Monday, 4 January 2010

A tale of two mother in laws, Part 2

Meanwhile out in rural Berkshire at Gran #2, my own mother's Fiesta sits abandoned. And, apparently there are similar Fiestas in the same situation all over the UK with some 20+ in one dealership in the Borders if sources are correct. The problem? An "EAC fail" message is the electronic accelerator control system fault warning but it can often flag a code in the main engine management self-diagnosis system too.

Once you work out what to type into Google you get loads of results (for example, honest john #1, honest john #2, ford_fiesta_common_problems_and_solutions, askabout #1, SA Ford Owners, another one, just answer #1, just answer #2,
just answer #3, just answer #4).

It is possible to deduce from this jumble that Ford or at least Ford dealers appear not to have a clue about this issue and its impacts on owners; where information may have been circulated to attempt to deal with it they appear incompetent in either finding that information or working through the logic. Anything from cleaning the contacts below the pedal to full ECU replacement and worse. To the extent that Parkers publicise the fact on their on-line vehicle guide).

Did I mention, my mother's oh yes 75, an independent, trusting 75 mind, strong enough in spirit to demand, and eventually get, a courtesy car, at least initially, and now every second week a discounted hire care despite initial unwillingness on account of her age. “The part is on back order from Germany” is I think the latest variation of a solution to this problem. Date for next attempt to fix it is we think this month. Cry “bull**it” I say.

The car (1.4 Zetec for those interested in that kind of thing) came from the same main dealer as is offering the “advice” and “solution” and despite the fact that she has had it 5 years it has been carefully maintained on its very low mileage, always garaged and serviced by the same main dealer. Someone, somewhere - take responsibility, take ownership!

My own view is that they should ideally fix it immediately and for free using one or more of the known solutions and warranty to continue fixing it immediately and for free in the event that it goes wrong again (as so many of the websites document) or, failing that, replace it with similar make/model at their own expense. In addition they should refund all costs incurred so far, republish on as many sites and to all past and present dealers and independents as possible the unfindable bulletin that was allegedly issued on the EAC failure and give a huge donation to Help the Aged.

Oh yes, and fix the myriad of EAC failures piling up around the country.....for free.

We know that the elderly can sometimes be less willing or able to find the words or mechanisms to fight their corners and I will confess to being slow on picking this up – as they say first impressions were actually quite good, putting all parties on the back foot.

Obviously, this position should be reversed and the suppliers (as well as their shareholders most of whom remain ignorant of their shareholding via unit trusts and the like even when treated so abominably as customers themselves) ought themselves to proactively take the lead; they are not generally accustomed to standing up and being counted though and trying to make contact with senior personnel is fruitless. Traditionally the 'little man' could do little and perhaps that still is the case.....direct action and viral comms, who knows.....

As per Pt 1 I am already planning on changing insurers at policy renewal time - much of this is little more than gesture I know......and I did own a Ford once (Cortina Mk III GXL rather like the one in Life on Mars actually) and the other half had a great Focus too but frankly my 20 year affair with Alfas continues (the electronics have been far less of a problem!).

Smaller businesses listen, they have to; question is, will the big ones?

If you read this do feel free to tweet, blog, moan, link to, tell your story, change your policy, talk to your broker.....

1 comment:

  1. 愛情是一種發明,需要不斷改良。只是,這種發明和其他發明不一樣,它沒有專利權,隨時會被人搶走。 ..................................................

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