Participation to the Oppositelock Alpine drive is compromised.

3 weeks ago, I sold my little Pug to my neighbors son. While financially it was a smart move, I now had to replace it for the Europpomeet 2017.2.
Luckily, I quickly stumbled upon an ad for a 2012 Renault Megane RS while refreshing my “RENAULT+PEUGEOT+FROM 2007+FROM 200 HP+TO 125000KM+TO 100KM AWAY” search for the umpteenth time. The price was really low, it looked quite nice, I called immediately, and went to check it out on the very next morning. Since I had taken the next week of anyway, I had plenty of time to take it home and start doing the paperwork.
I had to wait 1 1/2 weeks to have French paperwork, because French administration is terrible. But that left me time to go get the parts to replace the lower ball joint which showed some excessive play on the right side. Or so I thought.

The parts weren’t in stock and had to be ordered, which meant I had to wait a few days. No problem, they would arrive on time.
Parts arrived last friday, perfect, I can install them during the weekend... except I got the wrong parts. Quick drive back to Renault, spending about an our with the parts guy trying to figure out the part number for the part I really need (the guy was competent, their system not). Turns out, you can’t buy the Ball joint alone, but only with the whole (expensive) assembly, and it was on order only.
Apparently, in the past, they were able to get the ball joints directly from Renault Sport in Dieppe, but they can’t anymore. So off to the internet. Found the part, bought it on Friday, thinking if they send it on Monday it will arrive Wednesday latest, leaving me enough time to install it.

They sent the part on Wednesday.

The play is not too bad, I thought yesterday, when I got the news, You don’t feel it while driving, I will be able to drive it. Or so I thought.


Yesterday, on my way home from work, the light knocking noise it did sometimes when accelerating from a stop and that Renault forums say “comes from the brake pads having play to compensate for thermal expansion during track driving - official answer from Renault” became worse, and systematic, and seems to come from the left drive shaft.

I took my parents’ Crossgolf (which, mysteriously, had absolutely no transmission problems this morning) to work this morning. The Mégane had an appointment for a service anyway, and I asked them to check for the noise.
If it’s uncritical or repairable on time, everything is fine. If not, I might not be able to got to the Oppodrive. Why can’t I have just a troublefree car?


[Edit]: My mom got the car back from Renault, they didn’t find anything, and suggested maybe the sound from the passenger side transfers to the drivers side. I’m skeptical, but don’t want to miss a drive around the Alps, and ruining a pair of tires in the mountains is still better than having overheating drum brakes in a steep descent and no seatbelts or dashboard padding.

[edit2]: came home to an empty parking space, and my parents in the shop repairing the lower ball joint on the Mégane. It has arrived today. We also torqued down all the bolts we could see, but the noise probably came from a cheap linkage I’ll change next week. Oh and the service at Renault costs almost half what I paid at Peugeot. They also gave away little wooden R5 turbos and free car washes, which my mom politely declined because I was it by hand. She knows her son.