My Experience Using Carrs of Exeter
In 1992, six years after breaking my neck in a diving accident, I achieved my dream of purchasing a motor vehicle. Using a company in the United Kingdom, I purchased a Chrysler Plymouth Voyager which was purchased from a company in Phoenix Arizona USA. In approximately 2005 the ABS light came on and would not distinguish. During the MOT the mechanics could not get the light to go out either, therefore the vehicle would not pass its MOT. The only alternative we had was to send the vehicle to a registered Chrysler dealership in the hope that they could fix the problem... Just when I thought things couldn't get any worse.
My vehicle went to a company in Exeter called "Carrs of Exeter" where initially nobody could work out what was wrong with the vehicle and why the ABS light would not go out. Then after doing some research on the Internet I found out what the problem was. Basically, some Plymouth Voyager's built in approximately 1992 in the United States had been fitted with a faulty hydraulic assembly which control the ABS brakes. Thankfully the recall affected any car anywhere which meant even though my vehicle was now in the United Kingdom, it was still covered under the recall. I had done extensive research into the recall and what my rights were so I knew that the entirety of the work would be covered and I would not be required to put my hand in my pocket at all. Several weeks went by and I kept getting told that they couldn't locate the hydraulic assembly for my vehicle, they had absolutely no idea how long it will take, I remember exactly what the woman told me on the phone, it could take six days, six weeks or even six months, they really couldn't give me any clue to when I would get the vehicle back. Obviously this was not acceptable so once again I got onto the telephone and within a couple of days I had managed to locate the part myself, albeit over in the United States. After contacting a consumer journalist to complain, Carrs of Exeter miraculously found a part and carried out the work. I told Carrs of Exeter I would not be required to pay for any of the work but they completely dismissed this. The work had already been carried out on the vehicle so in order for me to get my car back, I had to fork out £1800. Reluctantly I paid the money and a friend of mine travelled to Exeter to collect my vehicle for me.
For some strange reason I had a premonition that something was going to go wrong, I wasn't sure what but I was just expecting a phone call. That premonition did indeed come true, Mike who was picking the vehicle up telephoned to tell me that there was something wrong with the vehicle and it was virtually undrivable. Anyway, somehow he managed to get the vehicle back to Brixham and took it straight over to a garage in Paignton for them to have a quick look. At first we thought that a spring had broken on the brake pedal and it was sticking. However, after driving it for only one day I realise that something much more serious was wrong with the vehicle. Basically, the brakes would bind after driving it for a short period of time, one would have to literally put your foot under the brake pedal and pull it up sharply. Obviously being completely paralysed made this process absolutely impossible. In the meantime I had been forced to take legal action against Carrs of Exeter to recover the money that I had paid them for carrying out the recall. Thankfully they backed down after realising their mistake and refunded my money, unfortunately by the time I had paid all my legal bills there was only about £300 left, so I will still completely out of pocket at the end of the day. Anyway, once again with the benefit of the Internet I was able to get some information about what could be wrong with the hydraulic assembly, after all it was supposed to be a brand-new unit that had been fitted. Basically, it seemed that the unit had not been fitted properly which is why the brakes would bind. I couldn't bring myself to go through all the hassle and expense of going back to Carrs of Exeter with my vehicle in the hope that they would put the fault right. So reluctantly I scrapped the vehicle at the end of 2006.
They dealt with my situation appallingly. The customer service was really extremely poor as they would neglect to keep me up to date on what was going on. They seem to lack any knowledge about what was wrong with the vehicle and even when they did try and fix it, just made it even worse than when I gave it to them. They had already fitted a reconditioned automatic transmission to the vehicle which gave me nothing but problems. So they really need to ask themselves whether they have the skills to carry out this type of work.
Nowadays I drive a Mercedes Sprinter Van which has given me several years of reliable motoring. I loved my Chrysler Voyager, it's just a crying shame that I ended up selling it for scrap just because a garage didn't know what they were doing.