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Car Dealer botched my parts order – do I have any recourse?

Discussion in 'Non-Vegas Chat' started by thecarve, Jul 10, 2013.

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  1. thecarve

    thecarve Misanthrope

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    I bought a new car last month. After having had three two-seater sports cars in a row, I wanted something a little more practical – both in terms of utility and price – this time around. While the car I bought is still “sporty”, I nonetheless found myself missing the performance of my previous cars. So, I decided to put on a set of summer-only tires to see if I could get a little more performance out of it.

    The dealership wanted to give my car a one month check-up (on their dime). So I figured that instead of finding a better price for the tires online and going to an independent shop to install them, I’d just pay the dealer’s inflated prices on the tires and combine the two appointments into one to save me from having my car in the shop any more than is absolutely necessary. That turned out to be a big mistake.

    When I drove the car home from the dealership last night, I was underwhelmed by the performance it had gained (or rather, hadn’t gained) with the new tires. But that trip was mostly interstate driving so I put off judgment at the time. This morning, I decided to take the back roads into work to put the new tires through their paces. Again, I was not impressed.

    Well, it turns out that the manufacturer of the tires also makes an all-season tire and the two differ in nomenclature by a single letter (“DWS” – the all-seasons – versus “DW” – the summer-only ones that I ordered). Guess which ones were put on my car. :rolleyes2:

    I understand that this in an easy mistake to make – even I didn’t catch it at the dealership when inspecting the tires. And I made the order over the phone, so it’s not like I have a written record of the exact set of tires I ordered (I only have my notes with the dealer’s quote as well as the time/date of the appointment – on these notes, I had clearly written the correct tire’s name). But seriously, why on earth would I want to replace a set of tires with only 1000 miles on them with what are essentially the same tires? :confused2: (Yes, I know. People, by and large, are idiots. I shouldn’t expect everyone to possess the common sense God gave geese.)

    Of course, the service manager of the dealership is on vacation until Monday. And the lackey that called me back basically told me that they can’t be blamed for not knowing the one-letter difference in names, because they’ve only ever sold the ones that they (incorrectly) put on my car. He said that the manager would have to call me back Monday to “see if there’s anything they could do for me”.

    So, do I have any recourse here? There is no paper trail noting that I ordered X and they gave me Y (only common sense and my own notes of the conversation). And, to be fair, I did leave the dealership without noticing the mistake. I was, however, quite clear on the phone as to which tire I wanted as I have found it common for tire names to differ by only a number/letter or two. Plus, as I did not even know that a “DWS” (the incorrect tire) existed until this morning, I know that I could not have mistakenly said that that was the tire I wanted.

    Do I threaten, raise hell and write an email to anyone who will listen? Or do I just play nice, try to get whatever little bit of compensation they’ll give me and chalk it up as an expensive lesson to never deal with these morons again?

    Thanks!
     
    Number 50!
  2. SH0CK

    SH0CK Stylin' and Profilin' Quasi Tech Admin

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    I'd contact the general manager of the dealership and tell him you didn't receive what you ordered. Don't threaten to do anything, just state that you ordered one thing and got something completely different.

    If they refuse, unless you paid cash, it's easy to stop payment on a check or call your credit card company and tell them what happened. That, I would tell them if they said no. ;)
     
  3. captainron62

    captainron62 VIP Whale

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    Sound advice. The same event basically happened to my father, he didnt notice until he drove to my home and I told him his tires looked funny. He went back and they replaced them without issues. I suspect this happens in that business w some frequency.
     
  4. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

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    I contact the dealership manager. If you get no satisfaction I'd try your local TV station Contact X for consumer complaints. Nothing car dealers hate more than bad PR on TV.:poke:

    Hmm. Never heard of summer tires. Snow tires, yes, but not summer tires.

    Of course for me a car is just a way to get from point A to B.
    248,000 and counting on my 98 Honda.
     
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  5. thecarve

    thecarve Misanthrope

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    Thanks for the responses guys. Contacting the GM was my thought as well. I was just taken aback when the kid I spoke with acted as if nothing could be done. I didn’t want to come on too strong, but don’t want to be taken advantage of either.



    Joe, good call on the TV station consumer complaint idea. Obviously that is a last resort. But I will definitely keep it in mind. And BTW, summer tires usually have a more aggressive tread pattern that is more “grippy” in the dry and wet than all-seasons, but not too good in snow. They are also made of a softer rubber compound that gives them more grip. But that compound turns really hard and slippery when it gets really cold (hence, “summer” tires).


    The GM “wasn’t available” when I called. So I’ve sent him an email basically saying (somewhat more professionally) what I said in the OP.
     
    Number 50!
  6. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

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    Until I got my first front wheel drive car in 1983, I always dreaded the snow tire change each season. I did it myself. Once I got FWD, never had to do it again! And since 2010, if it snows too much, I'll just stay home until they plow.:poke:

    You do it voluntarily.:evillaugh
     
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  7. thecarve

    thecarve Misanthrope

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    LOL, yeah I suppose so. :eek: Getting the summer tires was my gift to myself for being such a “good boy” when buying the car and not spending an ungodly amount of money for an impractical toy that could only be driven in nice weather (again). :rolleyes2:

    In the past, I’ve always just driven one of the “work trucks” from the shop during the winter. Since my cars were all RWD and fitted with summer rubber, they were, at best, worthless in the winter and at worst, death-traps. With my first FWD car in 17 years, I’m looking forward to not having to drive an oil-stained flat-bed behemoth (getting 12 mpg when in hyper-miler mode) around from December to February!
     
    Number 50!
  8. shifter

    shifter Degenerate Gambler

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    I would assume when you talk to the manager and tell him you ordered X and received Y he'll offer to fix it. the lackey that answered the phone is an idiot and hopefully the manager has more sense. it's like when you order a pizza over the phone and show up and it's not the pizza you ordered. they fix it, they don't ask you to prove that you really ordered the one you said you did.
     
  9. ken2v

    ken2v This Space For Rent

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    We tore through a set of Pirelli summer tires in less than 30k on Terri's car. We're a bit over 10k on Continental replacements and they are wearing well. Loud freakin' muthas. I drove Palms-to-Pines a few weeks ago and they're also sticky freakin' muthas. :thumbsup: Much more fun than taking my Ridgeline over the hill.

    I'd love to have something sporty and RWD, however.
     
  10. thecarve

    thecarve Misanthrope

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    Just hear back from El Jefe. He was very apologetic and sounded a bit perturbed that the issue was handled in the manner it was. They will be putting “Red’s” new shoes on – gratis, of course – as soon as they can get them in stock! I've actually been pretty impressed - I've been contacted by about every higher-up in the damn organization in the past half hour.

    Thanks for all the input, gang! :thumbsup:


    The BMW Z4 (R.I.P.:cry:) I had before this car had Bridgestone Potenzas on it…about 10,000-15,000 on the rears and 20,000-25,000 on the fronts was all they were good for. The ones I’m putting on the GTI (the new car) are Continentals. I’ve read good reviews and have heard good things about tread life. Fingers crossed!
     
    Number 50!
  11. HoyaHeel

    HoyaHeel Grammar Police & Admin

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    Glad they're fixing the problem! (as they should:peace:)

    I had 3 sets of Continental DWS on my Lexus IS AWD - loved them, very loud though, and not great tread wear. (I have a pretty long commute - I do 60 miles a day on country roads) Just got new tires last week - Bridgestone Turanza Serenity. Like them so far. Slightly less stiff & sporty on curves, but MUCH quieter.:peace:

    No clue what tires are on the Bimmer (old z3 inherited....) I need to get it inspected & tags renewed - should check tires:eek:
     
  12. undathesea

    undathesea Grandissimo

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    I have a BMW Z4. I have a pretty active lifestyle and I need something larger, and I've looked at other SUVs and four door cars, but I really can't bring myself to get rid of it.
     
  13. thecarve

    thecarve Misanthrope

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    Unfortunately, some jackass not terribly familiar with the laws of physics took care of that for me! (Damn if that thing doesn’t have a whole mess of airbags though.) I did love that car.
     
    Number 50!
  14. DeMoN2318

    DeMoN2318 The DERS

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    Well there is your problem...its a VW! jk jk :peace:

    Glad the problem got worked out...I actually buy the rear tires for my sports car on ebay, Discount Tire said they would match any price so I printed the page from the ebay store and they said there is no way they can match that price...the price for two on ebay is about the price of one from Discount. They did give me a discount on the fronts because they couldn't help me on the rears, and they mount and balance all four for me.

    Unfortunately I only get 3k-5k miles out of each set...lasts me about 2 years
     
  15. FXT

    FXT VIP Whale

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    I almost went down the VW platform before picking up my Subaru. Never looked back. Upgraded turbo/suspension and you're practically flying. If you need more room and are active like me, it doesnt get any better than an FXT.
     
  16. lucky13

    lucky13 Low-Roller

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    wrong tires installed , dealer will take care of you ..and should
     
  17. saintpauljeff

    saintpauljeff VIP Whale

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    I love my Zed as well, fun car isn't it? :cheers:

    what happened to it?
     
  18. thecarve

    thecarve Misanthrope

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    Some genius just pulled right out in front of me on my way to work one morning. I have no idea what he was thinking – he evidently just didn’t bother looking my way.

    I was actually lucky in one sense. I was on the website for the VA courts trying to find when the court date was (the guy said he was going to challenge the failure to yield right of way charge:rolleyes2: and the cop said I’d be subpoenaed as a witness) and I came across this guy’s record. Christ, it was a freaking mile long. I was thanking my lucky stars the deadbeat actually had insurance!
     
    Number 50!
  19. saintpauljeff

    saintpauljeff VIP Whale

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    ugh, that sucks, have had some close calls myself
     
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