Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Phoenix, Arizona
Local Time: 10:11 AM
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So I ended up taking the car to my local repair shop where they replaced the control arm bushings, struts and strut mounts. $1,800 later, and it still didn't fix the problem.
Mostly at higher speeds (say 70+mph), I begin to turn and it "jumps" a bit in the direction I turn. Say I had turned the wheel left 5 degrees, on it's own it will jump over to 7 degrees.
Angry at having spent the money, today I took it to the Mini dealer in Tempe, Arizona.
They put it on the rack for an hour, and came back and blamed the installation of the new control arms, said the other shop had not installed them perfectly and that caused the steering problem. Also recommended other unrelated fixes.
I pointed out that the steering issue PRECEEDED the control arm replacement, to which the dealer had no good answer, except to suggest I pay $300 for them to adjust it.
Approximately 3 miles later, on the freeway at 65mph, I lose power. Engine still revs when I press the gas, but absolutely no power going to the tires.
I pull over and turn it off. Wait. Restart, and everything works fine.
Within seconds, I notice a new check engine light, the temperature gauge is maxed out, and suddenly I have no power steering.
I immediately called the dealer and asked if they still had any parts to my car lying around, like maybe a belt or a fluid cap or something. Dealer got a bit defensive and said the car was in perfect working order when it left (a mere 5 minutes prior...). I asked if they would tow me, they said just to drive it back.
I reminded him the temperature gauge was at the highest possible reading, he said for me to call a tow truck (and presumably pay for that myself).
The car is now at my regular shop being looked at.