VW Vortex - Volkswagen Forum banner
1 - 11 of 11 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
21,490 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello Everyone:
VW has now released a few Technical Bulletins (TB) that pertain to the Eos. Because this subject (TBs) may be new to some of you, it is essential that you understand what the purpose of TBs are, and how they are used in the relationship between the manufacturer, the importer, the dealer, and the vehicle owner.
Communications Nomenclature
A Technical Bulletin is most emphatically NOT a recall. It is a piece of information that is somewhat more important than a 'Tech Tip', and significantly less serious than a 'Campaign'. A Tech Tip is an informal note that VW sends out to the service technicians in dealer network advising how to do something more efficiently, or better, or how to save time, and a 'Campaign' is the official North American word for a recall.
Technical Bulletins are used to disseminate all sorts of useful information to the service staff at the VW dealerships. Some technical bulletins explain how to carry out a complex (but entirely regular) procedure on a certain type of vehicle. Others stress the need for certain safety procedures when carrying out a procedure (e.g. changing a tire). Some TBs advise the service staff of the presence of a new, improved component for a vehicle - either hardware or software - and explain how to go about updating that component in the most efficient way. Other TBs educate VW technicians about how to quickly and efficiently troubleshoot common problems.
Technical Bulletins are not used to communicate the need to carry out manditory changes on a vehicle. If something important has to be done, and it must be done to every vehicle within a certain range of serial numbers, a 'Campaign' will be issued. The key difference between a TB and a Campaign is that when a Campaign is issued, a notice is mailed to the home or office of owner of the vehicle, advising them that a Campaign has been issued, and requesting that they contact their VW dealer to have the work carried out. So, I think you can now comprehend that TBs deal with minor issues that probably do not affect a large number of cars, or minor issues that may affect only a small percentage of cars within a defined range of serial numbers.
------------------------------------------
The Dealer - Customer Relationship
Within the worldwide Volkswagen organization, there are a number of relationships that exist at different levels. Here is a quick overview:
1) Manufacturer to Importer
The Eos is manufactured in Portugal by a wholly owned subsidiary of VW AG (AG being the German language equivalent of 'Ltd' or 'Inc'). VW AG then sells the vehicles, in bulk, to various importers and distributors that they have in markets all over the world. In North America, the importer is called 'Volkswagen of America'. Although Volkswagen of America happens to be wholly-owned by VW AG, it is an entirely separate company, and Volkswagen of America - and only Volkswagen of America - has the responsibility for supporting vehicles that they import and sell in their market region. If you have a close look at your warranty, you will see that it is issued by Volkswagen of America, not by VW in Germany, and you will also see that the warranty is only valid within North America. This is an excellent example of the scope of what the importer does.
2) Importer to Dealer
Volkswagen of America does not sell cars to drivers. They wholesale cars to dealerships that they have franchised to sell Volkswagens, and those independently owned dealers then sell the cars to the end users.
Volkswagen of America's 'customers', so to speak, are the dealers, not the end users, although VW of A does make quite a bit of effort to keep customers happy (more on that later).
Because it is the dealers that are buying the cars from VW of America, VW of America's primary 'customer support' mandate is to provide training, information, assistance, and various information (including TBs) to the dealer network. This explains why TBs are not sent out to the customers.
3) Dealership to End User (Driver)
The primary relationship that we as drivers - as Volkswagen owners - have is with our VW dealership, which is an independently owned and operated business. The whole customer support system is designed to encourage the customer to deal directly with the dealership, and to encourage the dealership to meet all the customer's needs for both pre-purchase information and after sale support. Think about it for a second... you don't write Volkswagen of America in Auburn Hills a letter saying "Gee, I'm thinking about buying an Eos, would you please send me a brochure" - you go to your dealer. By the same token, after you purchase your Eos, you go to the dealer for service and support, not to the importer, and not to the manufacturer.
This 'dealer to end user' relationship works very well - most of the time. In my particular case, I have bought 8 different VWs from the same dealership since 1979. I have a great relationship with the dealership - they know me, I know them, we have a high level of trust in each other, we all live in the same town and I often see the dealership staff at the shopping mall, hockey rink, etc. Heck, I remember seeing the present-day General Manager of my dealership at the hockey rink when he was 10 years old and playing Atom League hockey... that was a few years ago, though.

However... the dealer to purchaser relationship can sometimes get screwed up and not work as well as it should. Here are a few common causes:
a) Customer buys new car somewhere else (at a different dealer), then brings it to nearby dealer for service.
In theory, this shouldn't matter... but in reality, people are human beings, and it does matter. If you buy your car from a dealer some distance away because they offer a less expensive purchase price, then bring it to a nearby dealer for service, you might occasionally find that they don't always offer you a free courtesy car, or perhaps they don't do certain things "free of charge" (e.g. washing your car after it is serviced) that they do for folks who bought the car at the same dealership as it is brought to for service.
b) Customer attempts to circumvent the dealer - end user relationship prematurely.
Like I said before, everything is structured so that the primary relationship is between the dealer and the car buyer. The importer (VW of A) is available as a 'fall-back alternate', but only as a last resort when the customer has made every possible effort to get a problem resolved at the dealership and has had no success.
Be aware that if / when you call Volkswagen of America, the person you speak to at VW of A will take down all the information, then contact the dealership that you are using in an effort to facilitate a happy outcome for you. So, it is not appropriate for us as owners to deal directly with VW of America unless we have already made every possible effort to resolve the matter at the dealership level.
c) Customer hops from dealer to dealer for service.
Sure, if you live in Minnesota and are on vacation in Florida and your turn signal doesn't work, by all means go to a VW dealer in Florida to get the turn signal fixed. The Florida dealer will probably be delighted to see you, and will buy you a cup of coffee while you wait. But...
If you live in a big city where there are multiple VW dealers, pick one, then buy and service your VW there. If you hop from one dealer to the next every time you have a problem, you will not build up a friendly relationship with once specific dealer (translation = one local business), and you won't enjoy the same benefits that those of us who stick with the same dealer year-in, year-out do.
----------------------------------------------------
OK, by now you are probably wondering "What the heck does all this talk about manufacturers, importers and dealers have to do with Technical Bulletins?" Well, it's simple. The TBs are communications between the importers and the dealers, not communications between the importer and the customer, or between the dealer and the customer.
There are advantages and disadvantages to posting the TBs here on a public 'VW Enthusiast' site that consists of owners, not dealers. The advantage is that perhaps an owner might live in a small town where there is only one dealer, and perhaps that dealer has only sold 3 or 4 Eos so far... so, maybe they might not be aware that the TB has been issued. Also, by making owners aware that the TB exists, it provides significant reassurance to the owner that VW does in fact support their products and takes fairly prompt action to resolve any small problems that appear after the sale is made.
The disadvantage, however, is that if the customer shows up at the dealership service desk with a printout of the TB in hand and says "Hey, I want you to carry out this action on my car", first off, the service staff might be a bit insulted that you don't think they have the competence to find that information themselves, and second, the service staff might be a heck of a lot more knowledgeable than you, and for any number of good reasons (TB superseded, different vehicle configuration, etc.), they might say "Sorry, it is not appropriate to carry out that TB."
What all this means is this: Use the TB as background information if you are an enthusiast, but DON'T use the TB to circumvent the normal good relationship that should exist between the customer and the dealer. If you have a problem, and it looks like the TB addresses it, you might want to casually mention the TB number when you are discussing the problem with the service advisor at your dealership... they can then look it up. For goodness sake, use your discretion - you want to maintain a good relationship with your dealer, not become known as 'That PITA who thinks he/she knows it all'.
Lastly - be aware that most TBs are intended to be carried out when the vehicle is already in the shop for other work, for example for a regularly scheduled oil change or similar. Volkswagen of America pays the dealers to carry out actions recommended in the TBs, but if an action only requires 30 time units (three-tenths of an hour) of labour, then the VW dealer - and the service technician who does the work - will only be reimbursed for 3/10ths of an hour of labour. This is quite acceptable if the car is already inside for other work, but can be a bit of a burden if the dealership has to write up a work order, bring the car inside, assign an employee to do the work, check the work, etc.... all for $14.12, which is probably what they will be paid by VW of A for carrying out the TB.
In other words - if the problem you have is serious and urgent (water pouring in through a hole in the roof), and the TB addresses that, sure, take the car to the dealer to have the problem fixed. But, if the problem is not serious or not urgent (minor squeak, problem that only occasionally appears, etc.), wait until your next scheduled service to get it attended to... that's only basic courtesy.
I have moderated the Phaeton forum for the past two years, and all of us in that forum have followed (more or less) these guidelines when dealing with issues that are mentioned in TBs. I hope that everyone in the Eos forum enjoys the same good service experiences that we in the Phaeton forum have had.
Michael
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
444 Posts
Re: Eos Technical Bulletins (TB) - Philosophy, How to Use, Index (PanEuropean)

So what TSBs have been released so far. I haven't seen them yet. Can anyone post the technical Bulletins they might have knowledge off?
Thanks,
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
21,490 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Re: Eos Technical Bulletins (TB) - Philosophy, How to Use, Index (PanEuropean)

Archival Note: Here are links to posts elsewhere on the forum that contain Eos Technical Bulletins.
TB: RVU - Instrument Cluster, Update Speedometer Coding (OR) - Includes TB 00-06-10
TB: RVU - Comfort Control Module Software Update (OS) - includes TB 00-06-14 and 00-06-20
TB: Radio, Premium Sound System (Panasonic) Sound Inconsistent - Includes TB 91-06-06
TB: Radio, Premium Sound System (Panasonic) "NO SAT" Displayed - Includes TB 91-06-07
Please keep these two very important points in mind as you browse through the TBs:
1) Unless the TB is marked as a 'RVU' (Required Vehicle Update), it should not be carried out unless you are actually experiencing the problem described. In other words - 'If it ain't broke, don't fix it!'
2) Remember that if you are the one who brings the TB to the attention of your VW dealer, you need to do so with considerable courtesy (e.g. savoir-faire, sensitivity, politeness) - the TBs are communications between the importer and the dealer, not between the importer and the vehicle owner. So use your good judgement.
Michael
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,658 Posts
Re: Eos Technical Bulletins (PanEuropean)

PanEuropean, while I agree with pretty much everything you said, there is one fundamental problem. Many other car manufacturers go out of their way to support the products they sell and make the customer feel like they really desire to resolve whatever problems the owner is experiencing with their vehicle. VW dealers seem to put everything back on VW and use them as their scapegoat. I'm sure that most Phaeton owners are treated with the utmost of care because that's what VW requires of the dealers that are permitted to sell and service them. However, this is not the experience that a typical Jetta or GTI owner has.
I too have purchased multiple vehicles from my dealer and feel that I have a great relationship with them. However, I've walked away disappointed on multiple occasions because I didn't feel that the dealer actually wanted to fix whatever issue I was experiencing with my car, no matter how trivial or serious. Of course, I've had some great experiences there as well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,395 Posts
Re: Eos Technical Bulletins (Pelican18TQA4)

Quote, originally posted by Pelican18TQA4 »
Many other car manufacturers go out of their way to support the products they sell and make the customer feel like they really desire to resolve whatever problems the owner is experiencing with their vehicle. VW dealers seem to put everything back on VW and use them as their scapegoat.

You make a great point. I spent the last two days in an "Exceeding Customer Expectations" class where we were told VW wanted to move from the bottom 1/3 to the top 1/3 in JD Powers' surveys by 2008.
I made the point that there's a reason Lexus is at the top of the survey, and it has little to do with the people and everything to do with the tools they're given. For example, everyone who drops off a car at Lexus gets a loaner. That requires a large loaner fleet. This decision isn't made at the dealer level, it's made at the corporate level. The same goes for things such as goodwill and warranty. If the dealer says no, they're just parroting what the manufacturer has dictated. Remember, the dealers don't set policy, they just have to enforce it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
21,490 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Re: Eos Technical Bulletins (PanEuropean)

Good morning all!

I just went into my service department to readjust my headlights (something wiggled loose causing the beams to be to low in aim) and the customer service rep told me they did a "updated ecm software per recall". Unfortunately the tech wasnt around to explain this, so I'm wondering if anyone has any info what this was for?
Thanks much,
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
882 Posts
Re: Eos Technical Bulletins (Timokreon)

Quote, originally posted by Timokreon »
Good morning all!

I just went into my service department to readjust my headlights (something wiggled loose causing the beams to be to low in aim) and the customer service rep told me they did a "updated ecm software per recall". Unfortunately the tech wasnt around to explain this, so I'm wondering if anyone has any info what this was for?
Thanks much,

it probably means this update (listed within the FAQ page linked at the top of Eos forums):
TB: RVU - Update Programming to Eliminate DTC P0601 Stored in DTC Memory (OY) - Includes TB 01-07-21
it fixes an error that many don't have, and that just make a trouble code in the system (which requires a diag tool to even see)
So it isn't a big deal, but it is "required", meaning that they automatically give it to everyone, under warranty, on their next visit just in case.
William
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,899 Posts
1 - 11 of 11 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top