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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is an FYI as well as a question as to whether anyone else has experienced the same problem and if so how they have resolved it.

We bought an ex demo (< 2,000 miles) Kodiaq SE 1.4 125ps 7 Seater from Winchester Motor Group: http://www.winchestermotorgroup.co.uk/
It did not have a tow bar, but we definitely wanted one (doing up a house and want to pull a trailer). I ensured that i reviewed the specs of the car (http://www.skoda.co.uk/SiteCollectionDocuments/downloads/brochures/kodiaq_pricing_specs.pdf) and it said the car could pull 1600kg. I asked the dealer if it was OK to add a tow bar, they said yes and rough order of magnitude would be around £1000 (verbally only) which seemed expensive, but worth it as it would not affect the warranty (fitted by Skoda and Skoda parts).
So, a month after buying the car (which we have mostly enjoyed) we went back to Winchester Skoda to book in adding a tow bar. They came back with a quote of £4000 !!! Apparently, Skoda says that for our SE to be able to tow up to the specs and for its warranty to remain valid, it needs a complete radiator and cooling system upgrade! Eh????

From what i know about Consumer Rights (https://www.which.co.uk/consumer-rights/advice/how-to-complain-about-a-second-hand-car-to-a-dealer) you can't sell a car with specs that says it can do something, then expect the customer to pay to upgrade the car so that it actually meets the specs!!

We did spend a lot of time with Skoda customer support, who were pretty good at first. But unfortunately the dealer and Skoda are both blaming each other. Skoda say that they posted information on this issue before we bought the car (information sent to dealers only). The dealer didn't tell us (the originally said the info came out after we bought the car, but were wrong) and they claim that its Skodas fault no theirs. We have politely asked for them to resolve it between themselves (and let us pay £1000 for a tow bar to be added) but no joy!!

I have been very quiet on the matter until now, as i was naively expecting them to resolve it, but it seems that it is really up to the dealer to resolve (they are the ones who sold us the car) and they dont seem bothered. So we are going to take it to the Ombudsmen and see what happens. Bitterly disappointed as i always thought that Skoda were a reliable and trustworthy company. Alas....

So - if you want a tow bar on your 1.4 125ps Kodiaq SE, make sure its already fitted when you buy it, otherwise you are in for a big surprise!

I really do hope that they sort this out at some point, its crazy they can get away with this in my mind (but maybe my mind is crazy).
 

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Someone else on the forum started a thread like this a while ago but their dealership fronted the cost. I think the scenario was a little bit different and I'm not sure if it was the same engine or not.

I'd suggest that the advertised specs are correct if that's how the car's been ordered. Otherwise it's generally useless info for the initial purchaser anyway.

Edit: I doubt you'll get a favourable resolution since you only had a verbal quote that was given in error from the dealership. The time for a goodwill gesture seems to have passed. I'd think that paying for Just the parts and no labour will be about the best you'll manage to get.
 

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Without going into the finer details, I had aftersales issues with Winchester Motor Group and a warranty claim which they tried to blame on me. I got a second opinion from another dealer and Skoda UK were gracious about it and covered the costs. What helped was that I had a paper trail of evidence & photos.
 

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Try 'Rip Off Britain' on the BBC. They love this sort of thing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the info everyone. Interesting to know that Skoda UK and dealers have been gracious on things like this in the past, lets see if Winchester Motor Group step up.

I am going to continue to pursue it (got a reply from Skoda on Twitter today as i used all the social media avenues i could think of). Skoda UK customer service then got in touch to say that they found my original support request for this and that i should contact the dealer. Unfortunately, Winchester Motor group don't seem to be alive on their twitter or facebook feed.

If i dont hear anything in the next couple of weeks, then i will continue my Consumer Rights Act complaint to the Ombudsmen and maybe even try Rip Off Britain too!!

I will keep this thread updated.
 

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Politely ask for the Dealer Principals correct name and style of address.
This will usually elicit the question "What for?"
Your answer is for the court paperwork to pursue the matter in court.
Be prepared to use the County Court On Line Service for claims up to £10,000. If it goes to this the forms are easy to fill in effectively you state your complaint. There is a charge which you get back if successful but no further payment if you lose.
It is odds on with the threat of court action in his/her name coupled with the company, not only will it concentrate their minds but to avoid the costs on their part of briefing a solicitor etc and the main group knowing about the incompetence of their franchise they will capitulate.

Go for it
Dont get mad get even!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
thanks @professional1. I was thinking of going forward with the complaint with the Consumer Ombudsmen (www.consumer-ombudsman.org) rather than the small claims court (is that what you are referring to?). Any idea which one would be best in a claim of this magnitude (£4000-ish)?
 

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Unless Skoda cave on this I doubt you're going to get anywhere. You were badly misquoted which is really unfortunate but the dealership doesn't have to honour that quote as they can quite simply decide not to "sell" you the work. That's their perogative.
As for the specs of the car claiming it can tow 1600kg. My SE L 150 DSG can't tow anything because it doesn't have a tow bar. It's insufficiently specced for towing.
I'm not making argument, I'm just very pragmatic. Please don't take my comments the wrong way.
 

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Well b*gga me! Something else I have learnt.
I didn't realise my car could not tow either!!
 

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Colin Lambert said:
Well b*gga me! Something else I have learnt.
I didn't realise my car could not tow either!!
Don't want to upset you more old chap but it can't fly either.
 

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That's ok,
I don't have a PPL! ;)
 

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I'm waiting delivery of a 2 litre 4x4 SEL 5 seater. Has anyone any information regarding fitting a tow bar to this model? The dealer has assured me there's not a problem fitting one.
I just want to double check before accepting delivery.
Thanks
 

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The configurator shows both the 4x4 man, and 4x4 DSG as being able to have the F/Fit tow bar or tow bar prep.
Dave
 

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Hi,

I originally posted this a while back - by coincidence the bear is in this week to have the tow bar fitted. In the workshop for 5 days.

It is only the 1.4 Petrol that is affected, the dealership was unaware of all the upgraded items required and quoted to me the factory fitted price of £893 or £983 (Can't remember the actual cost). Cost to the dealership £3500 give or take a pound.

Interestingly they also mentioned this would open up a can of worms - 2nd market 1.4 Petrol Bears who would want to pay £3500 - £4000 for a tow bar? Their biggest worry was clients going elsewhere to get one fitted and then voiding the warranty due to overheating engines etc...

Regards

Dave
 

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Hi Willcrick...I just wish to say good luck in your potential claim...I advised my 2 local dealers when I purchased my Kody that I wished to tow, and both made it very clear which models to stay clear from..such a shame you were less lucky. I had to complain to Skoda HO on a different and far less important matter, albeit very annoying at the time to myself and wife. Suffice to say the local Dealer offerred something ludicrous as a gesture of goodwill for woeful service, (5% off car mats), which I refused. HO are sending me £15O. I am concerned that slowly Skoda Dealers are not so concerned about Customer Service as they are aware that their cars are fantastic value, and don't mind p%$$£*g off the occasional customer because their Sales will remain high?
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Hugh Fanism said:
Unless Skoda cave on this I doubt you're going to get anywhere. You were badly misquoted which is really unfortunate but the dealership doesn't have to honour that quote as they can quite simply decide not to "sell" you the work. That's their perogative.
As for the specs of the car claiming it can tow 1600kg. My SE L 150 DSG can't tow anything because it doesn't have a tow bar. It's insufficiently specced for towing.
I'm not making argument, I'm just very pragmatic. Please don't take my comments the wrong way.
Understood, i get the pragmatic approach. I am not too bothered about the mis-quote really, its more the fact that the car specs say it can tow a certain amount, when it actually cant. I feel that Skoda are to blame here. They sent out information to dealers 3 months (or so) after it went on sale to give them the additional info that this model cannot have tow bars added unless you completely upgrade the cooling system, showing that they underspecified the system when it was built. To me thats a mistake that they should be liable for, rather than me. Its doubly annoying that the dealer had this information when they told me it was possible to add a tow bar to the model i was about to buy. If they had told me it was going to cost £4000 then i would certainly not have bought this model. The tow bar was a must have item, and now i am stuck with a car that cannot tow the trailer i have been needing for the past 4 months (for my house renovation project - so i have had to resort to stuff on the roof, in the boot (getting soiled) and renting skips - all costing me more money!). I think (and i believe the ombudsmen will agree) that car manufacturers and dealers should be liable for the information they put out and say about a car. But hey, i will see what happens when it comes down to it!

cheers for your thoughts.
 

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willcrick said:
Hugh Fanism said:
Unless Skoda cave on this I doubt you're going to get anywhere. You were badly misquoted which is really unfortunate but the dealership doesn't have to honour that quote as they can quite simply decide not to "sell" you the work. That's their perogative.
As for the specs of the car claiming it can tow 1600kg. My SE L 150 DSG can't tow anything because it doesn't have a tow bar. It's insufficiently specced for towing.
I'm not making argument, I'm just very pragmatic. Please don't take my comments the wrong way.
Understood, i get the pragmatic approach. I am not too bothered about the mis-quote really, its more the fact that the car specs say it can tow a certain amount, when it actually cant. I feel that Skoda are to blame here. They sent out information to dealers 3 months (or so) after it went on sale to give them the additional info that this model cannot have tow bars added unless you completely upgrade the cooling system, showing that they underspecified the system when it was built. To me thats a mistake that they should be liable for, rather than me. Its doubly annoying that the dealer had this information when they told me it was possible to add a tow bar to the model i was about to buy. If they had told me it was going to cost £4000 then i would certainly not have bought this model. The tow bar was a must have item, and now i am stuck with a car that cannot tow the trailer i have been needing for the past 4 months (for my house renovation project - so i have had to resort to stuff on the roof, in the boot (getting soiled) and renting skips - all costing me more money!). I think (and i believe the ombudsmen will agree) that car manufacturers and dealers should be liable for the information they put out and say about a car. But hey, i will see what happens when it comes down to it!

cheers for your thoughts.
My honest thoughts are that it does tow what's stated. If the car had been specced with a tow bar then it can tow, so it can tow as claimed.
However, my opinion is that Skoda have messed this up with the blinkered viewpoint that without a tow bar added then it doesn't need the upgraded radiator etc, just in the same manner that it doesn't need the wiring in the back. This as you say, isn't really a problem. It's the misinformation from the dealership that is and the blame lies with them as far as I can see.
I fully empathise with your situation as you've literally been sold a vehicle that isn't fit for your intended purpose and I fully understand you kicking up fuss about it. I'd be looking for a resolution along the lines of the job being done for the stated cost to you, the car being taken back from you and switched for an appropriate one at a nominal cost, or to be able to reject the car.
I've had a few battles with different companies in my time and whenever I've found customer services to be useless writing to directors/CEO's/Managing directors is very effective. Many things are beyond customer services mandate and that's why you can hit a brick wall.
Duncan Movassaghi has only just been replaced by Rod McLeod http://www.businesscar.co.uk/news/2017/skoda-uk-appoints-new-director and if his predecessors email is anything to go by you can find him at [email protected]. I'd strongly suggest a polite and firm letter to Rod expressing deep angst and disappointment without making any digs at them. He doesn't want letters like that landing on his desk. Send the letter recorded and also by email.
Skoda UK:

Skoda
Brunswick Court
Yeomans Drive
Blakelands
Milton Keynes
MK14 5LR

I've not kept up with who and where you've complained to but I've made the assumption that you haven't already taken this step. Good on you if you have.
 

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Hi All

Tow bar is now fitted on my SE L 7 1.4 Petrol bear :) - I did post a while back with the details of what happened at the point of purchase and what the dealership said afterwards.

The bear was away for 1 week having all the required parts replaced, upgraded or installed. I must say a Big Thank You to Garland Motors - Aldershott. They also completed a recall issue for me (never knew there was one).

Everything is nice and neat :) Although I dread to think of the final cost.

One small glitch, could be related or not but when using the bear for any journey (except a 3 day period of driving where it behaved) I get at least 2 / 5 times the Front Assist warning light coming on - nothing in front of me, speed ranges of 5mph to 50mph. I'll report it to Garland and see what they say.

Finally - Every day I travel through the A3 Hindhead tunnel, after 100 meters DAB radio loses it signal, TBH I never thought much about it. The courtesy car Garland gave me (Octavia) did not suffer from this so I went delving - in the radio settings on the Octavia there is a setting for DAB - FM Automatic switching which was ticked. When I got the bear back the same setting was also ticked but it does not cut over to DAB - any ideas?

Regards

Dave
 

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