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Hi Im David, please allow me some time to pull up some info on your problem. thanks
Ok. do you know the last time the coolant system was flushed? has the thermostat ever been replaced and how about the engine coolant temp sensor? also have you noticed any leaks or smells inside of the vehicle?
ok, my recommendations are. a coolant system flush. replace the thermostat since it has to come out anyway for the flush, replace the temp sensor because its probably got built up crud on the sensors face, inspect the sensors connector and wiring for cracks and damage. another thing you can do is replace the crank position sensor. these are prone to failure under thermal overload conditions and once it cools down it will work again. and its probably time to replace the ignition key cylinder.
the correlation between the engine getting hot and it not starting could be the crank sensor. the crank sensor is part of the ignition system. ignition components get very hot under normal driving conditions and after a few years start breaking down internally. once the component cools it will allow the car to start again. ignition coils, camshaft shaft position sensors and ignition control modules also fall into this group. key lock up is due to wear of the lock cylinder, yes. the coolant system is supposed to be flushed every 2-3 years as it builds up rust, slime and contaminates that are harmful to thermostats and sensors. as far as the smell, id have to smell it to be certian of a possible cause.
checking in to see how its going
thats a hard problem to duplicate when the vehicle is sitting in a shop and not being monitored while driving in the conditions that cause the failure. my suggestion is to have them drive the vehicle in the conditions you describe at the beginning of this session while monitoring the engine parameters with their scan tool and taking a snapshot of the exact moment they experience the failures. that way they can come back to the shop, pull up the snapshot on their scan tool and see what happened at the moment of failure.