Joe and Kate Masters plan to crush their Dodge Journey with a tank.
Joe and Kate Masters plan to crush their Dodge Journey with a tank. Contributed

‘Destroy my Jeep’ guy finds tank to crush family’s Dodge

LEMON laws crusader Ashton Wood is taking aim at another target with new artillery.

The Sunshine Coast man is spearheading a new campaign which on Saturday will see a 2010 Dodge Journey be run over by a 52-tonne tank at the Gold Coast.

Mr Wood made headlines in 2014 with his "Destroy My Jeep" crusade, where he crowd-funded $18,500 and then had his Cherokee belted with hammers and crowbars, followed by being pulled apart by machinery.

Then inspired by the campaign, Melbourne's Teg Sethi created a hilarious music video "I made a mistake I bought a Jeep" after issues with his Grand Cherokee.

Now Waterford's Kate and Joe Masters have turned to Mr Wood to take their campaign to Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Australia - the distributor of Jeep, Chrysler, Fiat, Alfa Romeo and Dodge vehicles Down Under.

The parents of four children started to have issues with the seven-seat SUV one month after its warranty period ended.

There were a range of problems with the alarm and rear entertainment systems, although major mechanical issues started to occur in 2014.

They have raised about $9500 of a $15,000 goal through the go-fund-me website to "tank" the Dodge.

Mr Wood said he was contacted by the Masters family about 12 months ago.

"They were absolutely frustrated with their vehicle," Mr Wood said.

"They have had the dealer take it back and have an independent look at it but it was going nowhere."

He said they were among "a lot" of people who have been in touch with him since 2014 about troubles with a range of vehicle types, not just those made by Fiat Chrysler Australia.

Mr Wood wants laws to be introduced placing the onus car manufacturers, rather than dealers, to do the right thing by customers with faulty vehicles.

He also wants an independent assessor set up to inspect all problem cars.

He said the laws seemed to be progressing well and hoped they would be introduced next year.

Meanwhile, the Masters have said they were offered no resolution, a claim FCA Australia refutes.

"FCA Australia and its dealers have aimed to done everything possible to work constructively with the owners, including providing them with both service work and genuine parts at no charge after their warranty period had expired," a statement said.

"While FCA Australia is aware of this customer's concerns, the vehicle in question has been serviced and maintained by a number of private mechanics outside our dealer network, and our service technicians have not been given the opportunity have been specifically denied permission to inspect this vehicle's engine when at a Dodge dealership.

"All recent requests to inspect the vehicle to verify this customer's claims have been ignored denied, as have requests to have the vehicle inspected by an independent third party."

According to FCA, the Masters recently requested that no one from FCA Australia or the dealer network contact them regarding this vehicle.

"While FCA Australia is keen to resolve this issue, we are not in the position to issue the demanded refund of $40,000 for a vehicle purchased in 2010 that has driven more than 100,000 kilometres without at least having the opportunity to inspect the car," the statement said.

"With all avenues of communication shutdown, and with no opportunity to inspect this vehicle, we are left to conclude this stunt has little to do with reaching any genuine agreement with FCA."



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