Wow, What a wild ride. I just don't know what to say as an overall impression! Good deal but Cautious, perhaps? You decide:
We went slightly used van shopping and observed an interesting prospect online on their website. Looked good, nice price, nice a local. So we decided to go check it out.
We arrive and their facility was clean and spacious with a decent selection of vehicles. We were quickly shown the vehicle we were interested in. They started it up and brought it to the dealership door- nice service there!
We got our children situated for a test drive and well, it's Winter in Minnesota and we noticed it was rather nippy still in the van. We tinker with the controls and can't figure it out so we ask if there is some secret knack to it and they discover "the thermostat" is out. Oops. After about 45 frigid minutes we get back and decide as long as they fix the heater issue- we really like it and would like to take it to an inspection before signing papers.
SURE! They say. We'll get that fixed first thing and have it ready ANY time the next day for us to take to the mechanics. Okay.
The next day comes, we call in the morning and are told they just took it to the shop and it should be back for us at about noon. To be on the safe side we schedule a 2pm inspection at a different garage.
1:30pm rolls around and we call before coming and are told they just brought it to the shop [huh, where had I heard that before?] and it won't be ready for another hour. Okay. Is 4pm a safe bet? Yes. Okay.
3:30pm and the van is still not ready. The truth is now they don't know what's wrong with it but it's not the thermostat and it's big. "Sorry, the van won't be available for a week or so. BUT.... We just got this awesome trade in and we think it is perfect for you!"
Slightly hesitant, we agree to see the vehicle. It's nice. More basic and a couple years older than the LX version we saw but had ALOT less miles on it which is a good bonus. [Price would be the same because of our inconvenience- uh hu....]
We decide it may still be a good deal though and they offer to let us take the vehicle overnight and have it inspected the following day. Generous offer, we accepted. Inspection came out pretty clean, we put in an offer, got a decent deal and a good value on our trade.
Part of our deal was also that they agreed to put on new tires and give it an alignment because one tire was dangerously/shoddily repaired and could blow at any time. They then offered to let us drive a very nice nearly new vehicle until ours was ready.
We purchased our van on a Saturday but they couldn't do the work until Monday...... they said. Monday rolls around and I call to set up a pick up time for after the tires are done but before my husband needs to go to work at 3pm. Tires don't take that long to do. They hem and haw a bit and say it can't be done by when my husband needed to go and offer to let us keep the loaner another night.
Tuesday morning, same routine- need a pick up time before husband needs to go to work. "We just took it to the shop, Call back at 1:30pm, it'll be ready." We HUST took it to the shop? Isn't that what they said yesterday? This is getting to be a nasty pattern. We call at 1:30 and uh oh, it's done but they still need to pick it up at the shop, can't be gotten by 3pm, keep the loaner ANOTHER night.
Now I like the loaner vehicle :) Nice 2006 Chrysler Pacifica, very Luxury. But we also like our New Van and have already paid for it. They could have just been honest and said "it will be done Wednesday" instead of making us wait around all day every day with broken promises of when it will be ready.
In summary, we did get a nice vehicle at a decent price. They were friendly but almost distracted. They were not aggressive sales people. It bothers me that they always seem to have a new story. We also noted a sales associate showing the first van [the one with big problems?] to another customer as we took our test drive on the second one and thought that was suspicious-- If something was so wrong with it why was it still being shown for sale?
I recommend great caution with dealing with them. I observed things which could be construed as horrendous disorganization or deceptive business-- depending on the facts of the situation I don't have.
Never assume what they say will happen will. Research your vehicles and get an independant inspection. You might get a great deal-- but be alert and understand their time ........ "handicap" going in.