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  #1 (permalink)  
Old Jan 9th, 2013, 10:21 AM
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Mini HQ - Terrible ethics for the customer.

Hi everyone,

After reading people having successful good will claims for the common faults on the r50 generation mini I emailed Mini UK to perhaps pursue a goodwill claim.

Needless to say i'm disappointed with the reply:

To whom it may concern,

I write with regards to my 2003 Mini Cooper which I have owned for the past 3.5 years, I love my Mini but unfortunately its not been great to me. Over the past year I've experienced almost every common fault possible occur and its left me fairly out of pocket.

It started with the airbag light flashing on, this was diagnosed as the passenger under-seat connector which after just being a little more firmly placed together resolved the fault after clearing it at an independent BMW specialist.

Around 8 months ago I experienced power steering failure, something which has been widely reported on as being a common fault with the elector-hydraulic power steering motor used in the R50 generation mini. I have attached a screenshot of a thread located here: on a Mini Owners club forum which details the amount of power steering failures that the motor has caused.

The pump was disassembled and the fault was a short circuit on the electrical part of the unit, the brushes had worn down so much that the filings were filling the housing to the power steering unit. The iron filings were removed and the circuit board cleaned, the unit reassembled with what little was left of the internal brushes (unable to source replacements) and the power steering is now functioning again in a state where it will not suddenly become heavy and has reduced the risk considerably, however the life of the unit itself is in question and it will need replacing indefinitely to keep the car on the road and safe.

6 months ago the third and biggest problem of them all, Unfortunately my gearbox developed a fault and having sourced a refurbishment via the seller: bmwminispares (as the midland r65 gearbox is no longer available) and having to pay for labor to remove the gearbox and refit the replacement exchange unit set me back a large amount of money. However upon replacement the gearbox replacement was great and all noises had disappeared. However 5 months after the replacement, familiar noises started again and I was at a loss as to what could be the culprit. Surely not the gearbox? I was recommended to replace the clutch release bearing although this had been done at the time of the gearbox replacement. This set me back a further 200. Unfortunately, the clutch release bearing was not the culprit. But I believe it to be another failed Midland R65 gearbox, this is also a widely common issue amongst the forum which tends to people converting to the later getrag 6 speed gearboxes which would be great. The seller refuses to honor the advertised 12 month warranty and now unfortunately, I'm at a point where I cannot drive my beloved car, its been off the road for 2-3 months now and unfortunately.

I would love to continue to be a Mini car owner and the greatest thing of all would to be able to see my car back on the road with these faults addressed and ask that you consider the car for a Good Will Claim as I have seen people that have had both labor and parts covered under the good will claim service.

"My power steering pump failed on Sunday 16th December, I made a quick call to my local garage BMW Scotthall Southampton, and also a call to MINI UK to register my details. Dropped the car off to the garage on 17/12/12 and asked them to make a goodwill claim. Received a call this morning and the dealer and they confirmed that MINI UK agreed to pay 100% of the parts and labour for the whole pump - Very Happy!!!

All I have to pay is 75 for diagnostics and for the fluids!

MINI Uk confirmed that they can consider a claim for any MINI up to 10 years old.

Very helpful service all round. I spoke to a lady called Miya at MINI UK who was more than helpful!

Restored faith with MINI and a very satisfied customer!!! From Failure - Successful claim - Fixed car in 2 days!!!"

I really appreciate the time you have taken to read my message and look forward to your reply.

Yours Sincerely,
xxx xxx


Thank you for your email dated January 8, 2013. I am sorry to learn of the issues you have experienced with your MINI and I can appreciate the concern that this has caused.

Once a vehicle's warranty has expired and no Insured Warranty has been purchased, we are under no obligation to assist financially with a repair. We only use quality components in the construction of our vehicle range, however, we are unable to guarantee that a part will not fail during a vehicle's lifetime.

I appreciate that you would like MINI UK to provide goodwill for further faults with the gearbox of your MINI. I am sorry, however, this is not covered under the parameters for goodwill and we would be unable to assist you in this instance.

I acknowledge that you will be disappointed with my response and I am sorry that you have had reason to write to us under these circumstances.

Yours sincerely


My displeased reply:

Hi xxx,

I've been informed by other Mini owners that Mini accept Good Will claims for cars upto 10 years old, whether or not the vehicle has manufacturer guarantee or not. Using a gearbox design from 1986 for a car that is 850kg (citroen ax) as oppose to 1150kg kerb weight of the Mini Cooper is not good engineering and this was addressed with later models with the introduction of the Getrag gearbox. As for the power steering, this module was also changed from the electrical pump in later models.

As my concerns have been brushed off despite the serious safety implications of the manufacturer aware faults due to poor quality components, I will have no choice but to further report on my problems to VOSA.

Needless to say, Despite my love for the Mini styling... My next car purchase will not be a Mini, I will also not be advising anyone to purchase a Mini due to the faults which are almost guaranteed to occur. The facts are there with out of 2000 people that took the poll, over half had failures of the power steering. Much the same for the gearbox.

Kind regards,
xxx xxx

Great service from Mini, disgusting approach of avoiding recalls and denying faults of engineering.
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  #2 (permalink)  
Old Jan 9th, 2013, 12:50 PM
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I am not really surprised MINI turned down 'Goodwill' on your gearbox outside warranty as the goodwill offers on 10 year old Mini's only applies to the power steering pump, the Midland gearbox issue was never covered that way outside warranty to my knowledge? Also as you fixed this independently first with another replacement gearbox it is not really the factory original build now and any evidence of the original fault is gone.

If you had applied for goodwill 8 months ago on the power steering pump only, you might have been in with a chance but even that is unlikely now as you have already had an independent repair carried out on the pump which invalidates any claims for most manufacturers.

Sorry you have my sympathy but as said not surprised by the response but always worth a try I guess.
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  #3 (permalink)  
Old Jan 9th, 2013, 02:30 PM
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Why didn't Bmwminispares honour their warranty??
I would have taken them to court!
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  #4 (permalink)  
Old Jan 9th, 2013, 03:18 PM
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I heard a bloke tried to get Ford to give him a good will new water pump for his 1920 Model T, Ford said the because the warranty had expired 92 years ago they couldnt help, he wasnt too pleased either, he said how is one supposed to keep a car on the road if you have to keep buying bits for it.

There has to be a limit as to what a manufacturer is prepared to do, good will or not surely?
Ive a feeling some people think their car will be repaired for free for life, nice idea I suppose.
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  #5 (permalink)  
Old Jan 9th, 2013, 11:28 PM
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Sorry but this made me smirk. You can't even get free repairs on a 10 year old house, never mind a car!
I think they have been more than reasonable by funding the PS pump (I hope I read the first email properly) as they have accepted that there is a problem with them but I do not know of any precedent for gearbox replacement.
Perhaps next time you change, you should check for common failures; the glass like nature of the R50 gearbox has been well documented for many years.
Sorry if I sound harsh but, seriously, you can't expect a lifetime warranty for free.
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  #6 (permalink)  
Old Jan 14th, 2013, 05:47 AM
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Remember the lemon law. I bought the first of the new camaro convertibles in 88.
It kept filling with water. I kept everything and after 3 tries to fix in, 2 days before the warranty I filed.
At first they said bring it to a dealer for a special deal. The offered what every other person could have got.
A few days before trial they traded me for a new loaded 92 z28 convertible. Even trade
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  #7 (permalink)  
Old Jan 14th, 2013, 12:52 PM
Big Ry
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I have to say I agree with The Nun and S8RAH.

Do you honestly expect Mini or any other manufacturer to keep your car going for free 10 years after it was built ? I appreciate we all like to get a little something for nothing, but come on play fair. I think that any form of goodwill should be taken exactly as that....goodwill, and not treated like an alternative warranty.

Cars cost money to keep, we all have to accept that.
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  #8 (permalink)  
Old Jan 26th, 2013, 11:37 AM
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Once a vehicle's warranty has expired and no Insured Warranty has been purchased, we are under no obligation to assist financially with a repair.

is only part of the story and true of Mini UK but not the dealer that sold the vehicle, who typically hide behind warranty policies to attempt to evade obligations under Sale of Goods Act

The SOGA states that for a period of 6 years that the seller of the goods has a responsibility to ensure they are fit for purpose, free of defect and suitable for the use intended. After 6 months the obligation to prove that the goods where faulty when sold is on the consumer, but a statement to the fact is adequate for this or better still independent report confirming failure and reason for this

having said the above - it doesn't apply to yourself in this instance, as the agreement is with the vender not Mini UK, and you have to notify them of issues and give them reasonable time to rectify the problem - but thought it worth pointing out - you do however have full rights with the gearbox vender, warranty policy or not under the Sale of Goods Act they are obliged to ensure the gearbox was free of defect and fit for purpose, give them reasonable time to rectify (repair, replace or refund) and failing this take them to court via small claims
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  #9 (permalink)  
Old Mar 1st, 2013, 02:49 AM
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The offered what every other person could have got.

I love erotic bodystocking and feminine things. It makes me feel nice to look good and turn somebody on by doing so.
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  #10 (permalink)  
Old Jul 13th, 2013, 10:51 PM
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Well, i've had experience with Fiat in the past and they were happy to replace the fuel tank on a 8 year old Seicento that developed a leak at the seam... a common problem that seems to have affected many owners. About 400 worth of work taken care of after easy talks with Fiat HQ who were more than helpful.

The mini was poorly engineered and BMW fail to accept any kind of responsibility. A shoddy attitude to have towards any consumer.

Mini did not do anything with the power steering pump, this was carried out by my boyfriend and his father on a weekend after cleaning out all of the dust from the brushes the pump continues to work but new brushes are imminent.

Anyway, car is still off the road... BMW mini spares wouldn't accept receipt of the gearbox because I didn't have a receipt from a Mini/BMW garage specifying mtf94 spec oil was used, however I had a receipt from the independant parts specialist near me which clearly stated that MTF-94 spec gearbox oil was bought.
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  #11 (permalink)  
Old Feb 12th, 2014, 05:57 PM
MINI2 Newbie
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Hi, would you mind please letting me mini uk email address. Many thanks
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  #12 (permalink)  
Old May 22nd, 2014, 06:36 AM
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