Nissan Patrol Sun-damaged Dashboard
Welcome back to weekend radio on 2UE. We missed you. A while ago I recommended you to a colleague of mine, Amanda, for help with her Alfa (with great results).
I now need some help myself. I have a Nissan Patrol that is 5 in March and over the last year or so the dashboard has taken on a moon crater type look. There are hundreds or thousands of bubbles all over it. A quick look on the net confirms that this is a common problem and Nissan will replace it under warranty.
Nothing in life is that easy. Nissan Australia does not have a warranty department it would seem (interesting business model) and have not returned my email on the matter. I then tried a dealer at Top Ryde who surprisingly had never heard of this and would get their warranty clerk to call me.
All I can say is that the clerk must be very busy as I have now called three times and have not had a call back. I do not use Nissan service due to their outrageous prices but rather a local independent at half the price.
What can I do?
Thanks for the kind words. It's nice to be on air again with my old mate Tim Webster.
My understanding of this is that, yes acne of the NIssan Patrol dashboard is a common problem. It began (in so far as I'm aware) back before 2010. Anecdotally, about one in three Patrols suffers the problem.
Nissan issued (I think in 2010) what they call a 'service campaign' and authorised dealers will replace the 'acne' dashboards for free (inclusive of parts and labour). Service campaigns are like recalls, only they are handled in-house by Nissan rather than officially logged with the ACCC, as is the case with product safety recalls. This is why you won't find it on recalls.gov.au
Whether or not your vehicle is eligible for dashboard replacement will be determined by its VIN. It should be a very simple matter for any dealer to pump your VIN into their computer in the service department and retrieve all pertinent service campaign information on it - and perform that work for free, regardless of where and how you get the vehicle serviced. (The VIN is a 17-digit alphanumeric identifying code for your vehicle. It is on the rego papers, in the service log book and on a metal plate under the bonnet.)
Warranty and support cannot be leveraged against where and how you choose to get the vehicle serviced. And dealerships get paid (by Nissan) for the service campaign work done on your car in any case (ie, they send Nissan Australia a bill for it, so you are in effect bringing business in their doors by doing so. You are perfectly free to get your car serviced at an independent mechanic. Nissan already copped a tidy earn from selling the vehicle, and they are obliged to support it.
I will reach out to Nissan on your behalf, and see if I can't expedite a solution for you.
If you don't get a call it would be safe to assume they, together with the allegedly useless Ryde Nissan, are behaving like dickheads who don't care about customers.