Does the Dealer Need My Approval to Replace the Transmission?

  A rare photograph of a Holden Captiva not actually broken down, yesterday

A rare photograph of a Holden Captiva not actually broken down, yesterday


We bought a 2012 Holden Captiva Series 2 (brand new - zero km) and it's been terrible. The dealer we bought it from kept giving us excuses about what is wrong with the car. We've had several problems with the Captiva. Sometimes if the car ignition is on it will give petrol by itself like it wants to move. 

To make a long story short, the Captiva broke down and luckily we still have the factory warranty on it. They replaced the transmission. My question is: Can the dealer do such a major work to the car without my knowledge or even being informed?


It's bad form for the dealer not to communicate with you about what needs to be done. Presumably, however, after the breakdown you had the Captiva transported back to the dealership for diagnosis and repair. Presumably, they diagnosed the problem and decided that the repair involved fitting a new transmission.

On one hand it's poor etiquette for them not to keep you in the loop. On the other hand, you got a major repair for free, without having to fight for it - so on balance I think you are in front on this one.

Seriously, though, the Holden Captiva is one of the worst vehicles available in Australia today. Holden should hang its head in shame for continuing to sell this appalling vehicle in this country - a decision which is contributing to the slow but significant death of its reputation. Given its age, and the fact that the warranty will soon expire, I would look at selling it as soon as possible. Because, out of warranty, it is going to cost you a lot of money to keep on the road, and the frustration factor will be very high.

Look at the Mazda CX-5 >>, Nissan X-TRAIL >> or Mitsubishi Outlander >>. The Hyundai Tucson >> and Kia Sportage >> are viable, high quality options as well.