I am a Canadian Forces member with a valid CFOne card, and am eligible for the Canadian Forces Military Appreciation Program. According to the Bytek website, I am eligible for a 5% discount over and above any factory incentives at the time of purchase. As well as 10% off all parts and service, and access to VW's Volkswagen Plus Membership for free, which gives other perks and incentives.
I made an appointment with JD Brown at Bytek VW, and informed him well in advance when I would be there. Just before the appointment, I told them I would be a little late, so they had even more time to prepare for the test drive. JD was friendly and courteous, but did not seem to know anything about the vehicle he was selling. I was interested in the 2016 Touareg Diesel Highline 3.0 TDI 8sp at w/Tip 4M. The picture shown on the website has the same vehicle, but the windows are all tinted on the website. When I arrived, the windows were only partially tinted in the rear.
I looked around the vehicle, noticing light rust on the rotors, but that the calipers had been either painted, or replaced as new. There were also pretty bad rust colored stains under the front driver and passenger seats. This was on a titan black interior color, so it was pretty bad.
The test drive was going well, but during the test drive, the tire pressure light came on. JD passed it off as "hot weather" causing the light to come on. In my 30 years of driving experience, I have never seen a tire pressure indicator tripped because of "hot weather". The fact that it happened during a test drive where they had plenty of time to inspect and perform maintenance tasks on the vehicle. I was slightly annoyed, but wasn't expecting much, considering my opinion on car salesmen was already very low.
I also know that uneven tire pressure can lead to mechanical problems with any parts connected to the wheels, like the tie rods, sway bar, steering knuckle, wheel alignment, and many other critical parts can be affected.
I put my hoodie in the back seat, asking JD to remind me to get it after the test drive was over. His lack of attention to this detail was a sign to me that he wasn't interested in customer satisfaction. I had to go out and get it, after I had gone through all the financing options with him and his associates.
Also, during the test drive, JD pointed out that the Odometer reading was around 34000, which was lower than the actual 38,000 kms listed on the website. I think he thought this was going to impress me, so I acted impressed, but really thought that the dealership might be rolling back the odometer on it's used cars. This was clearly further cause for concern.
During the discussion on financing, JD pulled up a worksheet showing 6.99% financing over 24 months. He then changed the 6.99% to 5.99% immediately, as if this was supposed to be some kind of deal for me. I knew that there was a 0% financing for 24 months on all new and used Volkswagen vehicles on offer through October 31 2018... There are also a large number of other financing offers that beat the heck out of 5.9 over 24 that I already knew about. I kept my mouth shut, because I figured if JD didn't know much about the vehicle he was selling, he would also not know much about the financing options. My suspicion is that he did know, he just didn't want to share those deals with me at the time. He didn't even know what DOHC stands for, which is extremely critical, because it means that you're getting 2 overhead cams, one for intake, and one for exhaust. SOHC only has 2 valves per cylinder in most case, and I had asked him which one this model had. He couldn't answer.
I was then taken into an office by the financial adviser, who seemed to be intent on showing off her calculator skills. She told me that the Canadian Forces Military Appreciation discount was already applied to the vehicle, and was included in the $16,495 discount listed on the Bytek website. This is, of course, logically impossible. If the discount is $16,495, then that is the factory incentive discount for anybody who is going to purchase the vehicle. It then says, on the same Bytek VW website, that the CF Member Appreciation discount is to be applied ON TOP OF any other factory incentive discounts. This amounts to $2499.75 based on $49995.00 @ 5% discount. Which should have brought the total price of the vehicle to $47495.25. The lady told me that the CF discount was already applied, and that I would be getting $500.00 off, and then wrote "$500.00 off"on the copied version of the Volkswagen Plus information sheet she gave me. The actual contractual worksheet showed the Canadian Forces Military Appreciation Discount as $0.00... but she still insisted that I was getting $500.00 off, and that the $500.00 was included in the $16,495 already discounted for everyone. As you can imagine, I was completely unimpressed by this time, but I kept a smile on my face, and tried not to look completely dissatisfied.
Further to that, I took the liberty of checking the CF Member Appreciation website, which has all kinds of special discounts for Canadian Forces members, many of which are way better than what Bytek was offering. All you have to do is log in there with your CFOne card number and password. They've got KIA, Nissan, Infiniti, Ford, and even another VW Dealership on there... Bytek isn't even listed on the CF Member Appreciation website. Which probably explains why they weren't willing to give me a deal on it... because the deal is complete vapor... and a total misrepresentation, in order to draw military members into the dealership, but then try to waffle on the CF Appreciation discount.
Another associate named Lesley Drysdale, contacted me, to discuss financing options, after I expressed my concerns via e-mail to JD, after the fact, when I was at home. I told Lesley about the 0% financing for 24 months, and he insisted that the best he could do was 4.99%... this was immediately right after I told him about the 0% financing for 24 months that I found, and that I had had a friend who received 2.99% before the 0% financing option was available. Obviously, I was not impressed. My credit is fine, and I've paid my bills on time, and had very little credit card debt over the last 5 years, and have never had any problems paying any debt off. There is absolutely no reason why they couldn't find me a better deal than 4.99%, or why they couldn't offer me the 0% APR for 24 months that was on offer from VW, other than the fact that they just wanted more money, as is typical of car dealerships.
Since I was reaching an impass with these people, and having to explain myself several times, as to the various issues here, JD forwarded me to Andrew Crowe... the General Manager of Bytek Volkswagen.
Andrew asked me to explain the whole situation again, as he was too lazy to get the information from his associates, and present me with what he thought the facts were first. Even after explaining the whole situation to him, he still insisted on playing the broken record to me, where even he was still saying the $16,495 included the CF Member Appreciation discount. He never even bothered to address the 0$ APR financing for 24 months, and insisted that the vehicle didn't need any service. He insisted on assuring me that the vehicle maintenance records were solid, and that there were no major issues that they knew of.
When I was in the dealership talking to JD, I asked him several times to forward me the maintenance record for the vehicle. He wrote it down on his notepad, and then promptly and conveniently forgot about it. I had to go to CarProof and pay $45.95 to get the basic maintenance record, and the approximate value of the vehicle. The maintenance record checked out, but that doesn't mean there weren't any issues with the vehicle. The vehicle was valued at $48258, without any discounts applied to it, according to CarProof, so basically they're just taking $16,495 off because it's a used vehicle. What a joke.
Never, ever, deal with these people if you want to keep your sanity.