Details for Click & Clack.
Click & Clack Talk Cars “The Tappet Brothers’’ By Ray Magliozzi A blizzArd of complAints for toyotA’s blizzArd peArl pAint BY RAY MAGLIOZZI Dear Car Talk: Toyota. Or you can put signs on your car that say “Another quality Toyota paint job that they refuse to fix,” and park it outside the dealership on Saturdays. I purchased a new, 2012 Toyota RAV4 with the V6 engine and the premium Blizzard Pearl white paint. It now has 53,000 miles on it and runs well. The problem is that Most people give up in the the paint is literally blowing off. face of corporate stonewalling. About a month ago, I looked We can’t really blame them. It’s out the window of my house and exhausting and frustrating to fight noticed something fluttering on the with a company that has more than roof of the vehicle. It was a sheet enough resources to wear you down of the paint, which by the end of and outlast you. So if they don’t help the day had blown off completely. you, and you’re not up for a fight, A week later I noticed a small paint then you have only two choices: bubble on the driver’s rear quarter Leave the car as is, or repaint it. panel. Apparently, wind and water You can’t “touch it up.” The worked their way under it, and last paint job itself has failed, and the week a sheet of paint about 12 car has to be stripped all the way inches square blew off, too. down, primed, and completely I think they call this “paint repainted and clear-coated. delamination.” I call it a major defect. Looking around on the internet, it seems this is a frequent problem, and contacting Toyota has been fruitless. Is this something I can spot-fix or must the entire car be stripped and repainted? It is difficult to justify a $2,000 paint job on a car worth $10,000. Any advice would be appreciated. -- Gordon There’s been a veritable blizzard of complaints about this Blizzard Pearl white paint, Gordon. In my opinion, this is, without question, a manufacturing defect. For some technical reason, the paint didn’t adhere properly to the primer or the base metal. And we’ve heard the same stories you have; that Toyota is giving lots of Blizzard Pearl customers the “mechanic’s shrug.” That’s disappointing. I suggest you contact Toyota anyway, and give them a chance to do the right thing and fix your car, even though it’s no longer under warranty. The paint on a seven-year-old car shouldn’t be blowing off in the breeze. If you plan to keep the car for another three to five years (and with only 53,000 miles on it, it should go a lot longer than that), I’d say it’s worth a couple of thousand bucks to repaint the car, and stop hating it every time you look at it. It’ll also make it easier to sell when the time comes. But before you do that, give Toyota a try. Don’t be belligerent -- at least not a first -- but be firm. Tell them you’re really disappointed, you’ve taken good care of the car, and you’re aware that this is a defect. Let them know that they haven’t lost you as a customer ... yet. Maybe they’ll meet you halfway, and agree to pay for half your paint job. And then double the price. Good luck, Gordon. *** Got a question about cars? Write to Ray in care of King Features, 628 Virginia Drive, Orlando, FL 32803, or email by visiting the Car Talk website at www.cartalk.com. *** (c) 2018 by Ray Magliozzi and If they stonewall you, then you can do what most of the other Doug Berman Blizzard Pearl owners are doing: Distributed by King Features Swear you’ll never buy another Syndicate, Inc.