Dealer $$$ screwup-What would you do???

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Main Forum' started by FJRCRAZED, Apr 24, 2006.

  1. tochatihu

    tochatihu Senior Member

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    If you have intentions to use their service facility, this might be an useful time to request a meeting with their manager. Tell them while you are under no legal obligation to remit $500, you seek a solution that is moderately satisfactory to all parties, *and* leaves you with a A#1 reputation in the service department. A compromise might include some $$ from you and some service coupons from them.

    Personally I am uncomfortable with the "too bad - it's just a sleazy car salesman" solution. Especially since I did not read that the reputation is deserved in this case. I would be looking for a win/win solution. But that's just me.
     
  2. finally_got_one

    finally_got_one New Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(FJRCRAZED @ Apr 24 2006, 10:21 AM) [snapback]244322[/snapback]</div>

    I concur, they should bear the costs of their own goof...but I would be curious as to just what that 'about $500.00' was for. Also, I would check the account to make sure that the check your wife wrote has been cashed.

    If not, then they could still go after you for incomplete payment. But you have a rock to stand on when it comes to the paperwork you brought home from the dealer.
    If so, they still might do something bad by denying a service (such as XM Radio, for example), that you had paid for but the price wasn't included by the sales rep.

    Worst possible, they could hold the transmission of paperwork to the DMV, but that would get them a terrible reputation. Hold on to your papers. If they ask you to go down to the dealership to talk about it, do not take the original papers, take copies. If they want to add this $500 charge, and if you agree to it, then they owe you a completely new set of papers. Dont let them simply mark up the old ones.
     
  3. daniel

    daniel Cat Lovers Against the Bomb

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    I think it depends on what the $500 was supposed to be, and whether you had agreed beforehand on a specified price, or merely on something relative, like MSRP. I had a verbal agreement to get mine for MSRP. They added taxes and license fees, and I figured, Okay, that's normal. They also added a "document fee" of $150, and I thought that was sleazy at the time, but I wasn't going to walk away from my dream car, or try to take them to court, over $150, so I paid it, and since have found out that "document fees" are normal, and range from $50 to (in some places, and more recently) $500.

    If their mistake was adding up the numbers wrong, you may not have a legitimate argument. If you had a written or verbal agreement to pay a set price, and you paid it, I think you should not pay any more, and if they discovered that they should not have offered to sell at that price, it's their problem and you owe nothing. If they forgot to add in some dealer sleeze, like for example, they always make buyers take the undercoating, then you should not pay.

    If that $500 was the document fee, and they forgot to charge you, I think you should negotiate with the manager. Tell him that $500 for the document fee is outrageous; that some dealers charge as little as $50, and offer to give him $100 if he'll put it in writing that you owe nothing, and maybe throw in a free oil change. My dealer gives a free oil change with every new car. It's not much, but it's a token.

    And please post an update: what are they claiming the $500 was for?
     
  4. malorn

    malorn Senior Member

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    I would never bring a customer back in because we "undercharged" them the first time. I can't imagine a dealer would bring you back in for $500. If you go back in to resign make sure they aren't just adding $500. I hate to bring this up but about 10 years ago a dealer group was asking customers back in as a fairly standard practice and redoing the contracts at a higher $ amount. It smells fishy to me. ;)
     
  5. micheal

    micheal I feel pretty, oh so pretty.

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    I agree with some of the others who have said if you had agreed on $25000, but got out the door at $24500, then I would pay the $500. If it was an honest mistake on everyone's part, you never know how that $500 might lead to that salesman helping you out on a better deal the next time.

    If this isn't the case and the dealer is trying to pull a fast one, I would stick to the contract and don't pay them anything extra. Make sure all your bases are covered though in case they try to mess with your credit score, that can cost a person way more than $500.
     
  6. mssmith95

    mssmith95 Michael

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    This happened to me before! On my 2001 Ford Expedition.

    The dealer gave me both the good financing and the rebate, instead of just one. The finance guy actually caught it, and told me...and told me that it was the salesman's fault. He said that once he and I signed the deal, it was a contract, and not matter what the salesman said, I would not be liable. Obviously, he did not like the salesman!

    He said that they would call me, pretending that they needed my signature on something and then once I was there, threaten to repo the car if I did not pay. He said to stick to my guns and tell them that a contract was a contract.

    Before I went there, I had decided that if they openly admitted their mistake, and explained that they would be punished for making the mistake, I would pay them. However, they instead LIED and tried to threaten me. I played dumb...and then started screaming at them right in the middle of the showroom (nice touch with my 1 year old with us). The never admitted to making the mistake and never actually asked me to help them out...just idle threats!

    I went home and called the General Manager, and let him know how I was treated by both the salesman and the sales manager. Later that day, I received a personal call from the sales manager apologizing and stating that "of course" they would cover their mistake.

    The law is very clear on this. If the deal is written, you only owe what is on that paper...NO MATTER what is discussed. This works both ways...if you sign a deal without proof reading, you are stuck too.

    Now if the deal shows you owe that $500 and they missed getting a check from you, then you still owe it.

    As far as the service, the sales and service departments have very little interaction...I would not worry about it!
     
  7. samoan_ridah

    samoan_ridah New Member

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    I'm sorry but I don't understand why you would have to go in and pay the money to get a good night's sleep whether or not it was your fault.

    I could care less about it when it comes to a car dealership because they gouge customers all the time. I paid $4500 over MSRP for mine and it sucks. Just take it as you are helping to even it out for us who are paying over sticker.

    Take your $500 and invest in a new mattress. I'm sure that would help you sleep a lot better.

    As an aside, if they push the issue any further and threaten you in any way shape or form, tell them to take the car back and refund you your money. See what they say then. In fact, just tell them that from the start and see what their reaction is.
     
  8. SW03ES

    SW03ES Senior Member

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    Be very careful, this is a common dealership ripoff scam. Look over the paperwork carefully before you proceed.

    Is it possible that the salesperson or the finance department made a mistake? Absolutely. Does that mean you should pay them $500 if it isn't stipulated in the paperword? Definately no. I am a 100% commissioned salesperson (real estate) and before that I contracted and consulted for car dealerships and designed custom customer retention systems for them.

    While the poster who said that most people in this business are good people trying to feed their families is right, there are a lot of really STUPID people in the car sales business (and my business as well). Mistakes like this are serious, and it is their fault not yours. You're doing them a favor by not paying money that the paperwork doesn't stipulate because otherwise the dealership would never flush out the cause for this error and its just going to happen again, and again, and again.

    Look over the paperwork, if you paid what it says then tell them to leave you alone. There's no room in business for mistakes like this.
     
  9. DaveinOlyWA

    DaveinOlyWA 3rd Time was Solariffic!!

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    i have to find out what the $500 was for. if it was something like add-ons, forget it. you have the option to refuse them so you have the option of not paying for them. take the latter.

    if its something else like destination charge (ya...some are that dumb) taxes, or something you requested or agreed upon and it was forgotten, then i would pay it. its a simple mistake and just as i would help up someone who had fallen, i would capitulate. far as im concerned, not paying would be kicking the guy while he was still on the ground.
     
  10. efusco

    efusco Moderator Emeritus
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    My dealer screw-up story:

    My very first new car purchase back in what, 1988, I had the classic slimy salescreature. I needed something very cheap, basic, but that worked.



    Showed me a little Isuzu P'up pick-up stuck in amongst a bunch of other cars (couldn't even pull it out to test drive it!). I got in, check it out, scanned the sticker and went back inside to get a price.



    He scribbled the price on a little sticky note and slid it across the desk to me face down--whew! I KNEW I was getting a great deal now...right!



    Anyway, the price was fair, I agreed, signed a purchase agreement, we confirmed the VIN was the same vehicle I looked at and I was on my way since financing had to be arranged and such.



    Came back to close the purchase and got the old sales manager thing...Presented in front of me was a nearly identical copy of the same purchase agreement I'd signed a day or two earlier...he just slid it there and said "sign this". I took out my copy of the first agreement and said "Isn't this the same as that?"



    He looked a bit uncomfortable and said that the salesman had 'accidently' quoted me the price for the Isuzu P'up without A/C, but the one he showed me had A/C. I said, I'm sorry, but that's his mistake, not mine.



    He said, "As a gentleman would I please take the vehicle without A/C."!! I said "Excuse me, but as a gentleman you should acknowledge that this is your mistake, not mine and I agreed to purchase the pickup with A/C for a price", and described how the salesguy had acted passing me the note.



    In any case they finally relented on that point, then tried to sell me the extended warranty for about $1500 more than it was worth. I eventually relented on that point and paid ~$580 for it, and probably still got ripped off--never used it, the time I needed it for a repair it wasn't covered under the extended warranty.



    Anyway, if it's a contractually agreed upon issue I think the one at fault eats the loss. But that's the way my moral compass points.
     
  11. subarutoo

    subarutoo New Member

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    Sierra Toyota in Lancaster, CA quoted me MSRP for white 06, PKG 6, over the phone. I agreed to it and filled a credit app online to secure the car until pickup. They called back later and said the price was +$500 for pinstripes and side molding, which they apply to "all" their cars. I was thinking door side moldings, not worth $500, but useful, and didn't care one way or the other about stripes. I agreed but expressed some displeasure. When I saw the car, it had only little black plastic strips around the wheel wells, and black pin stripes. When I complained, they did admit that this was their "mark-up" when selling the car for MSRP. At least they acknowledged what I already knew. After driving the car, there was no way I was walking away.....yeah, they got me.
     
  12. FJRCRAZED

    FJRCRAZED New Member

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    Everything got taken care of. Too long to go into all the details but, they screwed up and we owe them nothing :D
     
  13. paprius4030

    paprius4030 My first Prius

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    Well somecar salespeople and dealer's ARE ettical. I sold cars for almost 2 years at a Chrysler Plymouth Dodge dealership. We had a policy that we sold Police, fireman ect. vehicles are $150 over invoice. Well I screwed up the rebate on a guys truck and gave him the rebate for a 4 wheel drive pickup instead of the 2 wheel drive model which is what he got. Nobody realised the mistake until he came in to pick up his truck, well the owner said he would just eat it, but I had to eat my commission too.
     
  14. Betelgeuse

    Betelgeuse Active Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(FJRCRAZED @ Apr 25 2006, 03:55 PM) [snapback]245008[/snapback]</div>
    C'mon. You can't just leave us hanging like that. :) How did they screw up?

    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(paprius4030 @ Apr 25 2006, 05:09 PM) [snapback]245077[/snapback]</div>
    I have no doubt that there are ethical car salesmen. However, they have a stigma about them and, in my experience, it's more often true than not. To be fair, I got the same icky feeling from the guy that was working in the matress store when I went to buy a bed.
     
  15. Garlic Capital

    Garlic Capital New Member

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    When I leased '04 Volvo S60R, I overlooked (yeah it was late on Sunday night) the contract and failed to notice that it was for 48 months lease. The newspaper ad was for 45 months contract. Noticed it in a few days and I called back. The sales manager stated that since I signed the contract, there is nothing that they could do for me. Granted, residual would be lower, however I had to make three more payments. I talked with him a couple more times and it almost got into a heated debate. I did call DA and the DA's office also said that I have no recource since I signed the contact. Boy did I feel bad. Then all of a sudden, the sales manager guy called and said that as a good will gesture, the dealership will pay three months payments. :eek: That was closed to $1,300. And they did. That was a very nice surprise. I guess not all dealerships are out there to get you.
     
  16. daniel

    daniel Cat Lovers Against the Bomb

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    At least tell us what the $500 was supposed to be.
     
  17. sub3marathonman

    sub3marathonman Active Member

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    If you read the contract it will state somewhere that this contract supercedes all others and is FINAL. That is what the dealership writes, so that is what they have to live with. Courts look at who wrote the contract in deciding a case. It doesn't matter what was talked about before, there is no reason to pay.

    Two stories.

    Sun State Ford, in Orlando, Florida. I spent hours and hours getting a price on a Ford F250. We finally got everything finalized. They slid the contract over to me to sign. I took a look. There was a "math error" of $500, surprisingly in their favor, where a 3 had been turned into an 8. They "apologized" when I caught the "mistake." I told them to keep their truck. I've always wanted to go back and hold the sign, "Don't get burned at Sun State Ford," but I live a good distance away. And they had that truck for months and months, costing them much more than the $500 they tried to rip me off for.

    The Toyota dealer where we bought a Prius and a Sienna. We had two cars to trade in. We did talk about a third trade in, but didn't agree to that. They wrote up the contracts. Got a call the next day from the salesman telling me to bring in the other car. He said that was what was agreed. I told him that's not going to happen. Then I pointed out the contract language that they wrote. But they try to intimidate people, and if they succeed it is just more profit for them.
     
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