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It's a dog eat dog world at New Century BMW (Alhambra, CA)

tmntmn335tmntmn335 Posts: 3
edited April 2018 in BMW
Man it's a dog eat dog world at New Century (NC)

We committed with NC for a new 2018 M3 and was told it would be sold to us, only to be told a few hours later that somehow there was a mistake and it was sold to someone else. FAIL FAIL FAIL.

Never in my life have I heard of such a mistake. I have had my share of experiences at dealerships and expect it not to be the best thing in the world. But this experience was the WORST, leading me to write a review to WARN others. I can usually deal with a bad experience, but this was on a whole new level for me leaving me with a very bitter taste in my mouth and I am utterly appalled. It was unfathomable to believe that we were getting such a text hours after we had just been told a sold sign was put up and it was ours to pick up.

I currently own a BMW 335 and am loyal to BMW. I live on the southern tip of SD and NC is about a 2.5 hour drive. Last week, after doing some research, I saw that NC had posted a new M3 with the color combo that I’ve been wanting. I called on a Saturday and spoke to Hamlet. I inquired to see if the vehicle was available and expressed my interest in the car. To show that I was serious, I set up an appointment to see the car. Since Hamlet was not working, he told me to ask for Chris. My husband and I drove to NC on Sunday to see it.

Our initial impression wasn’t the most pleasant when we were approached by one of their sales reps, Harry. Upon meeting him, he was aggressive with his questions on where I got my numbers to the point where I felt attacked (mind you, I am a petite, 5’0 girl). He then proceeded and said “if another dealership was giving you better numbers, go to them!” Anyone who has purchased a car and Harry being in the car business should know that clients shop around ALL the time. How RUDE and UNPROFESSIONAL. We drove 2.5 hours to visit your business, there's no excuse for that nonsense. I understand if you're having a bad day, but show some class to the couple that spent time to choose YOU to do business with.

Already, I was turned off by NC. But since we were there already, I asked to not work with Harry and to work with Chris. He was busy, but he apologized and was nice - always checked in on us whenever he could. He set us up with Diana for a test drive, who was also nice. After the test drive, I felt better about the whole situation and met with Saied, the sales manager. Saied was very efficient and quick, which I liked. He gave us a quote and we said we would think about it and would remain in touch with Hamlet. Hamlet gave me a follow up call the next day. I told him we were still interested and would keep him updated. My husband and I did everything we could to prepare for the purchase of this car including getting a preapproval for a loan. To prevent any misunderstandings, we had Hamlet email us the confirmed OTD price on Friday before we committed. We called Hamlet on Saturday at 5pm to confirm that the car was still available and that we would like to commit to the purchase. Hamlet said it was and that he would place the sold sign on the car. We even went the extra mile by texting Hamlet again at 6:22pm to confirm. Once again, Hamlet confirmed that the sold sign was up and he would be seeing us tomorrow. As far as we were concerned, there was nothing else to be done. Easy enough, right?!

Apparently not for New Century and company.

We get a text at 9:10pm (keep in mind that they close at 8pm and it’s only been 2.5 hours since) that we should not come the next day because the car was sold. You can imagine our shock and dismay since the car was supposed to be sold to us. In speaking with Hamlet, he mentioned that there was a mix up with another manager that allowed the purchase of the car. I don't understand how that would work if a “sold” sign was already placed on the car. How would the car even be shown to another customer and how could a deal be made if that was the case?! HOW SHADY!! This was no small potatoes. This is an $80k+ car we’re talking about. We were then told that they would follow up with us to sort it out and of course, not surprisingly, there was no follow up call/update, unless it was initiated by us. And once again, unsurprisingly, they just kept stating there was nothing they could do. Really? REALLY? How about you not sell away the car I had been promised and agreed to purchase? Lies and deceit. One way or another, something was done behind our backs and it’s a shame.

I rarely ever post such negative reviews unless something just doesn’t sit right on a moral and ethical level. But from my experience with NC, I sincerely suggest you look elsewhere for your BMW needs, this has legitimately been a nightmare and I wouldn’t want it to happen to you. Think twice about dealing with this disorganized and SHADY business. It is evident that unethical business practice is just how NC does business. The M3 was my dream car, but I guess dreams can turn into nightmares if you’re dealing with NC.

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Has this ever happened to anyone else before??? It's obvious that customer service and client relations are of minimal priority to New Century.

Comments

  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 128,257
    It's pretty typical.

    Until you put up money, or your signature on a contract, there is no deal.
    There was nothing to keep you from calling the next morning, to say you changed your mind about buying the car, right?

    Don't think about it from what you know about yourself. Think about it from their side. For every person that actually shows up to consummate a deal, there are ten that back out.

    How they handled communication is another matter. At least you got the text.

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  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    Yes, that's often the way it works. First one to put up the cash gets the car. Basically, without a deposit and a signed contract, you are asking the dealer to take the car off the market--which puts the dealer at risk.

    I do agree with you, though, that the sales staff does not seem well-trained to deal with situations like this. Obviously you should have been forewarned that without a contract, the car could go to someone else.
  • Yes, that's often the way it works. First one to put up the cash gets the car. Basically, without a deposit and a signed contract, you are asking the dealer to take the car off the market--which puts the dealer at risk.

    I do agree with you, though, that the sales staff does not seem well-trained to deal with situations like this. Obviously you should have been forewarned that without a contract, the car could go to someone else.

    Yeah, I understand there isn't a deal unless money is put down and things are signed. I just wanted to put it out there for people who trust easily, like myself - especially if you will be traveling far for something like this.
    We never asked for them to hold our car, we were TOLD they would. There's a difference. So I just thought that was something they would do first, so the disappointment was real. NC needs to be more upfront with their business modality. If it's first come, first serve - so be it or like you said forewarn us that without a contract, it could go to someone else. Let us know and if we snooze, we lose. But don't string us along and tell us if we commit, they'll put a sold sign on it for us as if they're holding it for us, and then sell it under us. That's just wrong.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    Well, whoever "they" was obviously exceeded his/her authority. I'm sure another salesperson or the sales manager would not like a situation where a buyer in the store was told that a car was on "hold" without a deposit.

    Again, it sounds like poor staff training to me.
  • kyfdx said:

    It's pretty typical.

    Until you put up money, or your signature on a contract, there is no deal.
    There was nothing to keep you from calling the next morning, to say you changed your mind about buying the car, right?

    Don't think about it from what you know about yourself. Think about it from their side. For every person that actually shows up to consummate a deal, there are ten that back out.

    How they handled communication is another matter. At least you got the text.

    Yeah, I see what you're saying about thinking about it from their side. I get that. Just disappointed in how everything was handled. It wasn't as transparent as I thought it would be. I would have had no problem with putting a deposit down for it if I was told that it was needed from me for NC to "hold" the car because I got my preapproval specifically for that car. Lesson learned though. There is no deal unless you put up money or sign a contract.

    What could I have done differently when I was told that the "sold" sign would be placed on the car for me and no deposit was mentioned? I guess it was just a matter of trust between both parties. Should I ask whoever I work with next time to take down a deposit to prevent all this? I haven't purchased a car in years so have forgotten how all this works.
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