the car to service for it to be repaired. Odd. Inconvenience.
2. I took my car in for service and upon picking up the vehicle and driving away, the "check engine" light was on - which had not been on before. I took the car back again. Inconvenience.
3. Roger, the service manager, gave me a business card for "free services on my next maintenance" because of the rude and poor customer service. Disturbing.
4. While waiting for the service rep to pull my car around, I witnessed a service rep back one vw' customers vehicle into another vw customers car. Disturbing. Odd.
5. I am 36, never listen to the radio. Radio went out after two years - had to be replaced. Odd. Inconvenient.
6. After pulling into my garage, turning off car - rear lights remained on would not turn off. Had to unplug rear lights so that light covers would not melt. Drove brake light-less to the dealership the next day for repair. Odd. Dangerous.
7. The service rep brought the car around. Asked me to stand behind the vehicle while he pressed brakes to show me that it had been repaired. The brakes still were not repaired - I could not stay - because I had already taken off work several hours. Told him I would have to come back. Odd. Inconvenient.
8. While driving with client - he reached to push back seat and pulled out spring. Took to dealership. They said this is happending to VW Jettas. Odd. Inconvenient.
9. While my husband and I were driving - the glove box fell open and would not close - uncomfortable driving with glove box jabbing in your knees - Nuisance holding it while riding as a passenger. Took to dealership for repairs. Odd.
10. While getting my "free" maintenance that I was due from Roger - they informed that the Jetta has a recall on the seat heater - that they would repair this while they had the vehicle. The seat heaters have never worked ( no heat) since they did this.
11. Driving 65 mph on freeway- loud explosion - implosion of sunroof - glass shattered all over me - dangerous situation - unaware of driving situation - hysterically crying in fear - police report - and case number. Dealership proof of photographs and my photographs showing "implosion" of glass. Volkswagon of America not having one concern for my safety, for the situation, questions from me, which proves lack of concern for other consumers that this may happen to. EXTREMELY ODD!

My husband and I had been doing research on this sunroof incident - there are reports of this happening on Jaguar's, Chryslers, Saturns and everyone is disturbed by the weirdness of this - each person knew that they had not been struck from the exterior - yet Volkswagon of American seems to think that they know the answer even though they are, again, the only party that has not even seen the car.

As I write this, my car sits at the dealership, I have contacted VW Credit to inquire on options of getting out of the lease - I want nothing to do with Volkswagon nor the car.

I am afraid to drive it out of fear of being injured. So, I made my last call to customer care of VW of America. I think his name was Jeremy.

I began my conversation by requesting my past reference numbers with VW and, by the way Hillary, Jeremy read them to me. I then asked Jeremy to file a new complaint with a new reference number. I told him to record that I am very concerned that VW does not care about safety and that I do not feel safe driving the car ever again. Jeremy informed me that VW of America stands by its decision and that this is their final decision. Jeremy was also very proud to announce that "regular customer care" representatives have the same empowerment as management.

Way to go VW of America for making your employeess so proud to have such equal empowerment. They are so proud that each time I speak to them, they feel that this is of such importance they must tell me about it!

To future, VW drivers, I hope that this may pursuade you to shop elsewhere - my husband was a VW fan for life before this car - and now he is anti-VW!

My brother also recently bought a diesel Golf and told me today that everyone he talks to with a VW is disgusted. One of his customers bought a Jetta after he bought his Golf. The first week he had the vehicle the transmission blew. Upon returning it to VW - they kept it for two months. Yes, they gave him a loaner car - but when he asked that they make his payment for two months since he never even drove the vehicle for two months - they laughed. They probably also told him about their empowerment.

Stay away from Volkswagon - nothing about it is pleasant!

LG
Houston, Texas
U.S.A.

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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 02/15/2006 08:10 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/VOLKSWAGON-OF-AMERICA/internet/VOLKSWAGON-OF-AMERICA-RIPOFF-DANGEROUS-SUNROOF-IMPLOSION-PROOF-WITH-PHOTOS-POLICE-REPORT-176453. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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#1 Consumer Comment

I Love It

AUTHOR: Cory - (U.S.A.)

Using cheap parts and cheap labor for an expensive car. Thanks for the info.
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#2 Consumer Comment

LG I feel your pain!!!!

AUTHOR: Joe - (U.S.A.)

First of all, your VW isn't manufactured in Mexico, it's assembled in Mexico.

Second is that this almost exact situation happened to me while on vacation (1500 miles from home). I was visiting my brothers house and just removed my 2 year old son out of his carseat when the rear window exploded. No houses, people, nothing around! I called the cops and he stated he's seen it before. Well to make a long story short I had it towed to the next State (closest VW dealer), and they denied warranty. But since they contract out their glass work I spoke with the glass repairer. He stated that the only reason a window can explode outwards is because the glass was not tempered correctly at the factory. I'm a die-hard VW fan but their customer service has gone to crap!!! Not just with this event, but with all the complaints I've heard from people around the country (VWVortex).
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#3 Consumer Comment

Made In Mexico

AUTHOR: Cory - (U.S.A.)

Leased a 2001 jetta for my wife. Back then, they only had a 2 year/24,000 mile warranty. Had it in the shop seven times for the driver's side window. They extended the warranty out to like 10 years/100,000 miles. One time I dropped it off Thur. afternoon for the window, the tracks kept breaking, they were made of plastic until the upgraded ones came in, that were made of metal. Anyway I picked it up on Mon. afternoon, Tues. morning the window breaks again. What amazed me about the vehicle was that every time we took it to the dealer for oil or whatever, I get a long list of parts and pieces that were bad and they had to replace. The parts were things I have never heard of. There were drain holes in the sides of the vehicle which were always leaking some kind of crap. Was told it was bee's wax used as a sound suppressor. Weird. Same experience with the glove box and cup holders. Found out later it was made in Mexico. Once the 2 year/24k warranty ran out, I figured it would be cheaper to let it sit in the garage, which it did for the last 8 months.
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