2012 VW Touareg, Joys of dealing with VW

Had this Volkswagen Touareg since 2016, it's my partners car. Its the car we use to go see family/friends go camping.. ect.
In April 2018 our 1st out of service problem fuel injector failed and needed to be towed in for repair. got it fixed all good.
$1200+
in April 2019 engine running really bad, got told by VW it was a bad batch of fuel, got home a few days later fuel injector came off the engine spraying fuel in the engine bay and needed to be towed in for repair. they charged us $2300+ for repair and had no ownership for failing to put the injector back in properly. didn't follow up. just bit the bullet. i also told them it needed an injector because it was the same problem as before.

in December 2019 ACC (Active cruise control) Started not working. cruising on the freeway to melbourne. usually the sensors need cleaning and its good to go.
booked it in for repair. $550+ for diagnosis. also found center brake light not working. they said the same wiring harness would fix both issues. they then found the control board needs to also be replaced. adding $2700+ to the bill.
got told it was good to go, 10 mins down the road. same error. also center brake light still isn't working
called them up they said they noticed a bracket was broken, they ordered said bracket and it got done a week later.
3 days after bracket was replaced. same error. took the car back. got asked if the car was in an accident. which it was but the accident was very, VERY Minor. will upload in comments later.
the same bracket, was still broken and was told needed to be fixed by a panel beater. so it did. under insurance.
went back to VW. they then said the K Frame is bent. went back to the panel beaters and got measured for frame damage or bending.
measured ok and wheel alignment was ok.

my partner was driving the car 29th june Monday just gone. engine died and lost all power. now 3 injectors need replacing with a quote of $3400+ and the ACC Alignment is $1070, they want to take the car to another dealership for the ACC alignment. they have also said they will not guarantee it will fix or work. but they want to charge us for it.

My issue is, Why have they charged $3300+ to fix something that isn't fixed. They are not owning up to any work they have done.
Diesel engines need to have injectors done all at the same time for Flow Match of the engine. which they haven't done.
Waiting to hear back from my extended warranty people about this. They have covered all bills so far. and have been great. I don't think it's fair VW Keep quoting and repairing when they can't actually fix it. Need Advise, and yes we will be selling the car the moment it is repaired and in working order.

Comments

  • +35 votes

    Eurolyf
    .

  • Someone once said that Touareg is the best of both worlds.

    Why don’t people stick to brands that have generations of proven reliability?

    • I think it is a great car. I personally put it back on who is repairing it and they knowledge they have.

    • Nothing wrong with the car, just the minimum wage idiots working on it.

      • Maintainability is an attribute of the car.

        • Most things are easily maintained if the people working on them have half a clue.

          Contrary to popular opinion, diesel injector seals don't last forever. This Audi/VW 3.0 actually has the best way of dealing with it I've seen. Rather than have the leaking gas/fluids go into the rocker cover, polluting the oil and starving the engine of oil, or going up the injector bore and seizing the injector into the head, they drill a relief hole out the side of the head. This makes removal and replacement of the seals very easy.

          Every PD or common rail diesel I buy gets injector seals (and cam followers and bolts for PD) replaced so I know it's done.

          The silly dealer monkeys who serviced the touraeg I purchased had been told it had a cold start issue, yet they said everything was fine. One injector seal was gone. Literally had black goo coming out the injector vent hole and they couldn't figure it out.

  • +5 votes

    It sounds like the very first repair of the injector wasn't done right and resulted in multiple other problems.

    ACC is likely to disable itself if stoplight(s) aren't working. All repairs to ACC and $1000 alignment bill are suspicious.

    • They also turn off when you are driving poorly over the lines ect. Its quite smart. I should have mentioned normal alignment is $330 from their own dealership. an extra 700 from another dealership that has a better one is suss.. should be the same price.

  • Sell it.

  • Waiting to hear back from my extended warranty people about this.

    Are they (extended warranty/insurance) giving you a loan car, while your car is out of action?

    I don't think it's fair VW Keep quoting and repairing when they can't actually fix it.

    Just make sure you flip it, before your extended warranty expires.

    • They do offer a $500 total loan car over the life of the warranty. been saving it for when we really need it. which this might be the time we use it.

      Flipping it before it expires is 100% the plan :)

  • Your problem is you are dealing with the idiots at a vw dealer.

    1. The injector bolts are single use. They are to be replaced any time an injector is removed.

    2. The injectors didn't fail, it is simply the injector seals, which are quite simple to replace.

    Diesel injectors do not all need to be done at the same time. Each injector has a calibration code on it that is entered into the ecu on replacement.

    I've just done the injector seals on my 2012 Touareg, takes about 15-20 minutes per injector. I'll swap you my perfectly working one with injector seals replaced for yours, I'd love to have ACC.

    Where are you located?

    • yeah i feel like they are.. the problem is finding people that have the tools,scanners and alignment for acc to fix it.

      ah good to know that about the injectors.

      don't tempt me. i might take you up on that offer.. :D

      • Also happy to buy it as is. Not even kidding.

        I have the scanners required for it. Don't have the stuff for the acc, but I think it's more than likely just the brake light failure that is stopping it working.

        There are plenty of people around who can work on things like this, it's quite sad how bad dealers are at this.

        • it's quite sad how bad dealers are at this

          The only time Euro brand dealers have been close to the plant the cars are made / training facility is on a Contiki tour, there was no detour to the itinerary.

        • Do dealers make more money by doing a sh!t job so you suckers would keep coming back?
          I'm happy with the $200 services on my Toyota. It's certainly not serviced with the dealers.

          • @berry580: You suckers? Where did I say to go to the dealer? I'm a mechanic, I work on my own stuff.

          • @berry580: Dealers are under the pump to make money and pay all the mechanics peanuts. They also put on lots of apprentices to churn through services.
            Most of the good mechanics run there own shop.
            Op look around on facebook/Google for an independent mechanic that deals with euros the dealerships are rubbish.

  • toerag doing what they do best. Sell the Lemon and cut the costs, your friends don't care what you rock up in btw, maybe they do? Get new friends perhaps at the same time. Try not bump this one around, or perhaps buy something better suited for rougher treatment i.e. not a euro?

    • it was more the fact one good car and one bad car combo. we are not materialistic. I like cars alot, and found the Touareg to be the nice main car, I did have company cars also.

      • If you really do like cars now is the time to treat yourself to an actual nice car potentially not a diesel too for bonus niceness!

        • diesel bad lol

          Yes it's much better to have an engine with a less appropriate torque curve for moving 2.3 odd tonne of vehicle while using twice the fuel 😂

  • Stories like this make me run away from european cars plus that red Alfa Romeo that I once owned, gorgeous car but spent a lot of time at the mechanics. As Alfa Romeo says in their marketing - it's a car you "buy with your heart" and never the mind.

    • haha :D

    • Current Alfa's are as reliable as anything else. Always hear these people who owned older models and swear off a brand for life, but things change.

      • I do believe that the reliability for new Alfas have improved dramatically; their cars are still absolutely gorgeous to my eyes. If anyone is in the market for a sub-$50k SUV then the Stelvio SUV is on promotion at just under $50k drive away, these prices makes buying a Rav4 or CX5 look expensive.

  • I cringing as I saw the cost adding up. Then I saw extended warranty. I suppose this one of those times where extended warranty came in handy

  • Let me try and sort out the problems.

    1. 6 year old injector "failed" and cost $1200 to replace. Are they gold plated or something?

    2. One year later an injector came off the engine? Are they not held in place by the fuel rail? Were the retaining clips missing or something?

    3. 8 months later the cruise control stops working, and VW believe it's a 'control board" for a brake light, which costs $3200 to replace??? What the hell happened to it being controlled by a switch at the pedal?

    4. The ACC still didn't work and they blamed a "bracket", they then replaced the bracket but somehow it was still broken??

    5. Then they said the k-frame was bent, which requires specialised machines to measure, which I'm sure a dealership wouldn't have. Also if it was bent, car likely wouldn't track straight and driver would probably notice.

    6. Lastly they want to charge you $3400 for 3 injectors that hare miraculously all died at the same time, and charge you $1070 to "align" the cruise control, whatever the crap that means.

    Mate these guys are taking you for a ride because you keep taking it back to them. STOP DOING THAT.

    • 6 year old injector "failed" and cost $1200 to replace. Are they gold plated or something?

      Dealer principle's watch is!

      The ACC still didn't work and they blamed a "bracket", they then replaced the bracket but somehow it was still broken??

      That is the up sell

  • The main source of revenue in any dealership is not from selling new cars, but servicing them. It sounds like this VW dealership is taking advantage of you and loading huge bills onto you. It's not uncommon for dealerships to triple the price of components when they resell them (see this happen to me).

    I'm glad extended warranty is paying the bills, but as you say, sell the car ASAP once it's running. You can see the writing on the wall, and eventually it will be you paying thousands of dollars per year to repair an old vehicle.

    • It's not uncommon for dealerships to triple the price of components when they resell them (see this happen to me).

      You got a bargain. I had a Merc part that was $60 in the UK quoted to me for $300 before fitting. The box is the size of small cube of facial tissues.

      • +2 votes

        Should have gotten a Volvo or a Camry, they come with a permanently atteched box of tissues on the parcel shelf :)

  • Audi owner here.

    There is a reason VW are referred to as Volkswagen Automotive Group.

    • VAG means Volkswagen AG. AG is some sort of German for corporation. Audi is a subsidiary of VW

      • +3 votes

        AG = Aktien Gesellschaft. Basically, means they are a public company :)

        GmbH = Gesellschaft mit beschrankter Haftung. Private, or limited liability company.

        Germans have a word for everything. Even Ozbargainer (der/die Knauser) :P

  • As much as this is being covered by the extended warranty, I reckon the ongoin nature of it is down to them and not VW. The warranty mob would be trying to pay out as little as possible and not allowing the proper repair procedure to be completed at once. The dealer would be likely complicit in this. Ie slap it together and send it out telling the warranty mob they fixed it properly with a padded out invoice in the mail.

    You don’t get that with a reputable mechanic and lying with your own cash.

    • +2 votes

      I've found with the official Allianz-backed VW supplied extended warranty the exact opposite, they actually wanted to fix it properly. Not sure what the dealer extended warranties are like (I would think more how you described).

    • so many mech's don't want to touch it.. sadly.
      the only time the warranty group had input was the 1st fix and only replacing one injector. atleast thats what the dealer told me. so i take it with a grain of salt.

      all the other repairs i have paid for then told the warranty people and got them to pay me back because they can take 2-3 weeks to pay up.

  • Should have bought a Toyota Camry.

  • Torch it

  • VW needs 40 bn Euro to copy Elon. Get a Polo on an Up!

  • +2 votes

    Since you're in Melbourne, give Dean at www.faststuff.net.au a call. He knows VWs inside out and can give you an honest assessment. I've been using him for years now. Otherwise, other ozbargainers may have their suggested reputable mechanics.

    • i'll call him tomorrow cheers :D

    • Is that you Brett? Get back in the workshop and start fixing those Touaregs. We’ve got more than enough VWs to sort out without you trying to drum up more business.

      • +1 vote

        No, I think Brett has moved on actually, he's not been there for a while now!

        (Plus he's the last person I'd expect to be on Ozbargain :P )

  • Next you will be telling us how much of a PITA it is to jump start a Touareg :-)

  • Don't you know that this is Ozbargain forum?

    Please expect the following responses.

    Survey says ……

    1 - 87% will give you shit about your car.
    2 - 3% will give you more shit about your car.
    3 - 7% will give you even more shit about your car.
    4 - 2% will tell you to get rid of it
    5 - 1% will give you ideas of recourse

    So, if you rant, get ready to cop it. Even if you have a valid ranting excuse :)

    Cheers

    • thanks for the statistics, i'm happy to cop it. and give some back. im trying to do the right thing with all the info.

  • At least you got 4 years out of it. I just bought a brand new ford ranger and 12 hours after picking up vehicle threw up an error code for all four fuel injectors leaking…

    • I just bought a brand new ford ranger

      It's ok, we all make mistakes

    • I drove a new ford ranger which didn’t belong to me. I Went into some mud so flicked it into 4WD. Thing died on me. Engine would not start. I had to have it towed ~300km back to dealer At my own cost. Turns out factory in Thailand installed the wrong/faulty transmission in the car. I learnt from this with Ford that until your first service Ford does not perform any inspection of the vehicle when it leaves the factory. After this experience I would never buy a Ford.

  • After reading this, when it comes to VWs you sound like one of the lucky ones.

  • Why are you taking your older car to the dealer for servicing and repairs? Do you have to take the car there for your extended warranty? I think under Australian law you can use any mechanic and it can’t void your warranty. The Dealership is taking you for a ride because you have an extended warranty. They know this isn’t coming out of your pocket so they keep doing small jobs instead of fixing it right at one time. The car is getting on in age. How many kilometres have you done in it? If it’s closer too 200k then I’d say it’s time for a new vehicle. These cars, being an SUV, hold their value in the secondhand market because a lot of people want SUVs for a family car. Personally I don’t like SUVs but that’s another story. If you want to keep the car then find a good reputable independent VW mechanic. You can explain the history with them and they can inspect or advise what course of action to take. Dealerships are used to servicing new cars with low kilometres. They follow manufacturer instructions on what needs doing and they don’t really deal with tricky problems that can affect older cars. I kind of assume dealer mechanics know the basics but aren’t really good for troubleshooting or laborious technical work. They make their money by charging a lot per hour and having repeat business from selling new Reliable cars. They don’t have to maintain a reputation for good work because problems like yours are unlikely to occur on new cars.

  • They say purchasing a brand new car is a complete waste of money… but you get warranty.

    Even if you buy a $20k car, depreciation may render it $0 in 10 years.

    So a 60K vehicle, depreciating to 40k or even 35k… is far better than a 20k or 30k depreciating and with all the repairs one has to endure.

    So, who really is the mug?

    • This logic only applies if you're talking about the poorly assembled, poorly engineered, low material quality chamber pots known as 'German Luxury Cars'. If you must own a monument to the sins of automakers worldwide, sure, buy the new one, but know this.

      Cars depreciate roughly 50% every 5 years on average (excluding a few outliers). So a $20k car will depreciate to $5k in 10 years for a total loss of $15k.

      A $60k car will depreciate to $15k in 10 years for a total loss of $45k

      $45k-$15k= $30000 greater depreciation loss by purchasing the $60k car instead of the $20k one.

      You would have to spend $30k on repairs over the 10 years to break even, and that's discounting the opportunity cost of tying up $60k of your capital over that time. Of course, the $60k car will probably need repairs of its own once the warranty finishes, so there's that too.

      I'll take the $20k car thanks.

      A $20k Toyota of course.

      • If you can't afford a premium car don't buy one. Nothing wrong with the Toyota. There's enough room in the market for both.

        But to call them:

        poorly assembled, poorly engineered, low material quality chamber pots

        Is ignorance incarnate.

        • Come now, many people that buy these kinds of cars can't afford them either, and these are the people my comment was aimed at.

          You can truly 'afford' these cars if you never have to work for the rest of your life to live a comfortable lifestyle. That's what being rich really means. Until you are completely financially independent, or have a huge inheritance coming, you can't afford these cars, no matter how much your ego tells you that you can.

          The vast majority of these cars are leased or bought via debt by people on piddling $100-$150k a year jobs.

          There is room in the market for expensive cars of course, (free market individualism etc) but many people who buy them have no business doing so from a financial standpoint, as our OP shows.

          Numerous testimony from disaffected VW, Audi, MB and BMW owners on any forum you care to visit across the web (including this one, just look through the first few pages on the forum) must mean something, surely?

          Their durability, robustness, and reliability are questionable at best, no matter how much soft touch material is on the dash, how quiet the interior or how good the handling is. (or how much so called status is attached to the badge on the bonnet)

          I stand by my opinion, so we'll have to agree to disagree

          • @Dogsrule:

            Come now, many people that buy these kinds of cars can't afford them either, and these are the people my comment was aimed at.

            No arguments there, my point was your dismissal of German "Luxury Cars".

            And it's pretty ridiculous to call Audi/BMW/MB/VW rich people cars when they are by and large the cars of choice of the upper middle class. I'd count rich people cars the way you've described as the Rolls Royce/Bentley/(Italian sports Marques) of the world. Whilst there are higher upkeeps associated with European cars it's by no means prohibitively expensive.

            There is room in the market for expensive cars of course, (free market individualism etc) but many people who buy them have no business doing so from a financial standpoint, as our OP shows.

            You're first point directly counters your second point. It's a free market so people can buy whatever they want. And the OP purely mentions that he has been made redundant, it's an assumption that his cars maintenance costs are not fiscally viable.

            Numerous testimony from disaffected VW, Audi, MB and BMW owners on any forum you care to visit across the web (including this one, just look through the first few pages on the forum) must mean something, surely?

            I believe this is representative of the exact kind of buyer we were talking about. They get a bit more money and they want a fancy car, the spend it on a pricey German brand and believe that because they spent X amount of dollars and that because it's more expensive than the Japanese/Korean Marques that it should be perfect and last 20 years.

            I think it's a stretch to call their reliability or quality questionable. If you make things to a tight tolerance you're going to get something that's more refined at the cost of absolute reliability. Even more so when you have weight considerations to take into account. In terms of durability, sure they won't take the abuse of a Camry or a Hilux but in terms of durability from a passenger safety point of view, you'd be hard to find any flaws there. It comes down to are you willing to trade absolute durability and reliability for something that is dynamic/engaging or something that literally cocoons you away from the noise other parts of the outside world. And based on sales figures it seems a lot of people do.

            • @serideth: 'You're first point directly counters your second point. It's a free market so people can buy whatever they want'

              I knew you'd want to say that. That's why I qualified my argument with 'from a financial standpoint'. But you missed my point and said it anyway. I'm not the car Gestapo, rocking up to the doors of European car owners and demanding their moral justification for buying them. I'm not making a moral argument here, just a financially pragmatic one.

              Buy what you like, but I reserve the right to debate those who think it's a financially pragmatic choice. In most cases, it ain't.

              'I believe this is representative of the exact kind of buyer we were talking about. They get a bit more money and they want a fancy car, the spend it on a pricey German brand and believe that because they spent X amount of dollars and that because it's more expensive than the Japanese/Korean Marques that it should be perfect and last 20 years.'

              We agree here.

              ' I think it's a stretch to call their reliability or quality questionable. If you make things to a tight tolerance you're going to get something that's more refined at the cost of absolute reliability.'

              I disagree. Lexus have proved that you can make
              cars every bit as refined as the Germans can, whilst maintaining long life, reliability and reasonable servicing and maintenance costs. The only quality Lexus is missing is the quality of the badge on the bonnet.

              Anyway, glad to have the debate with you, I'm sure you'll keep driving your Euro cars while I keep on with my Japs!

          • @Dogsrule: Haha, it's a vw, not a Maybach. If you think VW is some kind of very fancy vehicle you must live a sheltered life.

            By the way, I own my stuff outright, and don't make $100k a year.

            • @brendanm: Come on man, there's a big jump between a $20k Polo and a $90k Touareg, even though the OP bought it used.

              But really, my original point is the exorbitant maintenance, servicing and (most importantly) repair costs of Euro cars, (including VW) which is compounded by the ridiculous rate at which they seem to require those repairs, and the generally terrible quality of dealership service we experience here in Aus.

              Things are different if you buy them after they've suffered the bulk of their (significantly worse than market average) depreciation and you're willing to independently source your parts from 3rd party sellers and conduct the repairs yourself. I can see it working then, but I don't think that's what we're talking about here, certainly the OP isn't.

    • Unless you are doing huge KM to the point where it is over 300,000km on the clock and barely running at 10 years of age, no car depreciates to nothing. 10 year old cars (and older) still sell for more than 3k if they are running and in good order. I see 10-15 year old Mazda 3's and Toyota Corolla which retailed for ~20k selling for 5-8k all the time. Thats still a lot of money for an old car hence I'd rather look for value, more tech and driver enjoyment in much younger French or Italian cars. Pick right, look after it and it will serve you well.

  • 2012 VW Touareg, Joys of dealing with VW

    From the looks of it, the big issue is dealing with the DEALERSHIP and not with VW themselves.

    Also, the extra ($$$) "extended warranty" is given by VW or by the dealership???

    Perhaps buying a 4 years old car (2012 model) in 2016 was a very risky investment.

    Former owners sold a 4 years car for a reason.
    Now it is an 8 years old car with another 4 years of "reasons".

    Just a big warning for anyone else planning similar purchase.

  • +1 vote

    sell it and cut your loses, a close friend had a similar "interaction" with VW, they were charged for repairs which weren't done and the car had the same issue repeat, they lost hope in VW's ability to fix the issue after 4-5 times and paying VW each occasion to fix another part to rectify the same issue.

    VW customer service would rank one of the worst, they documented the attempts to fix the car as separate issues, the record listed 5 different issues in the course of one week so they didnt have to take ownership of their inability to fix the same issue. I know this because I was able to call their customer service line and have them tell me what was documented in their files despite not being the owner.

    The friend just bought another car last week, it wasn't and will will never be VW.

    This isn't the first time I've heard about VW stories and I'm put off by that brand and any other cars they produce (audi and skoda etc)

  • As a previous euro owner DONT BUY A EURO, especially VW.

  • I've had similar experiences with extended warranty where items need to be replaced in sets (door lock actuators) but the warranty (hence the dealer / repairer) will only replace the one item covered under warranty and not the set. Its the kind of frustration that turns me off extended warranties. Although in the OP's case he's probably very glad he has the warranty in place.

  • It's in their business model. Dealerships employ inexperienced young apprentices to work on your cars and charge you upwards of $200/hour for it. This includes dealerships of 'high-end' cars. Years ago a Porsche dealership charged me to replace the clutch on a 911 Turbo after the clutch pedal sank even though it was still under warranty but they said clutch wasn't covered, I knew they'd say that. After a week the clutch pedal sank again, took it back and this time the head mechanic checked it, it turned out to be a faulty clutch slave cylinder and not the clutch. They replaced the slave cylinder under warranty, but the unnecessary 10K clutch replacement was never reimbursed.

  • Who is the extended warranty through? I'm impressed they've been paying up!

  • +1 vote

    Sorry just found this part of your statement interesting "Started not working." - you could have just said "stopped working".

  • 8 year old car purchased 2nd hand.

  • That sounds like absolutely terrible experience (nothing unusual in the realm of VW ownership though). I am glad to know you've now gotten rid of the POS.

    I ALWAYS, and I mean, ALWAYS have had all my cars serviced with an independent mechanic who comes home to look after them. He has very occasionally had to take the car back to his garage to put it on a hoist if required, but otherwise always done the servicing inside my garage.

    Taking your car to the $tealership for servicing is a bit like playing Russian roulette with your car. I'd give the $tealership the boot as soon as the "free services" party is over. I acknowledge the fact that there may be highly skilled workers there as well, but I'd never know who works on my car, and I definitely can do without having to interact with people at the $tealership.

  • In my experience Euro car dealers are great to get warranty and goodwill services. If I had an 8 year old Euro car I would find a good mechanic you develop a relationship with and can trust.

    • except if that Euro car brand iS VW

      • yep I had an 20 year old euro, mech were great guys that did everything as cheap as they could and before it was an issue. still cost me much more than it was worth and the electrical issues were never ending

  • Do you put 91 in it? My mate is a master tech and most of his day was replacing motors on touaregs due to 91 ruining things. They even had a jig just for removing the motor quicker…

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