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Watch out for the Cowboys.

Discussion in 'Tuning' started by HowdiAudi, Feb 5, 2008.

  1. HowdiAudi
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    HowdiAudi New Member

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    [Feb 5, 2008]
    I’m the proud owner of an Audi S3. It’s a lovely car even though it is a bit on the slow side in standard (virginal) trim. I therefore decided to get the car tuned. I had read warnings about getting the car tune and I was (am) aware that a tuned car take a bit more maintenance than a standard spec car. I’m also aware that not all tuning companies know what they are doing. As a consequent I looked around a bit and decided to go for MTM as they have a good reputation. BIG MISTAKE, MTM are a very professional company abroad but…. this is UK and in UK MTM-conversions are done by guys like KIM COLLINS. When fitting a new turbo, intercooler, exhaust, chip ect. he totally screw up. Firstly, the new exhaust cracked after 3mth and KIM refused to cover any of the cost to fix it. Next the turbo broke down. Kim Collins had fitted a bottleneck on the loop oil return line which over time made the turbo bearing wear out quick. I have been in contact with the Turbo manufacture, who state that the failure of the turbo was created by the loop oil return line bottleneck. I have also spoken to MTM in Germany and they also agree that both failures happened as a direct result of poor workmanship and general ignorance about fitting a MTM kit. However, since this was done in UK and not Germany they did not want to get involved.
    Before I did the upgrade Kim could come to the phone every time I called his shop, but when it suddenly came to discussing warrantee, then he was always out of the office or just ‘not available”. In the end MTM-Gemany contacted him and asked him to sort out the problem. When I finally got hold of Mr. Collins he did amid that his workshop had now changed the way they do these upgrade, but he would not cover any part of the +1000£ repair bill.
    In closing, I cannot say for sure that Kim Collins is a cowboy and maybe he has got better by ‘try and error’ but to me it has been very expensive to do business with him. Please make sure that you have a WRITTEN agreement regarding warranties before you do business with him and do not think that his workshop deliver the quality and service or warranty that the MTM brand stand for.
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  3. Macduff
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    Macduff Member

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    [Feb 6, 2008]
    Trading standards?

    Did you pay by credit card? They have a duty to protect you. I think you're basically being denied your statutory rights as a consumer so have a pretty strong case.

    You could always go through small claims court to get the repair costs back if it came down to that. I think you can do it all online now.
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  4. macca
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    macca Member

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    [Feb 6, 2008]
    i know someone who used to work for him, they aren't exactly impressed with him either!

    Also someone i know had there car in for a chip and lets say they weren't happy with what happened to his car while in his care!

    i say no more.
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  5. motorbikez
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    motorbikez Active Member

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    [Feb 6, 2008]
    Sorry to here about your experience with this person.Go to trading standards and explore all avenues of recompense such as county court,credit card company,check your household insurance you may have some sort of policy protection there.Don't let this tosser get off scot free.
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  6. john2garden
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    john2garden Gonad

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    [Feb 6, 2008]
    Think Its a bit strange 1st post on a forum and you slag off a tuner.

    Sounds a bit fishy to me.
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  7. HowdiAudi
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    HowdiAudi New Member

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    [Feb 7, 2008]
    John2Garden,

    I don't want to slag off Kim Collins as such. I just want our fellow enthusiast to learn from my mistake. My point is that even though you can go to trading standards and that you are "protected" when using credit, you really got a poor case if you do not have a written agreement regarding warranties.
    Not all in here (myself included) have knowledge enough to truly understand all these wonderful things the prof. tuner can do for your car. I do grasp the basic principals of a Turbo, intercooler and chip, but I don’t miss around with the things my self. For that I seek professional support. When it then turns out that the company, which was well paid, does not meet your expectations then I think it is ok discuss it.
    First time I visited this site was to find out about where to get my other car tuned. I think it would be nice if people would share their experiences (good and bad) in one place. I admit that my first post didn’t exactly praise Kim Collins, however if everybody who had their car done in his garage would share their experiences it might show that I was just in poor luck. It would be brilliant if we could create some sort of yellow-pages over tuners. The user of this forum could then populate it with their experiences. This way it would be a little easier to find a good and reliable Audi-wizard.
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  8. john2garden
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    john2garden Gonad

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    [Feb 8, 2008]
    I realize now that you do have issues. Just seemed a bit strange for a 1st post and all that. You are correct people need to inform people of their experiences when it comes to things like these. In a lot of cases someone will little knowledge visiting a tuner for the first time and may be succeptable to making a bad desicion and losing money. Without forums like these other prospective purchasers will not be 'pre warned' as your post does.

    Hopefully trading standards will be able to help you. And at least you have warned others about Kim Collins and the poor service that they provide.
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  9. elliot69
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    elliot69 New Member

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    [Feb 12, 2008]
    Well, I don't normally post stuff like this but ssince people are asking for other people's experiences I will share mine.

    I bought an Audi S4 about 4 years ago now and a short while later took it to Kim Collins for a brake upgrade. Originally I had him send me the kit so we could fit it but he sent the wrong discs so we just drove down to pick them up. He told me the fitting would be free since it was him that cocked up but once I got the bill I realised that I had been charged for fitting the brakes after all.

    Whilst I was there he managed to convince me to get several hoses upgraded which cost close to £400. I was asked about this when I took the car to a garage up here for a service and was told that those hoses did not need to be upgraded in the first place. Kim Collins also assured me after checking the car that 1 or both my turbos were on the way out and at least 1 of them was going to fail imminently. Apparantly the car being down a bit on power told him that. I kindly declined his offer to upgrade my turbos for £6000 and would get the car checked out by an Audi dealership later on. The fault was in reality caused by a faulty MAF. Kim Collins assured me when I was there that this could not possibly be the problem and it was definately a turbo that needed replacing.

    Whilst I was there he "forgot" to give me my original calipers back and also forgot to give me my wheel locking nut back. He FLAT refused to send up the calipers to Glasgow. Apparantly it would cost him too much to do that and to just pick them up next time I was going to be down there. He agrees to send the wheel locking nut back up. I needed that desperately and I wasn't going to drive 800 miles round trip just to pick up a locking nut. I have since picked up the calipers. He couldn't find mine apparantly and found 2 lying about somewhere in his workshop.

    Basically my experiences with this guy is that he puts all his effort into selling whatever he can whether it is required or not. The actual work he does in my experience is shoddy at best.

    There is no reason on this planet that I would go back to him and I would personally never recommend him to anyone under any circumstances.

    This is just my own personal experiences of having work down by this person and I am sure that as he claims he has had many happy customers but I am certainly not one of them.

    Elliot
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  10. voorhees
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    voorhees Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Feb 12, 2008]
    Hello and Welcome to the site :sign_welcome:
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