Help! I've broken my car! Front suspension damaged

4D_Signs

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Driving my 2000 E320DCi Estate home last night in the early hours. I was driving out of a small village at around 30 mph when something largish and furry came hurtling across the narrow lane towards my nearside just at the edge of my forward vision but well behind the headlamp beams. Regretably, I flinched and swerved to the right. This resulted in me hitting some kind of block/kerb/gateway edge with my O/S corner at around fog lamp level. Apart from popping the lamp out of its recess and badly scoring the air dam on the righthand side. I have also badly smashed the front wheel and tyre (new) and cracked the plastic under pan behind the bumper and in front of the wheel arch.
I changed the wheel but the car now makes tyre "squeel" noises at low speed and feels very odd. The steering pulls right by about an eighth of a turn on the wheel and the ABS & ESP lights are both flashing and telling me to visit the workshop.

The impact was quite hard as you would expect at 30mph and the car bounced up over the obstruction (thus cracking the plastic windage tray)

My question is: What is the most likely cause of the ABS/ESP alert? Also which bits of the mechanism are most likely to have been bent? The Impact has cut deeply into the wheel rim and crunched off about a quarter of the ally rim edge. This must have pushed the whole assembly backwards quite hard. Enough to wrench the steering wheel around when I struck the object.

I'll take it to the garage ASAP but I'm always a bit dubious about the reports these businesses furnish as they all seem more interested in profit than service. Especially lately! It is nice to be able to question some of their statements and maybe force a clearer explanation from them.
 

turbopete

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sounds like suspension/steering rack damage. the esp alert is probably due to you travelling straight and the column sensor telling the system you are not travelling straight, but turning. (clever things, these cars!) it may also have damaged the wheel sensor wiring if the roadwheel was wrenched further than its designed to travel
 

ernieh

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Kerb Damage

Oh Dear! Sorry to hear of your calamity, but in all honesty there could be a fair bit of suspension damage in there, and a full suspension check might be the best way to go, perhaps even thinking in terms of an insurance claim if the costs warrant it. I would get it checked out by a reputable Indy as a first step.

We did something similar with one of the VWs a number of years ago, when one of our family members locked up the brakes on an oil spillage on the approach to a roundabout and skidded over the kerb, causing significant damage to the front subframe and suspension arm. In the event, the subframe and a suspension arm had to be replaced and the bodyshell jigged.
Apart from the front wheel being pushed back a bit, and the car handling like a bag of potatoes, it was difficult to spot a problem. Incidentally the family member drove it to her destination and back home like that!

Hope I'm not being a prophet of doom, but it really needs checking professionally imo. Anyway, hope you get it sorted successfully....let us know how you get on.


Ernie
 

television

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May I suggest that you take the car to MBS in Southampton and let Cole , known as SAM a member here take a look , the track rods we be bent hence the strange feel and the ESP lamp
 

Alex Crow

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if your steering wheel was off center when you drove away after the incident, then pete will probably be right about the esp warning.
 

100%Bitch

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Mark, sorry to hear of your problem, but on the bright side, that's what you pay insurance for.
 

television

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Mark, sorry to hear of your problem, but on the bright side, that's what you pay insurance for.

I never thought about insurance for mechanical damage,,I pay a £500 excess purely for any body damage as i can do that or get it done cheaply
 
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4D_Signs

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Thanks for the info.

Thanks people for the helpful information. It's handy to know about the sensor alignment issue. I assume I have bent something but I also detected some play in the bearing so maybe a cage is cracked? It's definitely pulling right now.

I will, of course, need to make a claim for this amount of damage. It's a shame as my son has recently had a claim on another car I own and that is likely to push my premiums up next year. I know we have some claims protection but somehow the new quote still seems to be disproportionately high after any kind of claim. So i want to assess the real cost thoroughly, before delivering the car into the uncaring and profiteering hands of the insurance repairs industry. A group of people more responsible, in my opinion, for wasting scarce resources (my money) than most others I come across!
Cheers
 

television

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Do get SAM to check it out before you make a claim as you may not need to if the damage is not that great
 
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