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Apr 03, 2001 (8:20 pm)
Yes, As sad as it sounds I absolutely hate American cars. Because of the "BUY AMERICAN" campaign from a few years back I decided to give Chrysler a chance. I bought a 1995 sport Dodge Neon with 30k miles. As soon as I reached 40k my "CHECK ENGINE LIGHT" came on and my car started leaking oil like crazy. I took my car to the shop and and $750 later I was driving it again. They replaced the head gasket and oxygen sensor. Because I had read the bad reviews on the internet I knew that this was a reocurring problem. Well what do you know, 10k miles later the "LIGHT OF DEATH" came back on again and 40k later I was leaving oil puddles under my hood everywhere I went. Since the firt time I have visited different shops on 4 occasions. 1 for the gasket and 3 for the "CHECK ENGING LIHGT". Finally I gave up, my car is no longer leaking oil becuase I just replaced my gasket for a second time but I try to ignore the "CHECK ENGINE LIGHTS". Following is a list of problems I currently have with my 80K mile car: Check engine light is on at all times, My windows sound like I'm driving a 747 Boeing jet, paint is peeling all over the car, weird noise under the steering column everytime I make a turn. Intermittent electrical problems with my blinkers and turn signals and low gas mileage. DODGE SCREWED ME AND THOUSAND OTHER CONSUMERS. AND THE WORST THING IS THAT THEY ARE VERY AWARE OF THE PROBLEM. I SAY NO MORE AMERICAN CARS FOR ME... ESPECIALLY DODGE, CHRYSLER OR ANY OTHER RELATED LINE. I GIVE DODGE TOW THUMBS DOWN, ON A SCALE FROM 1 TO 10 I GIVE THEM A 0. I HAVE RECOMMENDED EVERY SINGLE PERSON IN MY FAMILY NEVER TO BUY THEIR PRODUCTS AGAIN. AND THEY NEVER HAD.
#135 of 139 eneth and others
Apr 06, 2001 (10:57 pm)
My undergraduate degree is in marketing and the mantra in the field is "a dissatisfied customer tells 8 people of their experience, whereas a satisfied customer tells one."
I have trouble believing the 1:22 ratio:
[Somewhere I've seen it said that one customer with a bad experience will result in 22 or more lost sales from other customers]
That ratio is extremely high even in the high school education or less demographic. Typically, consumers with higher incomes/education levels will use word-of-mouth (WOM) in the initial stage of a purchasing decision but the critical factor(s) will probably be their own research. Marketing research has shown that those using WOM as a critical purchasing factor tend to be the less educated. Even in that group though, 1 in 10 or 12 is probably a more accurate ratio.
On a different note, I can completely understand why someone who purchased one of those 95-97 Neons would be - pardon the french - pissed at Chrysler, but let's not forget how fast Chrysler rushed that puppy from inception to production (less than two years). STILL...standing on a soapbox and essentially proclaiming that anyone seriously contemplating purchasing a 2001 Neon is a dolt is in poor taste. Hey pot, this is kettle. You're black.
I hate to be rude, but I hear violins playing in my head when I read some of these posts. With only a little research (hell, even cheap cars still cost quite a bit of money in the picture of things), any 95/96 Neon buyer should've been WELL aware they were going to be guinea pigs for a completely new automobile design (new engine, new tranny, new chassis...NEW EVERYTHING). Virtually nothing on the 94-95 Neon was carried over from the generally quite reliable and plenty unattractive Acclaim/Spirit twins. Now these same VOLUNTEER test subjects want everyone to join in their crusade against Chrysler? I can't help but to wish Kias on these people. They truly deserve it.
On the same note, I just heard someone the other day b******* about the problems he already had with his '00 Focus and I asked him point blank, "Just exactly what part of your pre-purchase research on the vehicle led you to believe that the car would be problem-free?" Yes, I was a jerk. But in my defense, this guy is an idiot.
When you buy an American car here in its first production year, you ARE going to be a guinea pig. The more new parts it possesses, the greater your odds of having trouble. This is common knowledge, folks.
When you buy a "new" Japanese design the first year out of the chute here, at least you can usually rest assured that the Japanese consumers themselves have done the beta testing.
On a different subject, I agree that Subaru makes some fantastic vehicles nowadays - if you can handle the exterior appearances (that new Impreza got beaten senseless with the ugly stick and I think most unbiased people would have to agree that the Forester does somewhat resemble an AMC Pacer on steriods). But, if you did a little checking around (you have to look hard, not a lot of people bought Subies ten years ago) to find some people who purchased the Subaru "timing-chain eater" Loyale ~1990, you would also probably find at least a couple really belligerent "I'll never buy one of those damn Subarus again" types in the group.
I think it's a very good thing that these boards exist so that people can share their experiences and opinions about different vehicles. I think it's important that none of us forget, however, that these boards are not accurate representations of true consumer sentiment.
The people who take the time to post here generally fit into one of two categories: (1)those seeking vengeance against companies that sold them lemons and (2) those trying to justify their own purchase decisions and biases (we call this psychological phenomenon "cognitive dissonance" in marketing). Most of us possess some type of bias (I, for example, hate sport utility or "suburban assault" vehicles with a PASSION). Let's just keep in mind that our opinions are just that - opinions.
Before I go, I apologize for the length of this diatribe. Just consider yourself lucky that you didn't have to read any of my research papers in college !
Happy motoring all!
Apr 07, 2001 (4:41 am)
No one is disputing that all carmarkers have produced problematic models.
A few corrections:
Subarus use almost exclusively timing belts, not chains. Shorter-lived belts were more the rule than the exception ten or fifteen years ago; Honda had problems, but so did a lot of other makers - and Chrysler's first 2.2L engines snapped belts with monotonous regularity as well.
The Neon was not an all new design by any measure. The transmission dates back to the Omni and Horizon of the 1970s - it has a generally good reputation for engineering, if not quality control. The Neon was designed to make a profit for Chrysler in selling U.S.-designed and North American-built small cars - something Chrysler had never attempted before (the Omni-Horizon were SIMCA-Rootes European designs, like the Cricket before them; the Shadow and Sundance were simply cut-down K-cars, not true small models). Chrysler cut every corner it could to keep the price down, and the Neon that resulted was unsatisfactory to most people.
It used to be true that the Japanese automakers held back worldwide releases until after home market debugging - that hasn't been the case for many models in years. And while no automaker is immune to design defects and manufacturing defects, you don't see the same level of problems with a newly minted Corolla or Civic that you do with a newly minted Neon model.
The newer Neons are what the originals should have been - no doubt. They're also priced quite a bit higher than the originals, and I would suspect they don't make much, if any money for DaimlerChrysler.
#137 of 139 How to recover costs? Lawsuit?
Apr 13, 2001 (1:48 pm)
My 95 Neon Sport had head gasket failure years ago, but not long after my standard warranty expired. Just my luck.
Has anybody who had head gasket work done after warranty been able to get any money back from Chrysler? What is the procedure?
Also, I saw only one mention on this forum about a potential class action law suit. If it exists, does anybody have details?
Apr 13, 2001 (4:12 pm)
You can try, but it's generally best to seek reimbursement up front, or soon after the repair is done.
Class-action lawsuits are meaningless to the individual consumer - they invariably result in miniscule payouts to member of the class (and big-league ones to the attorneys who represent the class).
Apr 18, 2001 (6:04 pm)
I had this problem on my 97 a few months ago, at around 75,000 miles(in other words, well after warranty). Dealer replaced it for $100 and acknowledged that it was a fairly routine problem. Just make sure you take the problem to a reputable dealer and let them know you are aware of this.