I have been through living H*ll with this dealership. I bought the vehicle new in July, 2017. They are 60 miles away - BIG MISTAKE to purchase at a distance dealer.
Because of the dark & unique color of Cosmic Grey, I did not discover all the clear coat horizontal scratches that were/are on much of the vehicle when I picked it up. I did see 3 modest-sized areas of scratches after they prepped & detailed it, & showed them where the scratches were; at which point they said they would buff them out right away. I left, thinking the paint was fine, when that was far from the case.
You need intense light such as the big overhead lighting that big gas stations have at night; or the sun when it is getting lower in the sky to see them. I can also easily see them with a Mag-Lite in the dark garage quite easily.
As I had no idea scratches would be so difficult to see in this paint, I didn’t examine the car under such lighting. I had no idea I would need to be micro-examining the car.
But, upon wand-washing the car at a self-service car wash, & carefully drying w/microfiber towels, daylight had waned, & I could see even under the car wash’s somewhat bright big square light that there were many light scratches still in the paint.
I called the dealer’s body shop mgr., who was accommodating, & said that since I lived so far, it would be fine to wait until 4,500 miles to bring it in, so they could buff the scratches. I did this, & sneaked back to where the detailer was doing it with 2 different buffing pads & compounds. When he was done, I could see at least 4 areas that were still scratched. So, he did these areas. God only knows how much clear these guys take off, as a detail shop & my local body shop told me the clear is about as thick as 3 human hairs, and that most of these dealer detailers are 3rd party, & don’t do their jobs right.
When I left the dealer, I thought all was fine. IT WASN’T. I examined the car shortly after getting home, &, to my horror, I still find there are a number of horizontal scratches. I call the body shop mgr. to tell him. Winter was about to arrive with a vengeance in a few days, so he told me to wait, & we’d wing it until the weather gave a break. It never did the whole winter. But I remained in regular contact w/body mgr., & he told me I could wait until my 10,000 m. Toyota Care Maintenance.
I did this 2 weeks ago. I had an appointment w/the understanding he was to buff any scratched areas & use better lighting. I had washed the car, per his instructions, before my appointment. But, when I arrived, they wanted to do the Maintenance first, so the car was out of my sight & in the shop in who knows how many areas. Then, it is suddenly placed back in the service waiting area, & not taken to the body shop.
I was HORRIFIED to look at the side of the car & find that there were deep scratches on the bottom half of the passenger front door & on the front fender. I immediately showed them to body mgr., & he immediately denied that they did so. Does he think I was born yesterday? I had washed & dried the car before driving there, & I scrutinized the car before leaving, & there were no such scratches. He tells me they are too deep to buff, & the door & fender would have to be repainted. I argued with him it was their fault, which he simply denied.
He stated that if these areas were repainted that the whole car would need to be buffed out (LIAR!), so there was no point in buffing the other scratches. Not knowing how to handle him, I told him I didn’t know if I would get those areas repainted, & told him to buff out the scratches I came in to have done. He then lies to my face, telling me, “I don’t have detailers working today.” WHAT? If you sell cars every day, you have to have detailers there every day. My local body shop told me that, as did another Toyota Certified Body Shop at a dealership in my area.
Realizing this dealer was not honest as I thought, & simply wanted to do nothing about anything, I called Toyota Customer Care. That was when I found out how Toyota has their whole system set up.
“All our dealers are independently owned, so we can only ask that they work the situation out with the customer, & have no control over them.” If I knew that this was Toyota’s arrangement with their dealerships, I would NEVER have bought a Toyota.
Toyota Customer Care had already lied to me before, telling me that each dealership had a Customer Relations Manager (called CRM’s) , who was employed BY Toyota, not the dealership, & that they were the watchdogs, the eyes & ears for Toyota. That is a total CROCK! These CRM’s are simply employees of the dealership, &, at this dealership it was the Service Manager, who is a slick & aggressive BS artist. When Toyota told me he was the CRM, I told them I did NOT want this going to him - I wanted the issue to be asked to be handled by the General Manager. So, both Toyota Cust. Care & I both left him voice mails. He NEVER RETURNED ANY CALLS.
When I then call Toyota Cust. Care again, I am told when a dealership does damage to a car, or doesn’t fix an issue, Toyota “doesn’t have any authority to make them do anything”, & “It is between you & the dealer.”
And this 20 year old simply argues with me, telling me that I can’t go any higher than him. I tell him there has to be a chain of command, & I demand to speak to the next level up. He puts me on hold, & then tells me his Spvr. will call me within 24 hours.
I called Toyota back, as I wanted to speak to a different representative to see what garbage I would be fed by someone else. She looked over the case notes, & told me she was sending an “electronic communication” re: no response to the dealer. This was the worst thing, because it went directly to the Service Mgr. / CRM, who then called me, & nastily told me that a “dealership decision had been made to sever all relationships; they would do nothing about either set of scratches; & that they would not service the vehicle moving forward, period.” And then hung up!
I’m still waiting to hear from Toyota’s Cust. Care Sprvr. But I believe this is going nowhere. Do you realize that with this policy Toyota has, a dealer could destroy your engine, and Toyota would DO NOTHING, & tell you it is between you and the dealership. I don’t know how they can get away with this legally.
Toyota should have long contracts for dealerships that state if they do not work with the customer to solve service / damage issues, that they will be bound by Toyota stepping in & having the authority to force them to replace the damaged engine, or do the body work necessary to fix what they have damaged. It is clear to me that this company has not set their policies up with any regard for the customer whatsoever.
I called the CRM of a large Toyota dealer near me. He has been a CRM for 15 years, & told me I should insist on this being handled by the next level up if this supervisor will not resolve the issue, which I’m sure he won’t. And Cust. Care is carefully taught to say that “this is our policy & nothing can be done other than to work with your dealership.”
BS. A Regional Manager is sent a copy of my Complaint Case, & is supposed to be involved in prodding this dealer about how they are going to resolve the complaint. But Toyota tells you that they “have no further knowledge of how the Regional Manager handles this, & they cannot speak to him directly.”
This is way, way over the top. Is there anyone in this Community who knows how to get Toyota to handle this & not simply make excuses?
Help is much appreciated.