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Old 07-07-2011, 01:38 AM   #241
Max Kool
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I am still wondering what the BMW Dealer will come up with. It has been two weeks now...
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Old 07-07-2011, 06:31 AM   #242
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I am still wondering what the BMW Dealer will come up with. It has been two weeks now...
Nothing so far.
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Old 07-07-2011, 06:32 AM   #243
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Nothing so far.
These things often take a very long time to unwind.
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Old 07-07-2011, 07:01 AM   #244
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Nothing so far.
Have you spoken directly with your dealer or was your email that you previously mentioned your only contact? If so, you should be there in person speaking to both the service mgr and the general mgr/owner of the dealership and get them involved and on your side.

Are you planning on hiring an attorney?

I really hope this situation works out in your favor, but you shouldnt be quietly waiting for them to act. The squeaky wheel gets greased while the others go round and round un-noticed.

Good Luck,

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Old 07-07-2011, 07:05 AM   #245
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Most insurance companies, and particularly a self-insured entity (like BMW ?), operate on a "claims made" basis when it comes to these types of non-warranty liability issues.

"Claims made" means they will do nothing unless you, or your attorney, make a formal claim for damages. That's when the claims process begins. Simply notifying a local dealer of a mechanical issue or failure does not initiate a liability claim, they will just see it as a warranty issue and handle it as such.

These companies will not seek you out to settle any potential liability claim. It's just not good business practice, and it's not cost effective. From experience they know most angry or wronged customers grow tired, give up and go away after a while. You have to be pro-active.
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Old 07-07-2011, 07:44 AM   #246
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Well, the pictures speak a thousand words, and more, and they're telling me to run away from checking these bikes out...

Speedy recovery and thanks for posting!
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Old 07-07-2011, 08:45 AM   #247
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Antiquewidow,
Email is not the best way to deal with a situation like this.

In-person contact is not always the best way either as what was said and what happened can be disputed or denied.

I would suggest that you write up a good, short description of the incident with pictures, as you have here, and make copies to send by REGISTERED MAIL (signature required) to BMW North America, BMW headquarters, your dealer, and every motorcycle magazine in the world you can find an address for. OK, maybe only registered to the dealer and BMW, but you get the idea. You want them to take notice. And you want BMW to know that you are telling others about the situation so include in each letter who copies were sent to. Perhaps the link to this thread would be good also to show you are not trying to scam BMW. "Oh my! there is a finger in my chili!"

If you are near (or in) a major city, send a copy of the letter and pictures to every TV news station and daily newspaper. If news is slow they may call and want an interview.

Eventually, BMW will pay you to say no more. But what about every other owner, rider, and buyer who may face the same failure and be killed? Has someone else already died as a result of the fork failure? Who will be next? Whose father, husband, wife, son or daughter, will die because of not knowing there is a potential (though very small) chance of instant loss of control if the fork leg breaks?

I doubt the motorcycle magazines will do much since they rely on advertizing dollars but at least they would be aware that this has happened before, has happened now, and will likely happen again.

This isn't a case of crying "wolf" over nothing. The wolf has attacked you. You were very fortunate, the next victim will not likely be so lucky.

I like BMW, they have some great products and I doubt any other manufacturer would handle the situation of product failure much differently. However, as a potential buyer, I certainly wouldn't buy that bike, nor anything else they make until they show serious concern for the lives of their customers.

I am no expert, so others of the legal persuasion may have other suggestions, but as was mentioned you need to be a squeaky wheel, just be a reasonable and concerned squeak. As a grandmother, you should do that well.

Get the word out, let people know, warn others of the problem.

Your case is ideal to get publicity among all motorcyclists.
A woman rider. (grandmother? BONUS!)
A new rider.
A new bike.
Extremely low miles.
Smooth paved road.
Single vehicle crash (no other cause to point at)
Catastrophic failure with no obvious cause. (to be determined...)

Be sure to keep copies of EVERY contact with your dealer and BMW. If by email, print it out and keep a hard copy, paperwork you send, keep a copy, letters they send you, keep the original and make a copy.

As was mentioned before, I do hope you are keeping a daily journal of everything. Your aches and pains, your frustration, your anger, your fear, the lack of communication and concern from BMW, when you send any letters and whom to, when and what you hear from BMW, your dealer, and any others.

We are with you in spirit and hope to be riding with you again soon. (figuratively if not literally )
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Old 07-07-2011, 08:58 AM   #248
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Yeah, what he said.

I'm pretty sure that BMW is monitoring this thread, and I'm really sure that BMW isn't going to do anything unless you poke at them.

I think it might be wise to contact an attorney who works strictly hourly and file suit for a million dollars. I know lots of you will start squeeling about a litigous society, but filing a suit doesn't mean that you expect to ever see the inside of a courtroom, it just shows them that they need to take you seriously.

Kind of like carpet bombing Dresden...

I need to run out front and see if there is a black 740i parked across the street.
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Old 07-07-2011, 10:45 AM   #249
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sop View Post
Most insurance companies, and particularly a self-insured entity (like BMW ?), operate on a "claims made" basis when it comes to these types of non-warranty liability issues.

"Claims made" means they will do nothing unless you, or your attorney, make a formal claim for damages. That's when the claims process begins. Simply notifying a local dealer of a mechanical issue or failure does not initiate a liability claim, they will just see it as a warranty issue and handle it as such.

These companies will not seek you out to settle any potential liability claim. It's just not good business practice, and it's not cost effective. From experience they know most angry or wronged customers grow tired, give up and go away after a while. You have to be pro-active.
And know that they are very well aware of the problems with these forks from past failures. They have made the financial calculation that is in their favor to keep producing this design without strengthening it, and pay off anyone who has a failure (even if it causes a death). So don't feel bad, keep pestering your dealer and work you way up the chain to BMW corporate, and get whatever you can from them.
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Old 07-07-2011, 11:35 AM   #250
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They have made the financial calculation that is in their favor to keep producing this design without strengthening it, and pay off anyone who has a failure (even if it causes a death)
No offense (usually said before offending someone), but that is complete BS, I think you've been watching too many 80s thriller movies. ;) Executives at large prestigious companies dont make concessions that will willingly dilute the brand image or cause injury and death. Even if it was purely based on economic factors, it makes more business sense to prevent failure and ensure brand quality.

I don't own a BMW, I dont work for BMW, and I'm just as shocked and disturbed about the fork failure as the rest of the people here, but by no means do I think it was an intentional act of negligence on BMW's part. I think they generally make a great product, but don't think you are going to have them come apologizing and throwing money at every accident as that would set a precedent and lead to financial ruin.

I do however think they seriously need to address this design and build quality of parts from suppliers to prevent this in the future.
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Old 07-07-2011, 12:53 PM   #251
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"I do however think they seriously need to address this design and build quality of parts from suppliers to prevent this in the future."

Good point!

Who is the supplier for those pesky final drive units that keep blowing out, Yugo?
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Old 07-07-2011, 01:06 PM   #252
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No offense (usually said before offending someone), but that is complete BS, I think you've been watching too many 80s thriller movies. ;) Executives at large prestigious companies dont make concessions that will willingly dilute the brand image or cause injury and death. Even if it was purely based on economic factors, it makes more business sense to prevent failure and ensure brand quality.

I don't own a BMW, I dont work for BMW, and I'm just as shocked and disturbed about the fork failure as the rest of the people here, but by no means do I think it was an intentional act of negligence on BMW's part. I think they generally make a great product, but don't think you are going to have them come apologizing and throwing money at every accident as that would set a precedent and lead to financial ruin.

I do however think they seriously need to address this design and build quality of parts from suppliers to prevent this in the future.
It could be that the engineers who did the new models weren't even aware of previous failures so the just sort of grabbed a known fork leg and used that. There isn't perfect communications in organizations OR it may be that BMW thought its FEA (assuming it was done) on this assembly was sufficient to determine that the fork was good.

This is a major issue and I doubt it can remain secret for long unless it turns out to be an outlier. The OP here wasn't badly hurt but some of those with the F models were. If this defective leg in this thread was a fluke - ok, but if it persists someone is going to be much worse hurt than the OP.

What interests me is that pub called MCN. That isn't advertiser supported. I wonder if it reported the many F model failures and if not, why.
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Old 07-07-2011, 01:51 PM   #253
Max Kool
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Question to the topicstarter: was the fork brace bent?
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Old 07-07-2011, 02:17 PM   #254
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Update:
The NHTSA has corrected the complaint # 10409875 which had to be corrected to show the model G650Gs. http://www-odi.nhtsa.dot.gov/complaints/
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Old 07-07-2011, 05:04 PM   #255
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For AW: Mr. Engels, in post number 253, talks about the failure of your left fork, too. However, your photos don't show a broken left fork - it appears that the wheel is still on the bike but possibly only supported on the left side. I cannot recall any previous mention of the left fork. You previously listed the part numbers for your R&L forks but not (as I recall) their dates of manufacture as stamped on the castings. When were they made? BTW... thank you for keeping us updated.
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