Last post on Dec 22, 2012 at 1:26 PM
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BMW 5 Series, Car Warranties, Sedan, Wagon
#58 of 58 Re: I wouldn't buy United Auto Care warranty again! [pointfinder]
Dec 22, 2012 (1:26 pm)
I ADVISE THAT READERS OF THIS POST AND OF THIS FORUM SHOULD NOT PURCHASE A VEHICLE FROM UNITED BMW ROSWELL GEORGIA OR ANY AFFILIATED UNITED AUTO DEALER OWNED BY PENSKE.
I ADVISE FURTHER THAT YOU SHOULD NOT PURCHASE AN EXTENDED WARRANTY FROM ANY OF THE FOLLOWING COMPANIES, WHICH ARE ALIASES FOR THE SAME PENSKE-OWNED COMPANY:
- “THE WARRANTY GROUP”
- “THE WG”
- “RESOURCE AUTOMOTIVE”
- “UNITED AUTO CARE”
- “CONSUMER PROGRAM ADMINISTRATORS”
I FURTHER ADVISE THAT – SHOULD YOU EVER DO BUSINESS WITH ANY PENSKE COMPANY – YOU SHOULD BE VERY CAUTIOUS SO AS NOT TO SUFFER THE SAME POOR TREATMENT AS DESCRIBED BELOW.
Here are the facts of my experience with United Auto Care and United BMW, both Penske companies. You should read for yourself before taking the risk of doing business with any of these Penske companies.
January 19, 2010: I test drove a used 2004 BMW M3 convertible at United BMW of Roswell – a Penske company. After the test drive, I fell in love with the vehicle which is the epitome of “The Ultimate Driving Machine.” Upon returning home that evening, I performed extensive research on the vehicle, and found many great reviews confirming that the BMW M3 is one of the most favored sports cars available anywhere!
However, one finding caused me great concern: the hydraulic oil pump for the automatic transmission had been known to experience premature failure; sometimes as early as 40,000 miles.
The following day, I spoke with United BMW’s used car salesman to discuss my concerns about the oil pump defect with this vehicle. The salesman reiterated at that time that the vehicle was being offered “as is,” but that the vehicle had been thoroughly inspected and that there were “no problems with the transmission.” At that time, the salesman also suggested that I could purchase an extended warranty that “would cover any transmission problems should they occur in the next 36,000 miles.” I informed the United BMW salesman that – if the warranty policy was reasonably priced, I would still consider purchasing the vehicle with the extended warranty.
January 20: I returned to the United BMW dealership to discuss my concerns with the salesman, and to discuss the extended warranty. At that time, the salesman informed me that the extended warranty by United Auto Care – also a sister company owned by Penske “would definitely cover any problems with the transmission oil pump”. At a cost of $3,000 for the Hi-Tech coverage option, the extended warranty seemed like an excessive cost for the coverage, but the salesman indicated that – if there were to be a problem with the transmission, “the repair would cost even more than the $3,000 warranty premium.” I was amazed at that statement, but after much discussion, I agreed to purchase the vehicle complete with the $3,000 additional extended warranty program as peace-of-mind for this potential transmission problem.
It will become apparent later in the story, why it is important to note that this Penske United BMW used car salesman had a verified history of misrepresenting the vehicles that he sold. When he sold the vehicle to me, he informed me that the vehicle was equipped with Bluetooth hands-free mobile phone connection. Only after the vehicle was purchased, did we discover that the vehicle did not – in fact – have Bluetooth capabilities.
When I informed the salesman of my dissatisfaction with his misrepresentation, he informed me that “I’m sorry. I was wrong and there is nothing I can do about it.” It was later determined by United BMW that the salesman had – in fact – misrepresented the vehicle as being equipped with Bluetooth.
Fast forward 3 months…
I began to notice a vibration in the transmission during start off from first gear. I brought the vehicle to United BMW, informing them of the vibration in the transmission. United BMW was unable to identify the problem, and had no idea as to what might be the cause of the problem. Over the course of the next two years, I brought the vehicle to United BMW no fewer than five different times requesting that they identify the cause of the problem.
It ultimately became clear that United BMW had no competence for troubleshooting this transmission problem. It was clear that they had no understanding of how the vehicle operated, and that they were not competent to perform inspection, troubleshooting, or repairs to this vehicle.
After two years of tolerating the poor performance of the LEMON that Penske United BMW sold me, I finally drove the vehicle to an independent repair facility (indy). My indy was quickly able to recommend inspection of the flywheel, which is a common cause of this particular symptom. Although the flywheel is a “covered component” according to the extended warranty, United Auto Care refused to pay for the cost of troubleshooting. I, therefore, authorized my indy to tear down the transmission at my cost to perform the inspection and troubleshooting process.
Upon inspection, United Auto Care’s inspector confirmed that “the flywheel showed abnormal wear, and needed to be replaced.”
This is where the TOTAL HELL of PENSKE and UNITED AUTO CARE begins:
I called my indy to check status of the repair, to which he responded “The warranty company is denying your claim. They are saying that this is not a covered failure.”
I contacted the warranty company, and after spending several hours on hold and speaking to a variety of different “claims representatives,” I finally was able to escalate my case to a supervisor – Mr. Andrew LaPorte – who continued to argue with me that my claim was not a covered item. I proceeded to question Mr. LaPorte as to why he was denying coverage for an item that is explicitly covered in my contract. After extensive argument, and PENSKE United Auto Care refusing to replace the flywheel, Mr. LaPorte conceded to “machine the damaged flywheel” instead of replacing it, even though this was NOT an approved BMW procedure. It is unacceptable that Mr. LaPorte should be allowed to force me to accept an inadequate repair that is not approved by BMW safety specifications.
During reassembly of the transmission, it was discovered that the automatic transmission oil pump had also failed.
November 2: While I was traveling in Asia for business, the indy initiated an additional claim to the warranty company to repair