A MUM is fuming after a car manufacturer refused to fix her Kia for a bizarre reason – despite it being under a 7-year warranty.
Natasha thought her warranty would protect her when her Kia broke down[/caption]
But she was devastated when the company told her she might not be covered by her warranty[/caption]
With Kia’s approval, she postponed her first service a year later to protect her 88-year-old grandfather, because of Coronavirus restrictions.
But when her engine light came on this year, Kia said that the delayed service meant she faced paying thousands for repairs.
The single mum-of-two said her car is a “lifeline” which she relies on for work and to support her kids – and she thought that Kia’s warranty would be a cast-iron “safety net” if it broke down.
When her first service was due, three-time Kia customer Natasha was sheltering her vulnerable grandfather, 88, under Tier 4 rules.
She got permission from Kia to delay the service until the rules were relaxed three months later, when she got her car checked immediately.
This May, the motor’s engine light came on – so she took it to Kia’s flagship garage in Bolton.
The garage told her that her car would be seen in mid-June at the earliest, before demanding her service invoices.
On June 22 Natasha’s warranty claim was rejected and she was told that a four-hour diagnostic check could cost £480.
Days later Kia Bolton told her that it would not check her car until August at the earliest – with the desperate mum unable to drive the unsafe motor to a different garage.
Then the garage told her that they wouldn’t check the car at all – and demanded she take it elsewhere.
Kia later made an unexpected U-turn after being contacted by The Sun – agreeing to pay for the repairs.
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But Natasha is now in a “limbo”, with her car stuck at the garage and no timeline given for fixing it.
Natasha told The Sun: “I’m absolutely broken. I haven’t wished the way I’ve been treated on my worst enemy.
“I burst into tears when the garage told me it wouldn’t even look at my car.
“I’m being punished for protecting my family during the pandemic, following government guidelines.
“My car is my lifeline. I bought it thinking that if anything went wrong it would be fixed under the warranty.
“I’ve now missed my third service while it’s been parked up at the garage.
“Every time they’re just jumping through loopholes, looking to get out of it.
“I want people to really think before trusting warranty promises when they buy a car.”
Kia’s head office told Natasha that she may not be covered by warranty if her car was damaged “due to lack of maintenance”.
The car maker said that her first service was late with incomplete invoices – even though Kia approved the delay to protect Natasha’s grandfather from covid-19.
Now Natasha faces having to turn down a “dream” job offer because she cannot drive to work.
She said she could also have to take out a loan to support her kids through the summer.
Kia said: “When the customer first brought their car to Bolton Kia with a fault, the car was unknown to the dealership having neither sold nor serviced the car previously.
“From what the dealer could initially see, the service history was late according to the car’s original registration date and therefore it acted accordingly.
“All circumstances aside, if a vehicle is late for servicing it is generally usual for a customer to be asked to underwrite the cost of diagnosis.
“Of course, all works must have a diagnosis before it is possible to determine whether they qualify as a warranty claim.
“Should the fault turn out to be covered by warranty, there is no charge made to the customer.
“As the customer did not agree to underwrite the diagnosis cost no further work was carried out.
A spokesman added: “On discussion with our Customer Services team they agreed to underwrite this, in line with our goodwill policy, to progress matters.
“Under our goodwill policy, and because they have been a loyal customer, Kia has agreed to pay for any necessary reparations needed to the vehicle before it is sold, even if the fault turns out not to be a manufacturing defect.”
But Natasha’s car is still sat at the garage, putting the mum in what she calls a “limbo situation”.
Kia made a shock U-turn after The Sun asked it about Natasha’s ordeal[/caption]