The forum with responses by the original poster and the members for the Ducati family can be found here:

http://www.ducati.ms/forums/56-superbikes/453130-my-ducati-nightmare-2013-1199-panigale-lemon-law.html

My Experience with
Ducati
&
Ducati North America (DNA)

INTRODUCTION

My experience with Ducati starts back in 2006 when I first got interested in riding motorcycles on the street. I had ridden dirt bikes and ATV’s for many years at this point, but was just getting adventurous enough to take my love for two wheels out on the street. I had always loved Ducati design, and their racing history but didn’t quite understand the brand and family enough to join it at this time. In all honesty, I felt I was too “green,” to own a Ducati.

My first street motorcycle was a 2006 Yamaha R6, bought in 2006, from Yamaha Sports Plaza in Oregon. I rode this bike for two years and put 7,800 miles on it. I performed my own maintenance on this bike. This motorcycle did not have any mechanical issues.

MY FIRST DUCATI

In 2008, I purchased a new 848, in pearl white, from Arun at Motocorsa. From the first time I rode this beautiful machine off the lot, I was absolutely hooked. The feeling that you get the first time you ride one of these machines is unexplainable. The sound in your ears and vibrations you feel through your body are incredible and cannot be replicated or understood easily.

I performed regular maintenance on my ’08 848. During the ownership of this motorcycle, the bike did have mechanical issues. At 546 miles the clutch on the bike had a serious malfunction while downshifting (3rd to 2nd) in an intersection. Coincidentally, I was on my way to have the first service done at Motocorsa. The shift lever got stuck in a downwards and neutral position (between 3rd and 2nd) causing the bike to coast and come to rest. I was able to safely maneuver the bike to the side of the road without getting hit by passing vehicles. The bike was picked up by Ducati Roadside via enclosed motorcycle trailer and dropped off at the dealer for repair. At this time the dealer also repaired an oil leak that was coming from a failed O-ring on the upper part of the engine. If I remember correctly it took about a month to repair because parts were backordered from Italy. During my ownership of this 848 the bike did have other mechanical issues. The motorcycle would routinely shift in a neutral position between 2nd and 3rd, 3rd and 4th, 4th and 5th, and 5th and 6th. The dealer did repair and replace the parts in the clutch that were responsible for this happening. After the repair, I still experienced this issue intermittently. I dealt with the problem until I sold the bike in 2010 for financial reasons. It had 5,000 miles on it.

It wasn’t until 2011, after recovering from a business bankruptcy and restoring my financial wellbeing that I was able to purchase a brand new 2009 Yamaha R6, raven, from Yamaha Sports Plaza. I was able to pick it up brand new for $7,450 OTD. The dealership delivered it to my house, gave them the check, and signed the papers in the driveway. At this point, despite the mechanical issues with my 848, I am completely in love with the Ducati brand. I felt privileged to have owned one, and am happy to have been a part of the Ducati family. Unfortunately, I was not in financial position to purchase another Ducati- and still not convinced that I belonged in the family. Shortly after this purchase, I moved from Portland, OR to San Diego, CA.

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The history of the “Ducati” name runs incredibly deep. The people that came before me built a legacy that needs to be upheld. I feel that strongly about this family and I didn’t want to tarnish it in any way. To this day, I don’t quite think I understand the blood, sweat and tears that went into building such an amazing legacy.

From 2011 to 2012 I resided in Pacific Beach. My R6 was my primary mode of transportation. During this time period, I had a local dealer perform scheduled maintenance. I moved back to Portland, OR in early 2012.

On 04/20/2012, I was stopped at a light, traveling southbound on NE Thurston Way and NE Vancouver Plaza Dr. in Vancouver, WA. As the light turned green, I accelerated through the light. A bicyclist in the bicycle lane was traveling in the same direction as me. Unexpectedly, he exited the bike line and made a 90 degree turn in front of me. I impacted him at about 20-25 MPH resulting in his taco bell bag and six pack of Milwaukie’s best tall-boys all over the street and both of us on the ground. The bicyclist and I survived, however, the motorcycle did not survive, and I sold my second Yamaha in 2012 with 10,000 miles on it.

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SECOND DUCATI

One week later, I purchased a 2012 848, stealth, from Jason at Motocorsa. This motorcycle had similar issues as my first ’08 848. The clutch needed repair within the first 800 miles, there was an oil leak as well. Motocorsa fixed both of them within 2-3 weeks. The clutch issue was related to the shimming of the gears. After this was repaired, I experienced the same issue with shifting into neutral position. I expressed concern to Jason at Motocorsa about the continuing issue. Although less frequent, still potentially dangerous. Jason explained that they had verified and fixed the issue once, and that if I was experiencing further problems with it, that I need to make sure I am “shifting positively into gear.”

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On 12/13/12 I put a $500 deposit to hold the first 2013 1199 Panigale to be delivered to Motocorsa. On 02/16/13 I traded in the 2012 848 with 4,074 miles.

2013 1199 PANIGALE

The first issue started with my Panigale started a month or two after I purchased it. The lower right side fairing had an exhaust retainer spring (located on lower right side exhaust pipe,) burning through the fairing. I took it into Motocorsa and Hannah ordered me a new fairing. She also noticed an oil leak on the upper portion of the engine (O-ring similar to the 848’s) and had it repaired within a 45 days. During this time period, Italy had an earthquake that caused the repair to be extended (no one was on-site to ship parts.) Motocorsa informed me that they replaced the fairing and installed a spacer on the fairing (per Ducati Italy service order.)

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When I picked the bike up I was provided the service repair records. I reviewed them before leaving the dealership and noticed that, in addition to the fairing replacement and oil seal, there was a paid warranty invoice for a headlight assembly and headlight. I inquired why these parts were replaced. “During PDI, the motorcycle was damaged. We ordered the parts and have had them here.” Was the response I received. With a laugh, and an empty tank of gas, I rode off. Arun and his team are great people and are known to do better work than most of the Ducati dealers in America. I did not want to rock the boat with Motocorsa so I left it alone.

On 05/16/14 I moved from Portland, OR to Orange County in Kalifornia.

Due to a previous poor experience regarding Ducati Newport (December 2012,) regarding their sales rep, I chose Brea Ducati as my local dealer.

Brea Ducati performed a rear tire replacement for me, as well as warranty related second lower right side fairing replacement. While waiting for my fairing and rear tire to be replaced by Brea Ducati, I perused the sales floor of their many dealerships, tried on a few riding boots, read magazines, and watched some great clips in their lounge area. The Brea sales guy and I spoke about his new monster (which is a piece of art btw.) I also ate some pizza that was delivered that day and offered to me by the sales gentlemen at Ducati Brea.

The issues with Ducati Brea came when I heard hammering coming from the service bay. I walked back into the shop and saw my tech using a standard weight ball peen hammering in the right side of my 1199 Panigale in between bites of his pizza. I was literally laughing so hard I turned around and walked back into the showroom and sat down on the couch continued eating my pizza. Once again, as Ducati customers, I’ve been conditioned not to be as big of an asshole as I usually am. Besides, aren’t we all a big family?

I rode the bike home and performed an inspection of my own. The bike was in good repair, torque on the bolts on the fairings were “within specs.” Once I got to the bottom of the motorcycle I discovered that the exhaust shields on both the left and right side were extremely loose and rattling.

On 02/28/14 I surrendered my 1199 Panigale to Ducati Newport Beach (Further referred to as DNB.) They resealed the cam cover and repaired seized bolts on the brake line cover above the clutch. I also purchased oil and filter to perform an oil change on the bike. I picked the bike back up on 03/04/14. They were unable to test ride the bike due to no mirrors on the motorcycle (explains why the cam cover oil leak wasn’t repaired successfully.) $308.96 charged to VISA.

On 02/28/14 (warranty claim number 292103) DNB processed a repair for a wiring harness recall. One electric wiring harness was replaced under warranty, Technician Mark Graham of Ducati Newport Beach. This might explain why the previous sales order took from 02/28/14 to 03/04/14 to repair.

On 03/01/14 (warranty claim number 292208,) this overlaps the previous warranty work order. Matt Graham from Ducati Newport performed another vertical valve cylinder seal after removing the cam cover. This is a second vertical valve seal that failed. (6,369 miles on odometer.) A few days after this repair I noticed that the motorcycle was leaking oil again, from the same location. Upon further inspection, I noticed tool marks on the ride side engine case. I immediately phone Adrian at DNB. He ordered a new engine case and called me about a month later when it came in.

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On 03/29/14 Ducati Newport replaced a timing cover because a Ducati Newport Beach technician marked up the engine cover with a tool. The paperwork showed bike was in 03/29/14 at 6,369 miles.

Ducati Newport picked the bike up on 07/15/14 at 10:23am. The phone records indicate when the shop called to say the driver was there waiting for me to get home. The paper work shows that the bike was checked in on 08/05/14. On 08/06/14 I contacted DNB at 03:22pm and had a 6 minute phone call with Adrian. At this time, I was informed that the oil leak had been repaired and they were waiting for the front fork assembly from Italy. When the parts arrived, Ducati Newport replaced both front forks, bled clutch master cyl., charged battery, and removed exhaust the tightened bolts. In addition to this they also replaced a snap ring, thrust washer, seal ring, and replaced the front right and left fork assembly. Performed by Nathan Betts at Ducati Newport. The bike is in DNB’s possession during this time period. From 7/15/14 to 08/22/14 about 39 days have elapsed.

NOTE: During a closed door meeting in November, I inquired with Mike and Adrian why the paperwork showed my bike was checked in on 08/05/14, instead of 07/15/14 when it was picked up. Adrian informed me that it “was a clerical error in the computer.” He said he would look into it and get back to me.

Adrian called me to pick the bike up in the afternoon on 08/22/14. I immediately drove down to DNB. I didn’t get two miles down PCH before the instrument cluster began flashing the service lights, check engine, ABS, oil level, etc. The cluster would dim and eventually turned off completely. I returned the bike back to Adrian at DNB. On 8/22/14 Ducati Newport inspected bike charging stem. They found it not to be charging. Checked stator. NOT CHARGING. REPLACEMENT. Replaced stator- now charging. Ducati Newport Beach said they replaced the stator/alternator along with the battery. Warranty Paperwork shows only stator replacement. I picked the bike up on 08/27/14 after being in DNB’s possession for 44 days. Approximately 1 mile from the dealership an engine seal failed. It sprayed the engine oil all over me, my rear tire, the brakes, and the cars behind me. I have pictures and a video of this occurring. After I regained control of the motorcycle, I parked the bike and called Ducati Roadside Assistance. Mike, from Newport Motorcycle Transport (he’s a great guy and did a wonderful job,) picked the bike up and dropped it off in my driveway. Ducati Newport picked the bike up on 09/02/14.

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On 09/03/14 Adrian from DNB called me to inform me that the bike will be ready in 24 hours as the engine sealant needs time to cure. He informed me that they were also replacing the rear tire for safety reasons. I asked Adrian to keep the bike for 48 hours for a proper cure of the sealant. I requested this because the bike seals have been failing after minimal cure time. DNB delivered the bike to me on 09/05/14, 53 days after it was originally dropped off at DNB. The service records indicate that they used blue loc-tite on the clutch cover bolts. This is interesting, because it was an engine seal that failed, not a clutch cover.

After they dropped it off, I took it for a short test ride determined that the rear brakes were floating and were not operating properly. I called Adrian and asked why this had not been remedied after the 20 mile test ride that they performed to check the oil seals, no answer. Mike, owner of DNB, approved a rear pad replacement. At 8,400 miles the original pads had 20% left on rear and 50% left on front.

On 09/06/14 the bike was again back at Ducati Newport. At this point, DNB driver doesn’t even need GPS to find my house. DNB replaced the fairing and right side exhaust components due to a third occurrence of the fairing melting. The bike was returned to me on 09/10/14.

On 09/28/14 I sent an email with pictures of another oil leak to Adrian at DNB. I inform Adrian that I want to proceed with a lemon law claim and have the bike replaced.

On 10/08/14, I emailed Adrian inquiring about my lemon law claim. He instructed me to contact DNA (Ducati North America,) as they have not returned his calls or emails.

On 10/09/14 I emailed and called Ducati North America regarding my lemon law claim. I sent them a nice letter explaining the occurrences and my request for a replacement motorcycle.

Melanie Perazo from Ducati North America contact me on 10/25/14 to discuss my claim. This is 45 days after I initially started the process with Ducati Newport Beach. She instructed me to contact DNB to have the current oil leak repaired while she prepares the documentation to replace the motorcycle.

On 10/26/14 a kick stand bolt fell out causing the kickstand to home partway off. The kickstand hit the ground in such a way that it caused the motorcycle to buck and jerk in a side to side motion. This caused significant damage to the exhaust, lower fairings and kickstand. Upon inspection of the kickstand, I noticed that there was also another oil leak on the bottom left engine compartment. This is in addition to the vertical cam cover oil seal that is also leaking.
On 10/28/14 DNB picked up my Panigale. Under warranty claim #354899 – They repaired two oil leaks, replaced the alternator cover, clutch lever, and missing kickstand bolt. The cosmetic damage was not repaired at this time due to DNA stating that the “buyback procedure is underway.” The bike was delivered to me on 11/06/14. NOTE: The oil leaks were repaired under warranty claim #354903.

On 11/08/14 the bike was picked up again by Ducati Newport Beach to address an electrical issue with E-LOCK illuminating and flashing red lights above 5K RPM, loose exhaust shields (again,) and missing clips from the headlight cowl panels. The bike was dropped off 10 days later on the 18th after tightening a ground wire, removing and tightening heat shields, and replacing missing clips from the headlight cowl panels. I instructed them that the fuel pump was also making a howling sound with each turn of the key. I emailed them a video of this happening. DNB stated that they were unable to replicate the fuel pump noise, mysteriously though, it was not present when the bike was returned. I have two videos from two different dates with the noise from the fuel pump.

In summary, during 660 days of ownership, my motorcycle was inoperable for 115 days, or 17% of the time I’ve owned it. Over 9,000 miles I’ve performed 5 oil and filter changes. I have a receipt for every tank of gas and all maintenance performed on the bike. I believe in the philosophy that if you take care of something, it will take care of you. In 660 days, the bike has had the right side fairing replaced 4 different times, the heat shields had to be retightened 3 different times, the front fork assembly replaced, 10 oil leaks repaired, wiring harness replaced, kickstand repaired, timing cover replacement, alternator cover replacement, stator/alternator replacement, clutch master cylinder replacement, lose ground wire, and missing cowling clips.

LEMON LAW PROCEDURE

On 09/28/14 I contacted Adrian, at Ducati Newport Beach, to start the Lemon Law Process. He agreed that the amount of issues with the motorcycle was a little out of hand and assured me that Ducati North America would take care of the situation. He stated that he would start the process.

On 10/22/14, after numerous emails to DNA about my bike, I sent a nice, but stern letter to Ducati Newport Beach, requesting their assistance in this matter. I understand that DNB has little to do with DNA calling me back. Mike and Adrian are the only people that would talk to me, so I had to use them to reach out to DNA. Whatever Mike did, worked. I received a call from Melanie Perazo on 10/25/14.

Exactly 45 days after I initially started the process with Ducati Newport Beach, I was contact by DNA. Melanie Perazo did not apologize for not returning my calls or emails. She instructed me to contact DNB to have the current oil leak repaired while she prepares the documentation to replace the motorcycle. She stated that she would start the process for the buyback procedure. We set a phone appointment for the following Tuesday to discuss the progress and to let me know that she had completed the research.

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A certified letter, formally requesting replacement, was delivered on 10/27/14. Despite Melanie stating that my case was extreme and a registered letter wasn’t necessary, I still sent it.

It wasn’t until 11/21/14 that I received an email from Melanie regarding the replacement of my motorcycle. She stated she was out of the office for a couple of weeks and is waiting for the regional rep to approve my request.

Coincidentally, I was on my way to a sit down meeting with owner of DNB. I had asked Mike to have meeting with me regarding Ducati Newport Beach’s involvement in the matter. I provided a list of things I wanted to talk about during the meeting. I wanted to give DNB, Mike and Adrian, a chance to explain to me their side of the story and clarify the issues I’ve been experiencing with the bike. This meeting was extremely productive and I am glad that Mike and Adrian agreed to sit down and speak with me the issues surrounding the motorcycle.

On 11/24/14 I received an email from John Bernsten, from DNA. At 74 days, DNA had sent an email agreeing to repurchase the motorcycle. During each one of my phone calls I’ve set up a phone appointment (7 days out,) with John and Mel to discuss the current progress. I was very explicit, stating that, “I understand you guys are busy, but please call me or email me to let me know what’s going on. Even if you tell me to F off, I don’t care. Please just let me know you’re there and working on this.” Every time that we would set a specific phone appointment, John and Mel both said, “I’m putting it into outlook now.” Not a single phone appointment was met nor email received. I was ignored by both of them for 30 days each time before hearing from them. I have records of each phone call and email.

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On 11/25/14 I received a phone call from John Bernsten, he stated that they had found a 2013 1199 Panigale and were in the process of inspecting it and crating it. At this point, I had requested replacement with an 1199 S model in flat black. My reasoning for the request was that my current 1199 has suspension issues with the front forks and the 1199S uses Ohlins suspension, to remedy this well-known issue.

John declined to replace my bike with an S model, but after much negotiation, offered $1,000 parts and service money, as well as the first service to be paid for. John stated that I would have the new bike in hand within 7 days. At this time, I specifically said, “John, I will accept your offer of a 2013 1199 replacement bike with $1,000 Ducati money and first service paid for, under the stipulations that this is handled within 7 business days and you put this in writing.” – Nothing was put in writing until 01/05/14.

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On 01/06/15, 41 days after John said I would have a new motorcycle,) I was informed by Ducati Newport that they had received a 2013 1199 Panigale in white. The new bike has 2 miles on it, but it has a dead battery, and was being charged. Once this “new” motorcycle was charged, a tech would take it on a 3 mile test ride to ensure everything is in order. DNB informed me that they had received the FedEx documents and scanned a copy over to me.

Contained in these documents from Ducati is a legal document outlining the replacement process for my Panigale. Included in the legal documents is a 1542 clause (release of liability for Ducati,) as well as a confidentiality clause. Additionally, there is legal verbiage that states Ducati denies my claims and does not acknowledge that anything was ever wrong with my 1199, however they agreed to replace it anyway. There is nothing in these documents containing anything about a $1,000 parts and service credit and a paid for first service. When I inquired to Adrian at DNB what to do from here, he stated that he would find out from Mike on 12/07/14 and call me in the morning to relay how to proceed from here. I have not received a phone call or email from DNB regarding this matter.

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In summation, I believe this to be a true and factual account of what has transpired since purchasing my 1199 in March of 2013. I have tried to remain as unbiased as possible. I do believe that if you were to ask DNA and DNB’s version of events, they would be identical to the facts I’ve laid out above.