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Deuteronomy316

I'm done with Lotus

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I’ll try to keep this moderately short. Mod(s), I'm not sure if I'm even allowed to post this, as I'm a newly registered forum member. You are welcomed to delete the thread as you see fit. I'm just sharing my experience and hoping that a Lotus staff sees and hears the experience that I'm having. Perhaps improving or defending what is being told by an individual in the US. Members, my apologies if I'm coming off as a remorseful buyer. I'm fond of the Lotus brand and may acquire another Lotus if the conditions improve.

I purchased my E400 August 2017. It was on my short list of many beautiful sports cars I had to choose from. I would say single-handedly, this forum (British) and LTF (USA) helped me decide on my current sports car. With all due respect to Porsche forums, Lotus forums are more informative and less opinionated. For the most part… For the short duration, I had the car, it was pure joy and love at first sight. I didn’t have a chance to test drive, as the closest dealership was in Dallas and didn’t plan on buying anything from their lot. But I’ve had some seat time in my brother in law’s Exige S. From what I’ve read, it’s the civilized version of the Exige, which I fully agree with. I had the exact color in mind, with the exact interior that I’ve wanted. I was able to procure one of the exact in Laguna, California.

Everything you guys said about the car was pretty much spot on. The driving experience, the emotion, the feel, and the… British engineering. In my experience, though probably singular and divergent from the populace experience, it has been a complete utter nightmare.

I will list some of the shortcomings of the vehicle.

1. TPMS sensors reading faulty code or not reading it all. Replace all the sensors, still reading error- $350 (problem since I received the vehicle 08/17) 

2. HVAC whistle (since I received the vehicle 08/17)

3. Sticky paddle shift which cannot be reproduced but scary as hell when it happened X2 (09/17)

4. Factory tint peeling from the back-teardrop window (08/17)

5. Trunk not opening due to posterior pillar warping. (09/17)– (talked to Park Place in Dallas/USA)

6. My care gets the dreaded Christmas light on the dash, but only once. (11/17) But I was starting to think that something was seriously wrong with my car.

7. Not going into sports mode and race mode; intermittently (12/17) – talked to Park Place again and said it may be hard fix if the problem does not appear when it’s at the shop.

8. Not rev matching, constant. Finally, something they can investigate (12/17)– Immediately made an appointment for service. 

9. Belt squeal from supercharger (12/17)

10. Christmas lights on dash – occasional or 50% of the time (12/17)

11. Not going into sports mode and race mode anymore

12. Going into neutral from Park position or drive position (01/18)

13. Gear grinds and clunks while reversing and turning at the same time (wheels not locked or completely turned) (1/18)

14. And the final straw was when the vehicle would not start due to being in neutral. Always at the least convenient time. (01/18)

It’s worth noting, #6-#11; I drove a total of 10 miles (approx.) due to my other vehicle being in the shop and was emergency use only. Did that twice and figured out I’d rather drive one my motorcycles in dead of winter. The car was driven without incident to Park Place, but the symptoms were increasingly getting worse by that time.

It will be at the shop now for 8.5 week and communication has been… well nothing of sorts from Park Place (Premier). My service manager’s name is Cody H. He’s nice enough on the phone but a complete liar and a disgrace to the Lotus community. His reasoning was Lotus has been noncommunicative and does not respond to his emails or calls in a timely manner. I suspect that there may be some truth to it, although after speaking with him several times, he is a liar and has complete disrespect for my intelligence. Most all problems have been resolved. However, he states that the sticky paddle was not reproducible and states that he fully disassembled it. That part, after having conversations with them, is a complete lie. He also states that there is no factory tint, and he does not see any tint on the dorsal window. I have personally seen the bubbling and the subsequent peeling of the tint in the Arkansas summer. I reapplied it using Windex and my trusty heat gun. It has started bubbling again during the cold winter months. He also states that the HVAC whistle is normal. If that is true, for that reason alone, I will be getting rid of the vehicle. Once I receive my E 400, I will record the video with the sound, I would appreciate if any other E 400 owners could vouch for the sound or confirm if it’s normal.

The positives. Park Place was gracious enough to supply me with a vehicle. But that’s a whole another story, though mostly positive experience. If I was given the choice, I would’ve rather dropped off the vehicle in Dallas (5-hour drive from Fort Smith, AR) and flew back to Fort Smith. Instead, I chose to have a loaner due to the timeline which was initially given to me, which was one week and perhaps two weeks at the latest. Again, I much appreciated it and certainly not taking it for granted for supplying me a vehicle, but I do have four other vehicles to choose from in my garage, though only one is winter capable. The caveat is, the loner has to be returned after 30 days of maturation. A policy in which I was not notified of. Of course, I was notified of this when I was on a business trip in New York City. I wasn’t asked but told to bring the vehicle within 24. Now I might sound like a selfish puissant right now, but in my defense, I called Cody the day before asking about my vehicle and that his finish timeline has expired, and my concern is that I will be on a business trip. His exact words were “no-worries” will let you know when the car is done, it should be done within a week (lying sack). He calls me the next day and tells me I must bring the vehicle back, but the car is not done yet. Screw you Cody! While that’s what I wanted to say, but instead I ended up asking my assistant back in Fort Smith to drive the loaner back. Of course, there was cost to this on my part. Cody was not present during the exchange. Not surprising, as our relationship has soured at this point.

I’m sorry, I could go on and on about all the trivial and frustrating experiences I had with Park Place, but I believe it may take another hour for me to write an essay about it.

I was given a call to pick up my vehicle, again only given a 24-hour period for the exchange. Which is reasonable if you are a housewife without kids or a cake eater. Having been told my vehicle was ready for pickup, I give Cody a call for an update on my location. I was about an hour away from my destination. Getting a boner thinking about being in my Lotus again. My conversation with Cody turned into the worst case of blue-balls, as he told me my vehicle was ready to go but the spanner wrench light was still on. He was a sly, in how he snuck that in the sentence. He was talking about how great my car is now and that they were washing my vehicle for pickup as he subtly inserts “the service light is on” in the middle of it. When I stopped him and asked him about the light, he said it was only a light in the middle of the dash. You don’t say Cody…. I’ll stop right there, at this point you guys could fill in the blanks. After driving eight hours nonstop, I’m back home without my Lotus. I’m just looking for a rock to crawl under and looking at my scotch collection. Funny enough as I write this, I just got a call from Cody saying that they were able to figure out my spanner light. He again blamed the Lotus for poor communication. He further insults to my intelligence by telling me the spanner light was due to the oil change he advised against. He states that the oil change will always turn the spanner light on. I asked him three times if this was true, and three times he lied to me. It wasn’t until I had this conversation with Cody when I gave up Lotus. I’m more than likely going to sell it for a significant loss. It was a magnificent car but the whole experience of it all put a bitter taste in my mouth. I believe Park Place service manager has the 99% of the blame. However, they are the closest location to where I’m located at. I think Lotus has a future, but I think this will depend on how many locations and expertise of the service stations. But for me, I think I’ve had it with the sparsity and the lack of communication with its customers.

You guys been great, by far one of the most amazing forums I’ve ever been on. Admittedly, even not having a car for nine weeks, I’ve been on this forum on a daily basis, several times a day. The community of Lotus enthusiast are in a league of their own. Most of you guys know your way around garage tools, which I can’t say about Porsche owners. However, after this experience, I more than likely going to go back to the Porsche brand or test drive an AMG. Both of which were located within reasonable distance from me (1 hour). I’ll keep you guys updated, as I’m about to pick up my vehicle within the next day or two. Although I would like to pick up the car myself, it’s likely going to be my assistant who is going to be picking up the vehicle. I know, bad idea, but I don’t have a choice. At this point in my life, my most asset is time, which I only have 24 hours in a day. I’ll keep you guys posted.

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It sounds to me, in the round, that your issue is with the dealer not with Lotus and I am sure if you speak to @Bibs by PM on here he can put you in touch with someone in Lotus who can confirm what contact they have had from the dealer re your car.  I thought you guys in the US had good consumer protection against this sort of nonsense?

Good luck with the future..... Sorry to hear about the hassle you have had.

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Very disappointing to read this, a similar experience would probably drive me towards the nearest Corvette dealer too. I hope at least somebody fixes the car properly for the next guy. No doubt it will be faultless for him! Does sound like dealer support is very sketchy in the States. A great shame, it's essential to Lotus ownership. Something else Geely will have to look at if they ever want to escape their niche market. Thanks at least for supporting Lotus, however briefly. I'm sure you gave one or two their first ever ride in a Lotus.

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Hi Jim,

I'm with the others. I expect that Bibs will be able to help. He always seems to go the extra mile for people. You are also able to leave a review of the dealer at the top of any forum page. Sounds like it needs telling.

The whistle from the HVAC, I thought was due to a thing that I think is colloquially named 'the hedgehog'. Though I may be wrong about this.

I understand that you will be saying goodbye to the car. Know though, that just because you don't have one doesn't me you can't drop in. :) 

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A real shame that your Lotus Experiance has ended this way and I must admit I don't blame you for moving on.

In my Experiance I've been on the tools as a Service Engineer in Indusrial Refrigeration for 34 years and by far the best policy when talking to customers is tell them how it is if I don't know what's wrong at that moment in time then that's what I tell them and equally if I think its down to the customer I tell them that as well and over the years its caused a couple of bust ups.

And I've been lied to at a gaurage before over work that has apparantly been done and on inspection clearly hasant and I've never used them again.

And good on you for posting your experiences hope all goes well on your next purchase after all all this messing around with cars is supposed to be fun isn't it 

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If that had been my experience of a modern  brand / car (classics are generally taken on expecting some "quirks") then I think I'd have run away to a different brand, and be reticent to ever have one again. Whether posting here will help I don't know (you never know who reads these), but it does at least give other prospective buyers a chance to consider the experience before they dive in.

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Sorry to hear of your bad experience. It's a real shame as occasionally a car form any manufacturer appears to be a particularly troublesome item and by the sounds of it you are exactly the sort of person that would appreciate a Lotus if it were in fine form, as most are. If you have the opportunity to return the car for a replacement I think you will be very pleased although your experience may be too tainted by now. Good luck with whatever you do and come back and let us know, whatever it is.

 

Trevor.

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See for me, this reads as I am beyond pissed off but it is saveable before he leaves the brand....probably for good.

This is where Lotus should be rolling out the red carpet - doing whatever it takes incl flying over a competent engineer to resolve/sort it and designating someone to be the liaison instead of him dealing with this Cody chap. 

You rectify this, you probably have a guy for life who will happily talk of how lotus went the extra mile and what other brand would do this etc etc. If they dont then its a big red cross in their column. 

If you have a great reliability reputation then you can survive these types of issues and chalk it as a bad car but if not (and we have all had at least one person tell us what LOTUS really stands for) you need to be squeaky clean and when it happens go into overkill.

Look at Alfa and the Giulia Quadrofoglio - regarded as a great car but all the issues they have had, have further damaged the brand and stopped people, including myself, from buying one. 

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1 hour ago, C8RKH said:

This is why I not ashamed to say I am biased when I refer to TLF as THE only Lotus based forum that is worth spending any time on. The others are just playgrounds (sic) for people who like Porkers.....  :)

As a long standing member of www.exiges.com, I would disagree! That forum is brilliant, with a great group of like minded, enthusiastic peeps and a very close knit community, on forum, on track, on road... and in curry houses various!

But, this place is also brilliant as well!  :thumbsup:

 

1 hour ago, C8RKH said:

 

 

Absolutely NO good what the OP has had to endure.

Especially sad when it has been in an overseas market, where so much of Lotus future business building has to be I think. Hope something good comes out of this for all. 

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Sorry to hear about your experience.  

I must admit all cars I have bought from a dealer need some fettling , which is a pain when it’s a 100 mile round trip.  That said when resolved the cars usually run fine there after,.  

Re aircon whistle that’s definitely not the norm 

 

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Saying that, my aircon did pack up at 12  months old , but was repaired in an afternoon under warranty.  Front clam off job. 

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4 hours ago, C8RKH said:

This is why I not ashamed to say I am biased when I refer to TLF as THE only Lotus based forum that is worth spending any time on. The others are just playgrounds (sic) for people who like Porkers.....  :)

Exiges.com is also a great forum, with members of a similar mind and attitude to TLF. It no longer has the factory connection it had in the early days, but the knowledge of the posters is excellent. Not only that, it is for the most part self moderating and therefore a friendly place to visit :)

I know what you mean about some other places though.......

Oh, and I hope its not too late for the OP to get a good outcome and remain with the brand.

Edited by tim_marra
forgot the OP!
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Hi,

Interesting re Lotus. I spoke with said Mr Turner when I had loads of clutch issues with my V6S a few years ago. Sorted the car and got free carpets throw in as an apology. Did take a while to get the parts at the time, but they got the job done.

Just f**k that asshole off at the dealer and give Lotus a chance.

cheers

Mark

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Jim, that's great news! really pleased for you. Quite upsetting and distracting to your life when the car isn't working. Once it's fixed you'll love it, Porsche's are great but Lotus just has that extra special feel when driving it, its unique and worth the effort (I own both btw!).

A fine speedy response from Lotus Customer Service:). Lotus under JMG is a whole new era, he's sorting it. 

Good luck and keep us updated;)

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Goes to show a bit of effort by Lotus and suddenly you have a great PR story.  Great news !

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I as a new owner are warmed by the outcome, and it also confirms my belief that LOTUS is moving in a positive direction.

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Truly great outcome and really eased for you.

 

Maybe time to change the thread title to "I'm a Lotus fan boy!"........   hahaha.

Well done for sticking with it. 

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Hope it all goes well Jim. :animier: 

I agree, Bibs is a great bloke. Made a fairly long drive in the UK to meet a guy from Oz that he didn't really know from Adam, when I was there on a holiday. :) 

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Ah man. Great that Neil is on the case and support from those up high. I had trouble with mine and the response/support from Neil will leave me a life long fan of the brand, and that was long before the “Geely Factor”.

All this @Bibs love is making me gag on my cornflakes though. You know he drives a VW right?

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Said the man with the bright red Cayman :lol:

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