Muzi Mthombeni is now a happy man. Nissan SA has repaired his vehicle which its Midrand dealership had refused to do.
Mthombeni was at his wits end when he approached Consumer Line for help two weeks ago.
Nissan wanted him to pay an exorbitant amount to fix the gears of a Navara he bought last year. His car had apparently just clocked 10000km when its gears gave him problems.
He said he took it in for inspection and the dealer discovered that its clutch was worn out and could be replaced at a fee. This Mthombeni refused to do.
"They expected me to pay R20000 for a problem which I later discovered was a manufacturers' defect, which Nissan was aware of," said Mthombeni.
He claimed that he got this information from one Nissan dealership which had allegedly fixed its clients' vehicles at the company's cost, but the dealership still insisted that the clutch was worn out and needed to be replaced.
The dealership further said that such wear and tear was not covered by warranty or their motor service plan.
"It was dangerous driving the vehicle because I could not change gears," he said.
Thanks to Consumer Line Mthombeni did not have to pay the R20000 at all. Nissan SA ordered that his vehicle be fixed at no cost to him at all. Even though Nissan SA had actioned his complaint, the company would not comment on rumours that the Nissan Navara generally suffered from a number of manufacturers' defects.
A grateful Mthombeni received his vehicle on Friday and test drove it to Polokwane over the weekend. He is happy.
Another Nissan dealership in Roodepoort was also accused of shoddy workmanship.
Joseph Mashinini took his Nissan one tonner in for a major service in June. He specifically instructed the service provider to fit in new brake pads, but this was not done. Instead, the dealership changed the break fluid, but did not disclose this to him, he said.
A day after taking possession of his vehicle he almost damaged the boundary wall of his house because the brake pads were not replaced and the brake fluid had leaked the whole night, rendering the car dangerous to drive
Mashinini claimed that he notified the dealership that he was not happy with the condition of the brakes on the day he took delivery of his vehicle, but was assured that new brakes were fitted and that it was safe to drive.
Mashinini said the dealership later admitted that there was a problem with the brakes, that they would fetch the vehicle and fix it.
"Nissan always encourage customers to avoid back yard mechanics, but they too have not done their best to help," he said.
Jeffrey Carbonari, the general manager at Nissan Roodepoort said he promised to bring the vehicle back to the dealership so they could investigate his' concerns in his presence. He said they told him that they would have to change the brake pads if necessary.
Carbonari said they sent a team to inspect Mashinini's vehicle and found that there was a minor leak on one of the rear drums. This was repaired at the customers' premises.
"We informed the customer to bring the vehicle back and we will inspect the vehicle again and sort out any issues that may have resulted from our workmanship," said Carbonari.