In yet another non-food related entry, I'd like to share with all of you the wonderful experience I had recently with Frank Z Chevrolet in Dayton, Ohio. I leased a 2007 Impala there a few years back and my lease was coming due in February. GM usually offers a pull-ahead on the lease as long as you're purchasing or leasing another new GM vehicle. Now, keep in mind, I'd leased or purchased all of my other 5 new Chevrolet vehicles through Serra Chevrolet, and had always had a good experience. The only reason I didn't go through them in 2007 is because one of the sales staff got pretty snarky when I gave him my very reasonable price range. Plus at this point, I lived in Dayton proper, so having a dealership and service center closer to home just made sense.
When it came time to turn in my lease, the sales person I was dealing with, Brian Pettitt, seemed increasingly irritated that I could not afford the payments he was coming up with on something new. He also, without asking my permission, ran my credit through approximately seven local credit unions that I don't have an account with. If you know much about credit unions, you know this is typical. They'll break their neck for their members, but you don't get far as a non-member. He didn't bother running my credit through GMAC, who I've financed through 5 previous times and have an excellent credit history with. Until I received the rejection letters, I was not even aware he was tapping my credit. After all, I'd just asked for some ballpark numbers - I didn't ask him to put together a contract and get a loan approval.
Come late December, I went back to Serra Chevrolet and they worked up a pretty great deal for me on a 2010 Malibu. About two weeks later I received a bill from GMAC on the Impala I'd just turned in to the tune of $2000 for mileage overages. This seemed really odd, because I was under the impression that on a 40 month lease, I had 40K miles to go through. I'm in outside sales for a living, so why would I agree to anything less? Well, apparently Frank Z, in an effort to lower my payments and get me to sign on the dotted line, lowered my mileage to only 32,000 for the entirety of the lease. I'm not going to deny that I initialed next to it in the contract - but you know when you buy a car, it's an hour of "sign here, initial there," with a brief description of what you're signing for. The lowered mileage was never verbally addressed. Supposedly I'd met with a financial adviser who reviewed all of this with me - which is funny because I'd never met him.
Upon requesting a copy of my contract, complete with a very smart-assed cover letter insinuating that I'm an idiot who can't count to five, I replied letting him know there was no reason for his attitude, because this was bad business. I also said that I'd appreciate it if Frank Z would talk to GMAC on my behalf about possibly lowering this balance. So please, take a heartwarming journey with me and read over the response I received:
"I have an attitude right now because you are trying to blame me,for what has turned out to be a bad decision by you.
You can come up with excuses all day long. At the end of the day, you signed the contract, you were told the term, the miles, the payment, etc. If you honestly think that we are going to pay for your excessive mileage bill that is crazy.
I guess nobody wants to take any accountability for themselves anymore. Let's find someone else to blame and pay for our mistakes.
Top notch customer service, right?! Apparently he missed the part where I'd agreed I'd made a mistake by not asking more questions in my original email to him. I wasn't asking them to pay the bill for me, I was asking for a little help. Regardless of who comes out the "winner" here, no service staffer should be allowed to speak to a customer this way and keep their job. If I approached one of my clients like this I'd get canned on the spot.
Do yourselves a favor and never, ever do business with Frank Z Chevrolet unless you like getting bent over and given the business.