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BangShift Question Of The Day: What’s Been Your Worst Warranty Nightmare Car or Truck?


BangShift Question Of The Day: What’s Been Your Worst Warranty Nightmare Car or Truck?

With that Ford story and its massive possible financial implications, we’re wanting you to talk a walk down (bad) memory lane. Yes, we want to know what the worst engineered factory junk pile you ever had was.

When I was a kid, my parents bought a brand new 1986 Taurus. The spaceship looking car was the hit of the neighborhood and looked like nothing else on the road. While this does not qualify as a warranty nightmare, the Taurus had a fresh engine and transmission in it by the end of the second year my parents owned it. To be fair, they had the thing an additional decade after that, so it was a pretty good family truckster for the Lohnes clan.

I remember my dad having to take a warranty claim all the way to some sort of appeals board at some point with a pickup truck that he had. That was about as protracted a battle as I’d ever seen him fight.

We know that there are warranty horror stories out there. Yes, we went full Vega with the lead photos here because that aluminum engine was one of the biggest gaffes that any car company has EVER had. Diesel to gas engine swaps at the deal from GM, Chrysler transmission issues? What’s your story?

BangShift Question Of The Day: What’s Been Your Worst Warranty Nightmare Car or Truck?


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11 thoughts on “BangShift Question Of The Day: What’s Been Your Worst Warranty Nightmare Car or Truck?

  1. Matt Cramer

    I’ve only owned one car with a warranty – a 1998 Isuzu Amigo. It also has the distinction of being the only daily driver I’ve owned to have had its engine replaced. This was due to a recall issue, NHTSA Recall 01I002000. So I guess it may also qualify as a moderate case of a warranty nightmare. Ditched it soon after, as there weren’t many places that knew how to work on it.

  2. Joe Jolly

    Warranty nightmare? 2014 F150. Took it in for A/C repair under warranty and it was 9 months, 3 dealers and 6 attempts before repair was properly diagnosed and fixed. In that time the brake rotors warped twice and the transmission valve body needed to be replaced. It was truly more Fords service departments being incompetent than a quality issue. Michigan has a Lemon Law and I used it successfully to get my money back on the truck..

  3. Disgruntled

    2013 Kia Optima I bought new. Thought they had their quality issues worked out by that time and really did like the car as a daily driver. Good mileage, comfortable, cheap to maintain, Good looking….. I was wrong. At around 75k miles, the thing started using a couple quarts of oil every 1000-1500 miles. The vehicle was judiciously maintained with all records kept. Took it into the dealer because it should have been a cut and dry warranty issue. Kia refused warranty on the car through a few appeals etc and ultimately claimed I didnt maintain the vehicle.

    At this point in time, Hyundai had already recalled the same 2.4L engine that my car had in it for oil consumption issues….

    So of course at that point, I got out of the car and took a ~2k loss on it at trade in as this was less than the cost of a used engine at the time. And of course, 6 months later Kia recalled these vehicles for oil consumption, just like Hyundai had. Still pissed off about being blamed for the damage and its been a few years since this happened. Never again will I buy one of their vehicles….

  4. Longrod Von Hugendong

    Had a transmission replaced under extended warranty in my Silverado, and it was never right since. Shakes, leaks, you name it. The dealer said these were other problems not related to the tranny. Boy was he wrong. We put it on the lift and my “new tranny” was filthy and had yellow junk yard crayon writing all over it!
    Turns out a tech who had the same truck used my vin to make the claim, swapped his crap tranny into my truck, and took my new one! The dealer said there was nothing they could do cause the kid quit soon after. Never bought another Chevy.

  5. Shawn Fox Firth

    We drive Tow trucks chasing accidents on the 401 in Toronto and the GTA , the 6liter diesels in Fords F350s Were Nightmares with the EGR coolers and Injector pumps . and the transmissions were shit too But having said that and to be fair we are pretty hard on the equipment -Nature of the game eh . the new 6.7 s in our F450s are Sweet motors . as for personal rides I’v never owned anything newer than a ’72 all GM .

  6. OKSnake08

    I was a service manager for Saturn and when I was fired the VP said that I had left a customer in a rental car for over 6 weeks while we tried to fix a nightmare drivability problem, which was true. GM bought the car back at full price (basically a full refund ) and the dealership “sold”her a new Vue at GM dead cost and ate the cost of the factory God’s own extended warranty. I had worked with our field engineer and tech departments throughout the attempted repair. In the end after new PCM , injectors just about every sensor and complete replacement of every wiring harness the car was “fixed” . GM sent the car to auction where a dealer bought it resold it and it was in another dealer for the same problem(s) 2 weeks later. I was still employed when this happened and my DSM said “ they should have crushed it”. Coincidentally the same day I was fired the used car manager and the new car sales manager were fired. All this a few months before GM’s bankruptcy which I’m sure had nothing to do with any of this…..ask a Saturn Vue owner with a 4 cylinder and CVT about the letter they got from GM after lots of failed fixes. They offered to replace , trans , tcm, pcm, etc in effect erase the entire CVT system. Ford must have sold a lot more of the problem cars than GM did since I doubt anyone ever heard about that offer unless you were a dealer or owner. Just to pile on remember the diesel Oldsmobile’s? my aunt and uncle got their purchase price and repair money plus a little “bonus” to STFU about what happened.

    1. Tony

      1983 Chevy S-10 Blazer with the 4-cylinder. A. Blew the head. Fix: new head. B. Blew the timing chain Fix: new engine C. Blew the head again. Fix: new head. NONE of which was cause by the 16-yr-old behind the wheel… who never, EVER redlined it. EVAAAHH.

  7. Scott Liggett

    Personally, never owned a car that was new enough to have a warranty.

    My grand parents bought a 1986 Coupe de Ville new that had the full digital dash. The problems started with the car having Coupe de Ville written on one side and Sedan de Ville on the other. My grandfather though it was hilarious and refused to let the dealer to fix it. But, the problems really ramped up from there. It kept blowing the plastic sides off the radiator, ten of them. The trans went out quickly. The last straw was the digital dash that kept dying. The car spent more time at the dealer than in their garage over six months. Their dealer offered and bought the car back as a Lemon Law, replacing it with an exact replacement. My grandma racked up 31,000 miles on it in 10 years with zero problems. My parents bought the car from her when that same dealer offered her a $5,000 credit on a new caddy because all of her previous problems. My parents drove her 1986 another 36,000 miles in 2 years and sold it for more than they paid for it.

  8. jerry z

    I leased a new Dodge Dakota in 1998 and over the 3 yrs if ownership was at the dealer for total if 2 months! One was for cats which sat at the dealer for over a month since there was none to be had. It wasn’t a recall though according to the dealership. Last Dodge I owned.

  9. Ian

    Used to be a warranty manager at a Holden dealer here in Australia, in 2000. I had to deal with the aftermath of the Calibra debacle, not sure what the exact issue was because I couldn’t get a straight answer even out of my DSM, but Holden footed the bill for every service and wear item as long as you were the original owner.
    Remember when GM said the early LS1 engines were non rebuildable? Remember that they either had severe oil consumption issues or piston slap? Yeah, that was fun as well, had 2 Commodore cop cars in on the same day due to oil consumption problems. One was getting it’s second new engine in 20,000km, first engine spun a bearing, along with a new T56 and read diff because they were beyond noisy. The DSM was in that day, along with a couple of Holden engineers with the Sydney Olympic torch relay cars so that was a fun day.
    For my own cars I’ve only had 2 warranty claims, Rav4 which had the driver’s seatbelt lockup, which later was subject to 3 recalls after I sold it, and my wife’s Nissan who’s CVT needed a software update, threw a code.
    My current Mitsubishi has a full page of warranty claims before I bought it.
    My previous Citroen, zero issues in the 5 years I had it. I’ll buy another Citroen in a heartbeat

  10. BeaverMartin

    My wife had a 2000 Hyundai. I have never in my life seen a less reliable car. My 72′ Beetle was way more reliable. Wheel bearings (which required the entire hub being replaced each time) Brake rotors that warped if you talked mean about them, and finally a broken crankshaft. I will NEVER have another Korean car near me in any capacity.

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