Mustang Hood Warranty FAIL

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  1. #1

    Icon13 Mustang Hood Warranty FAIL

    In mid March 2018, I noticed the paint bubbling on the front of the hood on my triple yellow 2015 Mustang GT PP 50 year package. It was about the size of a dime, right above the passenger side head light. I contacted Cloninger Ford of Hickory (North Carolina) and explained the issue to the representative. I was told that the issue was a paint issue (not a corrosion issue) and would not be covered.

    At this point, I grew concerned because the vehicle had less than 30,000 miles, is garage kept, and I am insanely anal about cleaning, detailing, and keeping my Mustang looking and running perfectly. I plan to pass it down to my daughter and am trying to preserve the factory paint to the best of my ability. My father did body work and painting for Porsche, so I have a bit of knowledge with what I'm doing.

    I contacted Ford corporate and was told that it's a corrosion issue that should be covered and they contacted Cloninger Ford of Hickory to schedule the repair.

    On March 19th, 2018, with 28,925 miles, my car arrived at Cloninger Ford of Hickory. The transmission was inspected due to a clunking noise when releasing the clutch in first gear at low RPMs/parking lot speeds. I did not receive any type of answer on what was causing this issue, if it was resolved, or any further information. The vehicle still makes this noise and can still be reproduced. They performed the door handle recall and they were informed about the passenger side puddle light image deforming, which was resolved. At this time, a new hood was ordered and the work was scheduled to be performed at Custom Body Works Inc. in Hickory, NC.

    I was given a loaner vehicle and they took my car to have the new hood that they ordered painted and placed on my vehicle. I was called by Cloninger Ford of Hickory and picked up my Mustang on April 7th, 2018. It was raining outside and my vehicle was in the parking lot of their dealership. There was black and gray wet sanding/compound residue running down the front fenders and bumper of my car, the hood was not aligned properly (closer to the passenger side and a larger gap on the driver side), the color did not match, there was a crack in the clear coat near where the original corrosion appeared (front passenger side headlight), the hood vent on the passenger side was not installed properly and was raised higher than the driver side. The vent also rattled when the car was driven above 40MPH. Also, on the driver side vent, there was a one inch line that appeared to be an indentation in the paint.

    I went back inside the dealership, they contacted the third party body shop that they contracted the body work out to (Custom Body Works Inc.) and I was told that it would be fixed.

    On April 9th, 2018 with ~29,500 miles on my Ford Mustang was brought back to Cloninger Ford of Hickory for the hood to be repainted. After a few days, I was called and told that the work was complete. The vehicle was returned with multiple imperfections in the paint, fish eyes, scratches, bubbles, and the under side of the hood did not match the outside or the inside of the engine bay. We brought my Mustang in to their service center, marked several areas with blue markers, and they took pictures of it to send to Ford corporate to be approved to be fixed.

    A few days later, the car was send back to Custom Body Works Inc. and they attempted to fix the issues. It was returned with two spots in the center of the hood where they completely sanded through the clear coat and appear dull. At this point, the new hood has several layers of paint on it, it has been worked on three times, and the vents have even more paint on them than the hood due to being the original vents. I contacted Ford Corporate on April 16th, 2018 and explained the issue with the hood. They reached out to three managers at Cloninger Ford of Hickory and I was told to go speak with either Barry Wilson, John Cloninger, or Jeffrey Shepard.

    When I arrived at the dealership, I spoke with Jeffrey Shepard and they attempted to upsell me on a 2018 Mustang or a 2017 GT350 that they had in the show room. I was offered $25,000 for my Mustang and was told that a 2018 would be $300/mo more than I currently pay. No thanks. I declined the offer and left, feeling extremely insulted and let down by the quality that Ford was providing to me.

    I called Ford corporate when I arrived home and was told that they would contact me the next day.

    On April 17th, 2018 (National Mustang Day) I received a call from Ford Corporate that my warranty claim is now complete and that any further issues must be resolved between me and Custom Body Works Inc. (The body shop that they [Ford/Cloninger] chose to use). I was also told that due to the repeated conflict that the warranty on my Mustang is now marked as void and any further warranty claim requests will not be processed or acknowledged by Ford.

    At this point, I have lost all faith in Ford or Cloninger Ford ever making this right. I have owned several Mustangs and have been a Mustang enthusiast for over two decades. I find it incredibly insulting that Ford would call a customer and try to return a vehicle in such bad shape after a warranty repair.

    Below, I have included several pictures displaying the imperfections and issues that have been outlined in my story above.

    Sanded through clear coat:

    Another picture of where the clear coat is gone:

    Misaligned front of hood where it meets bumper:

    Flat spot/indent in paint:

    Tags marking fish eyes, scratches, imperfections and other issues at the service center inside of Cloninger Ford of Hickory:

    Passenger side alignment of hood:

    Passenger side of hood from above:

    Driver side hood alignment:

    Driver side hood alignment from above:

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  3. #2



    While I can commiserate with you about your experience, this forum can not do anything to help you in your struggle with your dealer or Ford. While presented in a factual manner, I would suggest you need to select dealers more carefully going forward.

    If you are genuinely interested in getting resolution to your vehicle issues, the way you do it is either through a Small Claims Court filing or if the damages exceed Small Claims ceilings then you need to get an attorney and resolve the matter through the courts. What you are currently doing is not producing satisfactory results but is producing consistent results.

    While internet forums seem to be the right road to a successful resolution, the proven path is through the courts. Either do a Small Claims Court demand for compensation / restitution or get a for real attorney.

    Of course you always have another alternative. Just sell the car and start over — with a better dealer.


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