I just wanted to share my experience with you, good and bad.
I bought an SLT-A55V camera on June 26th 2011 while on holiday in New York ($1,250). It replaced my old Sony DSC-H3 which I had outgrown (though loved dearly). I hadn't really meant to buy one, but I had a look at one in a shop and the sales guy really earned his pay that day!
I spent the next year shooting some really excellent photos. I even bought a SAL75300 75-300 lens. Fantastic piece of kit. Joined Flickr and loved every minute of it.
Then two weeks ago (July 24th 2012) while on holiday with - amongst others - my Nikon-loving father-in-law, the autofocus stopped working. I'm ok-ish with manual focus, but for holiday snapping I really needed the AF. So when I got back from holiday, I got in touch with Sony UK and was quoted £117 repair. You can imagine that I was more than a little upset by this. In Sony's defence they did look into aleviating the pain, but when they saw that I'd bought my camera in the USA I was advised that nothing can be done and I have to either get it fixed in USA (£62 shipping by DHL...each way[!] ) or pay the fixed charge here.
I spoke then with the US helpdesk, and they were very friendly but sadly the shipping costs (and the time delay) are too much to bear so I'm left to pay £117 for a failure that occured 4 weeks after my warranty expired.
I know, yes that that's warranty and it's tough luck etc. But I feel a little let down that Sony aren't in fact a global brand, that the goodwill gesture was so quickly taken away once it was clear that I'd bought the camera from a far off and mystical land. I'm also pretty concerned that my camera developed a costly fault at the tender age of 13 months! My father-in-law was full of it! I have to say my confidence in costly Sony products has been seriously dented and I am now considering whether I should get the camera repaired and then sell it, rather than buying any more lenses. I don't feel comfortable with the level of investement versus the quality of manufacture any more - which is a shame becuase I'm a bit of a Sony fan.
Perhaps I was naive when I bought the camera in those wild, heady, carefree days of 2011. I should have questioned the whole warranty process etc (and bought an extended warranty!!!!!!).
Hopefully you can read my experience and learn from it to be more careful in future, so as not to be disappointed the way I have been.