Hilux failed clutch at 51000km

Submitted: Sunday, Jun 22, 2014 at 21:02
ThreadID: 108453 Views:5060 Replies:12 FollowUps:18
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I have a 2012 Hilux SR5 and at 51000 km the clutch has failed and the dealer's warranty clerk has rejected the warranty claim due to abuse of the vehicle. I have been driving 4wd's for over 30 years and have never been accused of vehicle abuse. I am kicking myself from not bringing the smelly clutch to the attention of the service people the first time that I noticed the smell. The repairs have cost in excess of $3000 and I am at my wit's end as to where to from here. I would like you to post this issue on your forum so that other owners are aware of the issue and that they scream hard and loud until they get a result. The clutch plate has worn down to the transverse grooves and in my opinion this is a result of very poor surfacing material used in its manufacture. This disaster has also cost me a week's accommodation as the failure occurred 1000km from home and I have lost a week's work as well. These dealers have a lot to answer for as they don't know the meaning of compassion. I can provide photos if needed.
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Reply By: Ross M - Sunday, Jun 22, 2014 at 22:09

Sunday, Jun 22, 2014 at 22:09
Shipo,
Because of the smell a clutch produces when frying the plate, it is surprising the service men who have had their noses in close proximity to the bell housing, haven't noticed it without your input.
Their olfactory system isn't working in their factory!
I would ask how they determine it was abused, and ask for a detailed explanation, on what grounds the warranty is being denied.
Just a claimed statement of presumed abuse isn't much of a reason.

Does the vehicle tow a lot? Was the clutch freeplay correct, has it been checked and marked in service book etc at service time?
The vehicle is advertised as being capable ( fit for purpose) of reasonable use and if you can show it has been used in a reasonable manner, ie life of tyres for one, they may reconsider.
If you are purely dealing with a Toyota warranty person, "through a dealer" then stop that and deal direct with Toyota.

If the dealer thinks he will be left with a loss on the job, ie, Toyota's recompense isn't enough for his greed, then the dealer won't relay info which assists in a realistic reply from Toyota, ie, mixed messages and dealers own agendas happen there.

Ask for the person they are dealing with inside Toyota and get his/her contact number and or name and conduct your issue through them.
Sometimes dealers use the excuse they are waiting for a reply or some other erroneous thing and they are not really seriously dealing with anyone there at all. Purely a ruse by the dealer. Happens often in companies and dealerships.
The person who may be replying to the dealer may not be the person who is actually authorized to decide your future anyway, so until you Talk Turkey with Toyota you will never know your real situation and have to suffer the total loss.

Usually in such cases a pro rata , not profiting ie, no financial advantage is applied but fairness also should happen.

Be sure of one thing, the dealer isn't going to place himself in a position where he will lose anything and if you lose it all, it's mind over matter, he doesn't mind and you don't matter.

Don't know what state you are from but Fair Trading deal with a lot of car issues and can tell you your position and liability or warranty due to you in that particular case.

Serve it up to them and "Don't lie down and get run over".

Cheers
AnswerID: 534824

Reply By: olcoolone - Sunday, Jun 22, 2014 at 22:38

Sunday, Jun 22, 2014 at 22:38
Lets kick a dealer again....... Chances are they have spoken to the Toyota claims department and it's the claims department at Toyota Australia who refused the claim.

Yes the dealer is protecting their interest over yours and they are playing fairly, most mechanical places would do the same, however upon removal there may be a chance it could be submitted for a claim and deemed faulty.

Anything you get done under warranty can be refused at any time due to abuse or wear and tear once removed and inspected.

I would talk to the service manager first and state your claim and ask him/ her to escalate the claim and resubmit it to Toyota Australia.

With any action you have to understand and accept all decisions made are from the manufacture and not the dealership....... No matter how much some here hate them...... The dealership has very little say in warranty claims but how dealership words something can.

It is in the best interest of the dealership to get the claim accepted by Toyota Australia as it is a secure income stream through their workshop........ They know they can not be competitive to non dealership repairers and by having the claim refused there is a very good chance they will loose the clutch replacement job on your Hilux to a non approved repairer who will use aftermarket parts.

A warranty covers an item for manufacturing or fitment defects only and not wear and tear, saying that Toyota and all the other vehicle manufactures have issues with clutches...... It's a trade off with clamping force vs light clutch operation.

As for compassion...... Why should a dealer fork money out of their own pockets to fund your problem when they are not the cause of the problem but the people in the middle, sorry I'm on the dealerships side with this one.

You are quite in your rights to phone Toyota Australia new car warrant section and ask the and plead your case with them.
AnswerID: 534826

Follow Up By: TTTSA - Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 13:27

Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 13:27
Agree totally Olcoolone, well said.
Cheers
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Follow Up By: Slow one - Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 18:48

Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 18:48
Yep as said, dealers don't refuse warranty Toyota do.

Note! Hiluxes are way to high geared in high range 1st gear.
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Follow Up By: olcoolone - Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 20:23

Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 20:23
Yes the Hilux is geared to high in first, with big tyres and a camper in tow it can become a real pain in the..... We found in the high country it was hard to get the Hilux moving on some of the climbs, the other problem we had was when travelling long distances in a convoy when in low range first we would have to pull over all the time because we kept on catching the vehicles in front.

Most new 4x4 utes these day suffer from it (helps makes it more drivable for the kiddies school run)...... However the new Ford Ranger/Mazda BT50 has a really low first gear that great when loaded, have big tyres or towing but quickly became annoying when driving normally so we went auto.
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Follow Up By: Ross M - Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 22:34

Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 22:34
The dealers assessment and their information which is relayed to the parent company for warranty and is what the company goes on. ie, their word for it and not the owners explanation.

Often, not always, the person responsible for warranty issues is sometimes not very good at doing so. Hence the problem.

Currently working with a bloke (different vehicle system involved) who has such problems and the service person at his dealers, ( Not Toyota), is so incompetent at detecting and authorizing correct industry standard warranty repairs, he has stuffed up and cost the company at least $37,000 so far that I know of. Recorded in Official Tribunal records as the amount paid by the company because of not dealing squarely with the parent company for a suitable outcome. Minimal repairs = maximum failure later.
The company can only go on what they are told. In all cases it would have been a cost of only a few hundred at the most, if done properly first time. Again part of the recorded official report.
So, not always does the warranty happen as the company intends it to, but it possibly happens as the dealer makes it happen.

Obviously this doesn't occur in all cases bit it does in some.
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Follow Up By: olcoolone - Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 08:52

Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 08:52
Ross...... already made mention of it.

"The dealership has very little say in warranty claims but how dealership words something can"

Have had the same problem with a service advisor at a Toyota dealership who we have a good working relationship with, told Toyota warranty stuff they didn't need to know making a claim rejected...... cost them a far bit of money as we pulled all our service vehicle work from them and went to another Toyota dealer....... the service advisor got asked to leave, we bought a new 200 series Landcruiser off them at a rock bottom price and all is good.

But still doesn't warrant kicking a dealer..... as with ours the dealership acted quickly to rectify the issue.

Unfortunately with most people who have a gripe and a winge on a forum you only every here one side of the story and it always seems to be they are the poor victim.... and he did admit on here he had a problem with the clutch but failed to inform them at the last service..... this alone is enough to refuse a warranty claim (using a vehicle with a known problem causing a bigger problem).

How do you know his Hilux hasn't got big wheels, is over weight and he towed a 25 foot caravan for the last 20,000k in the hilly areas of Victoria and New South Wales.

As I have said before some are their own worst enemies.

Not saying Shipo is one of these customers but when you don't know the full story and have very little other facts to go by you have to take it with a pinch of salt and play the devils advocate.

And it's good to see the "Take legal action NOW!" group is alive and well.....LOL
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Follow Up By: Shaker - Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 11:24

Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 11:24
Funny thing is that some of the dealer bashers are probably mechanics, plumbers, builders etc, that have their own questionable work ethics!

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Follow Up By: The Bantam - Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 13:42

Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 13:42
Yeh well why not kick a dealer.....plenty of them well and truly deserve it...as do the car companies.

Toyota Australia where known to deny responsibility for the dodgy injectors in the early CRD motors..and charge inflated prices for the injectors...while in NZ the injectors where replaced cheerfully and the price of the injectors was way lower.

Its not just car dealers, but an increasingly normal practice to deny warranty as a first reaction to to any claim.

It is more and more practice to delay, procrastinate and deny responsibility for anything and hope the customer will give up or the claim will come outside the warranty period...AND in most cases they do.

EVEN worse, we are finding that vehicles and other products are designed specifically to shift cost onto the customer and away from the manufacturer.

The manufacturer is only too willing to gear a vehicle higher and persist with the same clutch that was barely adequate in the past.
Result the manufacturer can claim better environmental credentials and lower cost of ownership......untill the owner keep the car a few more years then cops the full freight of the expenses.

yeh...it is soo common.....yeh don't change the oil as often the shedule....resulting in lower service costs and environmental impact.....but resulting in more wear and tear on the car long term


OH and there is the old favoriet......leave changing things like gearbox and diff oils, coolants brake fluids and the like till the fixed price or free service deal runs out.

It is a common thing that toyotas need new clutches at arround 50 000.....the RAV we just sold was arround that vintage and the dealer was pushing for a clutch job in the $3000 mark.
Look at the RAVs advertised on line and many in that 50 000 range have had new clutches.

Hell a new clucth every second set of tyres.....you that is about right isn't it.

Now look bac at a couple of older toyotas...my 2.7 liter pterol hilux had about 160 000 on the clock..has done some work in previous owners ..by the look of the gearbox ( just rebuilt) has pull a lot of weight.....original clutch in reasonable ned of replacement at 160 000.

My 4wd diesel hilux..with over 300 000 KM on the clock still on the original clutch....yeh its about due.

So this 50 000 clutch chnage over....its seems common..is it reasonable..I DON"T think so.

AS for $3000 to change a clutch in a conventional in line transmission.....don't make me laugh.....I have just had an gearbox rebuild WITH a new input shaft and some new gears and it cost me $2500 drive in drive out with a new clutch...from a known reputable gearbox specilaist.



So why not kick a dealer......they have been picking your pocket since the car was new.

OH.. yeh last service on the old RAV, the dealer rang and said the wiper blades needed replacing....they quoted $75 to do it...on top of the "service".

Oh the poor dealer...my heart bleads.

cheers
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Follow Up By: olcoolone - Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 17:37

Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 17:37
Know many who have not had a clutch in there Hilux that have done over 200,000 with no problems, we had one done in ours at 75,000 due to a slight spring noise now and again..... clutch was fine.

Bantam..... vehicle manufactures make vehicles for the masses and the masses say they want a light clutch operation as many women and men as well drive these vehicles as their everyday car and going off road is driving on the front law to wash it every week...... their idea of hard work is taking a load of rubbish down the dump every 10 -12 months before the relies come over at xmas time.

If they put a harder clutch in there would be more people complaining the pedal is to hard then what there is with faulty clutches.

love the age of internet were a few people having the same problem can make some believe it affects all that model.

Suppose Bantam if you had millions of dollars outstanding, employed 100+ people and had to compete with a falling new car market/profit.... you to would be trying to capitalise from the customer and make a profit, or do you think they should do it at cost and not make a profit.....doing it for love I don't think so...... maybe the employees can take a pay cut to help offer lower prices to the customer.

I know for one thing if I had 10's of millions invested in a business I would want to make a health profit....... now I don't know if you run a business or your a leach but if you do have your own business do you make a profit or do you do it for love...... and if you do make a profit you should be ashamed of yourself....

It's funny how one likes to rip someone off but they hate it when they are being ripped off.... or they want high pay at work but are prepared to haggle for a better deal when buying of someone else.

It's a funny world.....
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Follow Up By: The Bantam - Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 18:07

Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 18:07
no matter which way you try plam the blame off........a clucth that dons not last longer than two sets of tyres is simply not fit for purpose

Remember too the original poster is talking about a load carrying commercial vehicle

There is simply no excuse for a piss poor clutch.

cheers
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FollowupID: 818739

Reply By: Ron N - Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 10:06

Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 10:06
What a bloody joke - a clutch failing totally on a 2 yr old vehicle. These manufacturers need to smarten up their act.

"Abuse" is just a standard "out" for any dealer or manufacturer who doesn't want to stand by their product.
Get some advice from Consumer Affairs, and look at your options. Small Claims Tribunal is possibly one, a lawyers letter is probably another. If all else fails, go to the media and get your story across on prime time TV - and tell the dealer you are going to do it.

This is most definitely a prime example of a product not meeting even a basic level of reliability and "fitness for pupose".
A clutch in a 4WD should be capable of withstanding a major level of abuse. 4WD's are supposed to be built for hard yakka.
Oh, hang on - no sorry, current Hilux 4WD's are obviously built for posing on sealed roads around the city - you wouldn't want to take them into the bush, something might break.

Good luck, keep screaming and kicking, these dealers and manufacturers are excellent at avoiding their legal responsibilities.

Cheers, Ron.
AnswerID: 534846

Follow Up By: Ross M - Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 15:18

Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 15:18
Shipo
Some of the 4WD stores who do up vehicles for offroad work, immediately remove the OE clutch even though it hasn't done any work because they know before they begin, it isn't going to last.
They don't want to be carefully 4WD'ing and suddenly have the clutch say NO. Many do a reasonable job but some don't. Toyota can't admit to that so deny it is their fault. They have enough recalls to worry about as it is.

If you can always give a reason ie, Abuse is a common one, and various others are also used to immediately divert blame to the owner.

The fact the same owner has used vehicles previously and of possibly the same make and for longer distances without any issue, totally escapes their precious little heads. Logic goes out the window.

Even with a bit of hard work it should last longer than 50,000 and therefore an agreement may be used to cover the "usage V's the expected life aspect", and then a pro rata decision which is fair can be agreed to.

It should be honestly fair and the words "we are looking after you, we are doing our best", shouldn't feature in the replies you get when negotiating. If they appear then you know they aren't dealing with fairness.

Hilux costs more to buy AND maintain. Not a good Advertisement.
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Follow Up By: Ron N - Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 15:50

Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 15:50
Shipo - All of Ross's points are good points. A pro-rata offer is an acceptable one - but a clutch should last at least 150,000kms in ANY commercial vehicle.

The problem we have today is that with the huge swing over to manufacturing in 3rd world countries - the problems associated with corruption, and flaws in quality control, and materials not meeting manufacturers specifications, have only increased - by a large amount.

The Hilux is built in Thailand and uses components that are sourced from probably a dozen different countries. You'd probably be amazed at the percentage of Chinese components in the Hilux.
These are all sourced from independent suppliers. Toyota no longer make all their own components.

Keeping QC to the expected, superior Toyota level, is now a massive problem for Toyota, with factories in so many 3rd world countries - and Thailand is still 3rd world, regardless of what anyone says.

There's a book called "Poorly Made in China" that reveals how material specifications are met initially for parts supplied under contract - then through corruption, poorer-quality substitute materials are supplied - which slip through inadequate QC regimes.
Batches of contract-supplied parts are only randomly tested to meet specs, to save on costs - instead of constant QC checking of EVERY part, as Toyota USED to do.

A mate bought a new Nissan Patrol ute 2 yrs ago, and the rear springs folded up like chewing gum within 30,000 kms.

At least in his case, Nissan admitted they had a QC problem, and that a "bad batch" of springs had "slipped through" - and they gave him a set of replacement springs under warranty.

There was none of this BS, about "abuse" causing the spring failure problem. They just came straight out and admitted to a poor QC problem.

In your case, you have an identical claim for poor quality clutch material, and you need to push your claim for adequate compensation. At the very least you should only pay around 1/3rd of the cost of a new clutch.

Cheers, Ron.
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Follow Up By: Slow one - Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 18:51

Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 18:51
Ron N,
the clutch must be made by Ford or Detroit.
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Follow Up By: bigcol - Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 09:54

Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 09:54
Slow on really is slow
I have 1969 GT Falcon that has covered just over 99000 miles. It still has the original clutch and in the bad old days fried more tyres than you could imagine. Even used on sprint days at Lakeside and Queensland raceway. Was lucky to get 5000 miles from the rear tyres
My last Falcon ute did 450000 km on the original clutch.

Ford bagging seems like a past time on this site at times and I'll tell you one thing.
Nothing is built to last these days and ollcoolone can harp on about dealer bashing all he likes because there's a reason why dealerships have a bad name and it isn't because of the warm fuzzy feeling you get when you get screwed over by them.

My last 3 dual cabs tow a 1.3T trailer every work day. They all get traded between 150 and 200 thousand kms. Not once have I had clutch issues..
This clutch in old mates Hilux is either made from rubbish or had a faulty install.
Either way Toyota should fix it. If it's an SR5 spending 50 grand on it and then having a clutch go just doesn't cut it.
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Follow Up By: Ron N - Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 11:22

Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 11:22
olcoolone is just a dealer troll, I think all his posts should be moved over to the commercial advertising section of this website.

One only has to Google "hilux clutch problems" to see the overwhelming numbers of unhappy Hilux owners who have experienced exceptionally poor clutch life - including olcoolone.
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Follow Up By: BunderDog - Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 12:56

Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 12:56
That's soooo funny Ron N, Olcoolone has been around for a loooong time.
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Reply By: Member - Scooby (WA) - Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 13:47

Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 13:47
Hi Shipo,
I feel for you. My 1999 Hilux lasted 230,000k's before the clutch needed replacing.
My sons 2013 Hilux went 10,000 K (that is ten thousand) before the clutch failed. Mind you he had 35's and gave it a hard time off road. He replaced it with an after market heavy duty Exedy clutch and so far no more problems.
Regards
Scooby
AnswerID: 534861

Reply By: Zippo - Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 14:13

Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 14:13
I'd be asking the dealership for two things: the basis for their "abuse" claim, and THE PARTS that came out.
AnswerID: 534866

Follow Up By: shipo - Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 19:34

Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 19:34
Thanks, I refused to leave the dealership without the broken parts. I intend to take this matter as far as I can and prove to them that I don't give up easily. I intend to write them a letter this week and I have the name of the owner of the dealership so I will start at the top then move onto Toyota then the legal system.
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Reply By: Bazooka - Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 15:15

Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 15:15
They can't reject your warranty claim without providing a valid reason. If you know that the clutch hasn't been abused then you need to put them on notice that you will be exercising your rights under Australian consumer law. First thing to do is put your case in writing and get a written reply. Then if they don't make yiu an offer go to consumer affairs. The Hilux built tough ad would be a consideration in your favour along with statutory and vehicle warranty. Try a Hilux/Toyota forum to see if others have experienced a similar problem.
AnswerID: 534869

Reply By: peteC - Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 17:29

Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 17:29
Go to another dealer. Toyota will warrant the clutch in full upto 100,000km or 3 years.
Do some research on newhilux.net heaps of info
AnswerID: 534879

Reply By: Nomadic Navara - Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 19:42

Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 19:42
Quote "I am kicking myself from not bringing the smelly clutch to the attention of the service people the first time that I noticed the smell."

So obviously you did not bring a potential problem to their notice. The fact you kept using the vehicle when it should have been attended to could be considered to constitute "vehicle abuse."
PeterD
Retired radio and electronics technician

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AnswerID: 534889

Reply By: 671 - Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 21:35

Monday, Jun 23, 2014 at 21:35
I have worked for three Toyota dealers, two Holden and two Ford and have seen clutch lining worn down to nothing on many cars during the warranty period. Some of them were in the days when warranties lasted only 12 months or 20,000 ks. It is just about impossible to get that type of wear replaced under warranty. Clutch linings, brake linings etc are parts that are expected to wear out fairly quickly. No two drivers will ever wear them at the same rate and 51,000 ks is a lot more than some people get. So much depends on things like the number of gear changes, loads, if it has been used for towing or not, whether the car is driven in hilly or flat terrain or if it has been submerged in sloppy mud.

My Hilux has just reached 140,000 ks with no clutch problems but I can not be confident it will last for 230,000k's like Scooby's has. The first signs of failure may start next week for all I know.

I have seen clutches replaced for things like loose springs in the clutch plate but not for lining wear.
AnswerID: 534895

Reply By: gbc - Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 09:45

Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 09:45
Wow, I just googled hilux clutch issues and hilux clutch failure and it does indeed look like you are a great driver having made it to 51kms on your first clutch. The numbers are scary. I have no clue why anyone would buy a manual vehicle these days for any type of serious work. Dual mass flywheel issues have been well documented for the last 10 years now. Buy a manual car and $3k gets spent on the clutch upgrade, like buying a bullbar or a canopy, just another something to allow for and certainly not be surprised about when it bites you. Feel miffed that you got ripped, sure, but not surprised - there is too much information out there about these issues and Toyota is certainly not the only company affected. Hands up gu patrol owners with original clutches.......
It is a genuinely crap problem and I wish you all the best, but you're not going to be the first to travel the well beaten path so keep that in mind when researching and mounting your argument.
Hope you get a result.
AnswerID: 534902

Follow Up By: peteC - Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 12:58

Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 12:58
The hilux has a solid flywheel not dual mass.
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Follow Up By: olcoolone - Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 17:48

Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 17:48
Google anything and you will get hits...... yes the internet makes it sound bigger then it is.

And yes these days you can find someone the other side of the world having the same problem....... 30 years ago you were lucky if you could find someone in the next street...... maybe there was 10 people in the streets around you who had the same problem but you had know way of knowing about it.

I can remember when brakes were replaced at 40k, radiators may of lasted 60k, head gasket at 70k and diff, steering and gearboxes 100k..... now we see 250k plus and people complain.
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Reply By: Echucan Bob - Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 14:53

Tuesday, Jun 24, 2014 at 14:53
I'd make three observations:

a. if the the Hilux is so unreliable, why don't we hear about it on this forum? The only thing we ever seem to hear is how marvellous Toyotas are.

b. surely its irrelevant to the consumer whether the dealer or Toyota Australia has to stump up for the failure. The logical and only place for the consumer to seek redress is through the dealer. It shouldn't be up the the consumer to sort out a dispute between the dealer and the manufacturer.

c. it shouldn't be up to the consumer to detect clutch problems by smell or any other sense. What if the consumer had anosmia? The fact that the clutch smelled at 40,000 kms makes no difference - it needed to be replaced under warranty at some stage.

This sort of argy bargy re-inforces the notion amongst most of us that the auto industry employs a large number of shonks and sharp operators, and no wonder they have an appalling reputation.

Bob
AnswerID: 534927

Reply By: Member - graeme W (WA) - Wednesday, Jun 25, 2014 at 01:15

Wednesday, Jun 25, 2014 at 01:15
Hi Shipo.
Mine had two new clutches in two days the second one had a faulty plate the same as the first and could not be driven out of the workshop. Both were warped. Took 50,00 klms and a change of service foreman to get the first one replaced which was oviously faulty from new. They had a line of hiluxs with crook clutches and have replaced lots but will do and say anything to get out of changing them. I made sure i was there to veiw the first one when it came out because they tried to blame missuse.
cheers Graeme.
AnswerID: 534969

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