* Published Date: 07 May 2007
* Source: Sheffield Star
* Location: Sheffield
Renault shrug off L-driver's ordeal
By Amy Burns
A TERRIFIED learner driver was left "shaking all over" when the bonnet of his instructor's car sprung open on Sheffield Parkway during his driving test - smashing the windscreen and denting the roof.
The young driver slammed on his breaks and was lucky enough to come to a safe stop.
But driving instructor Helen Taylor is furious that Renault is denying there is a fault with the car's bonnet catch.
She said: "The boy was shaking all over. Quite rightly too as there could have been a serious crash. If a driver had panicked in that situation who knows what might have happened?"
The test was abandoned and the police were called to keep traffic moving.
Helen, who owns Crystal School of Motoring, has been told it will cost around £1,100 to repair the damage, but she will have to claim on her own insurance as Renault will not take any responsibility, despite a BBC Watchdog programme claiming hundreds of Clio II drivers have had the same problem.
"It has been all over the news that this has
happened to other people," said Helen, of Alport Road in Frecheville.
"Renault are trying to blame the customers by saying they don't look after their cars properly but I have had mine serviced as regularly as the handbook suggests."
Helen bought the Clio II new from Direct Cars in October 2005 with a three year warranty. It is not due for an MOT until October 2008.
"They keep saying that the catches are not faulty but I don't see how that is possible. What has upset me the most is that I have used Renault Clios since I started the driving school seven years ago and I have never had a problem before. But when I telephoned them to report this they were very unhelpful."
A spokesman for Renault UK said: "Renault has concluded that there is no design or construction fault with the bonnet catch mechanism."
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Last Updated: 07 May 2007