VW TDI Buyback: Documents Accepted

I have received communication stating that my documents have been accepted. Now, supposedly, a second ten day timer starts for them to validate my eligibility.

Here is a copy of the text that was sent to me.

 

We have reviewed the documents you submitted as part of your claim with reference number #########. Currently, your application contains all of the necessary documentation to determine your eligibility. We are now determining your eligibility and will inform you whether you are eligible to participate in the VW/Audi Diesel Emissions Settlement Program.

This email is being sent from an account that does not receive replies. For questions or other issues related to the VW/Audi Diesel Emissions Settlement, please visit www.VWCourtSettlement.com or contact the Settlement Support Team at 1-844-98-CLAIM.

To ensure delivery to your inbox, add claims_noreply@vwgoa.com to your address book.

My F30 328d

Being a car guy, the type of car and associated options are a very important detail that some buyers overlook. Let’s be real, a lot of the drivers on the road just want a car that starts every time and gets them from A to B for cheap. The econobox has taken over much of the lineup available to the US market. Everyone is EPA this and save the environment that. Don’t get me started on why there haven’t been more significant gains in fuel economy over the last two decades. Example: I once owned a 1998 Mitsubishi Eclipse N/A, aka 2gnt. During highway trips I could achieve 29-30 MPG on the piss water fuel(87). A brand new 2017 Lancer is rated at 33 MPG highway. In nearly twenty years, we’ve basically zero gains in this area, why isn’t anybody talking about this? I digress….

This push for “safety” and “convenience” is forcing car makers to neuter performance and dumb down the enjoyment level of many cars available. Gotta stay relevant and sell more cars yea? That poses an issue for someone like myself. I enjoy driving. I enjoy rowing through the gears manually with the fuel pedal to the floor. Windows down and radio up on a twisty mountain road would be the dream. Then reality hits and your options are automatic transmissions and electric steering. I could go older, but I do share some of the same needs as the general populace, I need it to start pretty much every time. I’ve owned cars that I enjoyed driving and they ended up modified. That leads to countless potential issues that will occur. Owning something cheap to modify is not a good idea right now, especially with California regulation, it’s tough to do much without sinking lots of money into CARB certified parts or sliding as much money under the table at the SMOG shop every couple years to go unnoticed. I’d rather just plan to move than go through all that noise.

The goal then becomes to find the best of these “slush boxes” to try and get a semblance of enjoyment out of the car. This crosses a lot of the available options off the list right off the bat as many automatics are just what we remember from the 80’s, mushy, slow, and meh. There are a few out there, though, that will make a believer out of even the most hardened manual Gearhead. The ZF 8HP transmission variants in many BMW cars is a fine piece of machinery. With the right programming and options, this transmission shifts extremely quick and is rated up to around 360 lb·ft of torque for the 328D.

I found a car after a few months of daily looking. I wasn’t trying to buy at the time but decided that it didn’t hurt to go and look. Upon arrival, the car was magnificent. With M Sport, the car was aggressive and sitting on staggered tires. The interior was all black. This was a significant change over my previous car as the headliner was grey, it makes a big difference. This car had the lighting package with Xenon headlights and Navigation. The list goes on. It was missing the Technology package which is basically a HUD on the windshield with the way the car was optioned. Also the top and side view cameras. I really wanted those but to be fair, I hadn’t seen a single vehicle with them during my entire search.

As most trips to a dealership go, I spent nearly the entire day there. This time included test driving the car, general chatting with the sales rep, price negotiations; Even walking out of the dealership at one point as the sales rep shut down any further attempts to negotiate. I ended up approaching a finance rep that spent fifteen minutes with me earlier in the day and she was willing to continue negotiating. After a late lunch and some more stewing, an agreement was made and we went back to the dealership to complete some preliminary paperwork.

There are some things that need to change, I am a car guy after all. I don’t plan on voiding the warranty any time soon as this could potentially be an expensive car to fix. Some general coding changes, programming the sports automatic transmission, a few other minor annoyances. I would *like* to change out the shifter to the “2TB” variant, it’s sportier and more comfortable in the hand. It may also be required to get the full oomph from the sports automatic transmission coding, from what I’ve read so far, there may or may not be a control module in the bottom of the shifter that modifies how the transmission works. I haven’t found a clear answer on that one yet. Either way, I’m enjoying the car as it is and I expect to get a ton of usage before it is retired. I’m looking forward to finishing the break in on the engine and starting to enjoy the full experience of this amazing F30 328D.

VW TDI Buyback: Documents Submitted

As of today, I’ve submitted documents to VW for this buyback to be approved. The confirmation page states that I should hear back within 10 business days. I expect to hear something back by the end of the second week of December, given the holiday and such.

Here is a copy of the text sent to me.

 

Thank you for submitting your documents in the Online Claims Portal. Next, we will begin reviewing your documents to ensure that you have provided all of the necessary documents and information to determine your eligibility. We will contact you regarding next steps.

This email is being sent from an account that does not receive replies. For questions or other issues related to the VW/Audi Diesel Emissions Settlement, please visit www.VWCourtSettlement.com or contact the Settlement Support Team at 1-844-98-CLAIM.

To ensure delivery to your inbox, add claims_noreply@vwgoa.com to your address book.

Day Zero: The F30 Finale

This is starting to feel like a grand slam. I’ve watched dozens of reviews and the 328 is scoring consistently high. The interior is pleasant to the eyes and all commentators mentioned high quality feel. Infotainment system is crisp, though I would prefer if the display were biased towards the driver some. My past aversion to BMW styling seems to be gone as I believe the F30 is magnificent. In truth, the E46 is lovely and my inner early 20’s likes the E36. 328D fuel economy is night and day vs the gasoline equivalent at 31/42 city/highway. There is some loss from the TDI at 31/46 city/highway, but they were “cheating” so that could just be the difference. In real talk, diesel will nearly always outperform the stated highway economy numbers, *nearly* always.

Now the tough part, determining what to buy. BMW offers a plethora of options and it can be tough to wrap your head around the intricacies of each item. Some options seem to overlap and even their online ordering system is not 100% clear at times. Luckily, there are plenty of user communities discussing these same items at great length. I was interested in active cruise control as living in Southern California, traffic can sometimes last for generations. Being able to sit back and let the car manage this extremely irritating aspect of modern day driving sounds wonderful. I did read some negatives about how if you have this system, if the sensor becomes damaged or blocked, your cruise control will not work whatsoever. This would be horrible if true, but I couldn’t discern through the signal to noise ratio of discussion.

Obviously M Sport is desired. There are styling aspects as well as visual enhancements that make the car look quite aggressive. The stock suspension would have been replaced for a lower appearance anyhow and M Sport takes care of this. Same with the wheels on the car, M Sport wheels are more distinctive than base. The list goes on for desirable options and I know it’s going to be tough to find a decked out CPO for the right price with zero competition. I had already thrown manual transmission out the window as I expect that search could last for longer than twelve months. The unicorn is out there, but I’m on a time crunch with turning in the TDI and don’t want to drive it for another year.

I begin scouring BMW’s used car inventory system. To be blunt, there were zero cars that met my desired spec. At the time of this writing, there are only 28 diesel powered 3 series vehicles within 100 miles of my location. Most of those do not have more than one or two options, the cheapo cars that dealers can push quick on buyers that don’t care much about what they are getting, just that it’s new. I decide to give up on the technology package. As long as Navigation is included, the heads up display isn’t necessary. I also give up on active cruise control and top & side view cameras. I’ve not seen a single car with active cruise control or top & side view cameras to date. (They are all over if you want to go 5 series, but I don’t want that large of a vehicle)

After two months of near daily searching, a recent model M Sport comes available. It was slightly more than I wanted to spend but figured it didn’t hurt to investigate the market. This car had nearly every option that I wanted.

* M Sport

* Comfort Access

* Navigation

* Front/Rear PDC and Backup Camera

* Moonroof

* Heated Seats

* Lighting Package

This car felt too good to be true, though it was over budget. I decide to inquire just to get the history of the car and feel it out. After a few emails, I made an appointment with the dealer. After an extended test drive and negotiating, an agreement was met and the car is now in my possession. It hasn’t quite set in yet. The car is amazing to drive, though there are some things I wish were different. I plan to document the daily life with this new F30 Diesel, all the ups and downs and everything in between. Here’s to 200k miles, if I’m lucky!