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The Tinny Mini

13 May 1974

28 Faults Shock Car Expert Who Bought It
By William Daniels

Dennis Lines inspects new cars for a living. So he knew exactly what to do when he bought a new Mini 1000 from his employers.
He inspected it. And he ended up with a list of twenty eight faults. Yesterday, Dennis slammed his company, British Leyland for allowing'shoddy workmanship.'

Dennis — who checks Triumph cars coming off assembly lines — bought th e car for £855 through British Leyland's discount scheme for staff. Now, he claims, he has spent seven days having faults rectified in the five weeks he has owned the car.

Most of his twenty-eight complaints were about the paintwork. But he has also had the rack-and-pinion steering replaced.
And he has protested that the handbrake did not work, the exhaust rattled, the heater was too noisy and the steering column made a grating noise.

There were other complaints about the car's electrical system and bodywork. 'We can all make mistakes,'Dennis, 53, said yesterday.
'But my car should not have been allowed to leave the factory with this number of faults. I shall probably be unpopular for speaking out about a car made by my own company. But I believe you cannot stay silent if something is wrong.'

Dennis has worked at Triumph's Coventry plant since 1946. His car was made at the British Leyland plant at Longbridge in Birmingham. 'My complaints are not an attack on my workmates,'Dennis said yesterday at his home in Westminster Road, Coventry, I am criticising the system which allows quality to be sacrificed for quantity, There is a lot of bad workmanship at British Leyland because some Inspectors don't bother any more, They seem to have been brainwashed.'

British Leyland was shocked last night by this attack from one of its employees. 'These complaints appear to be rather exaggerated,' a spokesman said, 'Quality is not being sacrificed for quantity, and it is certainly not true that our inspectors are brainwashed into letting faulty cars through.'

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