Also copy of mail to BMW mini
I would like an answer as to why BMW mini are failing to offer the same level of after care service for their customers in the UK, as they are in other parts of the world, in particular the united states.
In reference to the ongoing problems regarding the N14 engine fitted to 07 onwards mini coopers and John cooper works models. There are many instances of cam chain tensioner failures reported for this engine, which results in a very noisy engine, particularly when started from cold, as the tensioner fails to take up the slack in the chain, and it hits/rubs against the timing case causing wear to the chain and guides. There has been several bulletins issued to mini dealers outlining revised tensioner's, to my knowledge there have been three different tensioner part numbers issued but in the main the response from staff when approached by a customer who's petrol engine sounds like a diesel, is "they are all like that sir, nothing to worry about " but in fact this is obviously not the case, and when things get really bad, the slack timing chain can jump the sprockets causing massive engine damage.
Mini are in the main washing their hands of any responsibility regarding this issue, and that of the frequent failure of the high pressure fuel pump, which again is a major problem for owners of these cars, these fail on a regular basis, and like the cam chain issue, even if resolved by mini there is no guarantee that it will not raise its head again, repeat failure of both these items is not uncommon,due to repeated fitments of substandard parts.
Now on its own these issues are bad enough for a premium brand like BMW, but what is of more concern to the UK owners is the fact that we are being treated far differently to others in another part of the world, in fact I don't think its too harsh to say we are being discriminated against with the level of service you are providing.
As said here in the UK you seem to adopt a head in the sand approach regarding the above well documented faults, and in the main its down to the customer to foot the not inconsiderate bill to rectify your faulty goods. However in America you have extended the high pressure fuel pump cover to 12 years or 100k miles, here the poor owner gets a bill for £771 for the same fault ..... also now mini America are sending out letters to owners requesting they take their car into dealers to have the cam chain tensioner, chain and guides inspected for wear and damage, and if anything is found, then the repair will be at no cost to the customer (I have a copy of this letter) This is outrageous that we in the uk do not have this same level of aftercare offered, especially seeing that the engines are built at the same Hams Hall plant, with the same defective parts and same build processes, how can BMW justify this discrimination?
I have also written to watchdog outlining my complaint, who I'm sure you are aware have featured mini and BMW cars issues before as I feel this situation should not be allowed, maybe the class action that was issued against mini in America forced your hand to offer the above after care measures, and maybe we in the UK don't shout loud enough at times to warrant bothering about, I assure you this is not the case, and on this matter I along with a few others are prepared to shout long and hard enough, to whatever medium it takes for BMW to realise its not fair to ignore the loyal buyers, of what is an iconic British brand.
Before you trot out the often quoted line that the internet is not really a reliable source from which to gather data .... I put it to you that not everyone can be wrong considering the shear number of owners complaint.