Submitted: Friday, Feb 28, 2003 at 09:42
ThreadID: 3582 Views:1712 Replies:6 FollowUps:6
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In October 2001 I purchased a GXL Turbo Diesel, automatic Prado to which I fitted an OME suspension upgrade which increased wheel travel by 50mm.

Before Christmas whilst climbing a rocky/dusty track, the driver's side CV Joint broke. Toyota rejected replacement under warranty citing the failure was caused by the extra wheel travel.

Subsequent to the replacement of the CVJ, it was found that on draining the diff. two teeth from the spider gears were found attached to the magnetic plug! Toyota have also rejected warranty claiming the failure was a direct result of the CVJ failure.

I would appreciate feedback from anyone else who has had an failures, preferably with details on whether Toyota provided replacement under warranty. If they didn't replace these major driveline components under warranty, details on steps taken and the final outcome would be appreciated.


Graeme Cope
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Reply By: Savvas - Friday, Feb 28, 2003 at 14:44

Friday, Feb 28, 2003 at 14:44
Hi copey....

Regarding warranty, the fitment of aftermarket accessories or
enhancements does not in itself void manufacturer's
warranty. Owners who choose to enhance their vehicles whilst still
under manufacturer's warranty do so at their own risk; but are covered by legislation under the Federal Trade Practices Act.

If a modification can be proven to be the singular cause of a failure, only then can a manufacturer legally refuse a claim.

I don't know where you go from this point, other than maybe talking with your state's motoring organisation (NRMA, RACV, etc).
AnswerID: 14168

Reply By: copey - Friday, Feb 28, 2003 at 14:55

Friday, Feb 28, 2003 at 14:55

Thanks for your comments, the fact that I had fitted aftermarket suspension in my opinion improves the handling and carrying capacity no end. I think Toyota know that the standard suspension has been designed for 90% of owners who drive around cities.

I have already emailed the RACV, asking for their comments and any advice they would care to reply to date.


AnswerID: 14169

Reply By: bruce.h - Friday, Feb 28, 2003 at 21:11

Friday, Feb 28, 2003 at 21:11
itake it that you are in victoria based on the fact that you contacted racv
i found that by contacting the ministry of fair trading here in wa that if you complaint against the company in question is valid they will take it up in your behalf on several occatsions i have contacted them with excelant results so it might be worth contacting the apropriate deptment in your state
Regards Bruce
AnswerID: 14190

Follow Up By: copey - Saturday, Mar 01, 2003 at 13:34

Saturday, Mar 01, 2003 at 13:34
Hi Bruce,

Yes, I plan to contact the Fair Trade people in Victoria because with only 26,000 kms on the clock, plus the fact that I have only done the Simpson Desert and a couple of minor excursions in which I actually engaged low range, since I purchased this "softroader", I believe Toyota's action to be outragous!

Add Toyota's advertised claim that the Prado can take you anywhere is clearly a misrepresentation of the facts.

I also have a video that clearly shows, I was driving with extreme care and very slowly and at no time prior to or during the incident did I lift or spin a wheel, the CVJ just broke!

Will post the final result of my endeavours.


FollowupID: 8520

Reply By: Savvas - Saturday, Mar 01, 2003 at 06:56

Saturday, Mar 01, 2003 at 06:56

Just thinking through the failure itself. The 50mm lift may have contributed to the CV failure, but I would expect you would detect signs of wear before the failure. Such as undue noise, etc.

However, the spider gear failure doesn't seem to me that it could have been caused by the CV failure. If it was, that would only be possible if the axle shaft wasn't properly retained in the first place causing undue sideways loads on the spider gear. Thsi would be Toyota's problem then.

But how about this scenario...the spider gears were faulty in the first instance. When the teeth broke off, the failure momentarily jammed the axle shaft causing the CV to fail as it had an opposing load on it generated by the rotation of the wheel and tyre.

What this all means is that the suspension lift can no longer be proven as the singular cause of the problem.

What I think you need to do is follow this through with the RACV and get their view in writing that this is a possibility or even a likely cause of failure. Then take it up with the "fair trading" department in VIC.

I do know of one guy that had chronic electrical problems with a Pajero Exceed for 2 years. He took it to the Dept of Fair Trading in NSW and Mitsubishi were ordered to rectify or refund the purchase price of the car. He got his cash back and bought a Rodeo dual cab.

Hope this helps....Good luck.
AnswerID: 14216

Follow Up By: copey - Saturday, Mar 01, 2003 at 13:40

Saturday, Mar 01, 2003 at 13:40

With only 26,000 Kms on the clock, there should not have been any wear and there was certainly no indication of anything wrong, prior to the failure.

I thought of that one too, because if the diff. locked-up when one of the spider gear teeth jammed (somewhere) and the wheel kept turning momentarily, it could have potentially broken the CVJ. the momentum of the vehicle would provide the twisting/shearing motion.

As stated in one of my easrlier replies, my next move is to the Fair Trade people.


FollowupID: 8522

Follow Up By: Savvas - Monday, Mar 03, 2003 at 08:17

Monday, Mar 03, 2003 at 08:17
Hope it all goes well for you buddy!
FollowupID: 8609

Follow Up By: GaryInOz - Tuesday, Mar 11, 2003 at 17:25

Tuesday, Mar 11, 2003 at 17:25
Another good avenue for potential "humiliation" is For things as big as this they seem to have a good idea of how to tighten the thumbscrews. You will need to register and do a cut-and-paste of your original post as a new "gripe".

Best of luck with your problems
FollowupID: 8981

Reply By: David - Saturday, Mar 01, 2003 at 08:57

Saturday, Mar 01, 2003 at 08:57
Shoulda got a Patrol.... only kidding!
Sorry to hear about your bad luck- you must be fuming.
I think B4 the dust settles too much you need to be proactive- go higher- not just your local dealer.
Talk to consumer affairs, and I believe a bit of (bad) publicity - threatened or otherwise- can sway their point of view.
Finally as a last resort try to get them to go 50/50 or similar.
I think also there's a message here for others considering mods during warranty.
My neighbour had a claim on his Lexus which was initially knocked back, but after the thumb screws were tightened a bit they came to the party.
Good Luck- be interested to hear of the final outcome.
Some have always said warrantys weren't worth the paper they were printed on..............
AnswerID: 14220

Follow Up By: copey - Saturday, Mar 01, 2003 at 13:54

Saturday, Mar 01, 2003 at 13:54
Hi David,

I actually looked at the Patrol (far more capable off-road, exellent wheel travel in standard form), but the trade-in offered on my GXL V6 Prado with only 85000 Kms was nowhere near good enough.

As I could take the OME suspension, dual batteries, bull bar, tow bar off the old truck and simply transfer them onto the TD, we were talking thousands of dollars difference! However, with this latest round of expensive breakages, which I will have to wear if I can't change Toyota's
mind....perhaps I should have gone down the Patrol track!

In reference to the fitment of aftermarked suspension during warranty, in standard form the Prado wallows around corners in the city and highways...very uncomfortable. Not only does the OME suspension solve this fault but provides additional ground clearance as well.

I am already in diologue with Toyota's National Customer Services Manager and subject to his response, my next plan is to take my facts to the Fair Trade and Consumer Affairs people, communicate with 4WD Clubs arround Australia, 4WD Magazines and anyone else I can think of.

From what I hear, if Toyota believe bad publicity may result, they have been known to settle such claims.


FollowupID: 8523

Reply By: paul - Monday, Mar 03, 2003 at 11:00

Monday, Mar 03, 2003 at 11:00
Hey copey

Read with interest. I am a lawyer but don't practise negligence stuff anymore - but it seems to me it is not your fault and either Toyota or OME are to blame. Prado's don't just bust CV's or spider gears, mine hasn't. So it could work well to play one off against the other - detailed letter copied to both accusing each other of their negligence causing your loss and damage, make sure you keep a copy, seeking responses within say 7 seven days or you will seek legal remedy. In the meanwhile, proceed with the RACV plan. Naturally OME will say their product has been tested and is safe and there have been no reports from the thousands or so units installed of causing spider gear and CV breakages which then puts an interesting spotlight on Toyota. You then copy each other's resonse to each other demanding further response to each other's response within say 7 days then you will have a very clear idea i think of who and why which one is responsible.

Good luck, let us know how it goes.

AnswerID: 14341

Follow Up By: copey - Monday, Mar 03, 2003 at 15:27

Monday, Mar 03, 2003 at 15:27
Hi Paul,

Thanks for your comments and suggestions.

Will let you know the outcome.


FollowupID: 8624

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