Bad experience in buying a new car.

Reply

  #1  
Old 09-13-17, 02:04 PM
Norm201's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: USA
Posts: 6,039
Bad experience in buying a new car.

So I recently bought a new car. A 2017 Chevy Travesty (That's not a typo). Why I bought it is another story but sufferance to say I'm not completely happy with it, but even more unhappy with the dealership.

But my frustration is an option that I negotiated for. Since the 2017 have been out of production for the past six months, I (or the dealer) was only able to shop what might be available on the lot or lots of other nearby dealers within a 250 mile radius or there about. After much negotiations we decided that for a compromise of $250.00 (supposedly half the cost), the dealer would install what I was lead to believe factory OEM heated seats. Several days later I get a call that the seats were delivered. What was installed was a third party retrofit. Not OEM. The driver seat has one temperature only for both seat and lumbar, HOT! The passenger side only has a lumbar heat. Even the switches are just a toggle on/off switch. Wifey does not want or need lumbar heat, she wants seat heat and adjustable. Needless to say we are unhappy. I call the dealer to complain and they tell me OEM seats cannot be had and passenger seat cannot be installed because it interferes with the air bag sensor. And third party seat kits only come in one temp range. I'm having them removed and my money returned. Why was it not made clear that I would not get OEM Factory seats? If they could not do it, then just tell me. I also wanted the electronic rear view mirror, but that option cannot be retro-fitted on the car. Fine. Nothing more to talk about.

Now here is my real complaint. If by chance me or any other car of the same model with factory OEM heated seats was in an accident and the seat was damaged, would they not replace the seat with an OEM? Or would they tell the customer, too bad can't be done!

My better judgment and past experience told me not to deal with this dealer, but I said things change, lets give them another chance. Wrong! Wrong! Wrong!
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 09-13-17, 02:40 PM
Marq1's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: USA MI
Posts: 2,668
That is an interesting story, to be honest I've never heard about after market seat heaters.

Being a GM engineer (non electrical) the electrical harnesses would be unique for that option so even with OEM seats it's probably impossible to wire it up with the in-dash switches, relays, sensors thus the after market install. Even if it could be done, I'd bet that seat would be so cost prohibitive that nobody would ever but it.

And yes, if an OEM seat failed it would be available for replacement.

I do agree that it should have been clearly communicated so that is a fault of the dealer.
 
  #3  
Old 09-13-17, 02:54 PM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 667
I'm sorry you had such a bad experience but sometimes these things happen. The thing is we learn from our mistakes & lack of knowledge.
Like you, I will give most anyone a 2nd chance. On rare occasions I will give someone a 3rd chance depending on the situation & my gut feeling. However, normally, a 2nd chance is all you get. If you mess me up twice, I'm done with you. If you don't support me, I wont support you. That's my motto.

My family has always been die hard Ford people... end of story. When we needed a new vehicle (or a used one) there was no decision making, we just went to the Ford dealer & bought our vehicle.
In 1988, I decided it was time to trade my '79 F150 in on a smaller, midsize Ranger. The day I bought it, they had to send a wrecker after it. This went on for 3 years. The local dealer never could find the issue. It may run 30 seconds & it might run 30 days, but eventually, one day, out of the blue, it would just quit. I met with the dealership owner & sons many times & told them that somebody in Ford Motor Company could figure this out & to get on the phone & lets find out what to do to get this fixed. If they need to get it on a wrecker & send it back to Detroit, do it. I need it fixed. This is ridiculous. For 3 years, I got the run around... "we're trying to find it... doing the best we can".
So, after 3 years, I fixed my problem. I took it to the Chevy dealership & left in a 1993 Chevy Blazer. I haven't had an issue since. I have not owned a Ford since. That's been 24 years.

When I see your not going to support me, I wont support you & I'm like an elephant, I don't forget.

About 10 years later, there was an article in Popular Mechanics magazine about that model vehicle. The issue was a bad design or flaw with the ground screw in the distributor. It was never tight. So, as it jiggled around, it would loose ground & quit. Later after being towed, leaned on or bumped around on by the mechanics etc, it would make connection, make ground & start.

Again, somebody, in FMC could have found & fixed this issue. But, the dealer nor FMC took the problem serious enough to get the issue resolved.... 3 years. No thanks. There is too much competition out there for me to beg someone to take care of me. If they dont care, I dont either. Its waaaaay to easy for me to spend my money down the street.
 
  #4  
Old 09-13-17, 04:08 PM
PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Northern NJ - USA
Posts: 45,583
Not to intrude on this rant..... but 88 was a problem year for Ford truck electronics. You mentioned a loose ground screw but a problem that I'd seen over and over was defective pickup modules inside the distributor. I got to the point I carried a spare.

Continue on with regularly scheduled rant.
 
  #5  
Old 09-13-17, 04:56 PM
Norm201's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: USA
Posts: 6,039
Dixie,

I can understand your decision. With me it's just the opposite. I'll never buy a GMC product again. No, let me correct that. I'll never buy a GMC product from a large dealership again. Besides I prefer Ford. It's not that I haven't had problems with a FORD, but the dealer and company responded and made me happy. But, the thing is, as I compare Ford and GMC (Chevy mainly), it just seems Ford has a better idea (hearken to the old commercial). I like what Ford presents. Their cars seem more solid, and everything about their cars are more intuitive in term of operation. Over the past 10 years or so Ford has been at the top of their game. I realy think Ford has better overall quality. Others may disagree.

I owned several Chevy/GMC Astro/Safari vans since the first year they came out with them in 1985 until the last production year of 2005. I loved every single one for the utility and reliability. I traded in the 2005 for the Travesty because it seemed like the only thing that came close to the van. It even feels like I'm sitting in the van. But that is where it stops. This thing is like lumbering giant that can't seem to get out of it's own way. And being a late model car the mileage is not that great. The KIA Serento had it beat by several MPG. But for various other reasons the Serento did not fit the bill. If I had looked at Ford I would've been put into an Explorer and at the time when I was just starting to look it seemed out of my range. In retrospect maybe not!

The single biggest regret is buying from this dealership. So why did I go there? They are very close by and the biggest in the area. They represent every single car manufacturer. They even use former Buffalo Bill all star player as their spokesman. So why not give them a second chance.

As far as the deal goes it was fair price that I don't think another dealer would do any better. However, I had problems with them in the past and I've seen how they treated women in the service area (not good). And buying a car is a hassle. My wife and I both did not want to go from dealer to dealer. So I said, things change, different people, lets see what they can do. My first warning was I had to deal with two sales people. They have this team thing going. Two sales people share the same office and share the same customer. The guy was not bad and I trusted his word. But when we had to deal with the gal (whom, I found out later was related to the CEO of the company) I felt like she was not interested in my needs. Lots of other other small details that just kind of bothered me. But by that time I was into t he deal. The thing I disliked most was the fact that we were bounced from person to person during the deal. Sign-in with the receptionist, meet the two sales people, sales manager, finance guy, then get up walk about a block to go to the cashier to pay the down payment. Walk back to the sales office. Then when picking up the car, another person showed us the basic operation of the car. Too many people. Then when the heated seat kit came in I had to deal with another guy. And as it turned out he did not fully button up the install. As I was driving out I had to go back have them reconnect the seat belts. Lots of little things that in of themselves were not a problem, but added together they showed a lack of respect and concern for the customer. But if I had balked at any one of these little things it would seem as if I was being picky and difficult. And being in retail I know how those people come off.

On the other hand last week I helped my daughter buy a new Ford Escape from the dealer I bought other cars from. Wish I stuck with them. The experience was so nice and relaxed. No pressure, no hard sell and a one on one experience. The salesperson (a young guy) took care of everything including walking the checks to the cashier. He took my daughter though the whole car and made sure she was comfortable with everything.

If I don't warm up to this car by next summer I'll be trading it in for a Ford.

PS...Here's the other thing that kind of got to me. After the deal was done I was warned that I would be asked to fill out a survey as to how I thought I was treated. I was told very clearly that anything less than 10 would be considered poor performance. I did not want to ruin the guy's performance but did not want to give high marks. So as of this date I have not filled out the two reminders. But I will now!
 
  #6  
Old 09-13-17, 05:01 PM
Norm201's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: USA
Posts: 6,039
PJ,

I don't think any car manufacture can make a perfect car. Be it Rolls Royce, or a Chevy. But as was said treatment and response is most important. My second Chevy Astro van went through starters like crazy. Had to change it every year. But the vehicle was great and if it was still made I would buy it within a heart beat.
 
  #7  
Old 09-13-17, 05:48 PM
PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Northern NJ - USA
Posts: 45,583
I had some problems with TracPhone. They sent me an email survey asking how they were doing. I let them know exactly how thrilled I was. I had several apology emails but no offer of anything else.
 
  #8  
Old 09-14-17, 01:25 AM
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Wet side of Washington state.
Posts: 18,399
The days when the customer was always right have passed into history. The plain fact is, neither manufacturer OR retailer (of anything) REALLY cares about the customer beyond the point of the check clearing. They know that if YOU (or I) don't buy the product that someone else will. Further, the more expensive the product the worse it becomes.

I remember my first car, a 1974 Fiat 124 Spyder. Yes, Fiat had a less than stellar reputation back then but I really liked the car. I had several little problems but the dealer took care of every single one to my satisfaction. When I got married I went back to the same dealer and same salesman to buy a '76 131 sedan for my wife. I told the salesman there were two ways he could sell me the car, the hours long negotiation we did on the Spyder or he could simply quote the best price and I would either accept or reject. He said he normally could sell three cars in the time he spent with me on the Spyder and quoted a fair price for the sedan which I accepted. There were problems with the sedan as well but again, they were taken care of immediately. I knew other people that had bought Fiats from different dealers and they got nothing but the big runaround.

Here is what I think made the difference. The service manager at my dealership was also the owner. He made a decent, but not obscene, profit on the cars he sold and he was a man of very high ethics. Even when Fiat did NOT reimburse him for repairs he would go the extra mile to satisfy his customers. That kind of service simply does not exist (for the most part) today. In my area there is a "group" that owns at least a dozen different new car dealerships. Every single one of these dealerships has only a fair to poor rating with after sales service. They don't care. They don't care because they have a near monopoly on new car sales unless someone is willing to go fifty, seventy or more miles from home to buy a car. They KNOW that if you don't buy from them that someone else will and that someone else's money is just as green as yours.

The problem is endemic to big business and sadly, in my opinion, the days of the sole proprietorship are all but history. Conglomerates are not interested in pleasing the single customer for the simple reason they don't have to, there is always someone else willing to give them money. Poor quality, limited options and lousy service make money for the business while the customer is given a take it or leave option.

I could go on but for Norm's sake I'll end with this: When did the word "available" replace "optional" in regard to automobile accessories? Cars do not have any "options" these days but they DO have many items that are "available". Available, but ONLY if you purchase them in a "package" or as standard equipment in a higher class model. A former girlfriend had a '60s era Mazda that was pretty basic BUT all models had the same wiring harness so adding electrical options was easy. I wanted heated outside mirrors on my Toyota but they are only "available" on the top-of-the-line models and they have a different wiring harness in each model so I can't just swap the mirrors themselves but need to run additional wiring. Stupid!
 
  #9  
Old 09-14-17, 03:38 AM
Norm201's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: USA
Posts: 6,039
Furd,

Your 1st paragraph pretty much sums it up! I agree with everything you say.
 
  #10  
Old 09-15-17, 01:44 PM
Member
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 1,341
My wife gets a new car every 3-4 years (my PU truck is a 1994 Ram ). After years of hating the hassle and haggling associated with buying a new car, I decided to try something different. We bought her last 4 cars from the same Jeep dealer. Each time we visited on Sunday and photoed window stickers. A little internet research and I knew what I was willing to pay and what I wanted for my trade in. Each time the dealer accepted my offer. The dealer made some money and we get the vehicle we wanted stress free. We always pay cash and I have a cashier's check in my pocket. They have all of our info on record and time in and out including a test drive is typically less than an hour.

In years past I have had dealer's order the vehicle that we wanted from another area dealer. Both times the vehicle came with "surprise" extras (wheels in one case, moon roof in another).

Incidentally, the one time I had a problem with that dealer's service department I complained to the sales manager not to the maintenance guys. I got a call at home from the owner of the dealership apologizing for the problem.

Furd - I had a 850 Fiat Coupe ('68?) when we lived in Spain. I made the mistake of bringing it back to the US. While it was sorta' OK for driving in European cities, it couldn't handle the hills of New England. With two passengers it would wheeze up hills topping out at about 50 mph. It did get about 45 mpg though.
 
  #11  
Old 09-16-17, 05:00 PM
Member
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 313
PJ, at least you got an apology email. I got a survey once from a company, I absolutely blasted the heck out of them, and got the form letter reply of "That's fantastic, we're so happy you love our product, and we hope you tell your friends."

As for cars... I don't even do the car buying anymore, my luck is so atrocious. I tell the wife to go find a car she likes, and I don't even set foot in it before it's sold for fear that I'll curse it. I'm talking blown motors within 1,000 miles, etc. It's awful.

The only good luck I had was with a diesel VW Jetta. The wife and I liked the car and we wanted to buy it. We sat down to discuss financing, and the guy disappears in the back. Okay, I know the drill. But it literally takes an hour and a half, and we still haven't even gotten a single piece of paper. (And my credit is just fine, so no hang-ups there). Meanwhile, the sales guy is stalling, wanting to walk us through the manual page by page, etc. I told him I knew how a car works, I'd just like to sign some paperwork. He disappears, comes back again and says it'll be just a few more minutes. Now, I've been pestering him for an hour and a half, and each time the response was "just a few more minutes." I tell him that, since they're apparently not interested in selling me the car, I'm no longer interested in buying it. The salesman had already removed the tags from our "trade-in," and he was so desperate to keep us from leaving that he didn't want to put them back on my car until I threatened to have the cops stop by.

So we leave the dealer, get home, and my phone rings. It's the sales manager at the dealership. He's sorry about the delay, he says. The finance people were in a meeting and couldn't be bothered. I suppose business really is booming, if they can't be interrupted long enough to make a sale happen. Anyway, I said that he would have to do an awful lot to make up for the horrendous experience and the wasted afternoon. After all, if they aren't concerned enough about me to sell me the car, what happens if I need warranty work? So I ask him, "If we do buy the car, what are you willing to do to compensate me and my wife for our time that you wasted?" At this point, I was still thinking I might actually buy the car, and if I can get him to knock $500 or $1000 off of it, even better. His reply? "I can give you a free car wash."

In the most gentlemanly manner possible, I informed him that his offer was unsatisfactory, and that he could go ahead and shove my paperwork in the shredder.

But I said this was good luck. Yup. I got so ticked off about the whole thing that I decided I didn't really want a new car that bad, and so we shelved the car buying plans. And about a year later, the VW diesel emissions cheating scandal came to light. I was actually quite happy that I dodged being involved in all that.
 
  #12  
Old 09-17-17, 05:42 AM
Norm201's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: USA
Posts: 6,039
I finally filled out that dealer survey that I received three reminders about. I very politely explained why I gave them only 2 stars and what my reasons were. Funny, within the hour of sending that survey, I got phone call asking my about the deal. Nothing changed!
 
  #13  
Old 09-20-17, 03:46 PM
MotifSky's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: USA
Posts: 2
Thanks for sharing with this story. It's sad but I agree that this could happen with any other type of car
 
  #14  
Old 09-22-17, 10:18 AM
Member
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Arizona
Posts: 1,070
I have not purchased a brand new car since 1991. So I am glad I read about all your experiences. My experience dealing with the dealership staff back in those days was mediocre. Nothing to praise really. The salesman was a really nice guy. I'll never forget he told me he was admitted to medical school. But he decided not to enroll because he thought he would be discriminated against since he was black. Sort of felt bad for the guy. So there he was selling cars. Maybe it was a put-on to gain sympathy!

I noticed they didn't do a thorough job of undercoating my 91' Mustang................missed a lot of spots I could easily reach with a spray can. And the transmission was already failing after just a few years. I signed over the car to my Dad. He had the trans repaired and used the car for trade-in. Then he signed over his 92' Ford Ranger which I still drive to this day.

My Dad also purchased a brand new Pontiac LeMans back in the early seventies.' He had problems with the car early on while it was still under warranty. The dealership owner made half-hearted attempts to fix the problem(s). But it never really got resolved. He ended up trading it in.
 

Last edited by bluesbreaker; 09-22-17 at 11:33 AM.
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes