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Readers Respond: Car dealership horror stories

Responses: 89


Shady Dealer

Went to a dealership to look at a used truck (1995 f-250) liked the truck so i asked to test drive it but first the salesman couldn't get the hood to open, then the truck had no battery, then the truck was out of gas. so i finally drove the truck around the block and was pleased so i put down a small amount of money to hold the truck for a couple days. i cam back the next day wanted to test drive it again a little further. I drove it to my house on a military installation where it was leaking oil very rapidly. now the dealer is threatening to contact my Commander to make me pay for the truck accusing me of cracking the transmission on the truck because i was pulling a trailer with heavy equiptment..the truck didn't even have a hitch reciever on it... shady dealership located in Fort Walton Beach Fl called 98 used car sales this guy is a fraud. V/R Eric Goble


I brought my truck to a car dealer named ******* in cold spring NY owner George Marden, to sell for me. If he sold my car he would have gotten $500 off the top. Instead George wanted more, he forged my my name on my title. then put my truck on ebay. The Putnam County Sheriffs department who's juristiction this is wont help. George told me that he has them in his pocket and theres not a dam thing I can do about it. I called the DA's office they just redirect me back to the sheriff department. In the interim George sold my truck and kept the money. I also called DMV and the Attorneys Generals office, its amazing nobody will help. Someone suggested I hire an attorney they want $5000 to go after all the people involed , justice in America, you got to Love it.


In an incredibly competitive auto industry, a loyal customer is being completely ignored by corporate customer service. My request for a 3 day rental @ $30 a day has been rejected. With $9,000 of receipts, 35 days in the shop, still a cold heater, and the only compensation I am requesting being a simple rental car while they attempt to fix my car for the 5th in 12 months. This is both a dealer problem, ineffective service, and also a corporate problem, customer service. Volkswagen has lost a incredibly loyal customer simply because they did not value me enough to fork over $90. After spending $9000, go figure! Corporate response was even more sickening then the dealership, because at least the corporation pretended like the knew what they were doing. Without Heat, Jordan H


What can I do if a car dealership added options to my factory-orderd car? I ordered a factory-ordered car from a dealership in New York. I filled out the purchase order with the exact options that I wanted. The agreement was signed by me and the manager of the dealership. The sales rep. notified me by email about adding navigation to the car. I responded to him by email tellling him No, that I did not want the navigation in the car. The sales rep. on his own, called the factory in Germany and had the navigation added at an additional cost of $3000. Since the car is in its final stage, nd will be here March 1, 2010 the navigation cannot be removed. At this point, I have a VIN # for the car and I have an e-mail telling the sales rep. no navigation and a reply from him saying that he was being proactive and had the navigation added to the car.
—Guest Robert

They had to have known.

My wife got a Volvo CX90 from a dealer in Raleigh NC. These people are crooks and every car that they have sold is a piece of crap. Within the first week of our purchased the turbo went out on the volvo and it took them a month before they agreed to fix it. Then they pretty much told us that they have screwed us and to have a nice life. I wish for their demise. The car now is broke down with a shot engine. Lucky me
—Guest Robert Grout

shame on them

during the month of july I purchase a car from a dealer who seems fairly ohnest. One week later the car stopped on the highway route 280. I called the dealer and his respone is....that is the way it goes there is no guarantee I will charged 50 percent the repair and I pay the other half. The car been trouble ever since .
—Guest dot

veterans ford car payments if job lost

Remember the come on in the spring of 09 when the US car market was so deparate, that they will make your car payments if you lose your job?Well not if you go to Veterans in Tampa fl. I specifically asked and chose a ford for that reason, as the job situration where I worked was tenuous. I discussed the offer with Veterans, they reassured me and arranged the financing and sold me the car. Well six months later and a layoff guess what? The offier is only good if made through Ford credit which they did not mention because they used another finance company. So I am out of luck. Way to go Veterans! I would like to add they also said that gap insurance was required and must be purchased from them. After leaving the dealership and checking I found that I already had it on my policy. It took some doing to get them to take it of as there was a lot of denial and runaround on their part. Is it no wonder why the American consumer has such a bad taste in their mouth with the the auto idustry?

Fiat-drove in to Dealer, had to be towed

When I was in High School, my Dad bought a Fiat 850 from a co-worker whose wife had just died. After getting the car which seemded to run all right for a 35HP car, he drove it to the Fiat dealer to have it checked out. The next day the dealer called and said that it needed a new engine and was NOT DRIVABLE. My dad had a tow truck take it to another repair center and they determined that the dealer had not put splug wires back correctly and the car run fine for many more years!
—Guest Indiana Bob

Rude salesperson

Years ago, my father (in his early 70’s at the time) was looking to buy a new car. He told me of a deal he was considering on a Pontiac 6000, a midsize sedan, and the price (including his trade-in allowance) seemed pretty good to me. Because of his advancing age, he asked me to go to the dealership with him to see the car and help him verify and close the deal. When I got there, the car the salesman pointed him to was a Pontiac 2000 (Pontiac version of the Cavalier – a smaller car than the 6000). Dad was a bit disappointed, but he still was interested in the car. Then the salesman showed me the price, and I knew immediately that Dad had transposed the trade-in price (lower) with the price he would have to pay (higher). I explained politely to the salesperson that my Dad had been confused on the details of the proposed deal, and that I was confident that, once he understood he was paying significantly more money for a smaller car, he would never agree to it. My dad left to go
—Guest George in Ohio

ill-informed sales personnel

I bought a new Hyundai Elantra last August. The young salesman was nice enough until I asked him questions about the car. He got snippy, and truthfully didn't know as much about the car as I did. Also, when he explained the CD/Aux port which attaches to an iPod and MP3 device, he asked me if I knew what these devices were! I may be a woman of a certain age, but I'm not electronically illiterate, and while I laughed inside, there are plenty of women (and perhaps older men for that matter) who want not appreciate the remark. When we got back to the dealership, the salesman started the "dance" of going between me and his sales manager. When I gave the salesman a time limit, he seemed annoyed. The salesmanager, while nice enough, acted like he was doing me a favor by knocking off a few bucks. We still have along way to go before the car buying process becomes respectful to the customer and less adversarial. I'd rather buy a car from a robot. More sensitivity training is needed.
—Guest carol

The Dealership wrecked my Car

I took my 2006 Rendevous over to a servicing Dealership for a minor repair. The car does not even have 20,000 miles on it, and has never been in an accident. When the dealership took it for a test drive to see what could be wrong, they got into an accident. The damages are a little over $8,000.00 dollars and my car is worth $16,000.00 (well was!). They've given me a rental car and are going to repair all of the damages. However, now my car will never be the same, and hasn't it depreciated in value due to the accident? When I originally took it in, the service guy told me that I needed a front left tire because of the threading. The front right one is good because I just replaced it 6 months ago. However, he said that if you replace one you need to replace both and out the door the cost would be $510.00. Well, now since the accident, the tire that I had replaced not to long ago was ruined in the accident, but the dealer refuses to replace the other one since it's not covered.


I work in a dealership,28 years now most of it in the service department,I find that 80 percent of consumwers are just plain ignorant and stupid,They take advantage of the fact that they can be rude and ignorant beacuse they can get away with it Most of these people treat thier cars better than the family,or themselves.If a person would wrighta bokk on dealership stories would be very good.I have seen consumers try to rip off dealerships by changing vins,exchanging parts,making up stories,complaing about rattles that usually are thier fault.Everyone coplains about dealerships.What about teh used lots that sell the junk that dealers dont want and then they sell the car and send it to the dealership for repairs because they sell cars but dont fix cars how does that happen.What about the repairs centers that take your money and say sorry take to the dealership we cant repair it then the dealership has to explain why these repair centers took all your money and send sorry take to dealer
—Guest DAN

Stay Away

We were in the market for a second car and our car was in the shop, so we borrowed our son's GEO and went out to SUV shopping, pulled into **** Mazda and they not only would not let us test drive a vehicle but treated us like we were poor trash. At the time we were preapproved from our bank for car loan and we did buy from another dealership and very happy with our choice.
—Guest nogothere

hybrid that was faulty from day 1

My father in-law recently bought a 2004 chevy silverado, 3 days after he bought it, the dealer closed the door. He had a check engine light showing, so he took it to an authorized warrenty repair shop. the total to repair the hydraulic pump (for hybrid) in the transmission was $4000, and surpise surprise...hybrids aren't covered under warranty. what he paid for the truck, extended warranty and the repair of the transmission..he could've bought a brand new truck
—Guest Craig

****** of Bedford, OH - service dept.

Truck went in repeatedly to fix a rattle in dash. They broke the windshield in the process. Still have rattle, gained a leak in the replacement windshield that they could not 'fix' and this year gained a large leak over mirror. If I had lived with dashboard chirp or squeak then I would not have gained two leaks and rust starting under the paint in the windshield to roof joint. Rank this service crew from that time at near the bottom alongside a Freehold, NJ ***** dealer that replaced rear differential parts three times without investigating the root cause with the warped casting. Tough to see good sales dept. with lousy service support.
—Guest kthaines

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