Do Not Sell My Personal Information Jump to content

New Is350 Owner-very Bad Dealer Experience


Recommended Posts

I have just joined the forum and just wanted to share my very bad experience with the purchase and service, so far, of my new Lexus. I don't know if anybody is going to even read all this mumble, but I just need to tell my story so that others avoid going to this dealership.

I just purchased my new Lexus IS350 the end of February. I did all my research before contacting the sales person. I do not like the "price game", so I decided to contact the dealerships via the internet sales rep. I decided to go to Sterling MCcall Lexus. The internet sales rep is Richard Joseph, and he told me that there is no such thing as "lowest we can go". Told me to get my quote and then go talk to him. He promised me he could get me an evern better price for my car.

I went, test drove it, and as we were walking back to the office he asked "are you ready to drive off with a brand new '08 IS350? Because if not, I can just go inside, give you a quote on a piece of paper and then when you're ready you can come back. I do not want to waste my time with you and I do not want my coworkers to waste their time with you either if you're not ready to buy". I could not believe my ears. I decided to just walk away, and as I was doing it he started joking and telling me not to take it too serious, blah blah blah. Gave him a piece of my mind of course. I told him what I was looking for - 2008 IS350 with premium package, black on black.

He came out of the managers' office and told me he had an even better deal. For the same price we were talking about, he could get me "the features I wanted" plus the ML sound system. Of course, I was excited, they don't make that package with that sound system. So we talked price, I liked it, I was getting more than I wanted, for the same price or course. He really did not give me a better deal, only nocked off a little bit from what the other dealership had quoted me, but I was getting the ML, right, so ok. Four times he assured me that was the car I wanted, with the features I wanted, PLUS THE ML SOUND SYSTEM. So there I go to the Finance department. Like I said, I knew what the IS had since I had done my research. The finance guy told me the car had run-flats. I told him no, he kept telling me yes, sooooo sure it did; so I ended up giving up. Tires were not a priority to me, so I thought I had overlooked some information somewhere, and I bought the tire warranty.

I signed......The sales rep insisted on bringing the car so I could see it, I was not supposed to pick it up that day because I had tint to put on. He brought it. I got in it. The car was the IS350 but not with the premium package, it had the X-package. I got sooooo upset. I wasted 5 hours of my day, dealing with this man that did not want to "waste his time", and he ended up selling me the wrong car.

Talked to the Sales Manager, he gave me nothing, just the tint and the tire warrantly, but that was it. Said that he couldn't do anything else. I wanted the car, so I decided to buy it. I should have just walked away, I know.

I found out about the buzzing noise when you plug the iPod charger, and the sales manager did not help at all to even try to get me a better price for the interface kit. Service guy told me $700 but he could give it to me for $625, I laughed of course. I was there for 3 hours, took it in to have my lights checked and they changed it since "it had a faulty assembly". Came back 2.5 hrs later to tell me there was nothing wrong with my car, and that they had to take that new part back and put my original back in since there was nothing wrong with it. So much for being knowledgeable about the vehicles they "fix".

Took it in for the 30 day maintenance and the service guy found there was a fix to the buzzing noise, so he ordered the replacement parts but, to my surprise, they took one of my CD's that I had on my stereo. A burned CD, not even original, with my name all over it, they just took it. Called to report it, they said "sorry there is nothing we can do" Told me that he had asked and that his technicians had said they had not touched anything on my car, so I wonder how did they do the inspection?

The internet sales rep, Richard Joseph, does not know me anymore when I go to the dealership. The sales manager that I had been talking to, Steve Wedderburn, does not know me anymore either. I am very disappointed with my whole experience so far. I already filled out the survey, which was not a good one at all. Maybe it's because I'm a female, and they think I just might not be able to afford such a luxury vehicle and don't know anything about cars. Maybe I just walked in at the wrong dealership, but my experience with the first one I went to was not that pleasant either. What a shame because I know these dealerships are rated one of the top in customer satisfaction, and did absolutely nothing to satisfy or to even compensate me for my "wasted time", the wrong car, the wrong information at time of sale, and at the end, they still not kept their promise and I am missing the ML system. I like my car very much, it's just the people that have been involved in the purchase and the service are so wrong.

I don't know if anybody stayed for the whole story, did not really mean to bore anyone. Thanks for the ones that did finish reading and I hope this information helps others.

I promise not to take that much space anymore :blushing:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Tweety,

I stayed (and read) the entire post. First, let me give you some of my initial thoughts...

I WAS and to a lesser degree still AM a Lexus fan. I own a 2008 IS350, which I've had for about 2-3 weeks. This 2008 I own, is a replacement of a 2007, which was determined to be a "Lemon". My dealership experience (Tri-County Lexus in New Jersey) was about 100x worse than what you experienced, however, I do not mean to take away from what was done to you... it was/is appalling.

You had options, but you didn't take them when they were presented. When the dealership first presented you with the wrong car, you simply had to say "no" and should have left. There was no "meeting of the minds" and hence, no contract between you. You had NO obligation to purchase the car and this should have sent up bells and whistles about this crappy dealership.

My experience with the salesperson and sales manager is similar to yours and both seem to have forgotten who I am, post purchase.

Right now, I think your options are limited for a few things (here is what I would do).

Send a letter, certified mail (RRR) to Lexus Headquarters in Torrance, CA. CC the general manager of the dealership and the sales manager. If the dealership is individually owned, send it to the owner or the CEO if their is a corporate owner. File a complaint with the better business bureau and find various websites where you have "dealer ratings" and write a little blurb about what happened to you. Slam the dealer so that anyone contemplating them, considers another dealership.

However, whatever you do, make sure you can back up everything you say. Don't lie, don't exaggerate.

The last thing I'd like to say to you is that I've seen MANY Lexus dealerships (as my entire family seems to be Lexus owners) and in my experience, the dealerships are generally top notch. You and I happen to have had bad ones, but hopefully it doesn't change your opinion of the company. Right now, I still have unresolved issues with Lexus and I am not completely satisfied with how they handled my "Lemon Law" claim, but I still realize that IMHO (and personal experience) they are probably still the second best company in terms of customer service in the car industry (Honda/Acura being #1).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I read though both of your posts and for the most part agree.

I had a bad experience with my special order vehicle and am glad that I don't have to go to the dealers much if at all now. They just don't care.

Everyone assumes that the dealers and everyone that works for Lexus should be experts about the vehicles. Some employees are as they are true fans of the Automotive industry. The rest of the people are just doing their job. When they go home from work, the last thing they want to do is study online etc... about Lexus or anything to do with Lexus. It is just a fact of life.

I had a man-to-man talk with the head Sales/Service mechanic at a local Harley-Davidson store a few years ago and it really hit home for me. Basically, most of the people that work in the industry are by no means an 'enthusiasts' where the purchasers, full of up-to-date knowledge from hours of research are.

So, I know that the sales people etc… are not the experts but I can also understand why.

Regards,

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I read though both of your posts and for the most part agree.

I had a bad experience with my special order vehicle and am glad that I don't have to go to the dealers much if at all now. They just don't care.

Everyone assumes that the dealers and everyone that works for Lexus should be experts about the vehicles. Some employees are as they are true fans of the Automotive industry. The rest of the people are just doing their job. When they go home from work, the last thing they want to do is study online etc... about Lexus or anything to do with Lexus. It is just a fact of life.

I had a man-to-man talk with the head Sales/Service mechanic at a local Harley-Davidson store a few years ago and it really hit home for me. Basically, most of the people that work in the industry are by no means an 'enthusiasts' where the purchasers, full of up-to-date knowledge from hours of research are.

So, I know that the sales people etc… are not the experts but I can also understand why.

Regards,

All true, except that Lexus sort of markets itself as a "different kind of company" where customer service really does matter. Think about the hassle they give you about "giving them a positive review" when you buy a car. Customer service (and reliable cars) is where they are supposed to trounce their competition.

I think by in large, they are successful in most cases. We just happen to be the few the slipped through the cracks.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you all for reading my looonnnngggg story. I know I should have just walked away, but I had been looking for a black on black, and hadn't been able to find one. When they told me they had one, I went, but I should have just left I know that now. I am still having issues and I guess now I should just not even bother calling them for any issues I have since they won't help me anymore, I signed right? Oh well, I hope that word gets out about how bad these people are. Steve W. the sales manager told me "I expect to be treated with respect, just as I would treat other", so I guess now I know what kind of respect he has for himself.

Now I am having issues with the Dent Zone warrantly. Anybody bought this? Well, I did since when they explained to me they said it would cover dings and dents on the car. What they forgot to tell me was that only if it is fixable via the PDR system (Paintless Dent Repair), but it does not cover any paint job if it is necessary and they don't do "big dents". What is wrong with these people, I can not seriously believe my experience. I have a 1999 F-150 and I have never had such bad experience at all with a Ford dealer.

Thanks for you all's input and advice.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've read all of the above and I can't believe what you all are going through. I just bought my IS250 from Hendrick Lexus in Charlotte, NC. My wife bought her first Lexus from them (a '98 ES300) and now has an '04 RX330. I cannot tell you how pleased I am with the service she has gotten both from sales and the service department with her two cars. For example, when she owned the ES and took it in for service at the 25,000 mile mark, Hendrick replaced the brakes for her free of charge because they felt they should not have worn out that quickly. They have also replaced carpet in both vehicles that was discolored even though it wasn't technically a warranty issue.

My sales experience was great. When I stopped by the first time the sales lady spent about 45 minutes with me even though I told her I wanted just to look at the car and not drive it. When I went back to drive it 6 weeks later she spent over an hour with me. My point is, especially to Tweety, that not all Lexus dealerships are bad. In fact, the sale is the least profitable part of the relationship for them. Take your car to another dealer, tell them what you are going through and explain that you are looking for a dealer that you can have a long-term positive relationship with. Good luck.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

DK,

To be fair, I would bet you are in the MAJORITY and we in the small minority, but you generally only hear of stories like ours. It would be out of the ordinary for someone to create a thread about "how great my dealership treated me".

As I said in my original post, looking at my family members, I've seen the best of Lexus, unfortunately that wasn't my experience.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That's great DK, I wish mine had been as pleasant. This dealership has 2yr/25K free maintenance, and I need to find out if it's transferable to another dealership. I really do not want to deal with them if I do not have to, but I have to find out first. I know the other dealerships have it too, but I think I have to take it to where I bought it.

I know that not all Lexus dealerships are like this one, and I wish I had done a little research on the dealership itself.

Any comments about the Dent Zone Warrantly? Anybody?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There was a new guy there who I bought my car from (it was his first car sold). He was pretty knowledgeable about the car, although there were some technical questions I asked that he did not know, he got his manager who helped with the questions. Overall I knew what I wanted so he didn't have too much work to do haha.

He showed me the car in a few different colors. And when I decided on the color that I wanted (I never thought pictures did colors justice) he showed me the actual car (IS-250 with luxury and X packages). The reason he didn't show me the car right away and let me pick the colors instead was due to the fact they literally just got off the truck (truck was still on the lot). 9 miles when purchased! was a nice number to see...

They were very helpful throughout the process and I actually drove the IS-350 and 250 models, 350 was a lot faster but I wanted more interior comfort for a daily driver and I couldn't afford it with the 350.

When we got into the details of payment they helped cut off some more money because I stayed with their new salesman (guess they thought I was doing it out of concern for him...oh well.. extra $$ for me). The new salesman seemed to be more interested in what I wanted rather than selling me the car, which I found refreshing.

Just before going to Lexus I went to an Acura dealer to try out the Acura TL and I could not understand what the salesman was saying (really strong accent). That right there ended all chances of me buying one lol.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Now I am having issues with the Dent Zone warrantly. Anybody bought this? Well, I did since when they explained to me they said it would cover dings and dents on the car. What they forgot to tell me was that only if it is fixable via the PDR system (Paintless Dent Repair), but it does not cover any paint job if it is necessary and they don't do "big dents". What is wrong with these people, I can not seriously believe my experience.

Tweety,

I'm generally very sympathetic to what you've been through, having gone through a lot of BS myself, however, I don't see anything wrong with the dealership here. First and foremost, it is your obligation to read what you purchase. Do I think the dealership should have fully disclosed how the program worked? Of course, but in the absence of them being forthright, you could have protected yourself by reading.

Specifically to your question... I have never heard of this "dent zone" warranty but had a similar warranty from Honda years ago with another car I owned. It worked the same way as you described with one difference....

They came to your house to make the repair and the warranty stipulated you could only repair 2 dents per year (it was pretty useless - but free). The reason the service doesn't cover any "big dents" or "painting" is because you have to see how they actually take out the dents.

Depending upon the location of the dent, they use these metal "pokers" to push out dents from the inside out. They are not auto body guys. These guys are like the garbage men of the automotive world. Guys who are good at is can actually make small dents look normal again, provided NO paint has been removed.

I hope that clears things up for you.

If however you have small dings (where paint has been removed) a good car detailer might be able to minimize the appearance of such damage. Personally, I have had great success (in the past) at removing light swirls and scratches with Meguiars Scratch X and some good old fashioned elbow grease.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Now I am having issues with the Dent Zone warrantly. Anybody bought this? Well, I did since when they explained to me they said it would cover dings and dents on the car. What they forgot to tell me was that only if it is fixable via the PDR system (Paintless Dent Repair), but it does not cover any paint job if it is necessary and they don't do "big dents". What is wrong with these people, I can not seriously believe my experience.

Tweety,

I'm generally very sympathetic to what you've been through, having gone through a lot of BS myself, however, I don't see anything wrong with the dealership here. First and foremost, it is your obligation to read what you purchase. Do I think the dealership should have fully disclosed how the program worked? Of course, but in the absence of them being forthright, you could have protected yourself by reading.

Specifically to your question... I have never heard of this "dent zone" warranty but had a similar warranty from Honda years ago with another car I owned. It worked the same way as you described with one difference....

They came to your house to make the repair and the warranty stipulated you could only repair 2 dents per year (it was pretty useless - but free). The reason the service doesn't cover any "big dents" or "painting" is because you have to see how they actually take out the dents.

Depending upon the location of the dent, they use these metal "pokers" to push out dents from the inside out. They are not auto body guys. These guys are like the garbage men of the automotive world. Guys who are good at is can actually make small dents look normal again, provided NO paint has been removed.

I hope that clears things up for you.

If however you have small dings (where paint has been removed) a good car detailer might be able to minimize the appearance of such damage. Personally, I have had great success (in the past) at removing light swirls and scratches with Meguiars Scratch X and some good old fashioned elbow grease.

Well, yes I guess there is nothing wrong with selling something and lying about it. It's their job, right? But it's soooooo wrong. :( I know that I should have read it of course, I know it is not their fault I did not read. I should have known, it is my fault that I just believed on what they were saying. I bought it, I have it, and I don't think I'll use it. I do not want for them to drill holes on my car, no matter how tiny they might be, since they will not do any paint jobs and if it starts chipping then that would be only my problem. There goes $500 I could have saved. I have a dent on my back door already, some very intelligent person that probably moved their car when they saw what they had done to mine because I was for sure going to wait there patiently for them to come back if they were still parked next to me.

Thanks for your information, I appreciate it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you all for reading my looonnnngggg story. I know I should have just walked away, but I had been looking for a black on black, and hadn't been able to find one. When they told me they had one, I went, but I should have just left I know that now. I am still having issues and I guess now I should just not even bother calling them for any issues I have since they won't help me anymore, I signed right? Oh well, I hope that word gets out about how bad these people are. Steve W. the sales manager told me "I expect to be treated with respect, just as I would treat other", so I guess now I know what kind of respect he has for himself.

Now I am having issues with the Dent Zone warrantly. Anybody bought this? Well, I did since when they explained to me they said it would cover dings and dents on the car. What they forgot to tell me was that only if it is fixable via the PDR system (Paintless Dent Repair), but it does not cover any paint job if it is necessary and they don't do "big dents". What is wrong with these people, I can not seriously believe my experience. I have a 1999 F-150 and I have never had such bad experience at all with a Ford dealer.

Thanks for you all's input and advice.

You basically got blinded by your desire for this car. Every step of the way, you could see that this dealer was a problem, but you wanted that car. Always trust your gut.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think your experience is horrible but at the same time not true for the majority of Lexus dealerships. I just bought my used '06 IS250 and I couldn't be happier with the experience. Although I felt a little bit rushed (because the sale happened on the last day of the last month of the first quarter) the quality of service I have received has been top notch. I am very particular about my new car and I think within a week of rolling off the lot with my IS250 I have been back to the dealership 3 times for small adjustments such as the tint getting scratched etc, which they promptly replaced the tint on all 4 windows, and when I went back to say the car was pulling a little bit to the right they realigned the car and put two new tires on the front. I would highly recommend going to a different Lexus dealership and explaining the trouble you are having. Lexus is known not only for their quality but also notorious for their customer service. One bad dealership definately does not generalize all dealerships. I would definately take the issue up with the general manager of the dealership and corporate offices though.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

WOW, is all I can come up with to start this posting. I do some part time work for a local car dealership here in Virginia (not Lexus). I have been doing PC/Network support for them for about 6 years. I have learned a lot over the years. All salesmen know that if the customer leaves the chances of him/her coming back is very slim. They must do what it takes to close the deal the first time. Walking away is not as easy as it sounds. Like most men once I have made up my mind I want the car. It is tough to turn that off. When I bought my last two vehicles I decided when I went in that if I didn't like what I saw and heard I would walk away. That has to be your thought process before you walk in.

I would recommend you file an issue with the BBB. That way it will be on record. I would bet the folks at the dealership have you listed as the local pain now. They put up with you. I do not disagree with what you did to try and resolve the issues. The squeeking wheel gets the grease.

Thank you for posting your experience on here. I believe it might help someone with their buying of a car in the future. If you make only a 1% difference you , at least, made a difference.

Norman

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Forums


News


Membership