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Thread: We're almost there...

  1. #1
    Team Z8 KenZ8's Avatar
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    We're almost there...

    Ok, I've calmed down a little and began to think;
    1) Some owners reported damage
    2) It was brought to BMW AG's attention (thank you for the efforts BMW Club)
    3) We took a pole, showing a surprising number of cars with some reported damage
    4) We called for BMW to recognize the problem and create a fix so we could enjoy our cars
    5) We took another pole showing when we wanted a response and how much we were willing to spend on the fix
    THEN:
    1)the owner's reports of damage were taken seriously by BMW
    2)they engineered and announced a fix within the earliest timeframe that we "demanded"
    3)they told us we had to pay what many forum participants consider an outrageous amount
    If you look at our list of objectives and the resulting responses from BMW, it shows that we are almost there. Any business agreement takes time and requires refining of the terms before all parties are ready to "sign off" on it. We have BMW's attention and their committment to install a package that will make the Z8 able to perform more like the car that was described in the sales brochure and the Z8 DE, and restore its honor and prestige in the automotive world. We have it in a timely fashion for a mega company, even though we all individually wanted it microwave fast. The final details are money and egos, ours vs BMW's.
    BMW presented what I consider to be an "offer" in the letter received yesterday. We have responed loudly, telling them that they have "insulted us" with the financial burden added to the driving time lost and so on. Call your representatives at BMW and your local dealer, state your case with respect for what they have already accomplished for us, then let them respond...we're almost there.

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by KenZ8
    Ok, I've calmed down a little and began to think;
    ...we're almost there.
    I'm with you 100%. This is a levelheaded way to look at this matter and exactly what I was thinking. I even thought of seeing if we can get a group of us owners together to setup a meeting with the folks at BMW NA headquarters and have a "face to face."

    I would like to keep the lines of communication open to see if we can work something equitable out before we start running to the lawyers. No disrespect to those among us who are lawyers, but when lawyers get involved things have a way of deteriorating rather quickly.

    Also, while there is nothing wrong with verbalizing our anger, I feel that personal attacks are counter-productive. This is particularly true when we do it amongst ourselves.

  3. #3
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    Thumbs up

    A rational, measured response...
    What a novel idea

  4. #4
    Team Z8 dwz8's Avatar
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    Excellent summary.

    I want to add one more thing:
    The discussion should not be about what WE have to pay for a fix.
    The discussion must be how EVERY Z8 gets the fix asap.

    I am less concerned about the amount I myself have to pay. I am concerned about all owners being informed the right way, and all Z8s being modified, no matter whether they do "ambitious driving on bad roads" or not.
    This is the only way to stop the discussion forever.

    And there must be a solution for the cars that are "slightly distorted".
    Best regards, Dieter

    ....

  5. #5
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    wrong.................. question is why bmw did not know there were frame problems or maybe they did.... their fault but our problem because they are listening to laywers and not their customers.

  6. #6
    Z8 Addict Z8doc's Avatar
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    I agree as well, ....

    As I have stated before, I am not interested in the Class Action unless BMW does not respond appropriately for the interests of all of it's Z8 owners. I think KenZ8 is right and it was my opinion after reading my letter today that this is the "first offer" of the negotiation.

    I would agree that everyone should contact customer service, via email <[email protected]> or call at 1-800-831-1117 and ask for Alan Harris, VP Aftersales (the person who the letter was from) and express your concerns and let them know your desires. I would advise against brokering an individual deal however as, IMHO, that undermines obtaining the fix for every Z8 owners, esp. those who may actually not know of the problem at this time.

    As I stated, I was willing to give BMW some time to respond and re-think even this letter, but I have to agree, KenZ8 is right in that they are moving forward (abeit more slowly than what many of us would like). They acknowledge in the letter they are monitoring our postings "I am writing to comment on recent Internet postings and press articles regarding the Z8 structure." It is important that they get a feel for the entire spectrum of opinion, regardless of how varied it is, that way they know to what length the Z8 membership will go to with regard to making this right, including when we disagree with each other. Just as Z8Bob mentions above " a measured response", make no mistake about it, they are using this forum to "measure" us as well.

    Let's keep the communication and presssure on!
    Best Regards,

    Jeff
    61995 Silver /// Rot - Original Owner
    Z8 Club of Germany e.V. #102

  7. #7
    Team Z8 jawz's Avatar
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    Although I agree entirely with KenZ8 and the other postings here, there are a few things that are nagging me regarding this issue. Please forgive me for interjecting a little skepticism in this otherwise rational thread, but I think we all have a reason to suspect that BMW will fail to do the right thing in this case.

    #1 - BMW decided to call this a performance upgrade. This wasn't done by mistake. They've set the stage to blame each owner for their shock tower deformation if/when they experience it in the future.

    #2 - BMW will take no responsibility for any future shock tower deformations because the owner "decided" not to install the performance upgrade, thus exposing their car unnecessarily to this risk.

    #3 - BMW has positioned themselves to where they have NO INTENTION of ever fixing this on their nickel.

    Why do I have such doubts about their "inability to do the right thing"? All one has to do is look back just a few months ago at the way BMW handled the LSD debacle. We basically had the same arguments and expectations. Matter of fact, you could go back and substitute "shock tower deformation" for "LSD" into those posts directly without changing any of the arguments or the intent of the argument.

    BMW monitored those posts and we all contacted BMW NA customer service, etc. What was BMW's final offer? A slap in the face (IMHO). The offer of a discount coupon for a course that probably less than 1% of the US Z8 owners ever took advantage of.

    Also remember that they said the LSD issue was merely a simple mistake. Now their asking us to forgive this mistake as well. How many times do the customers have to take responsibility for BMW's mistakes?

    Sorry for my skepticism, but as far as I'm concerned, they've "played" us once and have positioned themselves to "play" us again. There is no indication of sincerity from BMW at this point. No...BMW has provided me with no reason to suspect this is their "first offer". I think it's their final offer.

    Remember the Alamo!... Remember BMW!

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    Jawz, I am thinking you are right on all points, and educated skepticism is indeed rational in this situation. BMW is not starting the negotiation process, they just ended it. It would take a huge about face to make the upgrade free to all at this point---after all, this issue went all the way to the top before their position was decided. We can try to reverse their position, and we should, but I will be very surprised if they "willingly" change their polka.

  9. #9
    Team Z8 dwz8's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KenZ8
    THEN:
    1)the owner's reports of damage were taken seriously by BMW
    2)they engineered and announced a fix within the earliest timeframe that we "demanded"
    I want to add some more detail to this:

    1) everything the owners reported was labeled by BMW as the outcome of a driver's failure, or an accident-like situation. Their response was simply: No, this doesn't happen under normal circumstances, you did something wrong with the car.
    2) they engineered some "performance kit" for special use cases, explicitely stating that these use cases have nothing to do with the reported damages and perceived weaknesses.

    So in other words:
    We asked a question, and they answered a different one.

    Regarding the announcement:
    To my best knowledge, BMW has NEVER made any announcement or statement regarding this issue other than in private emails to the Club.
    There is no way that any Z8 owner may know about this discussion other than if he is a member of the Club or visits one of the boards here. This gives me the impression that they try to purposely hide this away from public.

    Regarding the letter to US customers:
    To my best knowledge, nobody outside the US has received any such letter from BMW so far. So what kind of signal is this?
    Best regards, Dieter

    ....

  10. #10
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    Dieter, it's worse than that...

    Quote Originally Posted by dwz8
    To my best knowledge, nobody outside the US has received any such letter from BMW so far. So what kind of signal is this?
    The letters in the US are not going to all owners. Only a select few have received the letter at this point. I have personally talked to three that received, and one of them received via courier.

    So, they are definitely taking a "below the radar" approach to this. I appears that they are addressing the most "valuable", vocal, and active members in the US.
    thegunguy

  11. #11
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    KenZ8

    Ken,
    your statement is to me a well balanced one and may be the best I have seen on this board concerning this issue, well done!

    As far as the business valuation and the technical side of the matter I couldn't agree more.

    There is good reason to see the whole issue more relaxed now. I still believe there will be a point in time when BMW AG treats its customers as serious as it deals with technical issues, hopefully.

    But you are completely right, the technical and the business outcome is what counts at the end of the day. Nothing else.

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    Creation of 2 or 3 classes of owners

    To date I have not received either by e-mail, snail mail, or courier any notification of the offer. I have, however, spoken to Mr. Harris' secretary on 2 consecutive days and to 2 other people in customer service. They assured me, because of my insistence that I would receive the notification by courier but it has not arrived in 2 days.
    I too have some concerns about the segmenting into different groups the current owners of the Z8. I believe that the Club members are on the A list, and this website's active participants are the B list and the uniformed are SOS if the A and the B lists don't demand it. I am not a member of the Z8 club but did get a faxed copy from some one who is.
    During my discussions it was my impression that there will be some concerted effort to make us all whole, but that is only a very small proportion of the 5500 owners out there. To protect all involved BMW must see the potential nightmare of a PR issue this could create. I think it is imperative that we continue to interact with BMW to get ALL owners made completely whole no matter what the condition of their cars -- FOR FREE.

  13. #13
    Sport Button On - DSC Off Dogsbreath's Avatar
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    Frame issue

    I had a letter couriered to me. I am not an original owner but I did register my car with BMW when I bought it. Perhaps this is where they got their mailing list. I also have an extended service warranty. I am also a member of the German club. Maybe this made a difference ?

    I think we should give BMW a realistic timeline and insist on a reasonable price for the so called performance kit. I'll say it again - $5000 is highway robbery. Consequences of failure to meet what I see to be a highly reasonable request should be clearly delineated. I believe that the potential of bad press is more likely to have real clout than 100 or so of even the most loyal bailing out on future BMW purchases (crunch the numbers !). I do agree that the automotive press would run with the story - and some of the non-auto press too - and that would have real impact on the company. But, we would all have to be prepared to take a hit in terms of market value of our vehicles.

    On a personal level, I would prefer that not happen but I can accept it as I have no intention of selling my car. I had my last high end car for 19 years and sold it for more than purchase price.

    Dave P

  14. #14
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    Exclamation

    I have carefully followed this situation and thoughtful discussion from the outstart. I am the original owner of # AH61750, a member of the Z8 club, and a longstanding car nut as I'm sure many of you are. My car just turned 13,000 miles and, thankfully, has no evidence of structural change. I love this car and always have. The LSD issue never really rankled me because the issue didn't affect my enjoyment of the car. This issue, is however, completely different.
    Without rehashing the entire topic one craw sticks in my side. How can it be that the manufacturer of a vehicle universally blame the driver/owner for a consistent structural deformation seen in a predictable fashion with an undefined causative event. To be sure, if I bring my new Touareg with 10,000 miles in for a checkup and they note a broken tie-rod with no history or evidence of an accident (ie. cracked wheel, torn tire, etc.) they'd replace it under warranty without question. I will never really know what caused the problem but I will have faith in the fact that it's fixed as good as new. I feel very strongly that we deserve to know that unless we abuse or damage our vehicles that, at a bear minimum, their structure will not deform. Common sense would suggest that with the absence of a defineable event, additional physical evidence, or a traceable history of abuse, this uniformly occurring problem could only fall into one category. DEFECT!
    BMWNA , you should carefully consider the category of customer you are playing games with here. You know what you sold us and how it was marketed. Persisting with this charade is highly insulting both logically and financially. Clearly, appealing to your sense of corporate integrity is a waste of time. What I would suggest you consider is the magnitude of bad press that could be brought to bear should this group decide to respond uniformly and publicly.

  15. #15
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    No letter here

    2nd Owner, Club Member, and registered in the BMW "Owner Circle"

    Maybe my handle scares them!
    thegunguy

  16. #16
    Z8 Addict Z8doc's Avatar
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    yeah, the handle and the fact....

    Quote Originally Posted by thegunguy
    2nd Owner, Club Member, and registered in the BMW "Owner Circle"

    Maybe my handle scares them!
    you are in Texas! You know those Texans are an independent crazy bunch! I should know, I grew up there!
    Best Regards,

    Jeff
    61995 Silver /// Rot - Original Owner
    Z8 Club of Germany e.V. #102

  17. #17
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    Question Same for me

    I'm a member of the club and registered with BMW.....I too am the second owner...what gives?

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Cook
    I'm a member of the club and registered with BMW.....I too am the second owner...what gives?
    Sadly, I can beat that. I'm the original owner registered with BMW. I get all their junk mail, but had to call and request a copy of the letter addressed to me. Oh yeah, I also had to call for nearly six months before I received "the book."