I own a Chevrolet Spark
(2008 model) with registration number MH03AM8802. My car is under the Chevrolet
cashless maintenance offer, whereby any normal repair and maintenance (except accident, of course) is to be taken care of by Chevrolet
, within 45,000 kms/ 3 years. My car has run for about 26,000 kms.
Around end of March / begining of April 2010, I noticed a noise while normal braking. Concerned, I brought this to the attention of the Service Engineer at S C Auto Corporation, Thane while giving my car for its regular and due servicing on 24th April 2010. The Service Centre kept the car for two days and after reportedly cleaning the brake disc and associated systems gave the car back to me and told me that there was no problem whatsoever with the brake and disc and it was "as good as new". I hardly drove a kilometer from the Service Centre that the noise started to come again. Worried, I again reported the same to the Service Engineer at S C Auto. My car was arranged to be picked up from my office on 2nd May 2010 and again after keeping the car for another two days, the engineers at Service Centre were not able to find out and correct the problem. I was handed over the car after minor adjustments and cleaning of the brakes.
While taking delivery, I tested the car with the service engineers. Though they claimed to have solved the problem, however, I was not fully convinced. Nevertheless, relying on service engineers advice I took back the car, to realize soon that the problem was not sorted out. After a few days I decided that I should get the issue sorted out and on a call from the executive from S C Auto I registered my complaint regarding non-resolution of brake noise. I again gave the car to the Service Centre on 27th May 2010, who called me the next day i.e. 28th May 2010, and told me that the ball bearing of the front brakes have been damaged. They also stated that while the ball bearings of the brake were under warranty and they would be changed without charging me, however, there were marks on the disc brakes, which would have to be skimmed and I would have to pay Rs 1000/- for the same. On enquiring about the cause of these marks on the disc, the service engineer replied that they were caused due to damage in the ball bearing. I tried
to argue out with the engineer that I should not be liable to pay anything for the disc brake as the fault completely was with them as they were not able to locate the fault during the first service and the damage to the brake disc was solely on account of negligence on their part. Further, the skimming of the disc would reduce the life of the brakes, which would force me to replace the disc much sooner than would have otherwise been required, had the disc not been skimmed. Please note that this is the very same brake disc which, as per the service engineer, were in "as good as new condition" the very first time the problem was reported, which is just about a month back. I request that the disc brake should be changed immediately, instead of skimming, as the fault completely lies with the service center for not detecting the problem in the first instance. For some reason, if that is not possible, I should at least not be charged for something which has worsened because of the fault of the Chevrolet
I would also like to complain about the lackadaisical and irresponsible approach of the service centre towards the problem, especially since the brake is an extremely critical component of the car and usually the first and most important safety feature. Further, I have been forced to give my car to the service center thrice already for resolving this problem and every time they have kept it for 2-3 days, causing me inconvenience and extra expenses in my office and personal travel, which would have been avoided had a thorough job been done in the first instance. This third time, the car has been at the service center for a week now. In fact, I should also be reimbursed the additional travel costs that we have had to incur every time the car has gone to the service center, which aggregate to around Rs 5000/-
The response of GM has been pathetic, to say the least. I spoke to the GM Customer Care on 29th May 2010 morning, who, after taking down my complaint, had promised to send a complaint reference number
to my mobile within a few minutes. However, till date, even after 4 days, I have not received any reference number. I had also written an email to gmi.[protected]@gm.com on 29th May. I have receive the following reply on 31st May:
"We have gone through the contents of your e-mail and understand your concern, since the matter need to be investigated in regard to your feedback, our enfranchised dealership M/s SC Auto
Corporation, Thane is being requested for assistance & clarification on the matter. We are also advising Service Manager of M/s SC Auto Corporation to provide you necessary possible assistance in the matter."
After this, I have been waiting for the past 3 days for any further communication/ resolution from GM/ SC Auto, but none is forthcoming. Meanwhile, SC Auto Corporation is telling me that the car is ready; I should pay Rs 1100/- and take the car. It's not really a matter of money since 1100/- is not a large sum; it is a question of owning up responsibility. I wish that GM take up this matter seriously and the service center be pulled up for shoddy service. Only when the car went to SC Auto for a third time, they looked at it seriously since, as per their own admission, they would be questioned by GM why this car came for a third time within a span of one month and why the problem was not resolved. They are really not bothered about giving proper service; only finishing off the job with least efforts on their part.
I had expected GM to do something about it; but they seem as bad as their service center. They have a long response time and are just not bothered about the inconvenience caused to owners. I now realise that the cashless maintenance offer is a sham, since they will find out ways to extract money from the customer and my brake problem is just one them. Also, the fact that the ball bearings broke within 2 years of purchasing the car, points to poor quality of components used by GM.
I would request senior officials at GM to take up the issue for early resolution, since this is just not expected of a international company like General Motors.