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im24601

The Response From The Md Of Lexus Gb Ltd

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Pursuant to Excessive Inner Tyre Wear thread I have written to the MD of Lexus GB Ltd and asked him for his comments and to explain why both Customer Relations and the dealerships refuse to acknowledge the problem which us members know exists.

For those new to this issue, please read through the above thread - or ask any IS200 or IS300 driver/owner as they are bound to have experienced it...

I would kindly ask all members to NOT REPLY on this thread until the MD has responded: after that - post away!

For each day that no reply is received, I shall post on here "Nothing heard"

With thanks

Chris

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Day 3:...Nothing heard.

NB With fairness to Lexus GB Ltd. I have confirmed on the Royal Mail website and the letter, sent recorded delivery last Friday (22 Feb) was only delivered to Lexus GB Ltd from the Epsom delivery office on 27 February.

For anyboody who wishes to check the details of delivery (time and signature, presumably(?)), the Reference Code is: DW 4553 8629 8GB.

Alternatively, please click here

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Wait for it...Nothing heard.

So, not even an acknowledgement.

One week today I shall post the letter here and, if by then, I have heard nothing I think it is time to contact the motoring media.

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I'd give up waiting for a reply.

The IS has bad geo...its been identified for over 3 yrs now, time to move on perhaps..........dont you think!!!

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I have a pdf which tells lexus fitters why the geo is out of spec............due to weld splatter

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Nothing heard.

And no, it isn't time to give up.

Next week I am speaking to solicitors in Manchester who specialise in this sort of work: it is incomprehensible for me to give up. This is a safety issue, and as such Lexus should do the honourable thing. They would sit up and take note if someone died as a result of the excessive wear (who knows - someone may already have?).

I detest the arrogance that Lexus have shown in this matter and I, for one, will do something about it.

The mere fact that Lexus have refused to comment/respond to my letter is disgusting. This is how much they care for us owners.

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You should check pressures and tyre conditions every week its in the h/book.

I'm trying hard to find what it is you want personally.....a new set of tyres? or Lexus to admit that there is a fault?

either way they wont admit it, has Renault admitted that the bonnet catch (very dangerous) fails on the Clio range after 1,200 complaints even watchdog cant get them to admit a problem not even VOSA will admit it.

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The front tyre wear problem with the IS200 may be an historical issue, however a reply out of courtesy from Lexus, would in my opinion have been helpful. To ignore the subject matter in its entirety simply sends out the wrong message.

I have only owned my IS200 since May 2007, however in that time I too have been forced to purchase new front tyres. I am one of many owners who have turned to Tony at WIM' in order to resolve the tyre wear issue.

I also support fully the quest being made to obtain an answer regarding this subject. Giving up is all too easy, and who know's Lexus maybe hoping that this matter will die of death if left unchalleged.

If you don't ask ,you don't get.........

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Oh i hear you.

But i still dont get it, i've known about the tyre wear issues since i bought the car and Tony posted here with a solution (i was the first) now all the tyre wear issues have gone. They know about it believe me as they (Lexus GB) do roam in and out of the forum from time to time.

Hope you get whatever it is you want.

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Nothing heard.

And no, it isn't time to give up.

Next week I am speaking to solicitors in Manchester who specialise in this sort of work: it is incomprehensible for me to give up. This is a safety issue, and as such Lexus should do the honourable thing. They would sit up and take note if someone died as a result of the excessive wear (who knows - someone may already have?).

I detest the arrogance that Lexus have shown in this matter and I, for one, will do something about it.

The mere fact that Lexus have refused to comment/respond to my letter is disgusting. This is how much they care for us owners.

I had some non tyre-related issues with my first IS200 back in the early noughties and instead of writing to them, I rang the head office and asked for the then MD's fax number. A fax was duly sent with spleen in full vent mode, and two days later I received a letter from the MD and a free service voucher.

Regarding the tyre wear issue, I must have spent about a grand on new tyres on my two IS200s during the time I had them. It's my own fault - I joined the Owners Club in '02 when I got my second IS200 but then I let my membership lapse. Had I not done so, I'd have found out that Tony at WIM could have set the car up properly. The local people I use for tyres and tracking know what they're doing, but they only have the data which Lexus give them to do the tracking. Every time I went in to have another set of scrubbed away fronts replaced, they'd say that the tracking was "within limits" and that they'd seen many IS200s with the same symptoms.

As for your expected reply, can you be sure that they haven't replied? Perhaps it has got lost in the post. Do you have proof that it arrived?

And as Scorps says, you should check your tyre pressures/wear every week.

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As for your expected reply, can you be sure that they haven't replied? Perhaps it has got lost in the post. Do you have proof that it arrived?

Yes I can prove it was received - as I sent it recorded delivery. Please see earlier posts if you wish to confirm arrival yourself.

Oh, I received a reply today..............

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I'll post it on here by 2200 or so tonight. I need to do a few things first and then copy it out verbatim for this site. After that, I would kindly ask for people to comment as they see fit.

And no, Lexus have threatened nothing nor agreed to anything. Please give me a little over one hour and you can read my nitial letter and Lexus' response.

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I have read the letter and it's very.....very legal.. No doubt this is why it's taken them over a week to reply, solicitors and all that must have been involved...

Anyway i'll leave all the details to im24601, it's his thread.

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Mmmmm very interesting ...??!! be kinda intrigued to see how they have worded the letter as not to be legaly contractual to any blame oR fault to the problems that they have.....to me it seems as if they have got the solicitors involved then they obviously realise that it could mean pending legal action from ( people the public ) towards the tire issue.....

i think to underline that this is not only a tire wear issue BUT also a SAFETY issue....this is only my point of view and the way that i personally see it..

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Ok, here it is...

To put it in context, my letter to the MD of Lexus GB Ltd (Mr Miguel Fonseca) first...

For the Personal & Private Attention of the Managing Director

Lexus (GB) Ltd.

Great Burgh Heath

Yew Tree Bottom Road

EPSOM

Surrey

KT18 5XS

Thursday 21 February 2008

WITHOUT PREJUDICE

Dear Mr Fonseca

I have spent several months in conversation with my local dealership (Lexus Oxford) and spent much time speaking to your Customer Relations team. All, currently, to no avail. With that in mind I would kindly ask that you finish reading this letter and not pass it to one of your assistants to deal with. It is your thoughts and comments that I will appreciate, not those of anybody else.

I am the owner of a 2001 IS200SE. Since purchasing the vehicle several years ago (through the Lexus Approved Used Car scheme) I have had very few niggles with the car, however the singular greatest disappointment I have experienced is with the excessive wear to the inner edges on the front tyres.

I suspect that you are fully aware that there seems to be an inherent problem with the IS200. In fact, the problem appears not to be confined to that model alone.

I have on at least 3 separate occasions have had my local dealership, on their advice, perform a 4-wheel alignment and replace tyres (always the fronts).

Initially I replaced whatever tyres the car had on – be they Bridgestone or Yokohama. After the same problem recurred, I suspected something was wrong and approached Lexus Oxford who put me in contact with Simon Calado. We met a short while after at Lexus Oxford in August 2007 and discussed the issue at some length. He deduced that the reason for the excessive wear was the difference in camber between the Continental European market and that of the UK, stating that to “cure” the problem I would need to have another 4-wheel alignment with new tyres on. He provided me with a Powerpoint presentation of adverse camber for the right-hand drive v left-hand drive market.

I had the choice between the softer Bridgestones, Yokohamas or a more durable Dunlop tyre – the SP9000. Should I opt for the Dunlops I was to expect greater road noise as the tyre is harder, by design. I opted for as set of Dunlops, and had Lexus Oxford do another 4-wheel alignment. I was told that I must have tyres made in Japan not those made in Germany also.

Approximately 5 months later, and some 7100 miles – the state of my tyres was of some considerable concern.

At this point I will direct you to link on the Lexus Owners Club forum where you can see images of the tyres themselves. Please remember – these are taken after 5 months and 7100 miles of normal, everyday driving, predominantly on dual carriageways and motorways.

http://www.lexusownersclub.co.uk/forum/ind...=48284&st=0

I have learned from Goodyear-Dunlop directly that this tyre has 6mm of tread at new. Once it has reached the point of being “slick” – 0mm, at the shallowest point, the tyre will still have another 3 mm of rubber (so 9mm in all) before the wiring is visible. I hope you can see from the photo on the LOC link above that not only are the wires visible but they are wearing through.

Simple maths and deduction would indicate that my tyres, following Lexus’ own geometry settings have managed 3,500 miles and 2 ½ months of use before becoming illegal, from new.

Mr Fonseca, would you be happy if these were on your car? If a dealership adjusted (again) your settings on your car and the net result was as per the photos – what would you do and think?

I have, as I stated earlier, discussed at great length with Lexus Oxford and now the Service Manager refuses to speak to me on matters of tyres. The Dealer Principal advised me to contact Lexus GB which I did a couple of weeks ago.

I spoke to Samantha Betts – who refused to accept that the reason why mine and quite literally hundreds of front tyres on Lexus IS200 and IS300s wear out excessively quickly was down to the geometry settings used by Lexus. When I told her that Lexus Oxford blamed under-inflation for the wear, which I then put to Dunlop-Goodyear who, in turn, said that this (under-inflation) would not have caused the problem as that would have resulted in equal wear to both the inners and ousters – she even said that I should listen to the vehicle manufacturer and not Dunlop-Goodyear!

Ms Betts denied that this is a known-problem with the car, implying, like Oxford – that it must be my fault.

As mentioned, I have had everything from under-inflation to using German tyres instead of Japanese tyres as the reason for the excessive wear. And then, of course, my driving style was questioned.

For the Toe to be as out as much as it is on both front tyres, I would have had to have hit almost symmetrically-identical deep pot-holes at high speed.

So, according to Lexus – the fault lies with me. At this point I contacted the previous owner who confirmed that he had the same problem too. Perhaps his driving style and mine are similar?

I wondered if anybody else had experienced this problem so I joined the Lexus Owners Club forum and asked the question. Referring back to the link above, please read the thread in its entirety. You will see that there are many, many people like me who have experienced excessive tyre wear to their front tyres. Is this all down to driving styles?

You will note (assuming you have read the link in its entirety) that one of the members, “Doctor” Tony at Wheels In-Motion believes that he has the correct settings for a 4-wheel alignment and has on file over 300 Lexus owners who have been to him to have their geometry set properly. In essence, Tony has rewritten the settings and has hundreds of happy customers as a result.

Ultimately, Lexus owners are the best critics you will get – and I have found no-one yet who has said that Tony hasn’t fixed the problem. I have found plenty who, like me have been religiously back to their local Lexus dealership to have their cars fixed by “the experts” – only to return a few months later for yet more new tyres and another 4-wheel alignment.

Why is it, Mr Fonseca, that one man can do something that the combined brains at Lexus cannot? Or am I being naïve and the reason why Lexus are giving false information is simply because the want the profit from more 4-wheel alignments and the sale of more tyres?

I have recently contacted another Lexus dealership not too far from me (not Oxford – I will never grace that dealership again) and explained the tyre issue to them. One of the Service department staff members there confirmed that it was indeed a “known problem” and that Lexus have revised the geometry settings to “rectify” the problem. The acceptable ranges have been altered.

Why would Lexus do that? What problem? According to Lexus GB there isn’t a problem.

Having received a faxed copy of the “revised geometry settings” and compared them there are indeed a few changes. The faxed copy was printed from Lexus’ own intranet, I presume – https://lexuscentral.lexus.co.uk.

One dealership is setting up a car with one group of settings, another dealership less than 60 miles away is using a different set.

Which one exactly is correct, Mr Fonseca? In reality, I suspect neither is. In any case, this misinformation is not something that I would have expected from Lexus: is it a lottery depending on where one lives as to the accuracy of the information given? At best it is sloppy, at worst it is negligent.

So where does this get us? You will have seen on the Lexus Owners Club forum that I and several others are prepared to make the journey to Epsom to meet with you or somebody of a not dissimilar standing within Lexus GB to discuss this matter. For good measure I will bring my tyres (as seen in the above LOC thread) with me for your inspection and interest. If you are going to handle them – I’d advise you to wear gloves – those wires on the inners are quite sharp in places…

I genuinely believe that, as do many others – the geometry settings Lexus GB are providing to the Lexus dealerships in the UK are wrong, resulting in serious and excessive wear to the front tyres. If someone hasn’t been injured due to tyre damage yet it is a miracle. I consider that it is only by the grace of God that my tyres didn’t blow during the 7100 miles of driving on them.

You will further see from the forum pages that I have contacted BBC Watchdog in the anticipation that they will follow this up – as Ms Betts refused to escalate this problem any higher than her, no doubt hoping that I would go away.

If you believe that the problems I have had with my tyres is a one-off, I would ask you to Google the following key words “Lexus” “tyres”, “excessive wear” and “inner” to see what happens.

Should you require any further information or for that matter require print-outs of my various 4-wheel alignments, please do not hesitate to contact me. I will happily bring those with me to Epsom for any meeting we may have. You shouldn’t need gloves to handle those – just for my tyres.

For the time being, I shall not publish this letter on the LOC forum. I will, however, reserve the right to post it on there at a later date and any response you choose to make. I have no doubt that my fellow LOC members will be keen to learn what the Managing Director of Lexus is going to do about this most blatant of manufacturing errors.

.

In the meantime, please consider reading the following:

http://www.lexusownersclub.co.uk/knowledge...id=372&c=18

I thank you for your time and look forward to hearing from you.

Yours sincerely,

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And the response from Lexus, verbatim

05 March 2008

Dear Mr im24601

I have been asked by our Managing Director, Miguel Fonseca, to thank you for you letter dated 21 February 2008. Unfortunately due to the nature of our business, Mr Fonseca is not always able to personally respond to customers, and he has therefore asked me to respond to you on his behalf.

I have reviewed the details of your contact with us regarding tyre wear on your IS200, and I am very sorry to hear that you remain dissatisfied with the response you have received.

I must confirm that our position has not changed. However I would like to clarify the facts concerning the geometry on the IS200, and can confirm that when the car left the factory it would have been set up using "negative camber". This means the tyres were set at a specific angle which contributed towards the dynamic handling characteristic.

However the setting was within a tolerance range, as specified by the manufacturer and following customer feedback we authorised our Centres to amend this measurement to more of a "mid way" position, whilst keeping within the original tolerance range specification as set by the factory. A consequence of this has been improved tyre wear for some driving styles.

However, I must advise you that we do not recommend any further deviation from the manufacturer's specification, if it takes the car outside the original range of tolerances. It is worthy to note that any change may affect some other aspect of the car in the future.

Whilst I realise your strength of feeling on the matter, I feel I must reiterate that we are confident that the advice given to Lexus Centres in the UK, regarding geometry settings is appropriate, and a result of extensive research. We do not believe that there can be a predetermined life span for tyres, when such a large range of factors can influence their wear.

In closing, I am sorry that we are have not been able to afford you the answer that you are seeking, which is of course regrettable. For this I can only apologise, but trust we have clarified our final position in this respect.

Yours sincerely

Gill Want

Lexus (GB) Ltd

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