I took one of our cars in for some routine maintenance today, and to replace the rear shocks. I dropped it off took at the dealer where we always get good service, and walked up the street to get a cup of coffee and do little reading.
A little later I got a call from the service rep. They had a little problem with the repair. The replacement shocks were bent, and they had to order more from California. When I got back to the dealership, I asked, “How often does something like that happen? Did you have the car up on the rack when you noticed the parts were damaged?” I can just imagine having everything apart, you reach for the new part, and discover you can’t use it! You’d have a few choice words to say at that moment! Fortunately for the tech, the parts guy stopped him before he got too far into the job.
This doesn’t happen very often, and you can’t just run over to AutoZone or Napa to grab a new pair of shocks. My model is manufactured in Japan and the parts are model specific. They did find a set at another dealer in Atlanta, but I can’t go back till next week to get it taken care of.
Shocks are the Achilles heel of this model of car, of which I own two. I’ve hardly ever had to replace shocks on other cars I’ve owned, but these will be the second and third replaced in under 70,000 miles.
I find it interesting that many car parts are very make and model specific. That reality alone means jobs for lots and lots of folks.