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Problem With Accident Damaged Corolla

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I had a 17 ton dustbin lorry drive into the back of me 3 weeks ago... The repair work that the Toyota garage has done is appalling (body panels don't line up, came back scratched and trim had been pulled off).

I'm not very impressed with the Dealership that did this and they didn't do anything or get back to me, and so I wrote to the Dealer Principal and the MD of Toyota GB and only then did I get a response.

I have been concerned since the accident that all is not well with the car and the fact that the panels don't line up makes me smell a rat.

I'm going to push for a write off - it's a shame cos up til now I have been really pleased with the car.

Has anybody else had a similar problem and did they try and tell you that this sort of damage would not affect the future stability and value of the car?????



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Have someone follow you as you drive....and see if you motor is actually driving in a straight line! Rear shunts...especially 17 ton truck! are likly to twist the sub-structure...so you may be driving "crab-like" down the road. Lift up the boot carpet inlay and see if the floor is rippled....propably is.

But don't settle for the repair...if the panals don't line up...as you say if you come to sell it, it will be obvious to the buyer that it's been in an accident...and also had a bad repair job.

So 1...the chasis is twisted...so tha panals will never line up.

or 2....the dealer did a crap repair job. ( the repair should be like new...if not...get it written off.... no-one with any brains would touch it should you come to sell.

Oh were you in it when you got hit...how's the neck???? bet it hurts like hell.....!!! get a claim in!! it's affecting your driving and your work....!


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ask if the car was jigged during repair. any major body damage where there is damage to the chassis of the car must be jigged to ensure its straight. if you are unhappy then report the garage to the VBRA they are the people who regulate body repair shops. their address is

vehicle builders and repairers association

belmont house

finkle lane


ls27 7tw

tel: 0113 253 8333

fax: 0113 238 0496

email : vbra@vbra.co.uk

hope you get it sorted remember if it has had a shoddy repair then its your life they have put at risk. hope you wernt badly injured in the crash mate

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I had problems when I needed a new front bumper on my T Spirit when I hit a tow bar at low speed. It took four attempts for the dealer to get the panel fit/gaps right.

I'm now trying to get something sorted with the ongoing poor quality of my Corolla.

Oh the joy.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks for the replies guys - it has now been in for repair 3 times and today was the best it has been so far.

The panels are lining up better but they are not 100% perfect. Only problem is where they have had to paint new panels the colour of the paint is different... :(

When I went to look at the car on Monday they had managed to damage the interior (the vinyl to the left of the heating controls) and now it looks like they have "sanded" the damage out so the finish is not the same as the vinyl on top of the dash or round the steering wheel area.

I have lost complete confidence in Toyota now - the chap that I had to deal with at the Dealership was a cocky arrogant little upstart, but the Dealer Principal defended him quite vigorously.

I have had wasted visits to the garage and now have a two-tone car, but they have not offered me any form of compensation - I would have at least expected to get my first service thrown in for free!

We cannot consider selling the car as we would be stung severely for it. It's a shame cos I think it's a great car, but let down by poor workmanship.

And yes, I was in the car when it was hit - neck still sore and stings but I put that down to tension with all the problems I've been having with the car.

Will let you know what the outcome is...

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I'd advise to take it further...and not settle with this poor workmanship.

If they can't match up the panal's then there MUST be something structurally amiss,

or they are totally utter monkeys..since they've had three attempts...I'd say the sub frame's twisted. Tell em your taking it up with trading standards...go the full hog, it won't cost you anything..that's what they are there for.

I assume this is been taken care of by the wagon's insurance?? via yours.... ie your insurace actually pays for it..then claims off the third parties.... this is where you start. Tell the insurance company that the work they are paying for is sub standard. the panals don't line up..they can't match the paint...c'mon!!! they are just using the original colour codes..which of course..won't match due to sun fade etc...any bodyshop garage worth their salt could match the colour perfectly.

As you say, it's a great motor but your gonna lose out when you come to trade in etc...fight your case... if they can't fix it to a decent standard then insist they right it off.

and your neck still hurts... this is causng you stress..... tell your insurance company that you want compensation from the third party. Again if you have legal protection..it won't cost you a penny...and won't affect your premium...if indeed the third party is at fault.

Rant over!! I hate garages and insurance companies!!

I can't wait to do what my dad has done.... crashe the car..written it off...then bought it back for mthe scrap yard..and fixed it/mot'd it ,then wrote it off again in another accident...guess what...yes bought it back!! it was a old carr...hence it was written off each time...but my dad made a nice tidy sum!! insurance companies wern't happy writing off the same car three times...but hey it was re-registered with no probs and they accepted to cover it! Happy Days!!


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id contact Toyota HQ with both a letter and a phone call.........tell them straight you will take this further....and do it

contact the magazines, they love to tread on the big fish

a guy over on the lexus forums has just recently done the same thing

may be worth talking to him

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Have you contacted your insurance company to complain about the quality of the repair?

it might be an idea to push them for getting the car sorted from someone else. Having said that if the toyota dealership wasnt on their recommended bodyshop list they might be reluctant about this. Good luck anyway.

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Thanks all - I appreciate your input...

You would have thought that my insurance company would be a bit more careful and concerned - afterall I'm insured through Toyota Insurance and I used them cos I thought it would buy me peace of mind. I know better now!

I will heed all of your advise - I've started composing a letter to Toyota HQ and I'm going to grab them right where it hurts :) If they don't play ball then it's off to Watchdog and TopGear I go!!!

They chose to mess with the wrong person - I think the DP thinks that just cos I'm a girl that he can walk all over me and I won't do anything about it - wrong wrong wrong wrong wrong!!! :P

Over the last couple of days I've noticed all sorts of rattles that weren't there before - sounds like my windows are rattling and that there is something loose in the back. Also, when they have taken the boot apart they have not put all of the trim back properly either, so I'm pretty miffed about that too.

I think Toyota must be employing a bunch of halfwits in their bodyshops. I know that if I churned out work like that in my job I'd be on a disciplinary by now. Why do these people get away with it???

Anyway, now I've got that off my chest I'd better carry on with my letter!


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stick to your guns and don't let them fob you off. your car should be repaired to the same std as it left the showroom.

keep us posted on the outcome

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Hi Folks

Spent this last weekend going round Toyota dealers for their opinion on the work that had been done to my car - agreement is that it is c**p.

However, for a car that cost just under £13k 11 months ago, the most I am being offered for it now is £8k !!!!! :censor:

I have now written to Toyota GB Customer Relations Dept, and copied the letter to Top Gear and Watchdog. When I called TGB yesterday afternoon I was told that their service level response rate is 3-4 days, so don't expect to hear back from them before the end of the week. Just as unimpressive as the rest of the service I have received from them.

I think that this is going to be an uphill battle, but I determined to succeed... And when I do I'll probably buy a Puma Thunder instead!

Bye for now


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How on earth do Toyota do so well in JD Power?

I got fed up of waiting for TGB to call me this week so I rang them this afternoon and spoke with their Customer Relations Department. After spending about 30 minutes on the phone to them I came off the call very deflated but also foaming at the mouth.

They are basically saying that they cannot due anything except act in an advisory position because my debate is with the dealership and not with Toyota!!! :ffs:

They have said that they will contact the dealer principal and can offer their opinion to him, but at the end of the day he can do what he likes. I have reiterated to them time and again that the Toyota dealer network should be capable of returning a car in the condition that it would leave the production line in, so if the dealers can't then TGB should be taking this up with the dealer and not trying to wash their hands of the whole situation.

They also said that if we had an issue with the repair then we should take it up with the insurance company. Why can't they? I am the customer, they are customer relations - just what do they do all day???

I'm really hacked off with the whole situation and with Toyota - I would never consider buying a Toyota again after this.

Still, the battle continues - watch this space...

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I quite agree with your sentiments re Toyota GB, useless is one word to describe them, that is the polite way.

It is high time somebody in Toyota Head office in Japan got a grip and sorted this organisation out, for all the use they are they might as well not be there.

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First of all welcome to TOC although under somewhat unfoirtunate circumstances....

It may be worth entering a delaer review on the site as it is well known that TGB do monitor this site and all posts are known to then (Hi Guys & Gals...) but often chose to do absolutetly sweet FA to help the Toyota Custome, some of the stories we have had on this board have been abismal. From what I have sen certain probles do get get fixed but only with enough patience and hard work form the customer. Yes this is wrong but its the only way to get through to them...

I would take on board the advice given and chase continuosly through the insurance channels and also through the magazines, motoring press and Toyota themselves, if you need contacts, names and addresses I'm sure a quick post on the board will help you out. I personally love the Toyota Brand and the cars they manufactueer, its the stories like this that bring it into disrepute and caasue problems beyond belief.

I wish you the best of luck on your reapirs and hope you post the outcome opf your troubles...

All the best


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Mini update...

I have an engineer coming to look at the car this evening - he is the chap who first inspected it when it was damaged. He was waiting for the dealership to call him and ask him to re-inspect it. He was completely unaware that Toyota had tried to give the car back to me - said that shouldn't have been done without him signing to say it was OK...

I also have a meeting on Friday morning with the Franchise Director/Dealer Principal of Inchcape Toyota - we figured that sitting infront of him might have more of an effect - I'm going to put on my most intimidating face! We're hoping to negotiate a buy-back value for the car, but I'm not hopeful that this will have a happy ending

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Engineer has agreed this evening that the car needs to go back to a bodyshop and have most of the work done again, together with putting everything right that Toyota made wrong!

The bill for this could be almost the same as in the first place, so they will have spent more than 50% of the value of my car repairing it... I have heard that when it gets to 60% that they write these things off???

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Good news indeed. You now have the backing of an engineer. If it comes back this time...and it's still not right, then yes...insist they right it off. At the end of the day it's up to the insurance company if it's written off or not...if they are willing to pay out the cash to fix it..then so be it. At the end of the day...your insurance company won't be paying any more money out to have it "re-repaired" Toyota will be coughing this up...

Keep us informed!


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