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itsuki

BEWARE! Tuning Developments are scammers

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Wish I never had to write this post, but I've been scammed by Tuning Developments and wanted to warn others about my experience. And digging a bit deeper, I'm one of many.

I wanted to upgrade my exhaust manifold, and seeing the positive reviews on here about their NA Tuning Pack, I decided to go for it and have them send the parts to me since I live outside the UK.

TL;DR: I pay for the parts, never receive them and Tuning Developments and Mike become impossible to contact.

Long version: I paid for my order in November for Black Friday. After not hearing back from them, I followed up a few weeks after and was told by Mike "I'm afraid it looks like the courier have lost it! I've got Ryan our fabricator making another manifold for you at the moment and we'll get that shipped off ASAP for you."

At this point I mistakenly took their word for it, and again after no news wrote to follow up the first week of January. Was told the manifold was being finished and would ship next week.

After that week had passed and still no reply, I chased again and was told he was packaging up that day and it would be sent. That was the last time I heard from Mike.

From that point onwards he stopped replying to my emails, and if you call Tuning Developments you get an automatic message saying they're at limited capacity and to contact them through email. And then when you go to email them, another automatic reply saying the same thing: "We are currently operating under a limited capacity and will return your email as quickly as possible."

I had become suspicious but kept giving them the benefit of the doubt because of the positive experiences I had read about, but obviously this was the last straw. Having a look at their Google reviews and filtering by newest, it's clear this has become a frequent practice for them over the last few months:

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I have nothing to gain by doing this and feel like an absolute idiot, but at least I figured I'd try to warn people against this shitty experience.

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That's a shame. I bought some MTEC parts from them last year over the phone and had a positive experience.
I think the orders in feedback above seem to be for big amounts.


Sent from my SM-G781B using Tapatalk

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Its sad to be reading review like this (from @itsuki), but considering many of us from the UK have used Tuning Developments multiple times I feel compelled to chip in too.

I have used them many times (first NA, then TD Turbo kit), and in fact all my major mods have been done or installed by Mike's team ( @Mike@TD.co.uk). Never had any issues and the service was always superb (had a manifold blow once, Mike fitted me basically next day and got it sorted pronto). Admittedly, I would go to Warrington myself and speak to Mike as to what I want/ what options are available, etc.

I am not surprised reading "horror stories" about shipping recently. We have covid, brexit and particularly over November-December I had parcels lost, delivered 3-4 weeks later, etc (for example my new wheels were delayed, and then DHL notification arrived a week after the wheels themselves - go figure).

Large number of satisfied customers hopefully will back me up with their 1st hand experience, although there would be an occasional story with unhappy ending (as I have heard with forged engine) - like with any business. Limited Google or FB reviews are not (probably) the representative sample, although anyone who feels they have to leave a 1* review should be listened to by the business aiming to improve their customer service.

I hope with the move to new premises and increase of business Mike will also get someone to help with the customer service/ tracking shipping/ other admin and client communication stuff.

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Thanks for sharing and thanks for putting it out there. From what I can see and observe being on this forum for years now:1. They did not put out a sale during back Friday this last year while they have historically done it.

2. All the feedback relates to expensive online / distance purchases.

3. No update on FB since 2019 while they are / were very active on SM.

Their product quality has been average at best and have been copies of US designs but they have been about cheap price/ VFM.

They may be good at tuning But I suspect that as when I got my NA package , it took them 9 tunes to get it dialed in. For a package that they do day in and out , 9 tune versions is a bit much if not too much.

I can't look at locked tunes so can't say the quality of it but signs are not positive.

Their service F2F was the differentiator as they were quite good at it. Shame even that's gone downhill. They cannot ignore / block a customer and not respond/ help. Delay is OK, ignoring is not.

I am worried they might be in financial difficulty looking at the above signs.

Hope TD respond to this and try to help you as the end customer and the others who have fed back on Google reviews.

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27 minutes ago, VAD17 said:

Its sad to be reading review like this (from @itsuki), but considering many of us from the UK have used Tuning Developments multiple times I feel compelled to chip in too.

I have used them many times (first NA, then TD Turbo kit), and in fact all my major mods have been done or installed by Mike's team ( @Mike@TD.co.uk). Never had any issues and the service was always superb (had a manifold blow once, Mike fitted me basically next day and got it sorted pronto). Admittedly, I would go to Warrington myself and speak to Mike as to what I want/ what options are available, etc.

I am not surprised reading "horror stories" about shipping recently. We have covid, brexit and particularly over November-December I had parcels lost, delivered 3-4 weeks later, etc (for example my new wheels were delayed, and then DHL notification arrived a week after the wheels themselves - go figure).

Large number of satisfied customers hopefully will back me up with their 1st hand experience, although there would be an occasional story with unhappy ending (as I have heard with forged engine) - like with any business. Limited Google or FB reviews are not (probably) the representative sample, although anyone who feels they have to leave a 1* review should be listened to by the business aiming to improve their customer service.

I hope with the move to new premises and increase of business Mike will also get someone to help with the customer service/ tracking shipping/ other admin and client communication stuff.

 

That's fair, it was actually those positive experiences I'd read about that made my chose them, there's no denying that. I understand shipping being a nightmare in these times, but in that case you're able to give a tracking number and a delivery provider to be able to sort it out. I asked them twice about this, got no response.

Like @BRZ-123 says, I suspect covid has put them in a tough financial spot, as the negative reviews and experiences seem to have started in the last 5 months or so. I'm sympathetic to that and completely understand, and like the shipping, I'd have no problems if they were transparent about it. The problem is they seem to have chosen the route of taking non local customers' money and disappearing, rather than being accountable, explaining their situation and offering a refund or another solution. That's what I can't accept.

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They might not have discounted for Black Friday because steel/metals has risen in price in lockdown. Just a thought he might not have the margin in the materials to discount like normal.

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3 hours ago, VAD17 said:

Large number of satisfied customers hopefully will back me up with their 1st hand experience

I am also a satisfied customer of TD. They've done a couple of services and some mods for me. Last time I visited them was a few weeks back and I've only had positive experiences with TD. 

I've never had any problems contacting TD by phone and have never heard the automated message @itsuki describes.

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Always had positive experience’s with Mike and TD including just recently ordering some camber arms and receiving them the next day.

never had a problem contacting by phone obviously sometimes there busy so just have to try again later.

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Not sure what’s gone wrong but I can also say that I have dealt with Mike and TD.  Mike went out of his way to make sure I was happy and gave me tons of advice when I wasn’t sure about products.  
 

I have met him personally, like a lot of other members here and he is a genuinely nice guy, always willing to help.  
 

Lost count on the number of times I have had to pick his brains about stuff and he has always come back to me, normally in less than 24 hours.  
 

So I am a little shocked by this post, hopefully it will all get sorted for you.

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Funnily enough, I logged in to drop TD a chaser on my order today and I see this. Allow me to chime in on this, I've used TD multiple times with no fault in the past. However, I too have ordered mail order parts in November and still await delivery. Although Mike is responding to me, the delay seem to be becoming a bit onerous at this point. 

There is clearly an issue currently with fabrication side of the business. 

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I've had a couple of minor issues with TD (bolts came loose on the NA kit at a sprint round, they fixed it and altered how they fit the kits since then) and part of the airbox melted but not sure on the fault as we removed it at the sprint (Mike offered to replace it). Other than that, they've serviced mine and done work on it and never had an issue with the service.

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14 hours ago, Sking said:

Funnily enough, I logged in to drop TD a chaser on my order today and I see this. Allow me to chime in on this, I've used TD multiple times with no fault in the past. However, I too have ordered mail order parts in November and still await delivery. Although Mike is responding to me, the delay seem to be becoming a bit onerous at this point. 

There is clearly an issue currently with fabrication side of the business. 

Out of curiosity what are you waiting on?

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So common in this industry to be good people, but have near-zero ability to communicate.

Just put prices up by 20% and hire an administrator. Problem is, so many proritise being the cheaper option as they enter the market, that they don't realise how difficult that makes it to grow beyond a one-man-band.

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Fair enough. Having spoken to Mike last week about a centre silencer i'm waiting on, he did say they've had delays with bits coming on from there suppliers so that's probably what's holding up your manfold to.

As ThatGuyThere said, the extra cost of someone to do admin is worth every penny when you have these sorts of issues as they can keep people in the loop.

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Just a small update for those that may or may not have heard, I had an email from Mike last week saying they've been forced to move to a new unit. So they've been really busy with that, hence all the delays with orders/communication.

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I've had a couple of issues with TD. The first was that they fitted their full exhaust without giving me a choice between resonator and super-resonator. The standard resonator was far too loud and obnoxious so I had to order a super-resonator pretty much immediately. The super-resonator has twice needed welding at the connection between inlet pipe and the large section because it failed.

More problematic was the proximity of the UEL manifold to my top hose, which twice burned it requiring replacement. I could not get the clearance more than a few mm. Manufacturing tolerances meant that I dumped it in favour of a Rogue EL manifold, that gave me more power with the supercharger, too.

Mike was always helpful with me but you do take a hit when selecting inexpensive components from a small company.

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I have been in touch with Mike and they are moving premises right now, there is a lot to do with Rolling Roads and stock etc...

All I can advise is to be as patient as possible, I will post here when I have more info.

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8 hours ago, KevinA said:

I have been in touch with Mike and they are moving premises right now, there is a lot to do with Rolling Roads and stock etc...

All I can advise is to be as patient as possible, I will post here when I have more info.

Any ideas where they're moving to? 

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It's ok for some firm to have temporary problems/issues with timely work with customers due that .. but at very least it looks to be handled very poorly, in way that will leave long lasting damage to reputation.

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On 2/16/2022 at 9:21 PM, Mike said:

Any ideas where they're moving to? 

Won't be too far from where they are, perhaps a little more rural, haven't got the address yet mate.

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