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Norton Way Mazda - Letchworth. Not to be trusted


Norton Way Mazda –Letchworth, Hertfordshire

Bought a brand new Mazda 6 here in 2010 and a 18 month old Mazda 3 in June 2017.
Nothing has changed when it comes to their servicing department. Same dealership, same GM, Bruce Palmer, same premium prices, same backstreet garage practices.
I am staggered that this dealership gets away with this. Mazda UK said it was nothing to do with them as all dealerships are franchised. Trading Standards really need to investigate this garage.

In 2010 I was charged for screenwash that definitely wasn’t put in. I had filled it up prior to taking it in.  Air filter should have been cleaned but it was found full of debris after I received the car back.
Question mark over whether the oil had been replaced at all?

Fast forward to December 2017

Same screenwash issue. I took a photo before I took the car in due to my level of distrust

Pollen filter not replaced. It was listed as replaced on this service even though it was supposed to have been replaced at the last service, which was when I bought the car 6 months earlier. This is what it looked like 2 hours after the service.

Rear brake pads listed as 30% worn on nearside. Here’s a photo of them 95% worn just 6 weeks and 2000 miles later. They can’t possibly have been checked. Started squealing which alerted me to the wear level.
Tried to charge for an oil sump plug. When questioned, they said it has to be replaced every service, in addition to the washer. Couldn’t explain why a service part which had to be replaced fell outside of the fixed price as an extra item.

I will never, ever go near this place again. To be honest, the way Mazda UK distanced themselves from this means i'll steer clear of Mazda full stop.

Engineer Andy:
This is worrying.  Whilst it could be one 'bad apple' in the ranks of the mechanics (which is bad enough, especially if the individual was not disciplined for the first offence), as you contend, it could be a general problem with the whole team and at the instruction of the managers.  Customer service is, unfortunately, one of the things that Mazda are, in my view (looking at the many reports on this website and elsewhere), below the standard that they should be.

That being said, I too am a long-standing customer at this dealership (12 years), and, barring one or two minor things (not worth worrying about), I've never had an issue with them with the quality of their servicing or general maintenance work (including a clutch change and brake pad/disc replacements).  To be honest, whilst I'm an engineer, I'm not a mechanic and only check what I can see, rather than taking out filters etc to check if they've been replaced or cleaned as per the servicing schedule.  I have had the 'remainder' of the screenwash added left in its bottle in the centre cup holder on many occasions (as it should be, according to your screenshot of the service criteria).

The issue that most concerns me is that I may have been 'lucky' thus far or haven't been astute enough thus far to know if service/repair items have been either missed or incorrectly reported as needing work.  This is important to me as a) I'm about to put my 12yo Mazda3 in for a decent level of work - changing alloys and new tyres (which should be obvious if its done wrong), but more so b) that I'm thinking of having the PS pump replaced as the steering is slowly getting heavier (though still manageable), and possibly new shocks within the next couple of years, and I want the work to be competant.  All-in that's about £2k's worth of work for an older car (no corrosion issues reported them) that's probably not worth much more anyway.

Even if I changed to another Japanese make, say Honda, guess who runs the local Honda dealership?


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