BMW's Attitude - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 22 Old Feb 16th, 2006, 9:44 am Thread Starter
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BMW's Attitude

Thought I'd put this post in a new thread and rant a bit. Been a "loyal" BMW owner for over 20 years purchasing 5 new BMW's during that time. The way they treat problems has always been the same:

1. Blame the customer
2. Say: This is the first they have heard of the problem
3. Say: They all do that and it isn't a problem
4. Blame the customer again

I've just lived with it in the past but their treatment of the rear drive problem and the clutch spline problem with oilheads has about put me over the fence. The reliability of other manufacturers doesn't help BMW's case either.

Their is only one reason I might buy another BMW and that is the wonderful dealer that I ride 3.5 hours each way to visit. He's currently trying to talk me into a new GT ....... hard to justify it at almost twice the price of a FJR.

I've been with this LT group since the old board days and experienced the many small but niggling LT problems that BMW has mostly chosen to ignore or piss off the customer. One example stands out in my mind that almost drove me crazy:

Those that been around since 1999 will remember the mismatched radio code problem. When my (and many others) battery on a new bike often died BMW blamed us for not turning the trunk light off. They then came up with a shut down dance that was ridiculous. After a long ride to Phoenix the battery died overnight and stranded me again .... even when I did my own troubleshooting and saw a battery drain with everything off - BMW's answer was still - I was doing something wrong! They even went so far to say the problem was I wasn't riding the bike enough to charge the battery - this on a bike that I took off the 36,000 mile warranty in 10 months. After about 2 years they finally admitted a problem and matched radios with computer controllers.

My point is although I just turned 100K on my LT and have many wonderful memories - dealing with BMW sure isn't one of them!

Tom
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post #2 of 22 Old Feb 16th, 2006, 10:52 am
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Honda does the same thing.

Honda does the same thing.

Life is short. Get out there and ride.

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post #3 of 22 Old Feb 16th, 2006, 11:15 am
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Honda of Hollywood, a name that will live in infamy...

and then some dealers are just plain incompetent, not worth the $85.00/hour they charge for the "trained" mechanics...
I am still fighting Honda of Hollywood (authorized BMW dealer) to get them to finish my bike.
I had to rant in the Dealers Experience section of this forum...
http://www.bmwlt.com/forums/showthread.php?t=5497
You may want to do the same, as well as praise the "good" dealer you now go to.

Gilles & Kathy
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For her I climbed the highest mountain!
For her I swam across the deepest ocean!
For her I walked through the largest desert!
And then she left me... She said I was never home!!!


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post #4 of 22 Old Feb 16th, 2006, 11:38 am
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Good question. I say we ain't gonna change it...

Maybe if we lived in Germany and had to deal with Harley dealerships we'd have something to compare this to. My take is anytime you get a bunch of educated and sohpisticated customers paying absolute top dollar and being serviced by hourly employees with more work than time, this is the result.

find a good wrench or dealer person, stick with them, and slip them an extra hundred when your happy. the cycle of incompetence and arrogance is obvious in the motorcycy aftermarket industry.

I wonder if the mototechs and dealership people sit around and bitch at how arrogant and demanding we are???

chris k
N Kentucky
2002 LTE "Matilda"
1985 Goldwing
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post #5 of 22 Old Feb 16th, 2006, 11:40 am
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For the record, cage manufacturers are quite similar. I have a rare dealer that backs up what they AND the manufacturer say - even if (as I discovered) the mfr renigs (sp?). What I have seen in surveys is something like - LOVE the (car, bike, etc), HATE the manufacturer. Could BMW do it better? Yep. Does anyone build a bike that comes close (to what I want)? Nope. I, too, love my dealer and his service dept AND this board. Gonna keep ridin Beemers cause there ain't nuttin like 'em.

Jim Taylor
Minneapolis
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post #6 of 22 Old Feb 16th, 2006, 12:44 pm Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OlsonBW
Honda does the same thing.
We all are products of our experiences - mine is that if it's a real problem the Japanese manufacturers fix them with recalls. BMW almost never does a recall - they issue semi secret tech bulletins to dealers who aren't required to notify customers. Yamaha recently got caught off base with their new R6. They had no problem stepping up to the plate and handling it as they should (and as I suspect BMW never would):

Yamaha Offers to Buy Back New R6
2/15/2006
By MCUSA Staff

The motorcycle world was awed when Yamaha announced that its radical
new YZF-R6 sportbike had a 17,500-rpm redline, getting near to the
lofty rev limits of Formula 1 high technology.

Well, it turns out that a streetbike engine revving to 17.5K is still
nothing more than a dream. Independent dyno testing has revealed the
R6's rev limiter kicks in shortly after hitting 16,000 rpm.

In response, Yamaha has announced its error in that its tachometer
reads about 9% too high, showing 17,500 on the tach but not in
actuality.

The following is a release on Yamaha's website:

"Yamaha introduced and marketed the new 2006 YZF-R6 motorcycle with a
red line limit of 17,500 rpm, as indicated on the tachometer. After
testing production units, we have determined that the actual red line
limit is approximately 16,000 rpm, resulting in a tachometer error of
roughly 9%. This has no affect whatsoever on the performance of the
motorcycle."

While the R6's performance remains, there may be some buyers who
bought an R6 in part because of its racy redline. For those people,
Yamaha has sent out letters to all R6 purchasers offering to buy back
their bikes (plus interest) if they are dissatisfied.

"We decided we'd better do the right thing and step up and put our
money where our mouth is," explained Yamaha Motor Corp's press
relations manager Brad Banister.

The R6 buy-back follows a similar precedent set in the car world when
Mazda offered to buy 2004 RX-8s from owners once the claimed 247 hp
of the manual transmission version was found to actually measure at
238 ponies. Automatics were downgraded 10 hp to 197. The difference
here is that Mazda was forced to make this offer, while Yamaha is
doing it voluntarily.

"It's an unprecedented thing in the industry," Banister added, "and
it shows how committed Yamaha is to customer satisfaction."

In fact, this over-clocking of factory tachometers has been going on
for some time. Yamaha's previous R6 was claimed to rev until 15,500
rpm, but our dyno testing proved that it hits its redline prior to
15K.

And this isn't uncommon in the world of sportbikes. Last year's
Kawasaki ZX-6RR claimed a 16,500-rpm redline but revved to less than
16K when we put it on the dyno.

Yamaha hasn't publicly announced the reason behind the tachometer
discrepancy, with Banister explaining that the cause is yet to be
determined. He added that Yamaha doesn't expect to be flooded with R6
buyers trading in their new bikes.

"The R6 is exactly what we said it was - the most awesome, the most
technologically advanced 600 ever built."

Tom
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post #7 of 22 Old Feb 16th, 2006, 3:41 pm
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I had a Honda Goldwing with a defective radio unit while still under warranty. Two Honda dealerships told me that they did not work on Goldwings, (Note: both of these dealerships sold GWs, so go figure). Finally, had to go to a dealer 100 miles away which treated me like a king. So, BMW is not the only ones with a problem. I really like BMWs and will fight the battle as long as I can.
Leon
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post #8 of 22 Old Feb 16th, 2006, 3:44 pm
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I had the same problems with my Harley Davidson.They had a KNOWN cam bearing problem and would not recall to repair. If it did break they would fix it. Not very comforting knowing you are taking a 10,000 mile journey on secondary roads and desert. I believe I would still buy a new one each year as I had in the past before this happened.

I have always had FANTASTIC warranty services at Escondido BMW. A very knowledgable and courteous staff. I feel very lucky that they are my dealership.

Airborne "Never Forget"
Vonore, TN

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post #9 of 22 Old Feb 16th, 2006, 3:56 pm
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Jim, recently moved to the area and looking for a recommendation for a good dealership to do business with. Can you tell me which one you have had a good experience with. Thanks.

Greg Noble
Hudson WI.
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post #10 of 22 Old Feb 16th, 2006, 4:04 pm
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Yep - I agree but I also think it may have something to do with being under warranty. I think their (dealers) real bread and butter is with paying customers. Not sure what the deal is with warranty work or how the dealer gets paid by BMW but I bet they make less thus the reluctance. Troubleshooting may be a whole nother story - duno food for thought.

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post #11 of 22 Old Feb 16th, 2006, 5:12 pm
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Dealer support, not BMW, keeps me riding the brand. When the dealer support goes away so will BMW, but I'm not sure it is any different in the X brand camp, but I have not been there in a while.
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post #12 of 22 Old Feb 16th, 2006, 5:56 pm
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With some fighting, BMW has been doing a considerable amount of buy-backs of their 2004 and early 2005 R1200CL models because most were built with defective side stands that eventually collapsed on many bikes requiring the replacement of the entire rear sub-frame.

A number of owners had the sub-frame replaced only to have the same problem occur on the repaired bikes. BMW has settled a number of these claims by buying back the R1200CLs and selling the owners other BMW bikes, many of which are turning out to be K1200LTs.

But these buy-backs with BMW don't come easy. The owners have had to fight like mad to get them and a number have secured the assistance of attorneys to get satisfaction.

I was fortunate. I had a 2003 CL and that year was unaffected.

Steve Gray
Canton, MI
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post #13 of 22 Old Feb 16th, 2006, 6:18 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TPadden
We all are products of our experiences - mine is that if it's a real problem the Japanese manufacturers fix them with recalls. BMW almost never does a recall - they issue semi secret tech bulletins to dealers who aren't required to notify customers. Yamaha recently got caught off base with their new R6. They had no problem stepping up to the plate and handling it as they should (and as I suspect BMW never would):

Yamaha Offers to Buy Back New R6
2/15/2006
By MCUSA Staff

The motorcycle world was awed when Yamaha announced that its radical
new YZF-R6 sportbike had a 17,500-rpm redline, getting near to the
lofty rev limits of Formula 1 high technology.

Well, it turns out that a streetbike engine revving to 17.5K is still
nothing more than a dream. Independent dyno testing has revealed the
R6's rev limiter kicks in shortly after hitting 16,000 rpm.

."
Yamaha was one leeetle step from fraud court...

Steve White
Lewisville, Tx
'00 K1200LT
'05 R1200Gs
'03 K1200GT (hers)
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post #14 of 22 Old Feb 16th, 2006, 6:28 pm
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HD same..

HD "tried" 8 times to fix mine then bought it back.

Luv the LT and Lonestar BMW aint bad either...

...............
J.M.J...
Dcn Channing

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post #15 of 22 Old Feb 16th, 2006, 6:44 pm
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Smile Dealers VS BMW

I've been really pleased with my dealer here in Cleveland, Ohio. So far the only hassle has been the throttle cables which they immediately replaced FREE. Not one minute of hesitation. I now have 15,000 miles on the bike.

Rob Nelson

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More than 132,000 (recently corrected higher) motorcycle riders have died in traffic crashes since the enactment of the Highway Safety Act of 1966 and The National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966. Be careful out there.
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post #16 of 22 Old Feb 17th, 2006, 12:27 am
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Problems with the Manufacturer

I'm of the same mind as most of you on this issue. I have had my fair share of manufacturers not wanting to admit that their product has a fault, but I, and most of you are the same, can only persist through our dealers to not be beaten.

This is my first BMW after riding Yamaha for 46 years, I wrote BMW Canada 4 months ago about a silly little thing that bothered me and that was the charge of $25 I had to pay for a manual that didn't come with the BMW V.O.I.C.E. II Communication System II that I installed after I got the 05 LT. I paid a heathy dollar to purchase this BMW V.O.I.C.E. II Communication System and have it installed and they couldn't provide a manual with the system... give me a break! And it took me 4 months to get the manual. And they have yet to replied to my letter.

Cheers, Bill
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post #17 of 22 Old Feb 17th, 2006, 6:49 am
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A question here about the responses from BMW on the problems and concerns we have. Is it BMW AG in the mother country that is the problem or is it BMW NA that is the problem? I've heard that BMW NA is the real stumbling block when it comes to warrenty or dealer support issues. Any comments?

Bill McAllister
St. Louis, MO.
2003 K1200LTE
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post #18 of 22 Old Feb 17th, 2006, 8:58 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KYchris02
I wonder if the mototechs and dealership people sit around and bitch at how arrogant and demanding we are???
Yup. All the time!
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post #19 of 22 Old Feb 17th, 2006, 10:12 am Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McAllister
A question here about the responses from BMW on the problems and concerns we have. Is it BMW AG in the mother country that is the problem or is it BMW NA that is the problem? I've heard that BMW NA is the real stumbling block when it comes to warrenty or dealer support issues. Any comments?
My problems have always been dealing with BMW NA - when I ask dealers they also point to BMW NA; but if asked I'm sure NA would blame BMW AG. Sounds suspiciously like the government.

One time with one problem that they said they had never heard of I said I could give them at least 40 people that had it. They NA rep asked me to "unofficially" collect data and submit it to him. I spend days collecting data and submitted it - he then said thanks it does seem to be a problem but never contacted me again. I called him much later and he said the data did indicate a problem but "officially" it didn't exist.

Tom
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post #20 of 22 Old Feb 18th, 2006, 12:36 am
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No problem with dealers. Have a credibility gap with BMW NA tho'.
Had hyd clutch slave cylinder leak which also leaked into the clutch assembly on my way from Tampa to Las Vegas. Happened in San Antonio on a Saturday morning before continuing my trip. Had it transported to the San Antonio BMW dealer in the PM after finally getting the tow to my location.
The dealer couldn't work on it then so I had the weekend to wait. Called Cust Svc to ask for help..They said "no problem..get a room and rent a car and we'll reimburse you"..Which I did..The LT was still down after 6 days so I called again and asked for guidance..they said I could fly home and they would pay for expenses while they continued to troubleshoot the problem(s)..More had developed which trying to fix the original problem..After another 5 days they called and said LT was fixed and offered to ship it to me or I could come pick it up..I opted to pick it up so as to continue my trip as planned..
Back home I submitted the documents as specified by the Cust Svc rep..Request for reimbursement kicked back after 4 weeks of "careful review" for re-submission of necessary receipts(?)..Sent in copy of my credit card statement for verification of expenses and airline ticket charges..still no good
Gonna try one more time..BMW NA sucks but the dealers I've dealt with to solve my problems were very helpful and understanding in their efforts..
The LT has suffered an output trans O ring failure which they replaced under warranty..So I have 3 major problems with LT since new(2005 LT bought in Aug 05) with only 13,500 miles on it..I still love the bike and they way it rides. Just not happy with BMW NA at all..They just don't seem to get it..The happier the customer. the better it is for business in the long run..Sorry for long post but I am feeling much better now!!

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post #21 of 22 Old Feb 19th, 2006, 8:29 am
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I recall reading in the BMW Owners News sometime last year, about the trouble the BMWMOA leadership was having in getting a meeting with the corporate managment of BMW. BMW just seemed to keep brushing them off.

I couldn't believe what I was reading. The top management of BMW Motoraad could not or would not find time to talk to representatives of the largest organization made up of customers of their products?

That definitely told me something about what BMW Motoraad thinks of it's customers.

Follow your front wheel...
Steve S.

1998 Harley Davidson FLHR-P
1998 BMW R1100RT-P (Black Mariah)
2002 BMW K1200LTE (Bayou Buffalo)

If it rolls, floats, flies or shoots, runs on gasoline or gunpowder, is loud, goes fast, or shoots a big bullet, thus producing Torque or Recoil....It's Cool.

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post #22 of 22 Old Feb 19th, 2006, 3:24 pm
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Didn't the GL1800 have a overheating problem and then a frame cracking problem?? How long did it take for Honda to say there was a problem? and how many customers did they tell, that was your problem. I had a friend who under the warranty problem with frame took apart his own GL1800 and took them the frame. He did not trust them with his bike. Honda had outsider weld the frame.

I am happy with my LT. Not prefect, but I like my dealer.
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