VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - Alex TW

Hi, I recently purchased a used T5 VW Transporter Shuttle automatic(last week) The car was purchased from a used car dealer.

The van came with very little service history and due to its mileage (130k) we decided to have the timing belt and water pump done. We had noticed a slight noise when parking and asked our local garage to give it a once over. They recommended that we have a specialist automatic gearbox garage check the gearbox, which I arranged and informed the garage purchased from what was occurring.

The gearbox garage have confirmed that the van needs a full rebuild at a cost of £3100 + VAT. The garage the van was brought from have said they will not pay for this repair under any warrantee and have instead offered to give me my money back plus our old car which we part exchanged.

They will not give any money towards the works we have already undertaken and the garage is not really local to where we live. We want to keep the van and have the gearbox repaired, what are our options?

Any help would be most grateful.

Alex

VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - RT

Accept the refund, write off the money you've spent elsewhere, get your car back and look for another one more locally.

VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - RobJP

Accept the refund, write off the money you've spent elsewhere, get your car back and look for another one more locally.

As said. The selling garage has absolutely zero liability to you for the other work you've had carried out. Take the refund and your old vehicle, and walk away wiser.

VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - SLO76
You made a mistake in buying a vehicle with little service history, especially a complex auto turbo diesel. Grab that refund and the keys to your old motor with both arms and think yourself very lucky the garage are doing right by you without a fight.

Rather than spend a fortune fixing it they'll offload it to auction and let it be some other poor souls problem.

If you want an expensive turbo diesel MPV that cost the guts of £50k new then you'll need to spend more to get a good one (and avoid the DSG auto!) or reign your ambitions to a level your budget can manage.

The manual boxes are generally robust and long lived but DPF issues are common on these and auto boxes are a nightmare. And don't buy anything that hasn't a full service record with proof of annual maintenance! It's a false economy to do otherwise and high mileage means this is even more important not less so.
VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - gordonbennet

I agree with the others, take the refund, wave the thing goodbye thankful another £3.5k bill isn't waiting 6 months down the line, and put it down to experience.

Quite how these vehicles have attained the almost cult status they enjoy i cannot understand.

Edited by gordonbennet on 11/07/2017 at 13:37

VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - Alex TW

Thanks for your reply, we were infomed that the van was owned by a former garage who kempt on top of annual maintainence but had no record of works. We paid £13k for the 2011 van and traded our 65reg grand c4. Other than the gearbox the van is great!!

VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - RobJP

'You were informed that ...".

They could have informed you that the thing ran on unicorn f***s. Would you have believed that too ?

Unless absolute, incontrovertible evidence is available, assume a salesman is lying. Even then, be very dubious.

VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - SLO76

Thanks for your reply, we were infomed that the van was owned by a former garage who kempt on top of annual maintainence but had no record of works. We paid £13k for the 2011 van and traded our 65reg grand c4. Other than the gearbox the van is great!!

If there's no proof of maintenance then regard it as having not been done. This is a common excuse used by sales staff for the non-existent service record. "It was owned by a garage/mechanic." One thing you need to bear in mind when car shopping is sales staff will tell you anything to get a deal. You need physical proof and watch out for faked histories too . Any doubt and you should call the dealer who's stamp is in the book to check if they've ever seen it. This is much more commonplace than you'd expect.
VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - Avant

Maybe I'm just naturally curious - but do tell us, Alex, what you needed an ageing VW van for that your 65-registered Grand C4 Citroen (I assume that means a Grand Picasso) couldn't do?

If it's for camping, a top-of-the-range tent would be worth considering, and keep the Citroen. The C4 Picasso is one of the better French cars.

VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - Alex TW

Maybe I'm just naturally curious - but do tell us, Alex, what you needed an ageing VW van for that your 65-registered Grand C4 Citroen (I assume that means a Grand Picasso) couldn't do?

If it's for camping, a top-of-the-range tent would be worth considering, and keep the Citroen. The C4 Picasso is one of the better French cars.

Its a interesting one..... to fit my every increasing heard of children and the stuff that comes with them!!

VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - pd

The service history present or otherwise isn't going to make a lot of difference on a duff auto gearbox. If they go, they go and as few service schedules even include an auto box fluid change it could have had 75 services and still have a duff gearbox.

History is important but, as Henry Ford implies, can also be bunk and the most important thing is whether a car is working right at this point in time. A car can have 4 folders full of history or none, if the gearbox or something else is up the spout it is no good. Whilst I would always take a car with history over one without (they are usually nicer) you still have to judge the car, not just the paperwork.

Take your money back. The garage are within their rights to choose not to repair and are obviously a decent outfit as some dealers would squirm.

Edited by pd on 11/07/2017 at 15:16

VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - SLO76
"The service history present or otherwise isn't going to make a lot of difference on a duff auto gearbox. If they go, they go and as few service schedules even include an auto box fluid change it could have had 75 services and still have a duff gearbox."

VW's DSG box requires a fluid change at 40,000 miles and much of the issue with it is down to people ignoring this scheduled oil change or non-franchise garages being unaware of it.

If you want a complex and expensive used vehicle like this I'd buy only with a full dealer or genuine specialist service history. Preventative and scheduled maintenance does make a huge difference but yes it won't be a cast iron guarantee against problems especially at heavy mileages like this thus the reason why I'd never advise investing £11k into something like this, even more so without the correct maintenance record.
VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - pd
"The service history present or otherwise isn't going to make a lot of difference on a duff auto gearbox. If they go, they go and as few service schedules even include an auto box fluid change it could have had 75 services and still have a duff gearbox." VW's DSG box requires a fluid change at 40,000 miles and much of the issue with it is down to people ignoring this scheduled oil change or non-franchise garages being unaware of it. If you want a complex and expensive used vehicle like this I'd buy only with a full dealer or genuine specialist service history. Preventative and scheduled maintenance does make a huge difference but yes it won't be a cast iron guarantee against problems especially at heavy mileages like this thus the reason why I'd never advise investing £11k into something like this, even more so without the correct maintenance record.

If it is a DSG then yes, you're quite right they do need a fluid change. I just read Auto and assumed proper Auto which in most cases do not have any fuild changes in the schudule. That said, I wouldn't buy a high mileage DSG with or without fluid changes - they are a liability.

VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - SLO76
"That said, I wouldn't buy a high mileage DSG with or without fluid changes - they are a liability."

Agree totally. I wouldn't touch any of the current crop of automated manual gearboxes on the market. It still hasn't been perfected and will require many years yet to get it right regarding longterm durability.

One thing manufacturers should do to help increase take up and cut the fear of them would be to slash the absolute rip-off cost of replacing them when the do go wrong. A friend of mine was hit with a bill for around £6k to replace the DSG box in his Audi TT many years back at less than 60,000 miles. He's never even considered another VAG product since.

Now had the firm charged a cost price for the box which only cost them a fraction of the retail price they're billing customers then they may have saved a longterm customers loyalty and the higher depreciation suffered by automatic VAG products would be lessened. As with all things in business, traders price in that added risk.
VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - pd

The only reason DSG exists is that the torque convertor boxes of the time had a significant impact on emissions and mpg when attached to a diesel engine in particular.

Now the latest 8-speed and 9-speed torque convertor 'boxes do the same job and in actual fact usually beat the manual on emissions, manufacturers seem to be moving away from DSG back to traditional autos.

Mind you, what the rebuild costs will be on all these mega ratio autoboxes heaven knows!

VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - skidpan

Its a interesting one..... to fit my every increasing heard of children and the stuff that comes with them!!

Sell some of the children, certain countries pay good money and with the cash buy some condoms and a new television.

VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - pd
Now had the firm charged a cost price for the box which only cost them a fraction of the retail price they're billing customers then they may have saved a longterm customers loyalty and the higher depreciation suffered by automatic VAG products would be lessened. As with all things in business, traders price in that added risk.

It is amazing that after a long list of engineering disasters ranging from oil pumps on diesels, piston rings on petrols, timing chain issues, DSG disasters and goodness knows what else I could list people still go back time and time again to VAG. It is like some sort of automotive Stockholm Syndrome that drivers can be arrogantly billed a fortune for keeping a VAG car going and they go back and buy another.

I call them DBL - Deutsche British Leyland. As far as they are concerned the customers can do the development shakedown and never, ever, admit to any common faults with cars.

Some of the cars are quite nice (although some I think terrible even when working) but not pleasant cars to own once they get a few years old. They sell in droves though, new or used, which proves that buyers really don't give two hoots about quality or reliability. It just doesn't sell cars.

VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - skidpan

It is amazing that after a long list of engineering disasters ranging from oil pumps on diesels, piston rings on petrols, timing chain issues, DSG disasters and goodness knows what else I could list people still go back time and time again to VAG. It is like some sort of automotive Stockholm Syndrome that drivers can be arrogantly billed a fortune for keeping a VAG car going and they go back and buy another.

I call them DBL - Deutsche British Leyland. As far as they are concerned the customers can do the development shakedown and never, ever, admit to any common faults with cars.

Some of the cars are quite nice (although some I think terrible even when working) but not pleasant cars to own once they get a few years old. They sell in droves though, new or used, which proves that buyers really don't give two hoots about quality or reliability. It just doesn't sell cars.

Well since 1986 we have had 7 VAG cars and still have one on the drive and have been and still am totally delighted.

First was an 86 GTi. Kept it 3 1/2 years, 45,000 miles, fuel pump under warranty, no other issus at all.

Next up was a 89 GTi. Kept it 7 and a bit years and 113,000 miles. Had a waterpump and clutch under warranty and towards the end of our time with it an exhaust, battery and diff oil seals which together cost about £400. Cheap motoring.

Wife had a 90 1.6 CL which she had just over 6 years and 62,000 miles. Only issue was the flipping Pierburg carb.

Then she had a 96 Golf Mk 3 1.9 TDi. kept it almost 7 years and 63,000 miles and had a back box.

I had a 96 Polo diesel. 3 1/2 years and 30,000 miles and no issues.

2013 Leon 1.4 TSi 140 PS, Almost 4 years and 27,000 miles, no issues.

Now a 2017 Superb 1.4 TSi 150 PS which I am delighted with.

All in all cheap and reliable motoring with zero breakdowns.

The Mk 3 TDi was without a doubt the poorest built with more creaks and rattles than all the others put together. Bits of paper stuffed into gaps did the trick.

On the whole the dealers have been OK but in truth no better than other brands. They were better before VW insisted they build new Gin Palaces, sack all the established staff and employ brainless m****s. The Skoda dealer we used (via Carfile) was a small independant and was very helpful, would happily go there again. The Seat delaer we used (also via Carfile) was also a small independant but other than getting a good deal was totally hopeless, will never go back.

So over 31 years (with a gap of 11 years) and at least 340,000 miles I have no reason not to keep buying them if they sell/make products at prices that suit our needs. We had a gap of 10 years since other brands fitted our needs better at more competetive prices.

VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - SLO76
"It is amazing that after a long list of engineering disasters ranging from oil pumps on diesels, piston rings on petrols, timing chain issues, DSG disasters and goodness knows what else I could list people still go back time and time again to VAG. It is like some sort of automotive Stockholm Syndrome that drivers can be arrogantly billed a fortune for keeping a VAG car going and they go back and buy another."

I've owned and sold many (older Polo's and Mk IV Golf's mainly) and as long as you avoid the DSG box and buy the correct model (not a DPF equipped diesel for a low mileage user) then they're generally fine. Not as robust as the image they like to portray and there are some well known stinkers in the line up, A little homework should be done before looking at any brand though. But the reality is that many thousands of VAG products are running around our roads with massive mileages as taxis and most of these owners swear by them. I even run a Polo 1.2 TDi as a commuter and (touch wood) it's been a great little car to date with only a few minor annoyances in its 60,000 miles.

VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - badbusdriver

As someone who has, just out of curiousity, looked into the prices of the T5, i have to say, the price paid for the OP's one seems pretty cheap. Makes me wonder if the seller was actually aware of the impending gearbox self destruct?.

I do quite like the T5, but the prices typically asked are crazy, especially considering it is essentially just a minibus with idea's above it's station.

VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - SLO76
"I do quite like the T5, but the prices typically asked are crazy, especially considering it is essentially just a minibus with idea's above it's station."

Agree. I rather like them too but the residuals are a bit excessive. Built on an over exaggerated quality perception and basic supply and demand. But I do get the appeal. They're not too wide for use as an everyday family car and fuel economy is pretty decent too.

I'm in Cyprus at the moment and there are loads of similarly sized Toyota's running around as taxis that would be popular back home but sadly the firm aren't prepared to pay the cost of engineering their vans for regulation rich Europe anymore so all we get are cheaply made rebadged PSA trash.
VW T5 Transporter - Used Car Dealer problem - Help!! - pd

VAG stuff was generally pretty good, and on the whole above the average European standards up to the mid to late 90's.

However, I have no doubt from 2000ish onwards they had some quite stuning, basic, engineering errors which they refused to acknowledge and in some cases refused to put right for many years. It seems part of the basic company culture is to lie and deny anything and everything. I think a modern car, serviced inline with manufacturers recommendations should do 10 years and 150k miles without major incident. You'll never get 100% of course but they should generally do this and VAG had far too many cars failing with basic design errors early.

The internal combustion engine has been going for a long time and a major company should have worked out how to design an oil pump by now.

On top of that many of the cars from that era weren't anything very special when they worked.

The cars have certainly got a lot better - the current stuff is generally very good, particularly cars on the latest Golf platform which is excellent - but the jury is out until these cars get older as to whether the quality and design has picked up.

 

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