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Chevrolet C6 Corvette

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  • Guys, you want to hear about quality, read this! I purchased a brand new yellow 2006 Z06 on the last of October, after waiting patiently for a few months. Note that I owned a '01 Z06 which I kept for 2 years and recently returned a '03 911 Turbo off of a lease and purchased the new Z06, thus to amazement of some of my friends went back to a Corvette after having a Porsche.

    About 2 months ago after not using the Z06 for about 10 days, my Z06 woudln't start. I called roadside & received a boost. A similar situation happened 2 weeks ago, but this time after 4 or 5 days of not being used... Obviously a problem, so I made an appointment with my local dealer to check into the problem. This was this past Friday 1/27/06. Otherwise the car seemed to operate normally.

    The dealership checked the battery and told me it was fine, but when they were about to return the car to have me go on my way, the car didn't start! They obviously kept the car and later in the afternoon informed me that it was a defective starter... It happens, right, no big deal. They would overnight the part and fix it on Monday 1/30/06... No problem...

    Monday comes and I have a very unpleasant conversation with the dealership (who by the way are very professional) and I'm informed that when they car was lifted to install the starter... they discover a CRACKED lower ENGINE BLOCK!!!! They immediately tell me that they will swap in a new engine! The car is 3 months old with 1,300 miles on it, so you see the problem! I'm demaning a new car, NOT a repair!

    Mind you, I have a number of friends who own dealership and know numerous mechanics! I speak with all of them that same day on Monday. ALL state the same. The only way this could have happened is that the engine was overtorqued on the installation, thus cracking the engine block! This car was delivered to me defective and quality control (what an oxymoron) at Chevrolet didn't catch the problem! Fine, things happen... but Chevy, you made the mistake, rectify it and give me a new car!!!

    I call Chevrolet customer support, and get a very polite, non-comittal run-around. When I ask the lady who is a manager to let me speak with someone above her, she states that she will not as per her "guidelines." Coincidentally, that dealership where my car was being fixed had a visit from a Chevy field rep. and this issue was immediately brought to his attention. He obviously okays the engine swap under warranty, but when informed that the customer wants the car replaced, refuses it.

    I immediately file a Better Business Beureau complaint, and receive a phone call from a GM's customer relations manager on Tuesday morning, who is apparently above the customer support manager with whom I spoke earlier... He is told all the facts and promises to get back to me on Tuesday 2/06/06.

    I want the car replaced & my issues with the repairs are the following:
    a.) Obviously the Z06 is a very high performance automobile, the dealer admits to me they have never did this job on this car, I'm afraid the reliability & performance of my car will be affected in either the short term or the long term. Nothing against the dealership, but they have specialists at the factory hand building & installing these engines, and now this job will not be done in the factory? P.S., I would feel the same had they told me that car would go back to the factory for the repair job as my confidence & security in this car is totally gone.
    b.) A simple carfax will reveal that this car has a new engine, thus substantially affecting the value of the automobile. Again, Chevy delivered a defective car, they need to do right by their customer and replace it.
    c.) We all know that owning a Corvette is an emotional decision, and surely the way I feel about this car has been substantially affected in a negative way. I still want to have a Z06, but this car is obviously not the one I will keep.

    Finally, I feel betrayed by Chevy's immediate reaction to my situation. The company (GM)is having a lot of problems as we all know. I feel that we, as Corvette owners, are the backbone customers and need to be heard and I think Chevy/GM is very dangerously undermining the core customer base with these type of actions. I see myself and others like myself as GM's #1 customers. Not only do I own their HALO car which states to the world, take a look and notice, the Z06 is what GM is all about, but I'm also a repeat customer having previously owned another Z06! I still have hope that Chevy/GM will do the right thing and replace the car without any further action by me... I'm still waiting... But I'm prepared to take all steps necessary, including legal ones... P.S. I am an attorney.

    All contributions & opinions would be highly appreciated. Anyone else ever have similar issues? Any ideas in dealing with this situation? Needless to say, I'm extremely distressed by this situation!

    Thanks in advance for comments and ideas...
    Alena
  • jmessjmess Posts: 677
    From a technical standpoint a competent tech/mechanic can replace an engine without any long term harm to your car. I have removed and replaced engines on many cars; it is pretty straight forward. The Z06 is a fine machine but it isn't the space shuttle.

    From a personal standpoint I feel your pain. I would be upset also. The area GM folks don't want to set a presidence by giving you a new car. If they give you a new car then they may have to give the guy with a Cobalt the same consideration.

    So a compromise might be to request a GM extended warranty which should help you sell the car in the future at market value.
  • starrow68starrow68 Posts: 1,142
    The points made by jmess are valid and in addition you may not want to hear it but the current production of Z06's is mostly committed to dealers out through the end of production. One of the problems with a high demand car. I'm sure the same issues would cause anyone grief but at this point it is a negotiation and you have to get what is best and available. Good Luck.
  • Your on the right track. Don't take no for an answer. Get a new car. As you probably know there are specific Lemon Laws that apply to Automobiles. Although I am not entirely familiar with all the requirements for Lemon Law, it is worth checking into.

    By the way, I have a friend who got a great deal on an M3 BMW because the engine was replaced and the car had less than 5k on it. Car was taken back by BMW.

    Good Luck.
  • Ghandy, thanks for your support!

    You're right, there are specific lemon laws that do apply and I'm not taking no for an answer. Once again, the difference with GM and BMW comes down to integrity of the company!

    Your point addresses one of the main issues that I do have! I will basically have a new car with the engine having been swapped thus substantially affecting the value of my car! Where is the fairness in this? Remember, the car left the factory with the cracked engine block and Chevy quality control has proved to be anything but! Their screw up! Fine, it happens, do the right thing! They refuse. Am I missing something?

    P.S.
    Yesterday I spoke with a customer relations manager from GM who told me that they would not be giving me a new car. I'm not giving up, so stay tuned.

    So far, based on your feedback and that of other people on these board, Porsche, BMW and Honda have done the right thing in similar or LESS serious situations, but GM, knowing that they delivered a SUBSTANTIALLY defective car, have not!!!

    INTEGRITY!!! A wonder why GM is having the problems that it is! Must love their new slogan - "AMERICAN REVOLUTION"! What a joke! I try to buy and support American products, but shouldn't this relationship be mutual?! I guess not in the eyes of GM!

    Thanks. Alena
  • vicvvicv Posts: 41
    Regarding Lemon Laws, the dealer has something like three chances to get it right. After that, he's yours. However, there have been many other cases in automotive history where an engine had to be replaced - and the car wasn't. As long as you get a LS-7, I'd go with that and push for a transferrable extended warranty. When resale time comes up and you've got several years and thousands of miles on the car - assuming they're trouble free - it really shouldn't hurt the value. After all, the car wasn't wrecked or sustain any body damage . . . as my 06 Z51 did. A woman backed into it on Sunday at a convience store. But good luck no matter how it goes.
  • I picked up my 2006 victory red C6 in Dec. and I've been very saticfied. To me , the new Vette is the perfect mixture of pure perfomance and practicality. I just read the "Urgent C6 Z06" post and was just wondering if any other C6 owners have had any concerns or problems I should be aware of. Thanks

    On a personal note. Anyone concidering buying the new Porshe Caymen WITHOUT researching the Corvette needs thier head examined by a professional. :confuse:
  • jmessjmess Posts: 677
    The problem I have with my 05 is I am not even close to being tired of driving it after 11 months of ownership. The weather gods even smiled in Oregon today and I got to go topless for the first time in 4 months.
  • That's not a problem at all. Its been beautiful in the Carolinas all winter until this weekend, but I've had the top off many times. I got both tops but I like the glass top best. I'm sure I'll feel the same as you in 11 months jmess about my Vette. Thanks and what color is your C6? I'm nosey.
  • jmessjmess Posts: 677
    I originally tried to order white/red but when the order fell through I got silver/black off another dealer's lot. I have both tops also but use the smoked glass/plastic top 90% of the time. My silver top sits in the bedroom. The wife has even gotten used to it being there. Using a black top bag with a corvette logo on the outside helped that process a lot though :-)

    BTW, post 676 above is my car.
  • I appreciate your response and I'm sorry to hear about your 06 Z51!

    Its 18 days and counting and the dealership still needs parts... oh well...

    Alena
  • ClairesClaires Chicago areaPosts: 979
    I apologize for not stepping in sooner. The lemon law issues and critiques of GM are dragging this discussion off-topic at this point.

    Those who'd like to continue discussing GM's policies/practices, customer service, and warranty issues will find plenty of takers in the News & Views and Smart Shopper Forums.

    imageDrive on over and see me!

    MODERATOR
    Need help getting around? claires@edmunds.com - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

  • Thanks jmess. I think your better off with the Silver. My father-in-law has a white C5 and CANNOT keep the dirt and exhaust residue off. But... he gets to wash it quite alot. Awesome car. My last BMW was Silver/black and its a good look. Other than victory red, the silver would be my next choice. It's sleeting in the Carolinas so no joy riding for me. :cry: Out!
  • starrow68starrow68 Posts: 1,142
    Got to do a couple sessions just under an hour on track in a C6 paddle shifter. For a stick jockey it was not real easy to get down the process but by the second 30 min session I had a couple of 4 to 2 down shifts that were smooth enough to enter a turn in point doing the 80's, brake hard and get the shift done and exit in the low 40's with that amazing 2nd gear pull in the C6. Not good rev matching compared to heel/toe but certainly track capable and lots of fun any place on public roads. I won't be getting rid of the C5 soon.
    Randy
  • jmessjmess Posts: 677
    The A4 isn't nice at all with downshifts under the same conditions. Were you getting any twitching due to the less than optimum rev matching with the A6?
  • starrow68starrow68 Posts: 1,142
    Like I said, not heel/toe downshifting but it was good enough to get around the track and fairly smooth. Like being just a little off in the rev match but nothing like the A4. It is an amazing package and I expect we'll see many more at track days. Also given the lower gearing I expect it will do well at the drags as also. If I was 20 years older and tired of rowing the gears I might consider one and fact of the matter is I know several 80 somethings driving auto's who will like it a lot.
  • vicvvicv Posts: 41
    Good news. The only panel damaged was the front bumper and the local Chevy store did a good job of matching finish on the new one. :)

    Vic
  • bigmike5bigmike5 Posts: 960
    I'd be interested to know if the GM auto shift works similar to the Autostick in my 99 Chrysler 300M. What I have found is that if you let off on the gas like you would on a pedal shift to go to say third gear, the shift is abrupt [and disconcerting]. If on the other hand you do not let off the gas, but keep it steady or advance it a little, the shift to 3rd is smooth. Downshifting thru the gears is never abrupt at all. It took a while to get over the ingrained tendency to ease off on the gas while going up from 2nd to 3rd. Did you find the GM system similar? :shades:
  • starrow68starrow68 Posts: 1,142
    To tell the truth, I was driving on track with the paddle shifter and I wasn't backing off at all so I'm not the one to answer. Up shifts under power were smooth and downshifts with power on were pretty close to rev matched.
  • bigmike5bigmike5 Posts: 960
    Good to know how smooth it is. That is the one feature I wish my C-5 had, I like it so much in the 300M, and drive that way 95% of the time. I will keep that in mind if I make it to the C-7 timeframe. Still do not really like the C-6 headlights, and it may take that long for me to get used to that look. Funny though that I have a poster of the Guldstrand Grand Sport 90 [baby blue with a white racing stripe] in my office and that model had the clear headlight package, and I am not put off by it like I was with the C-6. Strange. I would trade my C-5 for the Guldstrand GS-90 though--in a heartbeat. :shades:
  • alenatasevich1 makes some good points to back up his assertion that he needs to be compensated with a new car however I feel that russla has stated some good common sense also. What will eventually matter is what documents were signed at delivery and what the lemon laws are for the state.
    Lets use alenatasevich1's situation and use an Impala or a Korean car... do you think a replacement would also be warranted? although an Impala is not an 80k car however it has value none the less to the owner. A company can not stay in business if it replaced repairable cars with brand new cars.
  • naghmeh1naghmeh1 Posts: 1
    I own a c6, and have a few problems ... car is under warranty but no luck finding a mechanic who really knows the car well !!! I expected more from GM... Can't believe this ... I drove porsches 911 for 14 years and decided to buy the c6 for a change ... Big mistake?!
    the dealerships are not very good at fixing them ... mechanics are not trained for high performance !!!
    clutch problem and new extra engine noises ...
    they are saying its normal!! ? New car ... woow ..!!!
    High performance should not be serviced like this or made this bad ...!!!
    The clutch hydrolics have been replaced twice and still its not as good as new !!! what to do and where to go???
    I live in sonoma california ... please help !!
  • starrow68starrow68 Posts: 1,142
    Finding a Corvette Certified tech at most GM dealers is a problem. I had one guy at Walnut Creek Parker Robb when they shut down he went to Fitzpatrick in Concord but he recently left GM employ. I still call him direct but he is not servicing Corvettes except on the side now.
    I went to Stead Chev/Caddy in WC recently and got very good service on an ABS/AH/TC issue with extended warranty and the tech knew his stuff. He also ID'd a leak that had been rubbed in a metal hose that was just about to become a problem, by a after market oil cooler stainless steel line and I didn't even try to get it under extended warranty, just paid for replacement and they tied off the lines and showed me where to keep an eye on it. So Stead in WC is the best I can suggest at this point.
    Good Luck!
  • jmessjmess Posts: 677
    There are two known issues with the clutch that I recall. Some early to mid 05s had the clutch stick down during high speed up shifts due to some pressure plate spring issues. There was also some recent issues with a batch of bad flywheels for 06s.
  • mlyonmlyon Posts: 7
    Since new I have had a problem with first gear on my six speed in my 05 C6. From a stopped position intermittently I am unable to get the shifter into first gear, no amount of force will do. In order to get into first I shift into second and then directly into first before releasing the clutch. After two service visits first gear was replaced (per a service bulletin)which initially fixed the problem, however with almost 3,000 miles on the fix the problem has returned. Has anyone had a similar experience?

    In addition the clutch is very grabie, both engaging and disengaging. I have complained to the dealer but they insist that there are no adjustments to be made and that it is working normally (although not satisfactorily for me). Once again does anyone have any feedback on this problem?
  • ravanravan Posts: 6
    I can certainly understand your dilemma after having spent so much money only to discover that theres a major problem that has to be fixed. I don't blame you at all for wanting a new vehicle replacement, who the hell does GM think they are? First they take your money and then they just simply wanna give you a new engine....NO WAY!!! I wouldn't settle for that at all...trust me...GM doesn't really care about their customers...as I will explain:

    My best friend bought a brand new black 2000 Pontiac Trans Am WS6 in 2000 and he bought the car to my office...and I asked him what the white spots on his car were and he told me that the dealer told him it was a detailing issue and to bring the car back the next day to have it detailed, so the next day I went to the dealership with him only to discover that it was acid rain on the car!!! Naturally, we had an absolute fit and he demanded a new car and the dealership refused saying they would paint the whole car which would make it depreciate by atleast 3,000 extra. In anycase, to cut a long story short he took it up with the BBB and after a few months of constant crap from GM and their reps, my friend won and they had to replace the car with a brand new 2001 model.

    In 2003 i bought a brand new 2003 torch red vette and after driving it for 30 miles the brakes started acting up..everytime the car would stop it would make an awful screeching sound and it was so embarrassing especially at red lights. I bought it to the dealers attention and they said the brakes were too new to fix....go figure....and then they said.....and I quote "Oh dont worry..the noise will go away eventually...WHATEVER!!! Only after having 1000 miles with the problem getting worse n worse did they change the brake pads....then they say we put superior brake pads in your car....so are they telling me that they were inferior when they got put in at the factory!!??

    Now I'm considering buying an 06 velocity yellow vette...I dont know....but I do know I'm not going to make any hasty decisions.....bottom line...GM SUCKS!
  • naghmehnaghmeh Posts: 1
    If you are working hard for your money DO NOT buy a new Vette my friend ...
    I have never had so many problems with a new car and I have always purchased new cars in my life.
    I was at the dealeship today and told my service advisor that I have all these problems with my new car and he had the nerve to tell me to purchase an extended warranty !!! Could not believe my ears !!! They expect me to pay them more money and deal with the hassel of taking my car there every six weeks to fix my clutch and transmision !!!
    I have to now hire an attorney and deal with the lemon law !!
    Its madness, while trying to make a living at the same time !
    Forget buying a high performance car from GM...the mechanics have NO IDEA how to fix them !!!
    My friend who owned a c6 took his car in because the clutch fluid was low and the mechanic topped it off with regular oil instead of synthetic !! messed it up the system in a big way 111 Now top that!!
  • ravanravan Posts: 6
    Hi! Thanks alot for your advice.....I wont buy a new vette considering the way the people are treated once they've given their hard earned money to the dealership only to discover they dont really care about you after the sale...its really very disgusting I must say! Why should you buy an extended warranty....besides thats extra money for the dealership and they charge rip-off prices as it is.
    If I was you, I would contact the Better Business Bureau and lodge a complaint against the dealership and GM, they are all so full of it....I tell you!

    In anycase, best of luck and I hope you resolve this issue to your satisfaction. As for my brand new vette I bought in 2003, I sold that several months later as I just lost confidence in GM and their non caring attitude. Thats the way they are though...they've got your money and youre on your own.....forget that seriously!!!
  • cat3126cat3126 Posts: 43
    I have a 06 Vette purchased from EVS in Random Lake WI who is concerned with my satisfaction of the car.,m treated courestly ,quickly ,questions are anwsered quickly.The car was in for a routine oil change this week,it returned to me washed,vacuumed and wiped down.
    This my seventh Vette and the absolute best of the lot.
    This dealership sells 3-4 Vettes a week and has 3 factory trained mechanics who only work on Vettes.
  • ravanravan Posts: 6
    I'm glad that youve had a pleasant experience with your dealership and the cars you have purchased over the years...I guess youre one of the lucky ones..but from the letters I've read here most people arent very satisfied with the service they have received at their dealership and with GM in general. I'm not saying that everyone is bad but I've come to realize that if there's a major issue with a new car one has purchased, GM just simply wants rid of you somehow and come up with all kinds of excuses..like for example when i got my brand new 03 vette in 2003 the brakes were giving me problems and according to the dealership, GM told them the problem was too new to fix and that it wouldnt be covered under warranty....which is total nonsense. After constant complaining..and my problem with the brakes getting worse they finally changed the brake pads.....like they were doing me a favor.

    They had the nerve to tell me that they had put superior brake pads into the car this time.....so in essence are they saying that the pads were inferior from the factory...hmmmmmm go figure.....I dunno!
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