What Ever Happened To Good Customer Service?

I’m so angry I could scream! I bought a 2003 Pontiac Grand Am from a local car dealer less than 2 years ago. Since April of this year I’ve had nothing but problems with it. First it broke down about an hour away from my home. It cost $200 to tow it to the dealer. They told me the rocker arm bolt went on the cylinder head and needed to be replaced. That cost $400 to replace. They said they couldn’t guarantee the work and if “it didn’t hold” I’d need a new cylinder head. Then the rotors were shot (something unusual in a car with less than 100,000 miles – my dad’s car has well over 100,000 miles and he’s never had to replace his rotors). The new rotors and labor cost me over $700.00. The front tires were bad (okay, sometimes this happens, I can understand this one), but it still cost me another $200. Now the wheel bearing went and that will cost another $200.

When the rocker arm bolt went I called the dealer and spoke with someone in the “Finance Dept. He told me since my warranty was up the only solution he had to offer was for me to trade in the car for a 2000 focus or taurus. He also said my monthly payments would go up by $100. What??? Was he really suggesting I trade in a 2003 Pontiac Grand Am for a 2000 economy car for an additional $100 per month? Unbelievable.

Well, in the meantime I needed transportation so I had no choice but to fix the Grand Am. I embarrassingly borrowed money from a family member and paid the more than $700 to have the new cylinder head put in. I certainly wasn’t going to take it back to the dealer, so I found another mechanic who did the work for me. But, when he saw the shoddy work the dealer had done, he told me right away. Apparently, the dealer’s mechanic had over-tightened the bolt and stripped it, making it impossible to hold in place. In addition, they left some random coil loose in the cylinder head. I was furious. The mechanic gave me all the old parts to show to the dealer if I needed or wanted to.

Well, today I made a phone call to the General Manager at the dealership. I told him how disgusted I was with all the repairs I’ve had to make after having the car for less than two years. I told him I was extremely dissatisfied with their customer service and service department. I reminded him I’ve been buying cars from his dealership for over 15 years and would never buy another car from them again. I also told him I’d sent friends to his company to buy cars, but now wouldn’t even consider recommending them to anyone. He had the nerve to ask me why I didn’t bring the car back into their service department. I told him that 1. they overcharge for their repairs and 2. why would I have my car serviced there after they had already broken something? He accused me of being “abusive” and hung up on me. Great Manager. Great customer service. Thank you Smith Ford, Inc. !

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