Toyota Motor Corporation Complaint - Toyota Tacoma- Chipping Paint, Bent Tailgate
TORRANCE, CALIFORNIA -- 5/20/05 - 4080 miles
Chipping paint- on hood, roof, front quarter panels and in front of rear wheels on bed.
Took vehicle to Toyota of Nashua (Nashua, NH) for evaluation. Toyota personnel told me that these were rock chips. I agreed, but stated that the paint was brittle and should not have chipped. Other Tacoma owners with Speedway Blue trucks complained about paint chipping. I read about these cases on the Internet site TundaSolutions. Bob Peterson (Service manager) and Josh Offit (Regional manager) offered to repaint the bed, but required that I spend $400 for Toyota running boards. I told them that this was unacceptable and that I should not have to spend any money, as this is a Toyota paint defect issue. Issue not resolved.
9/14/05- 10234 miles
Bent tailgate- Approximately Mid-August 2005, I was loading a riding lawnmower into the back of the truck, when I felt the tailgate give way. After removing the lawn mower and ramp, I saw that the left side of the tailgate was bent outward. The tailgate did close properly. Tailgate had NO labels that told of a weight limit, nor were there any labels in the truck. The Owner’s Manual did not have any warnings of tailgate damage due to excessive weight. I found out soon after that the tailgate can only hold 200 pounds. This is totally unacceptable for a vehicle that is designed to carry ½ Ton. My 1996 Tacoma could easily load & haul the riding lawnmower.
Took the vehicle to the dealer (Toyota of Nashua) on Sept 14, 2005. I showed the vehicle to Bob Peterson and Josh Offit. I explained that there was NO warning labels in or on the truck, nor in the Owner’s Manual that stated a 200LB weight limit.
Josh & Bob left me outside in 90-degree weather while they went inside to find documentation that states that the tailgate only has a 200LB rating. They came back in about 20 minutes and told me that they could not find any documentation, but reaffirmed that I was at fault for the damaged tailgate and that I abused the truck. I told them that they were wrong and that this is a Toyota manufacturing defect. And that the problem needs to be corrected AT NO COST TO ME!
Josh asked me why Toyota would make a cheap tailgate? I said, you should know, you work for the company. I then explained that the light tailgate and composite bed were to save weight, thus increasing gas mileage.
I explained that my family ALL had Toyotas,
Father- ‘89 Xtracab Pickup/ ’94 Celica ST
Mother- ’95 Avalon XLS
Brother- ‘’96 Tacoma Std Cab
Sister- ’97 Tacoma Extra Cab
Sister- 2000 RAV4
Me- 1989 Deluxe Pickup, 1996 Tacoma Std Cab V6
and the fact that this is my third Toyota should mean that they would want to take care of my issues to keep a customer happy. All of this fell on deaf ears.
In any case, the truck was not repaired. Josh and Bob did not give me a receipt to show that my truck was in the shop for this issue, as they felt that the issue was caused by me and that I was wasting their time.
I called Toyota Customer Care that evening and let them know that I am a VERY UNHAPPY customer.
Issue not resolved.
7/31/07- 36682 miles
7/31/07 36682 Bent tailgate- I had my truck in for other warranty service. I asked Service Advisor Kelsey McDonnell if Toyota had acknowledged that there were defects with the 2005-2007 Tacoma tailgates and provided a Technical Service Bulletin. He replied that Toyota had no technical service bulletins regarding the tailgate.
Furthermore, the dealer ( Toyota Of Nashua) had never heard of any other incidents of Tacoma tailgate failures. I explained my situation and he told me that there was nothing further he could do.
The warranty service included- replacement of a rear shock absorber and the main wiring harness ( Air Bag light was on). I have some other wiring passing through the firewall. This wiring consists of a remote radar detector and an Amateur radio antenna cable. I let Kelsey know that this wiring was in place, and could they please be careful to put it back the way they found it. I was assured that the top accessory technician at the dealership would put everything back together correctly. When I picked up the truck, the radar detector powered ON, but it indicated that the remote sensor was not connected. And the wiring for the Amateur radio antenna was too short to connect to my radio. The antenna wire was coiled up behind the dashboard and was tie-wrapped to an air conditioner Freon line. This line was HOT and it would have melted the insulation on the antenna cable had I driven the truck for more than the 10 minutes it took to get home. I drove back to the dealer and told them of these problems. Kelsey did not seem interested in helping me, he told me that they could take a quick look at the problem, but that was as far as they would go. I told him that this was unacceptable and that he just lost a customer. I went home and fixed the problems with the antenna and radar detector myself.
Later that night, I called the Toyota Customer Care line and I spoke to Reginald. He was no help and he refused to let me speak to his boss.
5/21/09- 51703 miles
I now live in Tucson, Az. I brought the truck to Precision Toyota in Tucson to have an ECU update done (starting issues, cranks for a long time) ,to look at the tailgate and the paint chipping. I worked with Service Advisor Connor Cullen and Service Drive Manager Tommy Rayl. Point of note- Technical Service Bulletins This is the second Toyota dealership I have been to that acts like they never heard of a Technical Service Bulletin until the customer shows them a hardcopy. Toyota of Nashua also responded in this manner when asked if there was a TSB concerning an issue with a vehicle.
ECU Issue- The truck does have the latest ECU code so there was nothing that could be done regarding the ECU. The tailgate issue is still not resolved, I was told that they need proof that the issue was brought to Toyota’s attention before the 3/36 warranty was up. The Paint Chipping issue was not diagnosed in the shop, but I was told by Connor and Tommy that it was road debris and there was nothing they could do about it. Tommy told me that his ’07 Tacoma has rock chips. I still contend that the paint or the painting process is inferior.
They suggested that I call Toyota Customer Care to see what assistance Toyota Corporate could provide.
I called Customer Care and spoke to Charmainge. My case # is 0905-127349. I explained to her about my visit to Precision Toyota a few hours earlier. She told me that under the history for my vehicle, Josh Offit, the New England Regional Service manager, did look at my truck back in September of 2005 concerning the tailgate. At that time, I was refused assistance. Josh had determined that I abused and damaged the truck. There was no technical service bulletin at the time. There is now a technical Service Bulletin (BO018-07) dated 11/13/07 concerning the tailgate. Because Josh claimed that I was at fault back in 2005, Toyota still refuses to fix my truck. Charmaigne reiterated that once a Regional Service manager makes a ruling, it cannot be reversed or superseded. Also, she told me that Toyota would not help me because I admitted to bending the tailgate. My Response- Toyota did a poor job engineering the tailgate and the problem lies with Toyota manufacturing and customer service.
The ’09 Tacoma has a heavier tailgate than my truck, and by coming out with a TSB, they acknowledged that there is a problem with the tailgate. Toyota should be fixing ALL defective Tacoma tailgates, regardless of mileage.
I will be speaking with the customer service representative at Precision Toyota in the next week.
I did speak with Mohammad, the customer relations from Precision Toyota. He told me that Toyota would not warranty my tailgate. I explained the tailgate issue to him. He made some notes, then told me to call the Customer care line again. I told him that they had already denied my claim. He told me to call again.
I spoke with Toyota Customer Care Line (Nicole) She was very pleasant, but offered no help. She told me that the Denver regional office reviewed my case and denied any assistance.
I received a call from Toyota Customer care on 7/23/09 and returned the call on 7/24/09. I spoke to Christine.
I gave her my case number. She looked at the notes and asked if I had been contacted by the Western Regional parts manager. I told her that I had not been contacted by any representative from the regional office. She told me that the Regional parts manager has declined my request for service. I explained that I will not buy any more Toyotas and I will tell anybody that asks about my truck not to buy a Toyota until my vehicle is fixed to my satisfaction under warranty. She then said “ I am sorry that you are having a problem with your vehicle.”
“Thanks for calling Toyota, have a nice day.” She then hung up on me.