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      03-07-2019, 04:34 PM   #1
TheBigChill
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ST / KW Coilovers: Buyer Beware

This happened while driving my 2005 Mini Cooper S JCW today, but I figured that my fellow 1ers might be interested as well.

On my way to work this morning I went to take a turn at maybe 10mph or less, and hit a rough patch while doing so. I was met with a loud snapping noise, and then a *clunk* while passing over any rough payment. I immediately turned around and went home (missing work..), jacked the car up and found that the driver side rear coilover had a broken shaft. It literally sheared off right at the shoulder where the threaded portion passes through the top-hat. I must say, never in my 20 years of motoring and wrenching have I seen a failure like this on a properly installed and young part (4k miles). Photos attached.

I called KW and spoke to one of their C.S. Reps (who turned out to be the CS Manager..) explained to me their "warranty process". After filling out a long form that requests loads and loads of technical details, KW asks that you send in the defective unit, they'll review the failed part, then...get this..."rebuild it over the next 3 weeks and send it back to you". I said surely you can't be serious, explaining that it would be far more reasonable to sell me a new unit on-the-spot and later refund me the money once my defective part was assessed. You would've thought I was speaking Greek, considering how the guy just kept silent and would then repeat his bullsh*t, intentionally obtuse responses. The conversation was no longer productive, so I called ECS tuning, the vendor that sold them to me. C.S. at ECS agreed that this was ridiculous of KW, and began making calls to see if ECS could foot the bill for a replacement unit and try to recoup from KW on their own time. There's still no resolution, but I can say for a fact that KW / ST lost a customer today. A failure mode like this is completely unacceptable, and should warrant apologies and the utmost cooperation from the manufacturer. Instead I was met with indifference and arrogance, and this was from their CS Manager.

If you plan on purchasing a KW or ST product, I'd urge you to reconsider based on not only my experience, but also the other enthusiasts who have had similar experiences with their products and warranty process.
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      03-07-2019, 04:37 PM   #2
Dogeeseegod
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Great timing. My taxes are coming back next week and my dollar was headed straight to them. I can't wait to see how this is resolved.
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      03-07-2019, 05:02 PM   #3
TheBigChill
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So far the resolution has been this: Them telling me that there's nothing they can do beyond following their silly warranty process. I've since purchased a new single unit and expect it to end there, on their side at least. I'm hoping ECS can reason with them. Good luck.
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