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West Sussex Area Rep
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
My experience with Hidden Performance Ltd. (HP2 Ltd.)

Please note the following are my own personal experiences. I am only sharing so people can see what I have been through and make an informed decision themselves.

On the 21st January 2018 I approached Hidden Performance Ltd. regarding an R34 Nissan Skyline that they had for sale with a blown engine. I emailed my requests to have the car completed to the spec I wanted. I received a quote which I agreed to and I promptly paid in full. (Please note I did not request any special prices or discounts, I emailed what I wanted and asked for a price) I then received an invoice that stated an estimated lead time of 5-7 weeks from commencement of project.

Work on the car began on the 23rd January 2018. After ordering the body kit online I was informed it would not be arriving until early March. This would delay the car slightly but I was told the painter would need it for 8 – 10 days to fit and paint the kit.

To go on the car I bought some 19” alloys which I had delivered to Hidden Performance. On the 4th March 2018 I received notification that the new wheels I had bought for the car would not fit as they were hitting on the suspension. I was informed that I’d need new smaller profile tyres and some spacers to get them to fit. This would be addressed once the body kit was fitted due to the wider arches and measurements needing to be taken.

On the 10th March 2018 the GTR body kit for the car arrived, I requested for it to be test fitted when it arrived (due to concerns around fitment as it’s all fiberglass and they never fit) but this did not happen.

On the 16th March 2018 I raised concerns that the bonnet pictured on the eBay site for the GTR body kit did not look the same as the bonnet on my car. I was told it was fine and would not be an issue.

On the 18th March 2018 the mechanical work was completed. My car was run in on your rolling road and the car was ready to go to the body shop.

On the 22nd March 2018 after chasing Hidden Performance for an update I was told that the car was at Sandwhich Body Repair Centre (the body shop they outsource the work to)to have the kit fitted and be painted. I was informed that the kit was of terrible quality but they would get it sorted.

I then received a message from Hidden Performance asking me to urgently call regarding the bonnet. Upon calling I was informed that the bonnet was too long and would not fit with the bumper (which I had raised as a concern previously and been told it was fine). After a conversation we decided to cut the OEM bonnet and weld to fit correctly.

Work on the body kit continued slowly. I would have had to chase Hidden Performance for updates and was constantly reminded about the bad quality of the kit and how much extra work was involved to fit it which I accepted. On the 5th April 2018 I was lead to believe it would only be a further week’s work to fit and smooth the kit.

On the 10th April 2018 Hidden Performance messaged me to tell me the kit was all on and the car was to be in primmer that day and would be in paint over the weekend.

On the 16th April 2018 I messaged Hidden Performance as I had not received any communication from. I got a reply stating the car was not in paint and that the painter was still adjusting the body kit. It was then stated Hidden Performance had bent over backwards to help me get the car done cheap as a favor. This is the first time this was mentioned to me, and as previously stated, I never asked for a discount or cheap work. I simply asked for a quote at the start and paid. I received an apology for the delays and it was stated the painter was behind on the project.

On the 18th April 2018 I was given the number to the painter at Sandwich Body Repair Centre. He would send me updates as and when he could but progress was still very slow. Hidden Performance informed me that James was working on my car roughly 4 hours a day as and when he could.

I received an update on the 27th April 2018. It stated my car was getting there slowly. I asked when it might be ready for paint. I was told there were still a few fiddly bits to do but I would see some real progress the following week.

On the 30th April 2018 I messaged the painter asking for an update. I raised my concerns that the car was a month overdue. He confirmed he was only working on it for 4 hours a day and that I had to bear with him as he was mainly working on it on his own with no assistance. He told me he had 3-4 days left of body work to do and that it should be in primer by next week.
 

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West Sussex Area Rep
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4,952 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
On the 10th May 2018 after asking for an update I received a message from the painters wife (and equal business partner) stating the painter could not handle the strain from myself and Hidden Performance and that I would need to message her for updates from now on.

I would get replies and a few pictures, but they would never commit to giving me a completion date.

On the 17th May 2018, after asking for an update, I received a message from the painter’s wife asking me to come down so they could show me the kit. She stated I didn’t know what they were dealing with and that she didn’t have time to message me updates. She also said to me to come down and collect my car if I did not think the vehicle would be up to standard. I immediately contacted Hidden Performance who told me they would sort it out.

The car continued to progress slowly. On the 24th May 2018 I received a message from the painter stating Hidden Performance was on his case and his wife wasn’t in the workshop that week. I was told that all going to plan the car would be painted the next week.

On the 28th May 2018 Hidden Performance messaged me stating the car was in the paint booth. I messaged the painter and asked about this and he informed me that he was still working on the bumpers and the car was not in the booth. I messaged Hidden Performance, I was informed they were mistaken about it being in the booth.

On the 30th May 2018 my main point of contact at Hidden Performance who had been over seeing my build messaged me to let me know that he was leaving Hidden Performance and starting a new company. This came as a shock to me but he assured me it would have no impact on my car as my deal was with the company.

I made contact with the other owner who confirmed he was now the sole owner of Hidden Performance after recent management restructuring. It was confirmed this would not impact on my car.

On the 31st May 2018 I received communication from the painter that the car was in primer and he sent me a video to confirm.

On the 5th June 2018 Hidden Performance emailed to state that paint work would be complete within 2 weeks.

On the 8th June 2018 a member of Hidden Performance went and test fitted my wheels with the new kit. It was discovered that they were never going to fit and that I would have to buy new ones.

On the 12th June 2018 I received a video update from the painter showing the bonnet, seals and rear lights in paint and lacquered.

I provisionally arranged to come up and collect the car on the 22nd June 2018. This was confirmed ok by Hidden Performance and the painter.

On the 19th June 2018 I received a message from the painter stating that when doing a big job like mine they cannot afford to turn way regular customers. He stated he had had a 2 day job in over the weekend. He said he had done a few bits on my car to push it along but it would not be finished in time for me to collect on the 22nd June 2018.

Upon hearing this I called Hidden Performance to get an actual completion date. I was told they would go there first thing the next morning. I stated I would be in training that day and would call them when I could.

On the 20th June 2018 I called Hidden Performance at 10am. They had not been to the paint shop as the painter was not in yet and that they were heading over in half an hour. I then called again at 12.30 on my next break and was told you still hadn’t been and would be heading over at 13.30. I called again at 14.30 but got no answer. At 15:00 I got a text saying one of Hidden’s employees was heading over to see the painter.

At 16:41 on the 20th June 2018 I received a message from the painter stating that if I wanted the car to be a priority it would cost an additional £5000. As soon as I received the message I panicked and called Hidden. The owner answered the phone in a very aggressive way. He informed me he did not need me ringing and bugging him all the time. He would not let me speak. I eventually managed to tell him about the demand for £5000 to prioritize my car and that this had panicked me. He told me he would look into it and get back to me that evening. I received no further communication.

On the 24th June 2018 at 22:30 I received a message from the painter stating my car would be in colour this week. I received another message at just gone midnight stating the car would be painted Tuesday all going to plan.

After seeking advice from Citizens Advice Bureau I wrote all the above into a letter and sent it to Hidden Performance on the 26th June 2018. I asked for the car to be completed ready to collect by the 6th July 2018.

On the 29th June 2018 I received an email response to my letter from the owner of Hidden stating he was “both surprised and disappointed that you felt it necessary to take this approach” and that he would reply as soon as he had time to read it and formulate a considered response. I never received a response.

The painter stayed in contact so I knew the car was progressing slowly. On the 23rd July 2018 I received a picture of the car almost complete with only a few items to put back on. I emailed Hidden Performance who had not been in contact with me since the 29th June 2018, stating the car was almost finished and could they sort out collecting. They replied stating they would liaise with the painter and get back to me as soon as. I received no communication.

On the 28th July 2018 I asked Hidden to collect my car from the painter in whatever state it was as no progress had been made since the 23rd. Home life meant I needed the car and could no longer wait.

On the 31st July 2018 Hidden went to collect my car to find the paint shop locked up and no one in. Despite several attempts all day by myself and Hidden we could not get hold of the painter.

Eventually on the 3rd August 2018 the car made it back to Hidden Performance. It was in a state. Dust from sanding covered the whole engine and interior. Passenger window switch had been broken, number of items hadn’t been refitted and it had running issues.

The above was sorted and the car was booked in for MOT on the 24th August 2018 with the plan to collect on the 28th. Unfortunately the car failed its MOT on rear brake pads and track rod ends. These were sourced and the car passed the following day with no advisories.

I collected the car on the 28th August 2018. There were a few items I wasn’t happy with after a quick look round. I noticed the washer bottle had been stuck on with duct tape, the electric window wasn’t working and fuse box lid was missing. Due to desperately needing the car I had to take it as is and get home.

I got the car home and after driving it around for a bit I noticed a number of serious issues. The idle was way too high and the car would stutter and try to stall every now and then. The tiptronic gearbox would not always change gear, eventually getting stuck in 3rd altogether. I emailed Hidden who asked me to do some further tests the next day. I got up early on the 29th August 2018 and went to start the car. It would fire up but then immediately stall. The car was returned to Hidden Performance on the back of an AA lorry.

Hidden looked the car over on the 2nd September and confirmed the issues. I sent them a list of things to sort, including the window switch, missing fuse box lid and washer bottle. They agreed they would sort most the issues but that I would have to pay to sort the gearbox issue.

I called citizens advice bureau who linked me to a website for the consumers rights act. This clearly stated the car needed to be fit for purpose and it was there legal requirement to fix the car. I sent this to Hidden. I received no communication and was getting ready to take legal action, then on the 7th September 2018 I got an email stating everything had been resolved and the car was now fit for purpose and ready to collect. I arranged to collect the car on the 14th September 2018. All issues were resolved.

On the 20th September 2018 I noticed I was getting a noise from the cam area. I posted a video on the owners club and they are fairly certain it’s the cam belt is too tight. I also found an exhaust leak as I have 2 out of 6 bolts missing on the back of my turbo elbow. I sent a message to Hidden with the videos on the 24th September 2018. They responded saying the bolts were an over site and that the noise sounds more like a water pump (which is brand new?) or AC compressor (air con isn’t on).

I have had the car looked at by another tuning company and it is coming from the cam belt area.

I am also still waiting on a final invoice which I have been promised this week!

If you made it this far I thank you for reading my post and apologies for the length of it. This whole experience has been extremely stressful for me and is one I will never repeat. I just want to confirm this is my own personal experience only.
 

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Seasoned Member
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9,055 Posts
Dude, I knew it was bad... but that just takes the digestive.

It's good that you have put this on here to warn other owners, but they are not vehicle specific and work on many marques. It might be more beneficial to write a google review on the business?!?!

Even after all of this I hope you are now happy with the car and enjoying it?
 

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West Sussex Area Rep
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4,952 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
I feel for you mate, I've just booked mine in for its respray and final finishing/prep of the kit and to be honest I'm dreading a similar situation as you've gone through.

Are they expecting you to pay out and more than you were initially quoted for the work?
No they are not expecting me to pay more for the above work. However, the issue with the cam belt I have now they should resolve as they are the ones that fitted it incorrectly when they put the engine together. Currently they are refusing to.

I am currently seeking legal advice regarding the matter.

Dude, I knew it was bad... but that just takes the digestive.

It's good that you have put this on here to warn other owners, but they are not vehicle specific and work on many marques. It might be more beneficial to write a google review on the business?!?!

Even after all of this I hope you are now happy with the car and enjoying it?
I have posted this on a lot of forums not just this one. I am working on a shorter version for google and Facebook reviews.

Currently still not enjoying it because of the engine noise. Once that’s resolved hopefully I’ll learn to love it.
 

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Super Moderator
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8,969 Posts
Sounds a nightmare, sounds like HP used a painter that was more used to doing quick accident repairs which are the majority of refinishers bread & butter,
Probably because he quoted them a cheap price for the work, and then he realized that fitting a body kit was a real pain and he wouldn't make any money so he pushed it to the back burner, they are both responsible for trying to cost cut in order to make money because they probably didn't have the experience of doing a full conversion, if you agreed to the price quoted i would have to guess that it was a pretty reasonable price which confirms my thinking, i have had connections in the trade so know what can happen...just bad luck on your part mate, at least you have the car back, i have heard of some who have had to resort to all sorts to get their cars back.
 

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West Sussex Area Rep
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4,952 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Sounds a nightmare, sounds like HP used a painter that was more used to doing quick accident repairs which are the majority of refinishers bread & butter,
Probably because he quoted them a cheap price for the work, and then he realized that fitting a body kit was a real pain and he wouldn't make any money so he pushed it to the back burner, they are both responsible for trying to cost cut in order to make money because they probably didn't have the experience of doing a full conversion, if you agreed to the price quoted i would have to guess that it was a pretty reasonable price which confirms my thinking, i have had connections in the trade so know what can happen...just bad luck on your part mate, at least you have the car back, i have heard of some who have had to resort to all sorts to get their cars back.
Yes it was a good price. I've not had a full kit fitted before so had nothing to compare to at the time but i have been told since it was cheap. I have pretty much accepted the body work now.

It's the mechanical issues i'm more worried about now. I've had a lot of work done on the engine and i am now concerned as to what else they may have forgotten to do or fitted incorrectly.

I did think several times i was going to have to take them to court to get the car completed or my money back. I guess i'm lucky in that sense, but i have not got what i paid for.
 

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3,301 Posts
Wow Ben sounds awful from the get go. Poor company and poor painter, although probably not helped by the usual crap quality of Ebay bodykits.

My advice is get the issues sorted and sell it. Since I've been away from the Skyline scene I have not really missed it one bit. Modern cars in general are so much better to drive and live with and seem to come with far less issues than Skylines.

Hopefully see you around in Horsham soon so I can see what the car looks like in the flesh.
 

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West Sussex Area Rep
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4,952 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
The body kit fitting i can partially forgive, it was crap. But then working on it for a limited amount of time each day is what i don't understand. Putting it on the back burner as well for other projects. (Including painting other cars for Hidden Performance).

It's more the way the whole situation was dealt with by Hidden and the fact they have let me drive away twice with a car that is not fit for purpose.

They have since messaged me, we are in talks as to how to resolve the cambelt issue.

In one of the recent communications Hidden stated they have had nothing but 100% satisfaction from customers over the last 6 months. I think what shows a great company is not there ability to deal with customers who have everything go right, it's to deal with the ones where it all goes wrong. Unfortunately this is where they greatly falter as can be seen in the above write up.
 

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The body kit fitting i can partially forgive, it was crap. But then working on it for a limited amount of time each day is what i don't understand. Putting it on the back burner as well for other projects. (Including painting other cars for Hidden Performance).

It's more the way the whole situation was dealt with by Hidden and the fact they have let me drive away twice with a car that is not fit for purpose.

They have since messaged me, we are in talks as to how to resolve the cambelt issue.

In one of the recent communications Hidden stated they have had nothing but 100% satisfaction from customers over the last 6 months. I think what shows a great company is not there ability to deal with customers who have everything go right, it's to deal with the ones where it all goes wrong. Unfortunately this is where they greatly falter as can be seen in the above write up.
Well its very easy for any company to say they have had 100% satisfaction from customers but it means nothing. Lets hope they sort your issues so you are happy with the mechanical side of things.

On a side note was heading back from Crawley yesterday and spotted you going round the Bewbush roundabout. Car looked great apart from the wheel offset :drool::drool:
 

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West Sussex Area Rep
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4,952 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Looks like bottom end has let go today.

Had new bearings, crank work, n1 oil pump etc done by hidden before engine was fitted back in the car.

Will update when I know more
 

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Terry
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1,969 Posts
Looks like bottom end has let go today.

Had new bearings, crank work, n1 oil pump etc done by hidden before engine was fitted back in the car.

Will update when I know more
Oh my goodness.. what a massive blow that is...
 

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West Sussex Area Rep
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Discussion Starter #14
Just a quick update. The car has had a visual inspection carried out by another well known garage. A number of items have been identified.

Unfortunately the engine knocking could not be properly diagnosed without taking things apart.

Hidden Performance have offered to assess and repair the car as required. They have organised collection for today.

I am being guided through this process by the Consumer Helpline, Citizens Advice and an independent legal company. I'm taking it one step at a time.

I will update when i know more.
 

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That's unbelievable mate, glad you have legal assistance, i know you have to give them a chance to fix but it would make me a little nervous, but i guess now they are under a spotlight they will have to make proper job of it rather than cutting corners which they seem to have done....good luck with it you deserve some.
 

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West Sussex Area Rep
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Discussion Starter #17
That's unbelievable mate, glad you have legal assistance, i know you have to give them a chance to fix but it would make me a little nervous, but i guess now they are under a spotlight they will have to make proper job of it rather than cutting corners which they seem to have done....good luck with it you deserve some.
Thank you. This is why i have decided to keep the threads up to date. I am nervous but have to give them the chance. Just hoping it goes well. Third time lucky!
 

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West Sussex Area Rep
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Discussion Starter #18
So to keep this up to date this is the current situation.

Car went back to Hidden last Friday (12th October). This was confirmed by them via email stating they would inspect the car Monday and report back to myself with reference to the noise from the engine in particular.

On Monday (15th October) I received an email from Hidden stating they have replaced the cambelt and tensioner which appears to have resolved the whine noise from the overtight cambelt. It also stated they are currently waiting on replacement gaskets for the exhaust leaks which are being delivered Wednesday. Once fitted they will install the replacement radiator that I supplied and then report back.

I replied thanking them for the update, I stated I very much appreciate that they had moved quickly with resolving issues with my car however I thought they were just doing an inspection to report back.

I asked if they could confirm if the oil leak on the main crank seal was addressed whilst the old cambelt was off.

I asked for an update on the other issues raised during the independent inspection by the other garage, as well as an update to the knocking noise which is my biggest worry.

I also stated that I had brand new downpipe and gaskets in the boot (these were booked in to be fitted by a local garage near me but were put on hold when then engine started knocking) They could use these if easier for them instead of ordering more (to save them some time/money)

I asked to ensure that I was kept informed of all progress on the car. Stating we need to work together to ensure the best outcome for myself and Hidden. I also asked to have pictures of the work being carried out and to ensure I got the receipts once complete for items replaced.

I received a response stating they would revert referencing the various on Wednesday.

All updates and responses from Hidden are being fed back to the Consumer Helpline, Citizens Advice and the independent legal representative I have looking after my case to ensure everything is done in the correct manner.

I will update when I receive an update from them today.
 

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West Sussex Area Rep
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Discussion Starter #19
Another quick update.

The knocking noise from the engine has been potentially diagnosed as a faulty bearing on the tensioner which has now all been replaced.

Engine oil has been topped up to maximum.

The radiator I supplied to replace the cracked one has been fitted.

The front and rear of the sump have been cleaned and there doesn’t appear to be any oil leak from the front crank seal.

The replacement downpipe and gaskets I had in the boot of the car have been fitted and there is no longer a blow from the exhaust.

Hidden are still to investigate the leak to the rear of the sump and will update once they have carried out an extended road test.

Still no update on the other items identified during the independent inspection however in my last reply i have specifically asked for items to be addressed.

I will update when i know more.
 

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West Sussex Area Rep
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Discussion Starter #20
Email received today from Hidden Performance.

They have taken the new cambelt back off the engine. After the extended road test and getting the oil up to temperature a small amount of oil was discovered coming from the intake side cam seal and leaking down the front of the engine.

This was making it appear to be the crank shaft seal leaking. New cam seals and rocker cover gaskets have been ordered to replace the sealant previously used. A new crank seal has also been ordered which will be change as they have the cambelt off for peace of mind. These are expected to arrive during the week.

70amp fuse mounted on the fly by wire will be replaced by the correct 80amp fuse.

The brake reservoir cap has been replaced.

The sump leak has been sorted and the correct amount of sealant has been used.

I will get another update once all parts have arrived and have been fitted later next week. Until the parts arrive the car will not be touched.

I will update the thread when I get more news.
 
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