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Discussion Starter #1
The OBD light came on my 03 CC and the exhaust was rough and power down. Dealer informs me that the cat has come apart and debris has been sucked into the engine. Apparently I now need to replace the entire engine block as well as the exhaust.

I am concerned at a number of points. I only got the car back a week after dealer had had it for 4 weeks replacing F1 pump. When car came back from dealer the floor of delivery truck was covered in oil as was underside of car. The car went straight back to dealer who advised they had merely overfilled the gearbox. I was concerned at quailty of work as it seemed to be still dropping tiny bits of oil on return.

The FI pump had failed after I had the car back only 10 days from dealer after a 4 week visit to change a wing mirror and heat shield. They declared exhaust to be perfect as I had asked them to investigate rough sound and sulphurous smell thinking it might have been a cat issue.

Does any of this sound familiar?

I bought my car last August and in twelve months it has required the following:-

Right Side Cat
Replacement Clutch (It's third)
FI Pump
Left Side Cat
New Engine.

I bought my car 12 months ago with 24k on the clock. It now has 29K.

Any insights would be greatly appreciated.

Johnny
 

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Impossible...

There is no way anything from that cats could go against the exhaust and end up in the engine.... I would get an independent mechanic to look at the car and document what has failed, then I would find an attorney and file suit... Sounds like a dealer has a fake wanna be mechanic and needs to be destroyed so they can't do this to someone else...
 

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a friend of mine has a c6 vette that had the same problem.(dealer claimed) i also have no idea how that could happen. interesting. also how long have they been putting cats on cars? if this was possible i think we would have heard about before now.
 

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Well let's think about the workings of an internal

combustion engine. The only time pressure enters the exhaust system is when the exhaust valves are open and the piston is traveling upward on the exhaust stroke. In order for there to be a vacuum toward the engine would be if the exhaust values didn't close and on the down stroke the intake valves were closed and the piston caused a vacuum in the exhaust chamber which would suck stuff from the exhaust into the cylinders which means that you either have a broken timing chain, broken valves, broken crank or something of the sort which means the cat's didn't cause the problem but could have ended up flushing their contents into the engine, the contents being platinum pellets... So the chances of this happening during normal operation are about zero unless someone has damaged the engine in the first place which was probably the dealer mechanic. As well as how are you going to suck the metal pellets into the combustion chamber, considering their weight...
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for all your responses. I am getting the car independently assessed next week. Should be interesting to see what they think. The dealer's scenario does seem rather unusual at best.

Thanks again. Will keep you posted.

Johnny
 

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how sad

to hear such bs. dealers get away with worst. i went through abuse from a dealer in ohio. cost thousands.
 

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Cat Breakup

This is an comment that was provided by Mark at Maserati of Minneapolis on another thread about this very topic... Perhaps he can provide more technical explanation.

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Cat breakup isn't necessarily from engine heat, its a result of an overly rich mixture exhausting excessive unburnt fuel into the pre-cat, which are fairly new in the last few years. The unburnt fuel then combusts in the pre-cat (which is what its there for). The problem is that because the engine is now running richer and more unburnt fuel than normal results in more fuel burning in the pre-cat which raises temperature and with those pops we love to hear in the exhaust are happening in the pre-cats they can break up.

This was fairly new to me as well, since I'm not used to engines with pre-cats, but my technician that came from a Ferrari\Maserati\Lamborghini shop said it is quite common with the Gallardos, even left stock.

The problem with breakup relating to exhaust modifications happens when the backpressure drops, there isn't as much vacuum sucking the successive exhaust pulses through and the unburnt fuel will collect in the pre-cat and have larger combustion pops resulting in more damage and possible breakup of the catalytic converter material.

This is a picture of the inside of a pre-cat (not a Maserati engine). The silver surface towards the bottom should show all the way to the top, but in this case the damage caused the pre-cat to disintegrate and catalytic substrate was sucked back into the engine.

This is very similar to what I've heard of the damage that Ferrari's with Tubi's were seeing.

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This is an comment that was provided by Mark at Maserati of Minneapolis on another thread about this very topic... Perhaps he can provide more technical explanation.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

Cat breakup isn't necessarily from engine heat, its a result of an overly rich mixture exhausting excessive unburnt fuel into the pre-cat, which are fairly new in the last few years. The unburnt fuel then combusts in the pre-cat (which is what its there for). The problem is that because the engine is now running richer and more unburnt fuel than normal results in more fuel burning in the pre-cat which raises temperature and with those pops we love to hear in the exhaust are happening in the pre-cats they can break up.

This was fairly new to me as well, since I'm not used to engines with pre-cats, but my technician that came from a Ferrari\Maserati\Lamborghini shop said it is quite common with the Gallardos, even left stock.

The problem with breakup relating to exhaust modifications happens when the backpressure drops, there isn't as much vacuum sucking the successive exhaust pulses through and the unburnt fuel will collect in the pre-cat and have larger combustion pops resulting in more damage and possible breakup of the catalytic converter material.

This is a picture of the inside of a pre-cat (not a Maserati engine). The silver surface towards the bottom should show all the way to the top, but in this case the damage caused the pre-cat to disintegrate and catalytic substrate was sucked back into the engine.

This is very similar to what I've heard of the damage that Ferrari's with Tubi's were seeing.

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well isn't that great news. glad i don't have to worry about that on my car wink wink.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Dealer advises L/H Cat failure leading to damage to L/H cylinder bank requiring refit replacement engine. Provisional estimate £17,800 stq. Hard to see this being resolved amicably.
 

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Sounds more like "Dealer advises damage to L/H cylinder bank requiring refit replacement engine also led to L/H Cat failure". Cats generally fail when something contaminates them, chemically or mechanically. A damaged engine sending fuel, coolant or lubricant through the exhaust, or small particles of metal, would certainly be the first suspect...

Have to ask the big question, how modded was the car? Was the ECU changed at all?
 

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That will help a lot that it isn't modded. Good luck with the battles! Hopefully it will work out for the best.
 

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Maserati Engines

I am finding engines from wrecked cars with very low miles on Ebay Motors for 5 to 7 thousand $ USD... You could put a almost new engine in the car for around 7 to 10 thousand $USD...
 

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I'm still not 100% sure what has to happen to bring on pre-cat breakup, but I have heard of it a couple of times with the Maser Coupes (but not on the QP's at all), and as that previously quoted post says, on the Lamborghini Gallardos (which from talking to my tech sounded almost common). I suspect that one of the better things you can do to help prevent this is to start the car and give it a few extra minutes to warm up before driving, especially if its a cooler morning and the car is on a cold rich start cycle.

Just out of curiosity Johnny, what part of the world do you live in? (or more specifically, what kind of temperatures does your car see on a day to day basis?) I suspect the answer to the cause may be with its previous owner considering the mileages mentioned. Also 4 weeks for an F1 pump, and the previous service is a bit nuts. How much of that was transportation related vs. actual shop time? We usually turn around an F1 pump or clutch in a day or two at the most..

I'd be interested to know what kind of testing \ investigating they did to declare the exhaust perfect? As far as I know, the only way to inspect the pre-cat is to remove the upstream o2 sensor, and use a good bore-scope to look inside. And if you reported a sulfur smell and rough running as the reason to inspect, that would be one of the first things a good shop should have looked at.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thanks for tall the responses . I live in Dublin and get my car serviced in Belfast ( about two hours away). We don't get any extremes of temperature in summer or winter. Summer temp is about 24 c with winter at 0 c at worst.

Maserati GB have offered an engine rebuild repair with a goodwill gesture for 50% of the cost of the parts. It seems a rather cynical gesture given the greatly reduced parts cost involved in a rebuild as opposed to a replacement.

I have had the car independently assessed and they have advised that I definitely need a replacement engine. They have also advised that when my other cat failed last year that the dealer should have examined the remaining cat at the very least. They have also advised that the dealer should have picked it up when I asked them to examine it 6 weeks ago given the cars history. They have also reported that the engine failed as a combination of poor workmanship as well as an inherent flaw. i.e. cat failure should not lead to engine destruction. It certainly doesn't with any other car I've ever had.

At this stage It looks like it will he headed for court and I will be without my Maserati for a while.

I will let you know what happens. Thanks again for your many helpful responses.
 

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Even at 50% cost (of 18k?) you can get an engine from eurospares/ebay/breakers for much much much less (seen 2k-6k).

you're obviously going to charles hurst...they know how to charge!

good luck
steven
 
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