Is There a Difference?

Many people think that all car lots are created equal, especially ones that deal in the same brand of vehicle.

I can tell you this is not true and with this story there comes a lesson also. Six years ago I went out and bought my favorite car a Toyota. Now anyone who knows me knows that I love Toyota’s and next to them is my favorite American made car that doesn’t exist anymore. I loved AMC products and my first car was a Rambler. I had no problems with Ramblers and they went on forever until someone dismantled them in some manner.

My second car was a Toyota Corolla, I loved that car and drove it for a very long time. That was the beginning of my love affair with Toyota’s. I had many of them over the years including one that was seven different colours. The thing about Toyota’s was that they were always dependable no matter how ugly the body got.

Toyota suffered a few black eyes at the start 2010 due to mechanical issues. The reason it was such big news is because Toyota is consistently good and reliable. When Dodge and Ford have recalls there is no panic and that is because those vehicles have been consistently bad and unreliable for decades. I love Toyota’s and they will always remain my favorite.

Six years ago I decided that I wanted a new car for a change instead of second-hand cars. I found that if I was buying new I would by my favorite car, Toyota. I started calling dealerships first I tried “Heninger Toyota” in Calgary, because this is where I live. The old car I had, had broken down and when I called the massively non motived salesman told me to “take transit” to get there, that would be a two-hour ride from where I live.

The next place I tried was “Charlesglen Toyota” up in Crowfoot Centre. They came down and picked me up and I ended up leaving with a shiny red Toyota Echo. I loved my little echo it went like mad and was so great. I wanted the Matrix at that time but they had none in stock. I figured the Matrix would be better for hauling supplies for my business. I drove my perfect red Echo for three years. During that time the dealership was great they called when it was time to have it serviced and were very nice, treating me with respect.

Now the third year I owned the echo, my mother was the market for a new car. I took her up to “Charlesglen Toyota,” that day I traded in my perfect little candy apple red Echo for a brand new silver Matrix and my mother also bought a Matrix. The salesman was great and everything went fine.

The day came for my first servicing and no call came. I found out I was about six weeks past my first servicing so I took in my car. The service department was not only disrespectful but when I asked to speak with the service manager he was a total jerk. I then went to talk to the sales manager, well things went from bad to worse. He was a totally arrogant little twit. His rude and condescending attitude I did not care for especially; from someone not more than twenty-five years old. I continued on with three not so fun years with “Charlesglen Toyota.”

As this is the third year owning my Toyota Matrix and I had leased it for the last three years, this was the year the balloon payment came due. Charlesglen Toyota contacted me about financing that payment,t so I filled out the form after I sent it in I was told that the one person, the twenty-five year old manager was now in financing. Okay, you guessed it he got my papers and refused me in the rudest and most obnoxious manner. I found out from Toyota Canada that I did not have to go to them for the financing, I could go to any dealership.

I went off to “Stampede Toyota,” a long ways from where I live but from the minute I walked through the door they were courteous and treated me with respect. They had nothing to gain from helping me and they went out of their way to make sure I got the financing I needed. You can bet that the next Toyota I buy will be from them.

The difference in dealerships is vast even in their servicing. Charlesglen would do things and not ask you but you got the unpleasant surprise on your bill when you went to pay. Not only that but they never called to say the car was ready or even send the shuttle to come and get you.

When Stampede Toyota serviced my car they came out and asked about something that needed to be there before doing it and then they never charged for it. They explained what they did and although I waited for my car because all it took them was a half hour to service the car and for an oil change, Charlesglen, would take seven hours.

It doesn’t matter what vehicle you like check around at the dealerships. Then again your story could be just like mine, the dealership could be good for three years and then they could drop you on your head.

This brings me to purchasing insurance when you lease or buy a vehicle. This insurance is supposed to cover you if you become ill,  disabled,  or die. Don’t believe it they will kick you right in the teeth and you will never be covered and all that money will be down the drain for nothing and you will not have your car payments covered.

All car lots are not created equal, even ones that sell the same vehicles.


~ by RL Ryder on August 22, 2010.

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