A review of Formula One Autocentres by FSA written on Sunday 30th of March 2014
I called into your Histon Road branch asking if they had access to a VCDS system to perform a forced regeneration on a blocked DPF which was not cleared through the normal reversal procedure of driving at 3000 rpm, in 3rd gear for at least 20 miles. The EML on my Skoda Octavia VRS had come on and my vehicle was in limp mode, which meant I had to rely on a VCDS induced forced regeneration, instead of any automatic in-vehicle procedures. I was referred to Brian at the Barnwell Road branch who said he does possess a VCDS system which can undertake this task and is willing to do it.
At your Barnwell Road, I met this Brian who had a dismissive attitude from the start. He started off by saying that "the EML, glow light and DPF lights are on so you have big problems". I was aware of the single problem my vehicle had, which I have described above given that I had already plugged my handheld VCDS fault code reader to discover the P2002 “"diesel particulate filter efficiency below threshold” error. He then plugged his SnapOn Ultra VCDS system which showed the same single fault code. He then started the diagnostic procedure and asked his junior colleague to take the car for a drive. The instructions on his VCDS said to drive in at least 4th gear whilst maintaining 2500 rpm. Brian’s colleague was driving at suboptimal levels and did not reach this, which I pointed out to the colleague.
Upon return, naturally the VCDS prompted to rerun the diagnostic check as it was not conducted properly. Instead of this, Brian had the audacity to swear at me, say that I wasted his twenty minutes and that my vehicle has ‘big problems’ and needs to ‘go to Skoda’. When I asked what these "big problems" were, given that even his VCDS machine displayed the solitary aforementioned fault code, he refused to comment and ordered me to go away. I calmly told him that there was no need for this attitude and that I was not seeking his services for free and that I would pay for having him run a diagnostic (even though he did not do this properly). He said he was not able to charge as it is his personal machine, swore at me again and proceeded to work on another vehicle. Brian was in no mood to engage in a conversation for me to highlight that he did not run the diagnostic properly.
While I am appreciative of the fact that Brian was willing to inspect my vehicle at short notice, his attitude and behaviour are not what is expected of the “providing value, care and service locally for over 40 years” slogan your institution likes to proudly boast. It is commendable that he owns such an expensive and powerful tool, but if he lacks the knowledge, skills or time to use it properly, then he should admit to it from the start and politely decline to investigate my vehicle from the get go. Brian was enraged at me ‘wasting’ twenty minutes of his time; on the contrary, he has wasted my time by not being able to undertake the DPF diagnostic test and forced regeneration, which he said he would. Additionally, he made false claims that my vehicle has ‘big problems’.
I hope that none of your other employees have a similar attitude to Brian. In order to rectify this situation, I insist on a formal apology from Brian and suggest that you send him on a Customer Relations course, for the sake of your business and to prevent any other customer from having to tolerate his attitude and tirade.
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Map showing Formula One Autocentres on Barnwell Road