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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,

I have been going mad waiting for my new 650 GS, having lost my other bike in a crash over two months ago. This is the first BMW I have bought and I went to Park Lane (as it's the closest dealer.) I stupidly thought that going direct to source would mean better service - how wrong!

While I read about Pondboy and NI650 already having received their bikes (congrats guys, happy riding) I'm getting told that the bike won't be at the service center until Monday and they can't actually tell me what date I can pick it up. I am absolutly fuming.

With that in mind, this is the last bike I buy from them, but hopfully not the last BMW, and I will not buy any accessories or get any servicing done by them. So, I am intesrested in people's opinions of their dealers as I need to find a new one. I live in London, so it would need to be in the SE region, but it's always good to find out what the customer service is like around the rest of the country.
 

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Darius - cant help you with respect to dealers 'darn sarf' - there is quite a large section on the GS forum site which may be able to guide you, so good luck.

From a North West pov, I have been more than happy with Williams in Manchester. Advice, assistance, parts, service, rideouts - all great. Any complaints? - well the beefburgers were a bit overdone at the last BBQ but I will forgive them so long as I get a 1200GS as courtesy bike next time I'm in (major hint there!!).

TC
 

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Darius, I bought my bike from SPC in Alton, even though I had a closer dealer in Reading. I can't recommend SPC highly enough.

Not only did they pull out all the stops when I wanted to test ride a bike (shorty little legs so I'm a big nuisance) but when I purchased the bike (used bike) and had a paint peeling problem on the engine they sorted this out under warranty for me. Loads of money's worth of work done.

The guys there always remember my name when I go in and they do go the extra mile for their customers. Or that's my view of them.

Plus the roads around SPC are excellent for a ride. An all round good day out.

And no, I'm not on commission for recommendations! Happy biking!

Lisa
 

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Prestige in Bexlyheath seem to be very friendly & helpful, Ok so I haven’t brought a bike from them or had any servicing done by them yet. But every little thing I have wanted for my ST they have always had.
And they seem very keen to let me take out a GS1150 or RT1150 for the whole day to see if its what I want. I’ll probably take them up on this offer when the weather gets better.
 
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LONDON

hi there
i get really mixed opinions and prices from all the big boys in london..well confusing !
i have been recommended a gem though !! are you ready...
HAPPY BIKES
0207 232 1814

they are not a bmw dealer just dam honest no fuss mechanic.
they guy is so good for advice etc
i have a friend who is a bm mechanic who is too busy for me an just said go and see Ed at happy bikes.
well worth droping in for a relaxed chat at a good hourly rate

im doing my own maintenance and he will check my work after and give opinions and that says alot i recon...
check em out

Valkon..
Si
 
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Interesting thread - as I've recently been contacted by Martin from Banjax motorcycles ( www.banjaxmotorcycles.co.uk ) about an F650 query. Anyone know of them and if so would you recommend them ? as he asks "PS, could you link us as a workshop for servicing etc as we regularly work on all BMWs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
As an update, I phones South London Motorcycles and they had the exact bike I'm waiting for and could get it ready for me in a few days. My fried bought his CS from there and said they are very helpful.

Unfortunatly, Park Lane won't let me cancel my order so I'm stuck waiting for them, and no attempt to appease an irate customer. :wall:

Grumpy of Stockwell.
 

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that's funny cause i've had the opposite experieince. SLM are ok, i just got the feeling i was being treated like a tire kicker. Park lane are very professional and slick, i've been using them and they are v good so far...happy bike sounds good. this weekend is a good opportunity to get into the open day at the major dealers and scope them out. i'm in at parklane on Sat lunch.
 
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Re: they better watch us

Valkon. said:
these people probably aren't aware of the difference this and other sites make to their business.
BMW Customer Services department are made aware of the shortcomings of various dealers, by myself and others, one Dealer which happens to be mentioned on this page, so I guess that feedback gets down to the dealer eventually, because of the 'education' that BMW Customer Services give the Dealers, in order to make them perform to the appropriate BMW standards.
 

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I have to admit from what I have read about Park Lane & Park West on the Internet I wouldn’t go anywhere near them. I remember popping into Park Lane many years a go when I had an old R75; they totally ignored me & when I asked them for something it seemed too much trouble to serve someone in bike gear. At that point someone came in wearing a suit, he had 3 sales assistants running around him in no time I left empty handed swearing never to go in there again.
I would have thought after 20 odd years they may have improved, but there again may be not.
Just take a look at the UKGSer web site, they don’t seem to a good word to say about them.
 
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dariusp said:
I went to Park Lane, (as it's the closest dealer.) I stupidly thought that going direct to source would mean better service - how wrong!
Darius, I thought to get my CS from Park Lane cos they are just down the road from me, but I phoned them, emailed them and never got a response so I bought my bike from Vines in Guildford instead.

Vines also happen to be approximately on the way to work so it's handy for servicing and stuff. Vines have been good so far, happy to replace warranty items but it's obviously a small bike operation and their selection is a bit limited, they're also a bit leery of installing non BMW parts, like the Wunderlich gaiters I've just purchased to protect my forks.
 

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soth london motorcycles

dariusp, well its early days for me (still in the honey moon period :) )
but south london motorcycle so far have been ace .

after enquring about an f650 Dakar just over a week ago they said they couldnt get one till april :? but decided to go and have a look around the next day.

when i get there i was told they had just had one turn up
so after a little thought ;) promptly put a deposit down :-D

have been back today to finalise the deal and can take delivey anytime i want from next week :-D :-D :-D !!

course when they have banked my money will it all change ??
but i dont get the feeling it will (unlike some dealers i have visited) !

Just my 2p worth, Brian
 

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Hi Chaps,

all I can say is my experiences with Williams in Manchester have restored my faith in customer service.

Ordering the bike was easy, the delivery was on the day expected, nothing needed attention on the day. Further more all servicing has been quick to arrange and no need to return for faults. The coffee's pretty good as well!

It's amazing what service you get by bringing the lads a supply of oven fresh pasties (on barm cakes) every so often!!!!!

Regards
 

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Perhaps it was a one-off, but I wasn't impressed with them when they did my 24000m service - no new plugs, nothing appeared to be greased, no cables oiled etc. such that when I took the bike to another shop a couple of days later to have a chain fitted (Williams didn't have and couldn't get hold of a chain riveter!) the guy asked me straight away "when was this bike last serviced". OTOH they forgot to charge me for the oil and they do seem helpful and friendly. 30000m is coming up soon so I'll give them another chance.
 

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I haven't had to take them any problems, but Cooper Reading has been a great place to buy a bike and generally hang around. I have seen a lot of existing customers come in to look at bikes, fix problems, get advice and it has all been dealt with in a friendly and helpful manner.

Tim Angus and Andy have kept me informed of progress on my bike delivery (the good news and the bad). Sorted out other peoples problems by phone and yesterday helped a non Beemer customer by replacing the Autocom bits that were not the ones he needed. (Those Autocom brochures might as well be in Chinese.) All their other customers that I have met have been friendly and obviously enjoy their visits. Tim & Andy know most of them by their first names.

My bike predelivery service was not rushed just cos I was waiting and they were happy to fit the Touratech mudguard I had just received. My first service is booked for the 24th, so I can give a workshop update then.
PB
 
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I bought my CS in May 2002 and found them very friendly. The downsides are: it is mainly a car franchise; they are situated on an industrial estate away from Guildford town centre; they are an hours ride from home for me.
I have had cause to use SLM in Caterham after a puncture and was impressed by their facilities. Alton's SPC are also nice to visit (with a pub next door you can have lunch while work on your bike is being done) and, after my changing jobs, are probably going to be the dealer I will use in future. CW'S in Dorchester come well recommended and after dropping in to buy a BMW heated vest I can see why.
 

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Hi, although I am not in the immidiate area concerned I would recommend CW motorcycles in Dorchester for servicing and parts/accessories. Nothing wrong with servicing a long way away in the summer, have a loan bike and look arround the local area!
:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
All credit to them, Park Lane came through. They have not managed to get my bike and still do not know if it'll be ready in a couple of days or a week, as they have not taken delivery yet. However, they are managing the situation and have given me an '04 loaner until mine arrives. This and the promise of a good discount on some clothing has somewhat restored my faith in their customer services and I will stick with them for the time being and see how the relationship pans out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Did I speak too soon?! - Latest is that the delivery company is trying to find out where my bike is. It was picked up from the prepping center (Thornton, I think) on Tuesday. This is where Park Lane's bikes get prepped at the moment. However, I found out today that this transfer is treated as an inter-dealer transfer and can take up to 4 days

So, buying from Park Lane at the moment is like buying from one dealer and getting the bike transfered to another dealer before picking it up

Paul is apparently working on moving the prepping center down to Battersea so that Park Lane will work like any other dealer out there but that doesn't help me.

I liked the way they reacted after I complained (although I don't think I should have had to complain in the first place) but the more I think about this, the more furious I am with the general management of this issue. Surely Park Lane knows how long it takes to get a bike from Thornton to Battersea but I was told it was picked up on Tuesday and it would be in Battersea Wed/Thu. If they didn't know and bearing in mind they had an unhappy customer, they should have been on the phone to the delivery company on Tuesday to get a delivery date.

I cannot truly put into words how utterly dejected and pi**ed off I am about this whole process. This is my first real bike and was meant to be a happy experience.
 

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For what it's worth - Bath Road BMW in Bristol are pretty good. Have bought my second bike from them (R850R) and they've dealt with a few minor hickups very well (Battery melted down on Monday, replaced it immediately with a better one and even lent me a pipe clamp as the tank may have had to come off for replacing battery, in the end wasn't needed).

So if you live in or near Bristol, they are worth a try.
 
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