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Discussion Starter #1
This is the story of the problem I have had with the diamond cut alloy wheels on my 2018 Sorento GT Line S which I bought brand new from my local KIA franchised dealer.
This is the third new KIA I have bought since 2016 and my second top of the range Sorento. So, I think it is fair to say that I was impressed with the marque and the service I had been receiving.

When I bought the car, I had the paintwork and wheels treated with a protective sealer. I wash it myself and never use the hand wash places with their dreadful caustic wheel cleaners and jet washers.
Despite the care I was taking, I first noticed corrosion around the centre caps on all four wheels in early December 2019. I first reported it to the dealership in January 2020. Then of course we had lockdown. My car is on the Care3 package and its second service was due in June 2020 so, I booked a service in good time in April and mentioned again that the wheels were corroded and a warranty claim requested. I forgot to mention that in August 2019 the front discs were replaced by the dealer under warranty so, they'd had the wheels off my car. On 16th June 2020 my car went in for its service. The wheels were inspected, photographed and a warranty claim agreed and commenced. During the service it was noted that the front tyres were showing wear on the inside edge. My brother is in the motor trade so obviously I was going to get my tyres fitted by him. A few days later, I was asked to go back to the dealership to have the wheels and exterior bodywork of the car assessed and photographed to ascertain its overall condition. Basically, it is still pristine and well below average mileage. It's now just over 25K as I write this. The corrosion was spreading from the area around the plastic centre caps. There was no other damage whatsoever. This was agreed by the dealership at the time the photographs were taken. Two new tyres were subsequently fitted on 21st July at my brother’s garage.

In early August 2020 I received a voicemail which I still have, from Paul Baker in KIA customer services. He told me that the warranty claim had been rejected on the grounds that the damage was caused by poor workmanship when the new tyres were fitted. Mr Baker went on to say that, at some point the wheels had been rotated on my vehicle. I pointed out that the only previous work on my car was done by the dealership when they replaced the front discs, If the wheels had been rotated, it was done without my knowledge by the dealership too. I also explained that the rear tyres were wearing evenly and showed no signs of the wear that the front tyres had. I further reminded him that I had first seen the corrosion in December 2019, reported it in January 2020, again in April and the warranty claim was started in June 2020 so, how could the fitting of new tyres in July 2020 be the cause of the corrosion and therefore the reason to refuse the warranty claim.

Despite numerous calls and emails KIA CS refused to further engage with me. I made a formal complaint to KIA UK, which was never acknowledged. In the end, the dealership offered me, as a goodwill gesture, 50% discount on having all four wheels refurbished. I agreed and the wheels were done in November 2020, very nicely I must add and fortunately, with a twelve month warranty. Unfortunately however, the corrosion has reappeared less than three months later.

I'm now considering having the wheels powder coated in shadow chrome under the warranty. I no longer have any confidence in the resilience of the diamond cut finish. If KIA continue to fit diamond cut wheels, they should improve their production methods or honour the warranty claims on them where the corrosion is due to poor manufacturing and not neglect or abuse.

I now have little faith in KIA who, despite clear evidence to the contrary, blame someone else for causing the corrosion on the wheels and use it as an excuse to refuse the warranty claim. I have just had to have the rear shock absorbers replaced after they seized up. They were done under warranty without question. I just don't understand why they took the decision they did over the wheels. I have no doubt that I could have pursued this issue through the Ombudsman or small claims court but, to be perfectly honest I could not be bothered with the hassle, which I wonder, is what they hope for.
 

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Sadly it is not just Kia with Diamond cut wheel issues...
Take a look round a car park at the cars. You will see so many with the same issue.
Just why manufactures persist with this type of finish (guess it's a cost thing) I do not know.

I had a claim rejected on the basis of pictures. Stating it was stone chip damage (in center area as well).
I did question as to how a photo taken several feet away. Could someone viewing it tell it has stone chips? Given if you run your fingers over the surface it was smooth.
If they had taken the wheels off and had a microscope on them, then maybe....
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Here is an update on my wheels. The company who refurbished my wheels agreed to do them again but this time in a shadow chrome powder coat finish. They've now been done and to be perfectly honest, I actually prefer them to the original diamond cut. Furthermore they should last much better too.
The pictures do some justice but they are better in reality.
So, if anyone else is suffering corrosion problems with their diamond cut wheels this is what mine look like now after powder coating.

KIA Wheel 1.jpg
KIA Wheel 2.jpg
KIA Wheel 3.jpg
 
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