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Poor customer service

What is it with the dealers here? Do they not want business?

I'm trying to get hold of an alternator and the reply I get is "no longer available, either new or reconditioned" - and this is for a car which is just 10 years old. That is bad enough but the attitude of the dealers (both Alfa and Bosch) is that once they've told you "can't get it" then that's the end of the story.

No one seems to be interested in going the extra distance to get a solution - they just say "no" and then that's the conversation over. No attempt to find an alternative source for parts, no attempt to apply a little lateral thinking to a solution, no suggestion of "I know a place that MIGHT be able to help".

The same applies to the local FIAT dealer - remember, FIAT own Alfa - he has no interest whatsoever in trying to get Alfa parts for me.

I've had it with Alfa and their lack of support for their products and their crap dealer service. As soon as mine is fixed I'm going to sell it and buy something american. At least THEN I'll have a dealer in town and access to parts via the internet.

For sale: Alfa Romeo 166 3L 24v Sportronic 2000my - make me an offer.
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Alrighty Richard
30p provided you deliver.

Pomeo

Rise above it..get the finger oot get it sorted drive up to their front door...and say remember me..big mistake massive even...fixed for 50p. even if it cost a fiver.

ps if yer surgeon had you attitude you's be under the sand.
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(Post Link) post #3 of 30 Old 28-12-10 Thread Starter
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My surgeon believed in getting the job done - as I do. However, that's more than can be said for the dealers here. I would persevere with the car if I actually liked it but I don't - it's the most disappointing car I've owned in a very long time.

You'll need to up your offer a bit, though - it's worth more as scrap!
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I'm going to sell it and buy something american. At least THEN I'll have a dealer in town and access to parts via the internet..
just as well, you're gonna need it. another word of caution - with the lack of decent specialists for American cars outside the USA, if you have a problem that a garage cant find (like I did with my 96 mustang) it can bounce from pillar to post for literally months. My mustang suffered a severe lack of power and very high fuel consumption (had 48 bhp at the rear wheels), and it went to four different 'specialists' in the UK, but without any factory trained technicians or real knowledge, the car was off the road in total nearly a year.

be aware also that the quality of modern American cars is beyond rubbish. I was a died in the wool yank car fan, but I'll never touch anything post 1990 USA with a barge pole again - its wall to wall crap to the point of being unserviceable.

the 166 is infinitely better built, better supported, better to drive, and far more reliable. if reliability is an issue to you, Yank is not the way to go. Most of my friends run American cars, mostly modern and low mileage. EVERY SINGLE ONE has broken down in the three years I have owned my 166 - the list is as follows

1998 Cadillac Eldorado - massive transmission failure
1996 Chevy Astro - wiring loom failure - random cutting out.
1996 Chevy Camaro 3.8 - random failure to start, no fuel pump.
1999 Cadillac STS - massive transmission failure
1997 GMC safari - trans and engine failure, and wiring fire (8 separate break downs)
1996 Mustang (mine) head gasket failure, crank shaft failure, trans failure
1996 Mustang (friends) head gasket failure
1994 Camaro Z28 - transmission failure
2001 camaro Z28 - cat collapse

from the other cars we run, a friend has a mondeo thats had an alternator failure, my mate with a mitsubishi FTO has had no failures at all, and my 166 has required a thermostat and a clutch, neither requiring recovery. none of the faults on these cars required recovery. Transmission and wiring issues are almost guaranteed with modern yanks.

Be judged for the man you are, and the actions of your life, not the book you read or the statue you pray to.......

Never hold a grudge, its a sign of a small, petty person.

Last edited by philoldsmobile; 28-12-10 at 11:31.
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You haven't checked my location, have you? We have a ready supply of dealers for Yank cars here - and they provide a decent service. However, my nearest Alfa dealer is 140km away (half a day's round trip) and seems not to give a s*** about customer service. The nearest independent specialist is the same distance away and is only marginally more interested in looking after customers, based upon the communication I've had with him.

My own experience of American cars (mostly Chryslers) is that they are tacky but robust - and it's far easier to look after an American car in the UK than an Alfa in the UAE! At least you can get parts for Yank cars in the UK - oh how I wish that there was an Alfa flavoured equivalent of "Castleford American" out here.

When the Alfa dealer says p*** off because it's 10 years old and there's no bits available, what are you do?

Last edited by Richard Moss; 28-12-10 at 15:32.
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You haven't checked my location, have you? We have a ready supply of dealers for Yank cars here - and they provide a decent service. However, my nearest Alfa dealer is 140km away (half a day's round trip) and seems not to give a s*** about customer service. The nearest independent specialist is the same distance away and is only marginally more interested in looking after customers, based upon the communication I've had with him.

My own experience of American cars (mostly Chryslers) is that they are tacky but robust - and it's far easier to look after an American car in the UK than an Alfa in the UAE! At least you can get parts for Yank cars in the UK - oh how I wish that there was an Alfa flavoured equivalent of "Castleford American" out here.

When the Alfa dealer says p*** off because it's 10 years old and there's no bits available, what are you do?
what are you to do?
Do what you did here

https://www.alfaowner.com/Forum/unite...e-problem.html


Be a better enginear than he'll ever be.If you can do that then an alternator is even easier.
Then take all his customers off him as you do a better job.

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I could - but then I will be in the same position with something else next month, something else the month after etc. It's also a very expensive car to run here and those parts that you can get are expensive (very). I came here to earn and save money, not squander it on £100 a time front brake pads!

As I said, if I actually liked the car I'd stick with it but I don't. Sorry if that offends enthusiasts but I am enormously disappointed by this car and just want it off my drive ASAP.
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Richard,

alternator aside, what's the issue with the car? Also, not sure about Abu Dhabi, but Gargash here is very efficient and can locate whatever I need (and my Alfa is older than yours). Could you post some pics and details on your car?
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(Post Link) post #9 of 30 Old 29-12-10 Thread Starter
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Gargash are the people who told me that the alternator was not available and it's chiefly their attitude that has annoyed me, so I've got a (rather expensive) used one coming from Al Ahli (?) in Dubai. Even then they couldn't be bothered to arrange a courier, asking me to do it instead.

Alternator aside, I just don't "feel' anything for the car. I don't know why but it just feels uninvolving and it's certainly poorly designed/built (the blind spots are shocking and the quality of the switchgear even worse). It's got a fabulous engine which is looking for a more deserving home!

Here's my "intro thread" on the car and I'll try to get some more detail up soon.

https://www.alfaowner.com/Forum/intro...m-the-uae.html
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You haven't checked my location, have you? We have a ready supply of dealers for Yank cars here - and they provide a decent service. However, my nearest Alfa dealer is 140km away (half a day's round trip) and seems not to give a s*** about customer service. The nearest independent specialist is the same distance away and is only marginally more interested in looking after customers, based upon the communication I've had with him.

My own experience of American cars (mostly Chryslers) is that they are tacky but robust - and it's far easier to look after an American car in the UK than an Alfa in the UAE! At least you can get parts for Yank cars in the UK - oh how I wish that there was an Alfa flavoured equivalent of "Castleford American" out here.

When the Alfa dealer says p*** off because it's 10 years old and there's no bits available, what are you do?

I've never used main dealers, only indies, and they never seem to say that. I'd have thought with an alternator the obvious course would be to order through one of the many online parts suppliers, or get it reconditioned.

Most main dealers of most cars will turn you away if the car is over 10 years old - I remember a ford dealer trying to tell my dad he would have to scrap his XR4i because there were absolutely positivley no brake disks available any more. (this was in 1994) yet the local parts factor had them (and still does) on the shelf.

I was told the trans cooler lines for my old Camaro were totally unavailable, so I used a bit of gumption, and repaired my existing one using a flaring tool, and some flexi hose from a flex-o-lite trans cooler kit.

BTW, the alternator is still available - buy parts buy have them for £164 + VAT

http://www.buypartsby.co.uk/alternator-buy.php

If you think the switchgear in a 166 is bad, the switchgear in a modern yank is shocking...the Russians actually made hundreds of improvements to the chrysler sebring when they started building it in Russia as the volga sieber

Last edited by philoldsmobile; 29-12-10 at 12:44.
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Don't forget to add £90 to ship it to the UAE and allow 10 days transit or so. I tried Buypartsby a couple of days ago but they weren't answering the phone.

Thanks for looking, though.

Sadly this country doesn't have knowledgeable motor factors - in fact we don't really have motor factors as such. There are places that sell basic stuff such as brakes, batteries etc. but no one is interested in trying to get something less ordinary becuase "you just go to the dealer for that".

I had a look at a few Chevrolets last night - them seemed better screwed together my 166!
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Richard,

I feel your pain....I posted in another thread https://www.alfaowner.com/Forum/unite...ly-2009-a.html
regarding the exact same issue. As I mentioned there, there are manufacturers of components like BOGE, SACHS, Lemforder and ZF that do a lot of Alfa OEM components, yet the local agents hear Alfa and that is their ticket to SIT BACK DOWN ON THEIR LAZY BACKSIDES. It irks me to the point of distraction!
I have already mentioned to the vendors that their local agents are about as useful as herpes, the people at KYB helped me to get shocks for my cars as the local people told me that they are no longer available. I sent KYB their mail and someone got a bollocking as two days later I got an apologetic phone call.
I needed gas struts for the bonnet/boot for mine and sent a letter to the vendors, they told me to contact Mr Chinna at Sparco who as agents for MANY Alfa OEM manufacturers, told me that they do not suppy that brand. I sent his email stating so, directly to the vendor who was naturally very interested in his response (expecting a call from him soon) :-)

The guy at Gargash spares division, well I wouldn't trust him to sit the right way around on a toilet seat. I have asked him for info on 4 seperate occassion to have the loser tell me he will 'call me back', the hell he will, I am off the phone for now, and that is all he cares about.
Gargash as a dealer is advertising their cars on souq.com, that is how bad sales are, dont believe me? Log on and have a looksee...all 2009 models that are STILL in their showroom.

In the other thread I mentioned that Dynatrade are also agents for many of the same OEM's I just have not followed up with them yet.

Bottom line is, if you dont like the car, sell it off...or, buy one of the cheapies that are on dubizzle at the moment and keep a whole car as spares :-)

I have been to Al Ahli's workshop, it is a little backyard joint, but they do seem to have a bunch of parts and whatnot. If you need something let me know, maybe I can help you out getting it to you. Alternatively, by from the factors in the UK. I am fortunate that my friend flies for Emirates and I get a lot of stuff sent back via her..and do the work myself....Why just yesterday I got back from a UK xmas and my bag was loaded with front brake discs, all-round new pads, gas struts, rocker covers and a thermostat. :-)

I too am sick of the hassle that we get from the local morons with IQ's that fluctuate with room temps and we SHOULD be able (as a group) to put some pressure on these monkeys. I thnk we should approach the GM of Dynatrade and get him to hear us....!!
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Hi Richard, am I wrong or the colour is, ehm, like "champagne"? How many km?
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Almayer:

It's "Aurora" pearlescent and has (off the top of my head) just under 130,000km on the clock. I will get some decent photos sorted out soon. The road safety test and registration is due in April, I think, but I'll check that.

Moonlightblue:

All interesting stuff, thanks.

I got my replacement alternator last night but haven'ty had a chance to fit it yet. Hopefully I'll get to do that this evening.

Last edited by Richard Moss; 30-12-10 at 08:46.
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Richard, not sure if your V6 is similar to mine in the attachment layout, but on mine, the alternator is a complete pain to get to....it sits under the rear bank of cylinders, and is not an easy swap....good luck!
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New alternator fitted and working - pushing out 14.2 volts. Following a tip received on another forum, I removed the anti-roll bar drop-link and loosened the drop-link bracket, moved the bracket out of the way and the alternator came out easily.
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New alternator fitted and working - pushing out 14.2 volts. Following a tip received on another forum, I removed the anti-roll bar drop-link and loosened the drop-link bracket, moved the bracket out of the way and the alternator came out easily.

wash yer mooth oot wie soap boy....they probably copied it from here.

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I think it was you on the 164-166 forum - which is what I meant by "another forum".
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Nice job, maybe my 155 is going to be an easy one too.....right, not bloomin' likely
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I think it was you on the 164-166 forum - which is what I meant by "another forum".
OOps richard..but yee ken that mah command o the engrish language is no the best

when's the stoning or is she getting the benefit of the doubt till next strop.

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Thanks Richard, will wait for the pics.
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As per the rest of the complaints regarding the local dealer in Dubai, Gargash Motors, I spoke with Mr. Sanjay, After Sales Manager of Gargash, and showed him this thread, he feels ver sorry for what happened, and he's ready to adress any after sales issue, his number is 04-340133331

As per myself, I always complained about Gargash, but I have to admit that since Mr Sanjay joined them recently, things have been completely different.
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Sorry for the delay in getting pictures up - when I can find where I've hidden my camera I'll take some!
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Think there might be a few too many digits in that phone number.. :-)

I would be well impressed if they could do something about the after sales service, but for me it is a bit of a pipe dream, mostly because I drive an older car. I am more than willing to accept that as cars age, the dealers are not really responsible for keeping them on the road. What would be more useful is if they helped us by garnering the support of the OEM suppliers. Being in the trade, their connections/contacts would be much stronger.
As I pointed out earlier, there are many OEM suppliers, in particular Lemforder, ZF, Sachs to name a few that should be able to supply some parts, but are just unwilling to do so.
I also think if there are any owners of Alfa's that are older than 8 years, we should get together and discuss matters with a local agent of these parts.....there are MANY of them and I am sure if we focused our efforts and spoke to them, they would help, or at least offer some valid reason why it is not viable to do so..

My 0.02 fils
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Moonlightblue,

Sanjay asked me to leave his gsm number, so here it is: +971 50-1000137. You can bug him any time on Alfa issues. Personally, I have a Spider from 97, so 13 years old, and I managed to repair everything (alternator included) via Gargash. Greg is a competent technician, and finally Sanjay is a good manager that actually follows up and gets back to you when he promises, something very hard to find in Dubai in general.

Which car do you have?
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