Why I regret buying a Skoda Kushaq: Consistent issues from the start

This saga has been running around for almost 3 months now with lots of false promises, lack of accountability, lethargic customer management and much more.

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We purchased a Skoda Kushaq 1.0 Ambition in October 2021. The car had almost all of the issues reported by other Kushaq owners including the EPC. Since the start of ownership, the car has been in different Skoda ASCs for 12 times and a total of 37 days.

This post is regarding the latest saga which started in April 2023 with AC issues and how the ASCs and CRM teams in Maverick ŠKODA Madurai and Aura Motors Tirunelveli have multiplied the issue many folds.

The car started to blow only hot air in April 2023. I took the car to Skoda ASC in Madurai for a checkup. After checking, they concluded there was no refrigerant in the system. Upon further enquiry on why this happened on a fairly new vehicle, it was mentioned that this is the first case they’ve seen on a Kushaq. They refilled the refrigerant and checked for leakage over the lines in the engine bay. They couldn’t find leakage and delivered the vehicle under observation (Note: I’ve always received the car back under observation for whatever issue it is sent to the service centre). During this instance, my car was eligible for the AC campaign, and it was performed as well.

Fast forward to mid-June, and AC did not work again. In Madurai ASC – the Refrigerant was empty again and I was requested to allow till evening to identify the leakage spot. After 2 days and getting a tool from a Tirunelveli Skoda ASC, it was identified the Evaporator coil was faulty and the ETA of the part would be 7-8 days plus 2 days for replacements.

A loaner vehicle request was rejected. I wasn’t comfortable with leaving my vehicle for this long a period for obvious reasons these ASCs are known for.

I request them to refill the refrigerant and deliver the vehicle. They tried to refill but the leakage was so bad, it wouldn’t hold any gas. Without many options, I asked them to deliver the car the next day morning. I have an infant and it was impossible to not have a car.

The next day, I reached ASC and saw my car fully washed, and polished, parked outside their dealership on an under-construction road, with windows open, unlocked, collecting maximum dust. I highlighted this to the security, and they couldn’t care any less. Highlighted this to CRM and it took them 15 minutes to move the car inside. No display of accountability.

I requested a loaner car as soon as available as moving around with an infant would be difficult in a car with no AC in scorching peak Tamilnadu heat.

I called up ASC for an update, and after multiple follow-ups, got to know the order was placed only 5 days after identifying the issue. Skoda’s logistical weakness came to light with restrictions on order placing that will happen only on Mondays. This was coming from a CRM and this was unbelievable at this time and age.

I was still driving my car without AC for almost 2 weeks and they’ve not arranged a loaner car. The delivery of parts was also getting delayed continuously with no ETA in place.

I wrote to the CRM team and Customer Care on escalating continuous delays, false promises, and unavailability of a Loaner car for almost 2 weeks. After all the escalations, I received a loaner car and they insisted on taking my car back for further evaluation. At this point, I wasn’t sure what they were trying to evaluate but I was not allowed to hold my car with me.

Thanks to Team-BHP, members and the experiences, I had a strong feeling that these guys would mess up the interior and other parts. I took photographs of most areas before handing over my car to ASC.

The procedure of replacing the evaporator coil is so complicated, that the whole dashboard had to be removed, including the steering wheel, gear lever and AC vents in the back seat. I continuously called up the CRM and insisted on the precautions and workmanship that were required for this job. My daily calls were a reminder to the CRM to insist on a clean job after replacing and re-fitment.

The part was finally received after a month and my car was sitting in the ASC with all dashboard parts removed. I trusted the CRM to handle the car delicately. Boy was I wrong. But more on that soon.

ASC took up 7 days to fix and refit all the parts and I requested them to drop my car in a nearby city, Tirunelveli, and take back the loaner car.

I looked at the car and to my horror and as predicted, the whole interior had lots of damage with scratches, dents, dirt and dust. They did not even care to dust off interiors. I’m adding some pictures comparing the before and after photos.

After all the calls and highlighting the need for good workmanship, this was the attitude the workshop and CRM had towards their customer’s property.

The MID had multiple scratches which were practically non-existent when I handed over the car. The picture taken by phone does not show the full picture but it was bad.

The AC vents were full of mud and the whole gloss plastic trim had deep scratches which could be made only with sharp metal tools.

The top portion of the dashboard had multiple damages which when looked at from a driving position will only make you cry after the care that we show to our cars.

The silver-looking trim below the infotainment and the one with the SKODA inscription were heavily damaged. They had deep scratches all over and it is impossible to miss.

More damage to other parts of the interiors.

Some to the Engine bay and more pictures.

The gear knob for AT box was also not working as expected. It did not have a tactile response and was difficult to judge the movement. Looks like there is a campaign in progress to change gear levers for AT vehicles and mine was changed under warranty.

How can ASC with multiple checkpoints inside and verification from CRM allow a delivery to customers? They had zero sense of accountability. They delivered the car hoping the customer would not notice and accept it as is. The damages were not even subtle and they are sore to your eyes at the very first sight. I was furious after all the calls that were made to CRM to highlight the issues beforehand and they completely disregarded the inputs.

This was escalated again, and they requested me to take the vehicle to Tirunelveli, Aura Motors for further evaluation. Now a different CRM and CRM head looked at the vehicle and I highlighted the issues. They looked at the car and requested a day’s time to evaluate the next steps.

The next day, they wanted me to deliver my car to them for 2 days and handed over a loaner car by default. They tried cleaning every scratch hoping it would go away. After 2 days, I was told they had ordered all the parts that were damaged and would be replaced once received. I specifically took up individual parts on the status and CRM mentioned all parts were ordered and would be replaced.

I again highlighted my displeasure with how this was managed, and I was promised complete satisfaction and replacement of all damaged parts by CRM.

I got a call back after a week and I was asked to leave the car for 2 days on 5th August. The car was delivered to my home after 3 days and was told 2 more parts are in transit and would be changed during the next visit. I was not available to look at it immediately as I was travelling.

In the meantime, I asked them not to close the job card as this is a repetitive case and would like to look at the vehicle before accepting it. CRM accepted it over call but still closed it immediately. The job card had only a mention of the Gear lever being replaced on warranty and not the other parts. I had suspicions about the missing parts but couldn’t spend much time on it immediately.

I looked at the car after 3 days and again was hugely disappointed. They had replaced the parts from a demo vehicle and still had damaged items. The dashboard even had stains on it and AC vents were full of mud. I was furious at the state of the car and they did not even care to tell me that these parts were replaced from a different vehicle. Only upon confronting, the CRM mentioned it was replaced from the Demo vehicle.

I was repeatedly updated that all parts were ordered and are in transit and nowhere during the conversation it was highlighted that these would be fixed from a different vehicle and that too from a demo car. How do they expect me to have parts from a demo vehicle that is used by many others and that too had visible stains on it? They’ve played with my car as much as possible and are trying to make a fool out of a customer.

When I asked about the replacement of MID, the CRM outright said it wouldn’t be changed and gave unbelievable explanations. He said changing the MID would make the odometer zero and would have all the settings to zero. It would be impossible to change the MID and I have to keep it as it is with scratches all over. Such BS.

The CRM actually withheld lots of information and was hoping to push it out to us thinking we would accept without noticing all the issues. This is a case of taking customers for granted.

This saga has been running around for almost 3 months now with lots of false promises, lack of accountability, lethargic customer management and much more.

I’ve been subjected to lots of emotional stress with continuous calls to CRM, subjecting my infant to unwanted external factors like high temperatures without AC, dirty interiors with stains from a demo car, loaner cars which reek of sweat and much more.

I’ve been put in situations where I can’t use my own car after paying premium prices for a “premium experience from a premium brand”. This ownership is turning out to be a regretful one.

I’m still getting all sorts of promises on replacement but not sure how would it turn out. This is what is expected if you are going to own a SKODA. This is the state of customer management. Do not get fooled by all the flashy interiors of the showroom and well-dressed personnel.

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