My ONTO experience

I just wanted to share my recent experience, hopefully as an aid to potential customers and also to ONTO to improve their service.

Context - subscribed to have a family car, mostly used weekends w/ wife & two kids, trialling it over xmas to use for the holidays and see if we like it.

I took delivery of a VW id.3 on Fri Dec 10th. That afternoon when using for the first time realised that the front passenger side seatbelt was jammed and unusable, and my wife couldn’t fit between the two kids seats in the back. Otherwise car was fine.

Called ONTO, they said they’d arrange to be booked into a garage asap. Monday evening chased, they were still waiting to hear from the garage. Tuesday evening chased, still waiting to hear from garage. Wednesday chased, they investigated and realised garage was no longer trading, so contacted another garage. Got a date - 24th Jan. This was no use so asked if they could give us a replacement. Rep said he would check with head office and get back to me asap, but was advised it might not be possible as “the car was still drivable”. Hadn’t heard back by Friday so chased again, this time another rep said they would try ringing round some other garages to see if they could get a fix done before xmas. By Tuesday morning I hadn’t heard anything so enough was enough, I called again to ask if anything could be done or otherwise cancel. No replacement was available so rep agreed to arrange collection and would go through the logs and refund money for any days the car hadn’t been used, minus the collection fee. Any plans we had for xmas went out the window. Car was collected on 29th.

Today (4th Jan) I chased for the refund. No notes were on the system for what had been agreed. I’m now waiting again for them to get back to me to “see what we can do”. I’ve literally used the car maybe six times.

The amount of hours I’ve wasted on the phone waiting, then explaining and re-explaining is unbelievable. The reps have always been very polite but it just feels that the processes they have in place to deal with problems is really poor, as is communication between departments. I can understand garages are busy and that ONTO don’t have enough car stock for replacements, but it shouldn’t be hard to just do the right thing by customers.


That has to be the rarest of faults on any car, especially a brand new one.
Sad to hear the story of inabilities to fix before xmas and in the circumstances I would have just taken to the nearest VW garage and got them to inspect and see if it was a simple fix.
Expect they could have resolved quickly.
Suggest you put the above story in an email to Onto and direct it @Carol for her attention as this forum is public and not a cCS channel to get a resolution.
Trust it all gets sorted asap and doesnt put you off trying another EV at a less hectic time of year.


Thanks, I’ll give that a try.

The car was otherwise a joy to drive.

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Hi @mateto - I’m sorry to hear about your Onto experience - if you could send me a DM with your contact details, I’ll look into your account and have Customer Service review this also. :slight_smile:


Thanks Raheel will do

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You should definitely push to not have to pay the collection fee as well, especially as the car was faulty and Onto/Garage couldn’t get you repaired.


@mateto What a nightmare. Surely before a car (whether brand new or a few months old) is delivered to a subscriber, some basic checks are carried out to ensure the car is fit for purpose, especially when it’s safety related items like seat belts?


Something could have been damaged or dislodged in transit, so checked when the driver left, and then they go over something or hit a pot hole and the tensioner fails (i am assuming).

I have seen brand new cars and used cars, drive off of forecourts and get 10 yards and a tyre blows, or the car stops dead, when the ECU just fails, even after every check has been done…


Everything fails in life, whether its mand-made or in nature.
And Sod’s Law states this can happen 1 minute, 1 hour, 1 day, 1 week, 1 month, 1 year, … 10 years after manufacture or any other indeterminate measure of time :wink:

We live on a planet where everything deteriorates with time.
The fact anything works for any reasonable length of time often amazes me.


Very Philosophical! :flushed:


Comes from decades of Customer Service Management. The number of times I had to explain why a product (laser or other high tech item) had failed after 2 or 3 years and their expectations was that the MTBF of 10 years meant it should be replaced foc. MTBF is the ‘mean’ time between failures, hence my time related explanations above and phraseology.

In truth if you add up all the MTBF’s of any product, it usually indicates it should never ever work. :thinking:

So it makes me really amazed and excited to see the James Webb telescope progressing so well. I spent quite a lot of time out in Karou, French Guyana years ago and got to inspect an Ariane rocket up close.


@burnt_crisps2 entropy makes fools of us all in the end.

Also I know what you mean. I worked for Bose, the audio company, the amount of customers who got angry when something failed either very quickly or within warranty. Used to have to bite my tongue and explain that no item regardless of price is immune to failure. NASA spent billions on Challenger for it to only last a minute or so.

It’s just how the world is. My Ioniq has some… quirks, that really should get looked at but none thankfully are super problematic


Ah. Everything makes sense.

Yes, I fully agree with your sense of wonder, @burnt_crisps2 … in my 60 years I’ve developed a sense of pleasure when things work… it’s not about being an optimist or pessimist… just that we have built a complicated world and things are there to be appreciated.

I think it’s why I choose my technology… on the basis of “it just works”…. Feels more rewarding when you can go with the flow… a bit like timing your approach to a roundabout perfectly so that a twist of the throttle and you’re safely through at a rapid rate of knots…. Or with a bit of scrabbling from the front wheels of a Hyundai……

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All consumers seem to believe everything should be reliable and always work these days and things that do go wrong should be fixed by tomorrow at the latest.
That actually shows how good many products have become for many everyday items to work well for so long.

What differentiates companies (that often provide exactly the same product) is the service and support that resolves any issues with good regular communications and prompt fixes.

We all take it for granted that when we flick the switch the lights come on and when we open a tap, water will flow out. 99.9% of the time it does just that. When they don’t all hell breaks loose. The fact the power loss is caused by a huge storm, flattening masses of trees and therefore poles/pylons across the grid network seems to have little impact on those left without power.
How quickly the whole network can be re-instated is usually incredibly complex and time consuming due to the landscape the grid travels over.
I have a lot of sympathy for both sides.
Those left without power in often freezing conditions who don’t seem to have any alternatives to keep warm and eat. And those poor engineers working in appalling conditions with extremely dangerous technology for very, very long shifts.

The recent storm in the North highlighted deficiencies in managing the sheer scale and time required to resolve and poor communication to those affected. The ‘project’ to resolve should have called for a vast workforce to clear routes to the affected grid issues, along with probably food/supplies drops to isolated communities. I trust the aftermath review will implement improvements as the grid is not a brand new infrastructure and is aged to say the least.

Living in north Oxfordshire in a small country village we have experienced many power outages and also loss of water supplies over decades and even before this we have always had the means to keep warm and cook without elecy. I guess the ‘be prepared’ moto is part of our nature, but I also think it’s part of what our parents went through that also taught us to be independent by nature.

OK that’s enough waffle from me. :roll_eyes:


You only miss/appreciate something when it’s gone/broken/failed etc.

Sorry not on a par with the wisdom of @burnt_crisps2 but the best I could do at this time of the morning.


So just to follow up here, customer service never got back to me, but @Raheel_at_Onto did reach out/call and sorted things out, with a refund for days the car wasn’t used. So great service from him, hopefully gave him some useful feedback that he can take and use to improve process/service elsewhere in the company.


@mateto - thanks for the feedback & it was lovely to talk to you and resolve the issue - glad we managed to sort it out & retain a valued customer :wink: