Never Again!!!!!!!!!!! - BMW Luxury Touring Community
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Old Mar 22nd, 2008, 8:24 am
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Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

I recently purchased a 01 LT, Its a first for me, It has high milage (73K) but looks and felt just fine. Everything worked ( except reverse, Never checked)

I did an oil change, sparkplugs, changed final drive fluid. I figured I should do filters, and tranny fluid. Not ready to attempt this with all the tupperware I decided to take it to the local dealer in Charlotte.

What a mistake!! the bike came back to me with more problems than it went in for:

I had them do the brake fluids, NOW have the 1hz flashing between the ABS lights, Soft front brake WHICH I CAN PUMP UP!!!. Dealer says it had a history of brake issues Its coding a 16 Dealer wants to replace the ABS unit!!. Idle was high about 1200 rpm. asked dealer about it? said it was normal when I took it in. Somehow it had a hard failure while there and started idling at 4K while at the dealer. Again had a HISTORY form the P.O..
Previous fix," CHANGED OIL AND AIR FILTER" problem solved. It cost me about $250 to replace the IAC.

Took a ride yesterday: now the Cruise control does not work, No light or anything. Worked when it went in!!. They put a new front tire on. The rear part of the fender was scraping the tire. ( I fixed it)

Mirror assembly vibrated. On the incoming inspection The service manager knocked them off pretty hard and I saw plastic flying!! They did a walk around for scratches and damage. It not a perfect bike but it is pretty nice. He listed everything and I signed it. It came back with a scratch in the side cover

They suposely did the 48K service per BMW. Did not stamp the book. It amazes me how the service manager kept telling me the bike has a "HISTORY" of this and that and how it came out with hard failures at the dealer which it didn't have going in. It seems to me if it has a "history" then the dealer did not have the knowledge or expertise to fix the "HISTORY problems"!!!

If anyone can suggest what areas to look at to fix some of these problem I would be very greatful. I only have the factory manual, not very helpful for troubleshooting only taking things apart and assembly. Any suggestions for a good Manual?

We'll we will see what else I stumble on that does't work!!

The more I ride the bike the more I really like it!!! even with all the issues!

Thanks in advance for any help
Al
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  #2  
Old Mar 22nd, 2008, 8:41 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Al,

Unfortunately, it sounds like you got off to a poor start with a wonderful bike. I don't have specific answers for you, but would suggest several site searches for your bike problems. I've owned my 02 for about 5 years and like most members of this forum, love it. I haven't had the problems you've had so I can't really feel your pain. Seems like your dealer though, is giving you the run a round and I'd first look for another. There is a wealth of self service info on this site, and I'm sure that someone will chine in soon with specif answers for you. Welcome to the zoo!
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Old Mar 22nd, 2008, 9:24 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Sorry to hear of your issues with charlotte bmw, have you contacted them to get the problems worked out? I know they are only human and I am sure the manager/owner woul like to hear of issues that come up if there is a problem. If you dont want to go that way there are a number of people in the area who would be happy to help you out if they can.
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Old Mar 22nd, 2008, 9:49 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

I'd call them up and give them a chance to fix the problems they obviously created.

If they decline my next call would be to my lawyer.

I'd certainly explain that the bike came in only needing an oil change and left with major problems that were not there before you brought it in.

There are quite a few guys in your area of the country with the knowledge to help you out of your issues. Sounds like the brakes weren't bled correctly and that's probably the cause of that issue. Re-bleed the front brakes and probably the rear as well.

Get some speedbleeders and it goes really fast. Low fluid in the rear res can cause your brake light issue.

At this point I'm not sure i'd trust that dealers explanation of anything.

Good Luck

John
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Old Mar 22nd, 2008, 9:52 am
JimH JimH is offline
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

In my opinion, you should hold of doing any work on the bike yourself until the dealer has a chance to make it right, or you risk them saying you caused the problem.

Take the bike back to the dealer, and have a discussion with the Service Manager. Present a written list , itemizing all of these points. Work with the dealer, ask questions, ask for paperwork and you may find that they will fix anything that they broke or left disconnected.
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Old Mar 22nd, 2008, 9:56 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Did you buy it from a dealer or an individual?

I bought my LT from that dealer in Charlotte and they have been nothing but great with all of my dealings with them. Matter of fact, they have gone the extra mile more than once to make things right when they didn't really have to.

As described, that is wayyyyyyyyyyyy out of character for them. Try again, talk to Mark, owner of the place. All the work I've ever had done or seen done there has always been first class.
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Old Mar 22nd, 2008, 10:30 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Al sorry to hear about your experience. I would, as other have said, work with the dealer to see if your issues could be resolved. I too got off of the wrong foot with my dealer but we worked though the issues and since then they have been great.
This site you will find a great resource.
Welcome and good luck.
Let us know how things turn out.
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Old Mar 22nd, 2008, 11:03 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Nightmare... not something you want to happen with a new ride..
i'd go along with JPSen and give them a chance to put it right,
only because GUNNY has had good words to say about them.
If no joy then a well put together letter to BMW about the quality of one of there dealer's,
Everyone has to answer to someone.
Over hear is a busy time for dealer's because everyone wants the rides ready for the better wether, sometime's thing's get overlooked,
This site will have everything you will want to know about the bike,
(Not just the BAD things, some do post good things about the bike as well..)
Had my 2000 LT since December, and i love it,
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Old Mar 22nd, 2008, 11:34 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Tough lesson.. hope you can get up to speed quickly on "DIY"..
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Old Mar 22nd, 2008, 12:21 pm
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

I have gone round and round with them, You can't talk to a person who believes he knows everything and you know nothing. There comes a point where you realize that all they can do is replace parts and hope like H*** they get it right.

I bought the bike privitely but my son bought his R1200ST from them and the sales guys are great!! Service is another issue.

I own my own business and came out of the areospace industry as a QA engineer. I have been into bikes and car for well over 30yrs. I have restored several cars ( collected real mini coopers) and bike over the years so I do know my way around mechanics and electrical. I just do not have the proper service manuals or tools yet for the LT. Thats why I took it to the dealer

Every time I talked to them while the bike was in there ( We were on vacation) I felt the upsell going on. It had no abs brake issues, the cruise worked, the idle was what I thought a little high at 1200rpm. and no scratches on the side covers. but it was running fine , no warning lights and all worked.

I don't believe they have any troubleshooting skills at all. I am really upset with the way the bike was returned and the service, How Do you get two MAJOR HARD Failures while at the dealer when it was ok prior. That has to be pretty rare and then the bike is returned to you with the ABS problem.

How do you fix an erratic idle with changing the oil and filter? call me baffled!!!

If I had these results with my customer I would not be in business. The only thing I can be sure of is that they actually put a new front tire on but could not put the rear part of the front fender on stright.

I bought this bike with the intent on seeing how well I liked it before spending 20+K on a new one. I really do like the bike and I was extermely happy with the sales department but after this experience we will never use them for service or buy another bike or parts from them.

Please realize with all my ranting I did buy the bike used and realized it would not be perfect. The service manager was sure to give me a HISTORY LESSON!! Still I have to wonder if these are repeat failures and they have History how come they did not fix thing right the first time!!!!!!!!

Al Young
Mooresville, NC
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Old Mar 22nd, 2008, 1:37 pm
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Al,
I'm sorry to hear that this happened to you. I avoid the dealer's service dept. if at all possible. When they have worked on it (only 2 times), I find extra scratches and missing screws, parts, etc.

Here's what has made it possible for me to enjoy LT ownership:

1. www.bmwlt.com
2. www.sayegh.org/bmw/service-video.htm
3. The BMW or Clymer manual.
4. Buy as many parts from Chicago BMW as possible(20% discount).
5. A do everything myself attitude.

Please let us know how things work out for you.
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Old Mar 22nd, 2008, 7:34 pm
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ArthurKnowles ArthurKnowles is offline
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

I suggest the first thing you do is take it to another dealer and request a printed history record before anything else occurs. If there is no history of failures, take that record with you to the previous dealer and tell him to fix it or prepare to be sued. Really simple.

If you paid by credit card, dispute the charges immediately. Explain you went in for an oil change and came out with a disaster. Then talk to the dealer about fixing it if he wants to get paid.

If there is a history of problems, talk to the new dealer about what he recommends and go from there.
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Old Mar 23rd, 2008, 10:57 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

I just went thru similar issues re manuals, etc. cause I got a 2001 LT in October 2007 (after 23 years on a Yahama Venture). I found two excellent sources of technical information. First are the Paul Sayegh video tapes. Cover all the basics, oil changes, tupperware removal, brakes, etc. They are excellent. Paul has a website you can get them from. Second is a factory manual, which from the Dealer is $$ but you can get them from eBay (CD, not paper copy) for about $3 - $6. Probably illegal copy though. Also, I highly recommend the CLYMER book on the BMW LT. I just picked one up, based on info I got from this site, and it is really excellent. Will list for about $50 but you can usually get it discounted for about $30 or so. Finally look at the Hall of Wisdon on this site for technical information. And the articles (Oil Changing 101 for example) on this site. Best of luck.
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Old Mar 24th, 2008, 8:32 pm
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

I noticed Saturday that one of the throttle cables is loose at the bar. Looks like the end is out of the threads. Called the dealer and informed him my cruise was not working now. I used it on the way to the dealer when going for service.. Told him I had read about possible cable adjustments.

When I picked up the bike they said they checked and adjusted the cables, On Saturday he said that they did not adjust the cables.

Also asked him about pumping up the brakes. (hand brake) he said that was normal and that his 01 LT and GS do the same thing.

Is this as common as he makes it out to be

Thanks
Al
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Old Mar 24th, 2008, 10:41 pm
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Quote:

Also asked him about pumping up the brakes. (hand brake) he said that was normal and that his 01 LT and GS do the same thing.

I'd worry about going to hell for telling such a lie...

pumping up brakes is a symptom of air in the system.

I hope you paid with your card and can dispute the payment.

John
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Live and direct from the new earthquake capitol of the U.S. Jones, Oklahoma
08 Can-Am Spyder (Miss Lindy's)
03 R1200CLC Capri Blue "Flipper" (Tis But A Scratch !)
01 R1100RT Glacier Blue "Lucky"
91 R100GS "It'sNotAMoneyPit"
The voices in my head may not be real, But they have some good ideas!


"I like the wind in my face and Boobies on my back. No, Wait, I got that backwards"
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Old Mar 25th, 2008, 11:18 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Sorry to hear your troubles. Once you get em ironed out though, I think you'll have many moons of happy riding.

I've also had cruise control problems that seem to start and stop like magic. (The problems always start the day before a trip and magically stop the day I get home...ok, that only happened once, but I've had 3 failures now on CC.)

My local dealer (Victory BMW) fixed it one time (switch movement issue, infamous on this site) then it failed again about 90 days later. I took it back and it was something else, (pinched cable somewhere they said.) They were very good and fixed it for no charge, while I waited. They could have easily charged me since it was a seperate issue.

It sounds like your at an impass with your local dealer, but since your son bought a bike from them you may try to talk to the owner and suggest your current bike won't be your last, and help now would encourage you to come back. Just a suggestion.
Good luck.
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Old Mar 28th, 2008, 1:29 pm
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Please allow me to introduce myself. My name is Bob Mihalko and I am the Service Manager @ BMW-Ducati of Charlotte. I have been with BMW-Ducati of Charlotte since the fall of 2005 and previous to that I was the Service Manager @ Matthews Fun Machines for nearly five years. I've also been employed in the motorcycle industry as a Sales Associate and as a Sales Manager. I have been involved in some type of customer service for nearly my entire professional career.

I have been an avid motorcycle enthusiast for the past 23 years, having owned nearly twenty motorcycles including my current bike, a 2001 BMW K1200LT, which I use as my daily commuter, my weekend getaway bike, and yes, my track bike.

I would like to take the time to set the facts straight regarding Mr. Young's recent experience with our dealership. I was the sole point of contact with Mr. Young from the time we initially set the service appointment, checked the bike in, consulted on the phone and checked the bike out when Mr. Young picked the bike back up.

Mr. Young had requested a modified 48,000 mile service with a four year service. His appointment was booked and his bike was checked into our dealership on March 6, 2008 @ 4:38 P.M. I filled out the Work Order and initially listed the following jobs which Mr. Young had requested: 1. Perform "modified" 48K / four year service (customer requests we do NOT change the engine oil or filter, the final drive fluid, or the spark plugs. DO install the customer supplied K&N air filter. Perform the remainder of the service as per BMWNA guidelines). 2. North Carolina Safety Inspection.

Mr. Young accompanied me outside to perform our mandatory, documented "walk around" of the motorcycle. During the process of the walk around, I checked the following items: Tires, suspension, front brakes, lights, signaling equipment, operation of of the hand controls, power windshield and the audio system. I recommended replacement of the front tire due to wear. Mr. Young requested a quote on replacing the front tire. I also inspected the final drive unit and the gearbox/crankcase junction (done so by lying on my back to examine the underside of the bike). I found the area just aft of the gearbox/crankcase junction to be soaked with oil. I showed Mr. Young the oil on my hand and I informed him of the possibility of a rear main seal or a gearbox seal leak. Mr. Young indicated the bike "is not leaking any oil, the oil was due to the fact I had overfilled the crankcase while performing an oil change". Mr. Young also stated the area was dry when he performed the oil change. I noted the following on the work order: Clean and check for possible oil leak, rear main seal or drain plug (customer just changed the oil, it was dry then). The bike was started and the reverse operation was checked (found to be non-operable). I noted to Mr. Young that the bike had an erratic idle (the engine idle speed was rising and falling). I informed Mr. Young that the previous owner had brought the bike in last year for a fluid service and also mentioned the bike was having erratic idle problems. Mr. Young acknowledged the bike did in fact have somewhat of an erratic idle. AT NO TIME DID I INDICATE TO MR. YOUNG THAT "THIS WAS NORMAL". I noted the following on the work order: "note: the bike seems to have an erratic idle - low then high to 1,300 rpms. I also informed Mr. Young that while performing the brake fluid service the previous year we discovered and cleared an ABS fault code #16 (ABS piston fault)

While performing the walk around of the bike I noticed a piece of rubber wedged between the RH mirror base and the upper cowl. I inquired about this and Mr. Young indicated the "mirror is loose and it rattles". I removed only the RH mirror to investigate the cause of the problem (I used the procedure that anyone familiar with the BMW mirror mounting system would know, place one hand under the mirror assembly and with the other hand use a short, sharp blow to the top outer portion of the mirror assembly to safely remove it from the three mounting posts). The mirror came loose as expected (it was tethered with a wire tie) and both Mr.Young and I inspected the mirror base assembly. Mr. Young pointed out the wire retaining clips were screwed up (in fact the mirror base plastic was cracked and there were pieces of plastic missing). Mr. Young stated the LH mirror had similar problems but it was not as bad. Mr. Young requested I provide him with a quote on replacing the mirror and I noted the following on the work order: 3. estimate to replace RH internal mirror assy.

I noted the following on our Motorcycle Check In Form: Scuffed RH engine guard, scratched trunk box latch, scratched RH saddlebag lid, RH Mirror base (cracked plastic and damaged clip), non-functional reverse operation, scuffed LH engine cowl, broken vanity mirror peg).

Upon completion of the walk around, Mr. Young signed the work order authorizing us to perform the services as described on the work order. Mr. Young also signed the Motorcycle Check In Form noting the current damage to the bike.

Mr. Young requested an estimate to complete all the work. I noted the following amounts on the work order $800.00 for service, $9.10 for state safety inspection. Mr. Young then inquired as to the cost of replacing the front tire and I quoted him approximately $200.00. Mr. Young stated that if I could keep everything under $1000.00 (without the mirror replacement), "go ahead and do it". Mr. Young then acknowledge (with an additional signature) the estimated amount of the modified 48K/four year service, the state inspection and front tire replacement. I informed Mr.. Young that I would contact him if we encountered any problems during the process of the service.

The work order was assigned to our BMW Master Certified Technician on the scheduled day and as per policy the work order was reviewed with the technician prior to any work being started on the bike. The technician assisgned the work order has been with our company for nearly nine years. He is a graduate of MMI with a certifications in both BMW and Harley Davidson. The following are a list of the certifications he has received over the years: BMW Master Certified Technician, Ducati Desmosedici Certified Technician, Ducati Level II Certified Technician, Triumph Certified Technician, and MV Agusta Certified Technician. Needless to say, this guy know his way around a bike and he has developed a very dedicated and loyal customer base over the years.

Based on my observations of the erratic engine idle at the time of the initial walk around AND the bikes previous history of erratic idle problems, our technician first checked the bike for fault codes using the BMW GT1 diagnostic computer. The checked revealed no fault codes present. He proceeded with the service, including the post service test ride. During the test ride the engine idle grew more erratic and by the time he returned to the shop the engine idle speed was hanging up around 4,000 rpm's. He again checked for fault codes using GT1 and found the following fault code present: Open idle actuator. I researched the labor costs and the part cost to replace the idle actuator and I called Mr. Young. I informed Mr. Young that we had completed the service, the replacement of the front tire, and the state inspection. I informed him that the amount of the service was actually $633.99 plus tax and not the $800.00 dollars I had estimated previously. The tire replacement was $196.85 plus tax and the state safety inspection was $9.10. I informed Mr. Young that the technician had noted the following problems during the process of performing the service: leaking timing cover, possible rear main or gearbox seal, and a leaking steering damper. I also informed Mr. Young of the high engine idle condition and the fault code for the idle control actuator.

Mr. Young became very upset at this time and indicated that the bike did not have that problem when it came in and he wanted to know what we had done to the bike. I explained in detail the process of performing the service including both the pre-service and post service diagnostics using GT1. I provided Mr. Young a quote on the replacement cost of the idle control actuator and the labor to replace it. Mr. Young asked me to "take a look" at the number and let him know what we could do for him. Mr. Young commented that he was not happy about having to take the bike back apart to fix a problem we should have fixed when we had it apart. I informed Mr. Young that I would see what I could do to help him out.

I called Mr. Young back a short while later and offered to replace the idle actuator using BMWNA's flat rate of 1.1 hours (replace idle control actuator, body work removed and fuel tank removed) instead of the 2.5 hours to replace it including removal of the bodywork and fuel tank. Mr. Young authorized the repair and I informed him we would have the part the next day and I would re-arrange our schedule in order to complete the repair.

We were able to get the bike back on the techician's lift that afternoon and we verified the failure down to the component level (with the idle actuator removed, we were able to manually close the plunger and view the results on GT1). The part arrived and was installed the following day. We re-set the TPS and verified proper operation of the idle control actuator. Engine idle speed was now normal. A road test was performed but during the test ride the ABS warning lights began to flash. We again checked for faults and discovered a re-occurrence of the ABS # 16 (modulator piston fault). The techinican performed a component test of the ABS modulator piston using GT1 and it failed. The fault code was cleared and the bike was given a final inspection. The replacement of the idle actuator was $229.00 plus tax. In addition to charging the lower flat rate of 1.1 hours instead of the 2.5 hours, we did NOT charge Mr. Young any diagnostic time.

Mr. Young was notified upon the completion of all the work and the final work order total was $1099.34 ($99.34 more than I had originally estimated for the service, the tire replacement and the state safety inspection). Mr. Young was also informed of the re-occurrence of the ABS fault code.

Mr. Young came in to pick his bike up and I reviewed all the paperwork and I returned the faulty idle control actuator. Mr. Young paid his bill and left with his bike. I did not hear back from Mr.. Young until the following week when he called to tell me the cruise control was no longer working, that the throttle cable had come loose at the throttle tube assembly and that we "had scratched the side cover". Mr. Young also stated that he had to "pump" the front brake. We spoke about the throttle cables and I described how to re-secure the cable in the housing and how to lock it in place with the lock nut. I also offered to have him come by and we would double check the throttle cable adjustment and perform the stationary cruise control test. I also offered him my opinion of the "pumping" he was having to do with the front brakes. My experience with BMW ABS II is that the initial pull of the brake lever has a soft feel. If the brake lever is pulled in, released and then immediately pulled back in the brake lever has a much harder feel to it. This is based on my experience with both my 2001 K1200LT and my 2001 R1150GS, and with consultation with representatives from BMWNA. I have not heard back from Mr. Young since we last spoke. .

I'd also like to respond directly to some of Mr. Young's statements from his posts.

Mr. Young states:"What a mistake!! the bike came back to me with more problems than it went in for:

Having been informed of the condition of his bike by trained professionals, Mr. Young is now aware of the problems he was un-aware of when he purchased the bike.

Mr. Young states: "Dealer says it had a history of brake issues Its coding a 16 Dealer wants to replace the ABS unit!!. Idle was high about 1200 rpm. asked dealer about it? said it was normal when I took it in. Somehow it had a hard failure while there and started idling at 4K while at the dealer. Again had a HISTORY form the P.O.. Previous fix," CHANGED OIL AND AIR FILTER" problem solved.

During the process of performing the walk around, Mr. Young was advised of the erratic idle, the previous history of the erratic idle and the previous history of the ABS problem. The bike did not have a fault codes present when we performed the pre-service diagnosis but did in fact suffer a "hard failure" while being test ridden during the post service test ride. The previous fix was NOT "change engine oil and filter". The previous owner requested we change the engine oil and filter and he mentioned the bike had an erratic idle. We performed the engine oil and filter change, checked fault codes (no idle actuator fault codes were present at that time) and we test rode the bike. We noted that the idle was normal at that time.

Mr. Young states: "They suposely did the 48K service per BMW. Did not stamp the book."

It is BMW-Ducati of Charlotte's policy to not go through customer's personal belongings in order to find the book to stamp it. We will gladly stamp a customer's book provided the customer gives us the book or directs us to the book. At no time did Mr. Young provide us with the book or request we stamp it.

Mr. Young states: "It amazes me how the service manager kept telling me the bike has a "HISTORY" of this and that and how it came out with hard failures at the dealer which it didn't have going in. It seems to me if it has a "history" then the dealer did not have the knowledge or expertise to fix the "HISTORY problems"!!!" and "How do you fix an erratic idle with changing the oil and filter? call me baffled!!!

We could not duplicate the previous owner's complaint and he was not concerned with the erratic idle problem. He wanted the oil and filter changed and he was going to let the next owner worry about the problem. We did not investigate it further because we were not authorized to do so.

Mr. Young states: "I have gone round and round with them, You can't talk to a person who believes he knows everything and you know nothing. There comes a point where you realize that all they can do is replace parts and hope like H*** they get it right."

We never went "round and round". I was honest and professional during all my interactions with Mr. Young. We did ONLY what Mr. Young asked us to do. Mr. Young was provided with up front estimates, the work was performed in a timely manner and at a significant savings from the original estimate. When we did encounter a problem, Mr. Young was notified and provided with a verbal estimate.

Mr. Young states: "Every time I talked to them while the bike was in there ( We were on vacation) I felt the upsell going on. It had no abs brake issues, the cruise worked, the idle was what I thought a little high at 1200rpm. and no scratches on the side covers. but it was running fine , no warning lights and all worked."

I never attempted to "up sell" Mr. Young. Mr. Young was advised of only the recommended services, a replacement of the front tire and the problems we noted and encountered while the bike was in our care.

Mr. Young states: "I don't believe they have any troubleshooting skills at all. I am really upset with the way the bike was returned and the service, How Do you get two MAJOR HARD Failures while at the dealer when it was ok prior. That has to be pretty rare and then the bike is returned to you with the ABS problem."

The bike was NOT okay prior to it coming to our dealership. We were just unfortunate the problems re-occurred while we had it. We did in fact diagnose the erratic idle problem correctly.

Mr. Young states: "I bought this bike with the intent on seeing how well I liked it before spending 20+K on a new one. I really do like the bike and I was extermely happy with the sales department but after this experience we will never use them for service or buy another bike or parts from them".

I'm sorry Mr. Young feels this way but I would not change a single thing we did during this entire process. We obviously failed to meet Mr. Young's expectations and for that I am sorry.

To all of you who have taken the time to read this post, I thank you. To our loyal customer's who have come to our defense, I thank you. I look forward to serving all of with integrity and honesty for years to come.

Sincerely,

Bob Mihalko
Service Manager
BMW-Ducati Motorcycles
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  #18  
Old Mar 28th, 2008, 1:59 pm
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Talking Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Two people, two sides of the story and too much to read! Nice response from the dealer.
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  #19  
Old Mar 28th, 2008, 3:17 pm
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by fazed
To all of you who have taken the time to read this post, I thank you. To our loyal customer's who have come to our defense, I thank you. I look forward to serving all of with integrity and honesty for years to come.

Sincerely,

Bob Mihalko
Service Manager
BMW-Ducati Motorcycles
Well Bob,

Sorry it took this kind of situation to get you riled up enough for your 1st post

I'm only sorry that I didn't take the time earlier to question the original poster's complaints. When I read the original post I thought to myself, "this doesn't sound like the Bob I know." I thought maybe there was a new service manager down in Charlotte.

I have not met Al Young, I hope he is more reputable than the 2 sides of this story indicate.

Thanks, Bob, for taking obviously a lot of time to put together a very professional response. I'm only sorry that I don't live closer to your shop so I could spend more time there.



================================================== =========

To other readers,

Bob's description of walk around and initial W/O write up is exactly what I have experienced during service visits to Ducati-BMW of Charlotte. The shop as a whole seems very open minded to us finicky owners. Take for example this whole reverse operation dispute, these guys are one of the good guys, they really know how these bikes work and what their idiosyncrasies are.

I, for one, although I do a lot of maintenance myself, when I don't have time or the ability to do something, or if I even end up screwing something up, this North Carolina dealer is where I'll be heading.
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  #20  
Old Mar 28th, 2008, 5:46 pm
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Well, I don't know either party in this but I know a few that do deal with the Charlotte and alls they do is brag about the place... And thats both sales and service....

While I do my business with Cape Fear BMW in Wilmington NC I would really like the other riders who have dealt with BMW-Ducati to chime in.. I'm fairly confident most all will be positive......

JTEC,, You bought a 7 years old bike with 73k on it.. With due respect sir those could have been some of the most abusive miles a bike ever got... But my biggest puzzlement,is why would the service department want to run off a new and potentially long term customer????...........Pete
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  #21  
Old Mar 28th, 2008, 7:21 pm
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Thanks for posting your side of the issues Bob.

I hope that you two can get these issues worked out in a equally equitable manner.

This certainly was a good start.

John
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  #22  
Old Mar 28th, 2008, 7:23 pm
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

I too would like to thank Bob for posting his side of the disagreement. It sheds light on the subject and certainly makes me rethink things a bit as well.
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  #23  
Old Mar 28th, 2008, 10:20 pm
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Wow...I appreciate Bob's response to the issues at hand, that was quite a post. I hope you'll consider being a regular contributor to the forum, we won't abuse you just 'cause you work at a dealership....really! I thought you did a nice job on the response.

As for the original poster, I feel your pain too, been there. I'll look forward to your response, but in the meantime, fix what you gotta fix and get riding...you'll feel better.
Good luck.
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  #24  
Old Mar 29th, 2008, 6:53 am
rglassma rglassma is offline
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

JTEC,

It is really tough when you buy something (new to you) and feel as if maybe you bought the wrong item.. I felt that way when my rear main seal went on my LT. Hindsite is always 20/20. I have learned by my experiences what to look for in a BMW motorcycle and when a specific set of circumstances prove an increase in the amount of risk when buying a specific machine. I would call it the "school of hard knocks".. Experience is the best teacher.

The items that you had mentioned that are an issue would not have become appearant to you unless you had total disclosure from the previous owner and were aware of the service history of that specific bike. That is a tough situation and very uncomfortable. I feel your pain also !!!

The dealer on the other hand is responsible for doing their job. It is always easy to "Kill the messenger".. But, the dealer has to do what the dealer does because you asked them to. It is obvious to me that Bob has done a very professional job of disclosing the details of your interaction. That is to be commended... If anything, and with my experience with BMW service, I would have to say that the prices and treatment that they have provided are quite reasonable and professional. It seems they feel your pain also..

My recommendation is to either fix the bike (and then ride it and enjoy it), sell it and buy one that you have thoroughly researched (including service records, maintenance requirements, etc.), or trade it in. Either way, you will have a great bike to ride !!!

If you decide to acquire a different bike, also keep the following things in mind:

1) Buy one that still has some warranty left on it.

2) Do your research through the BMW dealer(s) that serviced the bike

3) By all means, buy an all inclusive extended warranty from a seperate company that will deal with the financial issues if the bike breaks for a pre-determined period of time.. But, it must be purchased when the bike is under manufacturer's warranty. If you would have had this plan, I am sure you wouldn't be nearly as frustrated as you are now, correct?


But, most importantly, at the time, come to the forum and search and ask questions.. You will get the guidance that you request.

These bikes are great !!!! They are the best full blown tourer out there. But, they do have their issues. Just know what they are and as they say "forewarned is forearmed"..

Good Luck..
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  #25  
Old Mar 29th, 2008, 8:29 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Bob,

I am glad you replied and gave your story. CYA

As stated earlier, I know the bike was not perfect and it was used!!! no arguement!!!!!

You did offer for me to come back. The question is why: the dealership did enough

I never asked for the 48K service. I thought it was strange since it has 73K on it but I took your lead. As for the book you had it and even wrote my name on it. It was what I thought a high idle, 1200rpm not erratic

AS for the bike having a "history" it just tells me that the dealership could not FIX the problem, If they could there would be no "history" maybe that is why the previous stop going to the dealership. Dealerships never make mistakes.

We will do our own service and repairs. We are very capable. I am very experienced. I have over 20yrs as a Q.A Engineer in the aerospace industry working on such items as the space shuttle navigational systems and many other military nav systems. Mechanically I have collected and retored several cars that have won many concours events. 37 years on motorcyles. I hold 2 B. S. Degrees and one Technical degree. I actually was offered a job in the motorcycle division of BMW NA in the early 80's.


I have been self employeed for the last 18yrs where we design and manufacturer item for big boys in the hobby industry. www. jtecrc.com
We pride ourself on our quality, workmanship and customer service, otherwise we would not be in business.

I will admit that I am getting older and lazy and that is why I took the bike in for service. We bought a 2005 R1200St and were very satisfied with the sales department.

lets face it, you were just happy to get ride of me when I picked up the bike. I had had enough by that time and gladly paid you to get my bike back. It would have not done any good to argue with you.

I would be happy to post some pictures as to how I recieved the bike back. Front tire , Throttle cables , scratch. but its time to put this thread to bed.

I do thank you for the information provided about the cable and cruise. I will bleed the brakes and see if there is any improvement.

This has turned into a pissing contest which nobody ever wins


Al Young
Mooresville NC
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  #26  
Old Mar 29th, 2008, 5:24 pm
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

I almost did not read this thread. I get tired of all the P & M ing and negativism we read here. I am glad I did read it though, as I happen to be a very pleased customer of BMW of Charlotte, et al. While my experience is limited to the last 2 1/2 years, it has been all good. I would go so far as to say that Bob is, by far, the best Service Manager I have ever dealt with: cars, boats and motorcycles. I believe his professional response speaks for itself. The BMW Technician Bob speaks of is top notch and knows his stuff. I would not hesitate in recommending this dealership to anyone.

Motorcycling is a lifestyle we all should enjoy. Too many people make a life of finding fault where there is none. Based on my knowledge of this dealership and not knowing Mr. Young, I would be willing to bet the latter is the case in this situation. You just can't make some people happy.

Mr. Young, the next time you buy a used bike, remember: dealerships can do a pre buy inspection for you. It can save a buyer from making a big costly mistake on a purchase.
Just MHO.

Ultra LT
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  #27  
Old Mar 29th, 2008, 9:15 pm
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by JTEC
AS for the bike having a "history" it just tells me that the dealership could not FIX the problem, If they could there would be no "history" maybe that is why the previous stop going to the dealership. Dealerships never make mistakes.
Al,

From what I read, and from what I understand of the situation, it's not that the dealer could not fix the problems. But more they either could not duplicate (i.e. to identify) the problem while it was at the dealer or the PO (previous Owner) would not authorize the repairs. It was more convienent for the PO to let YOU deal with the problems he was informed of by the dealer. That's the previous history.

Finding out what the previous history was is why I suggested you go another dealer so you could find this information out for yourself rather than take anyone's word for what the previous history truely was.

It's also apparent that you bought a used motorcycle and were aware of it and the potential trouble that could occur in a used motorcycle. I recently bought two. A '96 R1100RT and an '06 K1200LT. I bought a used RT knowing that it might have unresolved problems, but Ichecked the owners manaul for its detailed maintenance history and was satisfied it had been well maintained. Up to the 60K point where the second owner finished up. I am doing the 60K maintenance myself plus a few other odds and ends. It too is a high milage motorcycle and I was prepared to do work on it as you should have been.

If you were not prepared to do so, then you should have bought a motorcycle with a factory warrenty (I did - 1 year) so I was able to extend it with a Western warrenty. Warrenties cost a bit of money, but much less than one serious repair on the motorcycle. FWIW, I turned down another motorcycle (an '05) where the warrenty had expired and no factory warrenty was available. The difference in price was only $1000.00 between the '06 and '05 and the '06 also include a navigation package.

I don't see this as a P&M match, what I see is the dealer informed you of the problems as they occured and gave you the option to fix them (and pay for them) or let you take care of it yourself.

I can defintely see you think you had a bad experiance with the dealer. Not having been there myself I can't truthfully determine who is at fault. But then again, that is why I always pay with a credit card so I can use the CC to aid me in recovery of my funds if needed. But, before I would go that route I would have checked with another dealer to verify the quality of the work (that was done, that needed to be done, that was not done, etc.) and verify the history.

I did not have the RT checked out by a dealer before I purchased it, but had thought about it. Only reason I didn't was because I did significant research before the purchase so I knew the major fault areas to check out first. I was satisfied none were present and am enjoying my purchases. I wish you had of been so lucky.
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  #28  
Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 9:23 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Ditto on the Clymer and this website reply. This weekend I took my bike apart to get to the back of the radio. Never would have attempted it without the Clymer manual and the tupperware info on this site.
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  #29  
Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 11:13 am
Tandemfusion Tandemfusion is offline
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

I concur with the individual who pointed out that a history of specific problems is certainly not an indication that the dealership was unable to fix them, and indeed Bob explained quite thoroughly that the previous owner did not authorize them to resolve those items. For Young to continue to suggest that the dealership is incompetent becuase the bike had a history of problems in the face of both the clear common sense explanation that a dealer can only do what they are authorized to do, and Bob's explanation of the specifics is telling.

My personal experience with that dealership and with Bob is completely contrary to what Young reports. My LT was purchased used from them and they also serviced the two Triumphs I've owned. I simply can't imagine a better, more professional approach to customer service nor a more competent technician than their Mr. Lee.

It seems to me that there is a lesson here, and it is as others have mentioned, that it is unwise to buy a complex machine used without having a skilled assessment of it's condition.
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  #30  
Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 11:19 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

IMO...Knowone cares more about the quality of the work being done to your scoot than you do. Therefore, purchase a good manual, (I have a Clymer), and go for it. Good luck
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  #31  
Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 10:24 pm
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

This brings up an interesting question about confidentiality. Does anyone here think that a dealer should disclose conversations and work performed with a customer? I'm not too sure I would want my dealer / service department to publish either conversations or other information concerning an unhappy me.

On the other hand, I also appreciate that the server manager did respond to the issues that where publicly posted. He did present a powerful response to the complaints made against his company.

I bet there's no confidentiality clause signed by either party, so I'll assume there's no legal basis for either the dealer or the customer to keep quiet about what's going on between them. Since there is only one professional being criticized, I wonder if a more abbreviated response and an offer to work with this somewhat upset customer could be a better approach to resolving this.

Regardless, I'm glad this forum exists so people can air their feelings, and respond to them as well.
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  #32  
Old Apr 22nd, 2008, 11:06 pm
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

My question to both parties--- can anything be done so both the customer & dealer are satisfied with the final results?

It's a unfortunate situation for both of you, I hope both of you can come to some kind of solution and move on.
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  #33  
Old Apr 23rd, 2008, 12:07 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

[QUOTE=Tarkusny]This brings up an interesting question about confidentiality. Does anyone here think that a dealer should disclose conversations and work performed with a customer? I'm not too sure I would want my dealer / service department to publish either conversations or other information concerning an unhappy me. QUOTE]

Your point is well taken, but I think if the customer published details first, the service guy is within his rights to respond in like terms. Seems fair to me.
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  #34  
Old Apr 23rd, 2008, 5:52 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

I agree with Steve. A dealer should not post on this site details of their dealing with a customer, unless... the customer has voiced a complaint that has not been resolved. In that case, I think anyone should agree that the dealer has the right to tell their side of the story. As has already been stated, I just hope some type of resolution can be had so there are no hard feelings either way. We need the dealers on our side.
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  #35  
Old Apr 23rd, 2008, 6:32 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Kind of cool to have the service pros comment. We should have more of that.
In this case, IMNSHO, code-schmode, history-pistory. It's simple, looking at it as average-Joe-Rider. The guy gets his bike back with issues that were not present before the service. Lurking perhaps, but not evident. Cruise, brakes, ABS lights, 4K idle, yada-yada. I'd feel 'off' in such a case too and either seek correction, or an acceptable explanation, one which my non-techie mind will digest.
I hope you guys can sort it out and build a relationship, without glossing over issues by vaguely assigning them to history.
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  #36  
Old Apr 23rd, 2008, 7:21 am
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Smile Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

I must chime in and say that all of my dealings with the service, parts, and sales departments of BMW-Ducati of Charlotte have been top rate. The technician I believe they are referring to is one I trust completely and actually request that he work on my bike if possible.They also care about the air heads that are still around. I have checked there parts prices with catalog prices and they are reasonable. I just had to say that personally I am clad to have BMW-Ducati of Charlotte close by when I need service, parts, or maybe just some advice.
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  #37  
Old Apr 23rd, 2008, 7:34 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Bob, thanks for responding.

A couple of good comments/ideas throughout this post.

Getting a through check from a qualified BMW mechanic before the purchase of a bike like the K1200LT, to at least have an idea of possible repair items, IMHO, well worth several $$$ to learn about potential hidden damages or service items.

I appreciate Bob's quick response as the Service Manager. There are definitely two sides to this issue and I get the feeling that the service was well documented and accurate. I would personally feel comfortable in that dealership for service.

Dealer has the right to respond after an unhappy customer opens the door. It would seem to be unfair to not allow his answer to pointed complaints.

The complaints were long and the response equally so. I am glad though that I read them both for a more balanced view..
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  #38  
Old Apr 23rd, 2008, 7:48 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

"After many words, transgressions are unavoidable."
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  #39  
Old Apr 23rd, 2008, 8:17 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by messenger13
"After many words, transgressions are unavoidable."
Joe,

I think I like the end that was left out (but understood) of your quote, "But he who restrains his lips is wise." I need to follow it better.....
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Old Apr 23rd, 2008, 8:26 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by dandiver
I need to follow it better.....
Me moreso than you Dan. (That's why I understand the principle as well as I do.)
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  #41  
Old Apr 23rd, 2008, 9:51 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

I haven't had my LT in for service at BMW-Ducati Charlotte, but I have been in for parts/maintenance items. The counter salesmen are always polite and get me what I need. If I question the difficulty of a maintenance procedure, they have gone and asked the technician. Once, a tech came back with the salesman to explain removal of the fuel filter assembly from the tank. While waiting for my turn, I have observed other customers receive the same positive customer service experience. This isn't to say that there couldn't be problems. As humans, we are, well, human.
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  #42  
Old May 18th, 2008, 11:21 am
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

We get this all the time. When we replace a transmission on a vehicle, it's suddenly our fault the vehicle gets less fuel mileage or the electric window won't work................
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  #43  
Old May 19th, 2008, 2:18 pm
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ArthurKnowles
I too would like to thank Bob for posting his side of the disagreement. It sheds light on the subject and certainly makes me rethink things a bit as well.
I tell you what, if my dealer could give me an account of my visit as detailed as that, I'd set up camp in their parking lot. Sounds like they have their stuff together to me. Too bad I'm in Southern Cal....
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  #44  
Old May 19th, 2008, 3:01 pm
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by secretaryrick
I tell you what, if my dealer could give me an account of my visit as detailed as that, I'd set up camp in their parking lot. Sounds like they have their stuff together to me. Too bad I'm in Southern Cal....
If you bought them pizza once and a while (especially if they had done a really good job getting your bike in order on a very tight schedule), I guarantee they would greet you by your first name every time you walked in the door (and get priority treatment whenever you needed anything).
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  #45  
Old May 19th, 2008, 3:13 pm
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by JTEC
I have gone round and round with them, You can't talk to a person who believes he knows everything and you know nothing. There comes a point where you realize that all they can do is replace parts and hope like H*** they get it right.

I bought the bike privitely but my son bought his R1200ST from them and the sales guys are great!! Service is another issue.

I own my own business and came out of the areospace industry as a QA engineer. I have been into bikes and car for well over 30yrs. I have restored several cars ( collected real mini coopers) and bike over the years so I do know my way around mechanics and electrical. I just do not have the proper service manuals or tools yet for the LT. Thats why I took it to the dealer

Every time I talked to them while the bike was in there ( We were on vacation) I felt the upsell going on. It had no abs brake issues, the cruise worked, the idle was what I thought a little high at 1200rpm. and no scratches on the side covers. but it was running fine , no warning lights and all worked.

I don't believe they have any troubleshooting skills at all. I am really upset with the way the bike was returned and the service, How Do you get two MAJOR HARD Failures while at the dealer when it was ok prior. That has to be pretty rare and then the bike is returned to you with the ABS problem.

How do you fix an erratic idle with changing the oil and filter? call me baffled!!!

If I had these results with my customer I would not be in business. The only thing I can be sure of is that they actually put a new front tire on but could not put the rear part of the front fender on stright.

I bought this bike with the intent on seeing how well I liked it before spending 20+K on a new one. I really do like the bike and I was extermely happy with the sales department but after this experience we will never use them for service or buy another bike or parts from them.

Please realize with all my ranting I did buy the bike used and realized it would not be perfect. The service manager was sure to give me a HISTORY LESSON!! Still I have to wonder if these are repeat failures and they have History how come they did not fix thing right the first time!!!!!!!!

Al Young
Mooresville, NC
AL, Your flashing brake light may just be low fluid on the rear reservoir. Doesn't take much to cause it.

My 2002 LT ran great for four years. Very few issues.

Good luck getting it sorted.

My dealer in OH is great and the service guys know their trade well.
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  #46  
Old May 20th, 2008, 3:04 pm
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jebain2002 jebain2002 is offline
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Location: North Myrtle Beach, SC, USA
Posts: 114
Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

OK, I am more than a little late coming in to this particular discussion, but I note that Mr. Young joined the community in February, 2008 and this thread began on March 22, 2008. Of course, Bob Mihalko joined and made his first post on March 28, 2008 to give his side of the story.

For anyone who cares about such things as credibilty, let me first make a point or two: First, I have been on this board, and the old Yahoo Group (if you have to ask what is the Yahoo Group, it won't mean anything to you anyway), for quite awhile. I don't post much for a number of reasons, primarily because anyone with a keyboard suddenly thinks they are an authority on all things. However, I do own an LT, with the help of a couple of good friends do most all maintenance myself and generally ride a good bit when time and inclination strikes, but I have managed to put enough time in the saddle that I should roll my odometer into six figures withing the next few weeks.

That having been said, I did run into a problem last year when a slightly leaking rear main seal and what should have been a 3-4 day repair (that is actualy time on the lift, not necessarily time in the dealer's shop) turned into a 12-week nightmare.

Long story short - On a Saturday morning of the dealerships within an 8-hour drive of my home I would consider taking the LT to, BMW-Ducati of Charlotte gave me the best shot at getting my bike fixed and on the road in time for a little trip I had planned around the US and Canada from August 20-31, 2007. Bob fielded the call, gave me straight answers, did exactly what he said he would do, when he said he would do it and worked with me every step of the way (including calling me and putting his tech on the phone for me to explain some of the "unique" wiring solutions I had done to the bike - yes, I have one or two non-factory accessories on my LT).

Bob and his service staff went way above and beyond what was necessary. They truly bought into getting my bike back together and on the road the way it was meant to be in plenty of time for me to make it to the start of my trip. Bob even called after I got home to follow up and see how things went.

Since then I have called Bob on a couple of occassions and asked a question or two and if he was not sure, he put a tech on the phone to answer the question.

If someone asks me whether I would recommend BMW-Ducati of Charlotte for service, I wouldn't hesitate. In fact, I will be taking another little trip in late August, 2009 and Bob, De Long, and the rest of the crew in Charlotte will most likely be doing a little service work to help me get ready for that one as well.
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  #47  
Old Jan 3rd, 2011, 11:07 am
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Risky Risky is offline
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

To Bob.
I feel for the owner, I also feel for you, It was a seven year old bike in What I read as in good condition. No one wants surprises after they have dropped lodes of cash on a new ride (to them) and find out they may have a lemon!
Just the response to the post means to me that you care and I think you would try to make things right.
Just my to cents
Risky
CMC 017
Windsor.
Ontario. Canada
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  #48  
Old Jan 3rd, 2011, 1:38 pm
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calvarez calvarez is offline
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

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  #49  
Old Jan 3rd, 2011, 2:12 pm
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mwnahas mwnahas is online now
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Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Bedford Hts, OH, USA
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Risky
To Bob.
I feel for the owner, I also feel for you, It was a seven year old bike in What I read as in good condition. No one wants surprises after they have dropped lodes of cash on a new ride (to them) and find out they may have a lemon!
Just the response to the post means to me that you care and I think you would try to make things right.
Just my to cents
Risky
CMC 017
Windsor.
Ontario. Canada
Just a wee bit late to the party there John. Almost three years.
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  #50  
Old Jan 3rd, 2011, 2:27 pm
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fpmlt fpmlt is offline
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Re: Never Again!!!!!!!!!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by mwnahas
Just a wee bit late to the party there John. Almost three years.
True concern knowns no limits!!!!
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