Kia Warranty Worthless
GILBERT, ARIZONA -- I have a 2005 Kia Spectra with 32,000 miles on it that I bought brand new. The car just stopped running with no prior symptoms while driving down the freeway 6/11/2007 and the car was towed to the nearest Kia dealership, Desert Kia in Gilbert, AZ. They told me the car needed a new battery. I told them I had put a new one in after the car died and it still wouldn't start. Then they said I needed to use a Kia battery because aftermarket batteries won't work in some of their cars. My ex-husband just happens to be a battery expert, and he called and told them that was a load of crap. They changed their story while talking to him and said there was an electrical problem, but they were having difficulites diagnosing exactly what the problem was.
On 6/21/2007, they finally told me the car needed a brand new motor and they would not honor the warranty because I live in Arizona and did not have the severe weather maintenance done at 15,000 and 30,000 miles. They hadn't even asked me for those records (which I don't have because the owner's manual says they are "recommended.") All they asked me for was oil change receipts, which I provided to them.
After 10 days with no car and no word on what was wrong with it, now they're telling me I need to pay them $7,000 for a new motor. They're saying the flex plate cracked and went up into the motor and damaged the motor. But they're refusing to honor the warranty due to lack of maintenance records which they have never requested from me and don't even know if I have or not?!? And $7,000 seems like a lot for a car that was $11,000 brand new...?
I called Tempe Kia to see if I could have the car towed over there to have the warranty work done. Someone named Bill told me not to bother because if the warranty was denied at one Kia dealership, another one cannot then do the work. He also said that if Kia is able to find a loophole in order to not have to honor the warranty, they will find it - whether it is related to the repairs needed or not. Oil changes and severe weather service would not have prevented my flex plate from cracking, but they are using that as an excuse not to honor the warranty and there's nothing I can do about it.
I have asked them repeatedly to provide me with something in writing showing exactly what is wrong with the car, what caused it, what it would take to fix it and if the warranty doesn't cover it then why not. They will not provide me with the info in writing. They will tell me over the phone what is wrong, and their story changes every time I talk to them and is completely different when my ex-husband calls, but they will give us nothing in writing.
Now I'm faced with filing bankruptcy because I am neither willing nor able to pay for a car that doesn't run while I find alternate forms of transportation and I can't afford an attorney to try to sue them. I am a single mother working 2 jobs and I bought the car because it was inexpensive and had a good warranty, and Tempe Kia told me if it broke down they would provide me with a loaner car until it was fixed. It seemed like the perfect car for someone who can't afford to have unreliable transportation. Desert Kia wouldn't give me a loaner car for those 10 days because they say Kia dealerships each have their own loaner car programs and they don't honor each others' programs even though they are all Kia dealerships.
Please don't ever buy a Kia, and if you already have one, make sure you get all the maintence work done at the Kia dealership at the proper times - otherwise your warranty will be worthless, regardless of the work that needs to be done.