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Leif Johnson Ford Customer Letter

 A recent customer of Leif Johnson was so pleased with his experience that he wrote us a three page letter of satisfaction! We’d love to share that letter to show y’all what the Leif Johnson experience is all about!

“Dear Ford Customer Relations:


Pictured Above: Stephen Brown-New Cars Manager (Left); Rudy Perez, Service Tech and Thomas Ledford, Service Drive Manager (Right)

I am writing this long-winded letter to emphasize my extreme satisfaction with my experience with Ford Motor Company, and specifically Leif Johnson Ford. Please find a detailed account listed below along with the names of several people in particular that made my experience what it was. Here’s a little background. I am a Ford man. I have been since I was a kid and always loved the sound of a Fox Body Mustang. Here I am in my late 30’s and I have had Fords, Chevys and several BMWs. The one that stands out are the Fords. I have had 4 Mustangs, an F150 and 2 Edges. Currently, I own a 1993 SVT Cobra, 2011 GT500 and 2013 Edge. Obviously I am still a Ford man.

I am a software engineer. As a hobby I work on cars and can do everything from spark plugs and brakes, to engine builds. I had a 2011 Mustang and I installed the Ford Racing Supercharger kit myself. I know what it takes to a be a good mechanic and I know how important it is to have attention to detail….the little things that make the difference. Having had a lengthy experience with BMW, I know customers are treated like royalty. Yes, you have paid for it, but having a Starbucks and a movie theater in a customer lounge is nice. I expected HORRIBLE things from Ford service.

In November of 2012, an old woman in a 90’s Honda pulled out in front of me and ended the life of my beloved 2011 Mustang GT. The next day I bought my 2011 GT500. Within a week, I had ordered the FRPP 750 horsepower supercharger upgrade kit. Within the next week, I had installed it, loaded the FRPP tune and was on the road again. I was ecstatic with the way it ran and the power it made. As with any extreme horsepower car, trips to the dynamometer and racetrack are common. This is what these cars were built for….for the enthusiast that goes beyond the daily trip to the grocery store. I am active in the aftermarket and enthusiast community and am proud to own and drive my Mustang.

You can imagine my dissapointment when a little pesky problem popped up. AdvanceTrac could be disabled with pushing the button on the console next to the shifter. Unfortunately, when any wheel spin was induced (such as the racetrack, dynamometer or simply on the street with 750hp on tap), it would re-enable itself violently. I consulted with Ray at FRPP tech support on this multiple times. He advised me that there is no way it could be the calibration and that I should take it to the dealer and have them engage a Field Service Engineer if necesary as the problem was obviously under warranty.

I took the car initially to _____ Ford in Austin, Tx. I’m sory to say my above stated expectations were met exactly. They offered HORRIBLE service and unbelievable incompetence. After spending 15 minutes test-driving the car, they reported back that they couldn’t duplicate the problem. The mechanic verbally recommended that if the problem persisted, I should simple reload the Ford Racing tune that was provided with my supercharger kit. He was sure that would fix the issue.  I took the car home and immediately plugged in the Ford Racing ProCal tool. I reverted the car to stock and started to reload the Ford Racing calibration. About 6% in, the tool generated an error. The calibration process failed in such a way that I could neither revert to stock, nor load the FRPP calibration. The PCM was for all intents and purposes a brick. I talked with Ray at Ford Racing and he explained that the car would have to be towed to Ford to have the ‘as built data’ and ‘PATS’ reloaded. After having the car for a couple of days, the service advisor at ______ Ford explained that they couldn’t figure out how to complete the programming. I spent the better part of a day bouncing back and forth between FRPP tech support (Ray) and the service advisor. Ray assured me that he had the same equipment as the dealer (nothing special) , and that they simply didn’t know how to use their equipment. He was frustrated with them as well and finally just asked them to put PCM in a box and ship it to him at FRPP. He explained that he wouldn’t charge me anything, as it was a very simple process. 2 days later, the PCM is back at Covert Ford and they call me that my car is ready. They explain to me that they also had to replace the battery as it had died while the car was there (this becomes relevant later). They charged me almost 500 dollars for all the time they had spent trying to figure out how to do their job (when in reality the FRPP tech did all the work) and for the battery. So, 500 dollars to replace a battery, and to take 3 bolts out of the PCM (a 5 minute job), put it in a box and ship it to FRPP. Wonderful. It was later determined tha the suggested ProCal load process failed because the battery was bad.

So, I’m back on the road now, but I still have the original problem. I’m just 500 dollars lighter. I talk to the Service Director at Leif Johnson Ford in Austin (501 E. Koenig Lane). Stephen Brown is a great guy and I have bought most of my vehicles from him. He puts me in touch with Thomas (the Service Manager at LJF) and they convince me to give them a shot at fixing the problem. They had the car for around 2 months, give or take. They would try something, give me the car for a day and try to see if it was fixed. They replaced the traction control switch, ABS module, steering rack and some wiring. They worked with Ford engineering to try different software and various other fixes. They simply couldn’t figure it out. Rudy Perez was the tech that spent all his time. He spent dozens and dozens of hours on my car. He had done his best when he asked me to engage Ford Customer Relations because they could no loner get assistance from Ford Engineering. A day later, Field Service Engineer Brett Castleberry was on site and that is when things really started to change. Brett and Rudy determined that my battery was bad again. That led them to the fact that my charging system was spitting out way too much voltage. They replaced the alternator and the PCM and were left with the same problem. This time, the aftermarket gauges in my car had been fried in addition to my new battery.

The next step was that Brett contacted and worked with FRPP. They realized that the FRPP calibration was increasing the voltage in the charging system. This is done so that in a high boost car, voltage to the fuel pump doesn’t unexpectedly drop resulting in a lean condition and ultimately engine failure. So, the ultimate problem was the FRPP tune and ‘undocumented feature’ of that tune.

In the end, Brett and Thomas went to bat for me. He replaced and intalled my gauges. He replaced my battery and he solved my problem. LJF ensured that I was in a rental car the whole time. All of this was above and beyond…they could have told me the same thing as _____ Ford did and send me on my way. No, they took care of my the customer and I have shared this experience on every Mustang related forum that I can find. I will also be sharing my experience with _____ Ford (MY experience and nothing more).  I am still a happy Ford customer. My car runs strong anad in the end the fix was to load an aftermarket non-FRPP calibration that did not include the voltage increase. I am thrilled at the expertise of Brett and Rudy and am very grateful for the support of Debbie, Thomas and Stephen. It was several monhs before the ‘who is going to pay for this’ battle was done, but Brett worked it out and took care of the customer.”

John, thanks so much for letting us know what Leif Johnson was able to do for you! We definitely love to hear back from all of our customers and encourage everyone to send us letters, calls or feedback of any kind!

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