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WARNING: Giant wall-of-text incoming.

TL:DR - my Challenger RT with less than 1000 miles on it was making a ticking noise between 2500-4000 rpm. Dealership determined it's in the engine itself and have to tear the engine apart.

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It was time for a new car. My getting-long-in-the-tooth BMW Z4 was going to cost me many thousands of dollars over the next 6 months. Instead, I opted to sell my beloved Sardine Can and begin the hunt for a new vehicle.

My requirements were: performance-oriented car, good looks, manual transmission (if possible), and more comfortable for my large frame than the bone-breaking ride of my Z4.

After doing many hours of internet research, I settled on an RT Dodge Charger or Challenger, and I was leaning towards a Charger.

So over the course of 45 days, I test drove four different Chargers. But when it came down to 'make the deal' with the dealership, I always chickened out. Something inside was holding me back.

During this time, I wanted to test drive a Challenger too, but either the dealership didn't have a manual transmission in stock, or flat-out wouldn't let me test drive one (I left those dealerships in a big hurry. I am not a young kid).

I finally found a good, used Challenger that a local dealership would let me test drive. It was a 2016 with 30k miles on the clock.

Aftet the test drive, I was in love. This was what I wanted. The feeling of that Challenger is what I had been missing, and why I hadn't bought a Charger. It ticked off all my requirements too: sports car, manual transmission, good looks, and comfy!

But the 2016 I drove was a little too high mileage for me (30k isn't bad mileage by any means, but I wanted something with a bit more factory warranty left), and the dealership wanted to charge me over 2000(!) in add-on fees. I walked away, but now I knew I wanted a Challenger.

Two days later I found a beautiful 2018 Challenger in Jacksonville, FL. It was USED with 187 miles on the clock. Maximum steel color, dark rims, manual transmission, etc. And because it had been titled, it was over 7000 less than it would have cost new.

I called the dealership and got the story. A older gentleman bought it in March for himself. He took it home and his wife LOVED the car. She wanted to drive it too. However, she couldn't drive stick and had no interest in learning. She told him he needed to go back and buy and automatic so she could drive it.

"But it's my car!" he protested. "I don't care, I want to drive it too." She replied.

This gentleman believed in the 'happy wife, happy life' philosophy, so he returned to the dealership, hat in hand, and asked if they could trade the car in on an automatic. The dealership and this gentleman came to an agreement, and he drove off with his new automatic.

So I bought this peach of a Challenger, barely two months old and 187 miles on the clock. I drove the three hours to pick it up, and the three hours home with a giant, shit-eating grin on my face the entire time.

I love this car. It's amazing. It big, with brash good looks. It's loud when I step on it, but cruises nicely on the highway. For four days I was in mostly-new-car heaven.

Then the problem started. When I drove to work one morning, I noticed a sound between 2500 and 3500 rpm. It sounded like a belt/tensioner pully when it goes bad. It was a kind of half-assed tick that got louder and faster when I engine speed increased. It wasnt always there (there were trips the car wouldn't make the noise), but when it did happen it was loud enough I could hear it over the exhaust and the radio.

I shrugged and figured I got a broken belt or pulley from the factory. I made an appointment with my local Dodge dealer to have the car looked at. That appointment was yesterday morning. My car had just over 700 miles on it when I dropped it off.

I took the mechanic for a ride when I dropped the car off and had him listen to the noise. He verified he heard it, and I wasn't going to get the car back with the old 'Welp. We couldn't hear the noise so we did nothing' answer.

Yesterday afternoon the dealership calls me: they took off all the belts and the noise is still present. This means it's in the engine itself. They have to tear down my brand-new-less-than-1000 miles engine. They have to take pictures for FCA corporate, and then decide if they fix the problem (whatever it is), or replace the engine

Sigh. What crappy luck.
 

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Water pump failures are not uncommon with these motors but if you are hearing a pronounced tick as you accelerate it could be valve train related. Some have louder valve train noise than others but if it is bad enough that the dealership is tearing into the motor then it could be a bad MDS lifter. Sucks to have problems on a brand new ride, good luck and keep us posted!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks Chally. A water pump would have been my long-shot guess as to what was wrong. I never suspected they would have to tear down my engine at less than 1000 miles on it.

I will keep posting in this thread as the fix progresses, although I doubt I will have any news until next week.

Meanwhile, I'll be driving the Toyota Corolla they sent me until my Challenger is fixed. ?
 

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hemis tick, but some have issues with lifters which isn't that big of a deal. Sucks but you got a warranty, either way it will get fixed or get a new engine.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Nards, I researched the 'Hemi tick', and it's my understanding that its usually heard at idle or low RPM.

This noise was between 2500-4000 rpm and could be heard over the exhaust. If my information is correct (and I fully admit it may not be), that's outside the range that you normally hear the Hemi tick.

I agree with you: I have a warranty and the issue will be corrected, so I'm not stressing about it too much. It's just frustrating on a brand new vehicle.

Especially when they give you a Toyota Corolla to drive in the intern. ?
 

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Its a manual car, so no MDS. Could still be lifters though. These are not quiet engines, I have had 3 and they all have that ticking sound between 2500 and 3000 rpm. Unless it is very loud, I would keep driving it. You have notified the dealer so they have a record of your issue and you have lots of warranty. I don't like the idea of a dealer tearing in to a new engine, it never seems to end well.
 
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Discussion Starter #7
Pallen, the fact that the noise was intermittent (it came and went), and didn't show up until several days after I bought the car makes me think that something is out of spec.

I agree with you: I am NOT thrilled my brand new engine is being torn into. There is a lot that can go wrong.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Number40fan, I am hoping for new engine as well. I don't know what's gone wrong with this one, but my confidence in this engine has been shaken. That's not a good feeling to have in a car with less than 1000 miles.

I've never heard of sending my oil off to be checked, and it inteigues me. What does that involve? What are they looking for?
 

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Number40fan, I am hoping for new engine as well. I don't know what's gone wrong with this one, but my confidence in this engine has been shaken. That's not a good feeling to have in a car with less than 1000 miles.

I've never heard of sending my oil off to be checked, and it inteigues me. What does that involve? What are they looking for?
Sometime an engine is just bad, they do run quality checks like running an engine, but they can't do it to everyone. So one bad one does slip through and it is rare. It could be just that something in valve train is defective.

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I picked up my car yesterday. The dealership replaced the cylinder head (due to a chunk of metal missing out of it), a rocker arm, and a piece where the exhaust meets the headers (there were two sheered bolts where the exhaust connects).

And it did nothing to fix the noise. The noise is even louder and more obnoxious than it was before.

I have to take the car back in tomorrow morning.
 

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I picked up my car yesterday. The dealership replaced the cylinder head (due to a chunk of metal missing out of it), a rocker arm, and a piece where the exhaust meets the headers (there were two sheered bolts where the exhaust connects).

And it did nothing to fix the noise. The noise is even louder and more obnoxious than it was before.

I have to take the car back in tomorrow morning.
Oh my gosh!!! So sorry. Try not to fret they'll replace it if they have to. This could be a blessing in disguise. You still got your deal. Let us know and good luck!
 

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Silver Scat, thank you. I'll keep this thread updated as I find out more.

The plan was to take my new Challenger on a road trip over the long weekend. I was going to pickup my GF and go run the Tail of the Dragon along the Tennessee/North Carolina border. That's not going to happen with the car back in the shop.
 

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I picked up my car yesterday. The dealership replaced the cylinder head (due to a chunk of metal missing out of it), a rocker arm, and a piece where the exhaust meets the headers (there were two sheered bolts where the exhaust connects).
:wink3:
And it did nothing to fix the noise. The noise is even louder and more obnoxious than it was before.

I have to take the car back in tomorrow morning.
Hi Superiormirage,

We are sorry to hear that you have an ongoing concern with your Challenger. Please send us a private message with your VIN, mileage, and dealer if additional assistance is needed while your vehicle is in service.

Darlene
Dodge Social Care Specialist
 

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Hi Superiormirage,

We are sorry to hear that you have an ongoing concern with your Challenger. Please send us a private message with your VIN, mileage, and dealer if additional assistance is needed while your vehicle is in service.

Darlene
Dodge Social Care Specialist
Thank you for your offer of support Darlene. ?

I figure it's only fair to give the dealership a chance to correct the issue before I get Dodge involved.

If I need further assistance, I will certainly let you know.
 

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On the topic of oil analysis, it can tell what is going on / developing internally. Think forensics. Check out these guys https://www.blackstone-labs.com/


Blackstone's standard analysis will tell you what you need to know about the condition of your engine and how it's wearing. The standard analysis costs $28.00 and includes the following:

Spectral Exam: Establishes the levels of wear metals, silicon, and additives present in the oil. Also checks for coolant.

Viscosity: Determines the grade of oil.

Insolubles: Quantifies the percentage of solids present in the oil.

Flashpoint: The flashpoint is the temperature at which the vapors from the oil ignite. When the flash is lower than it should be, it shows
a contaminant (usually fuel) is present.

They have a laundry list of tests and pricing.

Good Luck!
 

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Thank you for your offer of support Darlene. ?

I figure it's only fair to give the dealership a chance to correct the issue before I get Dodge involved.

If I need further assistance, I will certainly let you know.
You're welcome, Superiormirage! Feel free to message us at any time.

Darlene
Dodge Social Care Specialist
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I am seriously frustrated.

Before the Memorial Day weekend, I dropped my car back off at the dealership. I took the engine mechanic for a ride, and he heard the ticking/tapping noise. However, he also started hedging, "Well, it could be a normal engine noise.". Why wasn't the noise there when I bought the car, I asked. Why was the noise, originally, intermittant, and why did you replace a big chunk of my engine for this noise the first time? The mechanic agreed to look at the car.

The next day the dealership calls and says the car is ready and they couldn't find any problems. After playing phone tag with my service advisor for half a day, I finally got someone in the service department on the phone and I expressed my displeasure with this diagnosis over the phone (Politely), and advised I would like to drive one of their 2018 Challenger RTs when I arrived to see if it had the noise.

I picked the car up the following Tuesday, and the dealership brought another Challenger around, but wouldn't let me drive it. All I could do was rev the engine. I did not hear the same ticking/tapping noise that my engine produced. I talked to the service manager of this dealership, and I asked to speak with the local Dodge Represenative and requested he look at car. The service manager wasn't happy, but he agreed to email the Rep. I asked when I could expect thing to move forward. "I'll call you tomorrow." was his reply.

By Friday I hadn't heard anything. I had called the dealership three times during the week and left two messages, one with my service adviser and one with the service manager. No calls back.

So I called the Dodge Customer Service number. I talked to a very polite gentlemen and explained my problem to him. He offered to call the dealership for me, which I had him do. He was able to get through and talk to the service manager, who told him he was still waiting to hear back from the local Dodge Rep, and that he would email the Rep again on Monday and call me during the week. I had my doubts that I would recieve a call back, so I asked the Dodge CSR what would be an appropiate amount of time to wait for a return call. The CSR advised me to wait a week, and if I hadn't heard anything by the following Friday to call the Dodge Customer Service number back.

A week passes with complete radio silence from the dealership.

The following Friday(6/8) I call the Dodge Customer Care number back. I got a second CSR and, again, explained my problem and why I was calling. This CSR offered to call the dealership back, which I had him do. However, the CSR went through the same phone-hell that I experienced every time I called the dealership. He was transferred around, disconnected, and finally talked to the service manager, who didn't answer his questions but instead punted him over to my service adviser, who sent him straight to voicemail.

At first, the CSR advised me to stop by the dealership and try to get answers in person. I explained I was rapidly losing faith in this dealership, and I shouldn't have to drive to dealership everytime I wanted an update on how things were progressing. He offered to escalate my case, which I accepted. I was excited at first. Maybe I could finally get the ball rolling on getting my car fixed. I asked the CSR what happens now, did he need anything else from me? "No, I type in my notes and escalate your case." Ok, who will deal with my case from this point on? "I don't know." Uh....ok. When can I expect a call back? "I don't know. My shift ends very soon, so I'm going to escalate this and leave."

Sigh.

The following Monday(6/11) evening I hadn't recieved a return call from Dodge, and my patience was rapidly diminishing. I called the dealership and was again subjected to phone-hell, with disconnects, transfers, and being sent to voicemail for 45 minutes before I (politely, but firmly) informed the receptionist that I had had enough, and I wanted to talk to an actual person. She was able to get the service manager on the phone. I explained to him (mostly politely and VERY firmly) that was tired of being blow off, shuffled around, and generally ignored. I was NOT going away until my car is fixed. Suddenly, he tells me to drop my car off on Friday. The Dodge Rep will be there and will take a look at it.

I told him I wanted to be there when the Dodge Rep looked at my car. I wanted to speak with him or her myself and take them on a test drive. The service manager didn't like that, and said the Rep just wanted to look at my car. I, again, reiterated that I wanted to be there and speak the Rep myself. The service manager said he would have to call the Dodge Rep and ask him, and that he would call me back.

The service manager did call me back this time, and this was the response I got: "You will drop your car off on Friday and leave the dealership, or the meeting is off." Wow. Just wow. I was not happy, but I grungingly agreed.


Where I am at now:

As I mentioned in the first line: I am extremely frustarted. This is my first Dodge product, it has less than 1500 miles on it, and I've had nothing but issues since I bought it. My car has had serious repairs and still isn't right. I feel the Dodge dealership I am dealing with has blown me off, has no interest in fixing my car, and just wants me to go away and stop bothering them. I don't know where my case is with Dodge itself. I don't know if it's still being processed, or if the CSR shuffled it off to a dark folder on a server somewhere, never to be seen again.

All of this is a TERRIBLE experience for the customer (me).

I am going to drop my car off and have the Rep look at it, but I have little confidence he or she will be willing to fix my car.

/pitypartyover

DodgeCares, would you be willing to look at my case and see what can be done?

Everyone and anyone else: Any advice? I am struggling with where to go after Friday.
 

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Is it possible to take it another dealer? Cause it sounds to me that dealer that you are dealing with is a piece of crap.

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If you don't get anywhere after the Dodge rep looks at your car, it's time to find a new dealer. I wouldn't have gone back after the repair was hosed the first time.

DodgeCares on the forum is the same as Dodge customer care that you called on the phone. They just have their customer service people monitor this site for people having issues.
 
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