I had a nightmare experience here.
I took my vehicle in at 8:30am for what I thought would be a routine servicing, which was pre-paid. Right away they tried to deny this and it was
I took my vehicle in at 8:30am for what I thought would be a routine servicing, which was pre-paid. Right away they tried to deny this and it was only after I produced paperwork that they reluctantly said “sure, sure, it’s covered”.
So, I briefly mentioned a couple of concerns with the vehicle, and scribbled my signature on a hand held device. The hand held device had no text on it, and at no time was I verbally given any more information. I kept saying I had a free servicing and they were all like “sure, sure”. Perfect.
So I took the shuttle home, which took 1.5 hours for what was a 10 minute drive away because someone else was going to a suburban city and I had to go with them all they way out there first.
Then, I heard nothing all day, until I get a phone call very late afternoon saying the vehicle was ready and that it would cost $1,200. I was shocked. I took a shuttle back, explaining on the phone on my way that I shouldn’t have to pay this amount as I believe I didn’t consent to it and my understanding was that I was taking the vehicle in for a free routine servicing. I also had to pick up my kids really quickly. They said that when I signed the hand held device I was consenting to repairs and consenting to them keeping my vehicle until I paid the full $1,200 amount, in full, on the spot. I disagreed.
When I got to the dealership they refused to give me the keys to my vehicle. They printed out a form that had my signature on it, apparently copied from the hand held device onto the printed out, detailed form. Little did I know that on the hand held device I was also signing off on an “estimate” for the few little things I had mentioned they “look at”. Even this after-the-fact, printed out estimate from the hand held device showed an estimated cost of $400, not $1,200. Even if I had known the estimate was $400, I wouldn’t even have signed off on that and said don’t even bother! I was expecting $0 due to pre-payment! Lesson learned - never sign anything without asking in detail what’s behind that hand held device!
But, I still wanted my keys to pick up my kids and started getting a bit agitated. They still wouldn’t give me my vehicle unless I paid $1,200 right then and there. I still refused to pay. And what did they do next? They called the police on me.
The police were absolutely amazing though. Being called in to this dealership for something pretty silly in their day to day world. But so quick, and so professional. After a bunch of back and forths and the police literally acting as mediators and negotiators, the car dealer very reluctantly agreed to give me my vehicle back if I paid $450 on the spot. But they wanted me to sign something saying I would pay the other $750 remainder within 24 hours. I refused to sign, because I did NOT consent to that $1,200 cost. Again, they didn’t want to hand over the keys, but finally did after about an hour after the police arrived.
The other thing was that in this large car dealership, there was literally no management present. Like all on vacation or something or not working or not reachable. There was nobody responsible and the entire place was left to run by quite junior staff. The junior staff were calling some management on their cell phones, but it was just all so unprofessional. They were rude and mocking me, saying “what are you going to do about it bro?“, yelling at me “get out of here, we have clients here looking to buy cars”. Waving me off, shushing me. Nobody could help, as nobody was responsible for anything. Only 1 associate was really nice and professional and courteous - offered to help find a solution, which nobody else wanted to even listen to; that guy’s a keeper.
Now, we’ll see how they proceed with trying to get the remaining $750 from me. I don’t even think I should have paid $450 but did anyways.
Just all in all a very stressful experience. I learnt a lot of lessons myself, but I think the business is super super shady. Would really be careful.