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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
BAD Experience at Cook Automotive in Aberdeen, MD

Wow, just wow is all I can say about what happened Monday. The easiest way to sum it up is to post a copy of the letter that I fired off to the Mid-Atlantic Chrysler Customer Care Manager:

I just wanted to let you know of an event which occurred Monday, May 5th 2014 that I feel that you should be aware of. First off, be aware that I strive to be the most informed buyer that I can be in order to obtain the best price and to avoid disappointment from unrealistic product expectations, no matter what product I am purchasing. Of course it should go without saying that the more expensive the item, the more due diligence that I perform in terms of research and study. This background is important and leads me to the events that occurred on Monday, May 5th 2014 at the Cook Motorcars dealership located at 1136 S Philadelphia Blvd in Aberdeen, Md. at approximately 12:30 PM.

At this point I should also mention that I have been seriously considering the purchase of a 2014 Challenger R/T for some time now and that I had previously been working with what I would consider a model salesman who has repeatedly gone out of his way to accommodate me and had worked with the dealership management to create a great deal that unfortunately did not work out due to important concerns of mine that prevented me from following through with the purchase at that time.

I was at the dealership attending to a warranty matter that affected my 2012 Challenger SXT+ (which I had purchased from this dealership from the salesman that I had been working with for the purchase of a 2014 Challenger R/T) and had noticed a 2011 Challenger SRT that had been setting on the lot for several months. After attempting to locate the salesman that I had established a business relationship with, I was directed to speak to the used can manager, R. X. I am familiar with Mr. X as we had spoken briefly before when he was a salesman.

We initially exchanged general pleasantries such as his position there and seeing each other again. At this point he inquired about the reason for my presence there which led to a discussion about the 2011 Challenger SRT. It was at this time that I mentioned that I would like follow up on the other salesman's offer to test drive the 2011 Challenger SRT in order to determine its real-world fuel efficiency which is a concern of mine. This is part of my information gathering process that could lead to a decision to purchase that particular vehicle over a 2014 R/T in the next few (2 to 3) months.

It was at this point that things began to rapidly deteriorate. He then proceeded to tell me in no uncertain terms that and I quote (although unfortunately not perfectly verbatim as over 48 hours have passed) “there is no way in hell that I will allow you to come in here just to take a joy ride and put more miles on that car if you are not going to buy it today…not on my watch buddy, no way, no way in hell! And if you don’t like it you can just get the hell off of my damn lot!” By the time he finished these statements he was literally shouting at me, yes actually shouting!

Needless to say, I was quite taken aback at such unprofessional, not to mention crass and offensive language emanating from someone who is supposed to be sales professional not to mention someone who is supposed to be in the position of assisting with the sales of very expensive consumer products! Fortunately there no other customers in the used car office area and only two other sales people. I attempted to smooth over the situation by stating that if a “deal” that was satisfactory could be reached; I would seriously consider purchasing the vehicle ahead of my scheduled time frame. And that I was not there for a “joy ride” and that I could gather the information that I needed with just a few miles. Reluctantly, and I do mean very reluctantly along with clearly being highly agitated, he arraigned for the test drive with another sales person to ride along which is something that I had never had happen at that dealership before.

When we returned Mr. X was exceptionally aggressive in trying to force me to commit to buy that particular car right then and there while I was providing the salesperson with the information that they needed to determine the value of my car. It was at this time the salesman that I spoke highly of earlier entered the area and we exchanged greetings and explained that I had driven the 2011 Challenger SRT and that I was very impressed with the car and that there was a possibility that a deal could be reached. The other salesperson asked at this point if we were able to reach a deal, would I be willing to buy the vehicle today. I explained to him that as I had told the original salesman that I had been working with, I did not make a major purchase the same day as it was presented and additionally, because it affected our budget, I also needed to consult with my wife. After this exchange, Mr. X again told me in an aggressive and hostile manner that if he put the effort into a deal that I was obligated to purchase the vehicle that day. In an attempt to calm Mr. X, I gathered my overcoat and walked outside while the two salespeople and Mr. X consulted each other. At this point I had decided that I would NOT be purchasing the vehicle due to Mr. X’s aggressive and hostile demeanor along with the degrading and demeaning manor in which he had been speaking to me, and had spoken to me earlier.

After a few minutes, he walked out and approached me to ask me what I expected for trade-in value out of my 2012 Challenger SXT+. I gave him an highly inflated value (well over retail value) in an attempt the let him know that I was no longer interested. Completely misunderstanding the meaning of the greatly inflated price that I expected out of my vehicle, he became even more hostile and aggressive and proceeded to lecture me in an extremely demeaning manner that I found to be highly offensive about the value of my car and that I was "crazier than hell" to expect that amount out of my vehicle as it was not worth that much to him. In a final effort to prevent any further escalation of Mr. X’s obviously highly agitated (and quite possibly unstable?) state of mind I told him that I would just sale my car myself and when I was ready to purchase a vehicle I would come back by and make an offer and started walking away from him. At this point the salesman that I had established a business relationship came up to me and tried to explain that my car was not worth what I was expecting. I told him that I know that and that; however I would not take an offer of less than one half of what I had paid for the car slightly more than two years ago. After a bit more conversation he was called away and I proceeded to walk over to the service area to pick up my car.

I know automotive dealerships have gained a less than stellar reputation from the past behavior of some of their employees and I must say that Mr. X’s behavior on Monday not only matches the stereotype of a highly aggressive and offensive sales manager, but far surpasses that stereotype. I’m not sure if Mr. X was trying to “teach me a lesson” with his behavior about not purchasing a vehicle the day that I looked at it and test drove it; but I can guarantee that that lesson was “taken to heart” in a manner of speaking.

I know that the loss of a few automotive sales over a few years is a drop in the preverbal bucket considering the dealership’s cash flow; however, Mr. X’s hostile, aggressive and offensive behavior will prevent me from rewarding a dealership who sponsors and condones such behavior with any further business from me. In addition, this experience will be shared with anyone who inquires about how potential customers are treated at this dealership.

In closing, please believe me when I state the following facts. It is a fact that I will purchase a 2014 Challenger R/T or quite possibly a 2012 SRT within the next year and it is unfortunate that Mr. X’s behavior will in all probability negate all of the previous efforts of the outstanding salesman with whom I have established a business relationship. It is a fact that I will be buying my wife a new car within the next two years. She has already mentioned her attraction to the Chrysler 200 and we have looked at several already. And lastly, it is a fact that I will be purchasing a lightly used pick-up truck within two or three years after I purchase my wife’s car and that I am seriously considering a Dodge Ram for that vehicle.

Please allow me to once more reiterate that Mr. X’s behavior will in all probability cost Cook Motorcars (and quite possibly Chrysler Corp) dealership at least two and possibly three sales over the next two to five years. And as long as he remains in his current position it is my opinion that his hyper aggressive and offensive behavior will dive many more customers away from that dealership instead of creating many return customers.


Sincerely,
me
 

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I would have left a sticky note on his computer "thanks for the joy ride!"
 

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I would have left a sticky note on his computer "thanks for the joy ride!"
How about a painted number on the doors and a racelegal bumpersticker slapped on the spoiler? :D

Not to make light of the OP's experience. It's unfortunate that you had to deal with someone like that. The loudest message you can send is to take your business elsewhere. I certainly wouldn't feel comfortable buying a car from a dealership that condones that type of behavior. Good luck. :smileup:
 

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I probably would have CC'd the owner of the dealership with an addendum that I was taking my business somewhere else.
 

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Sounds like you should close the chapter with Cook Automotive. I have run into issues similar to that in the late 80's/early 90's, but nothing really offensive since. As a whole, dealerships have done better from my view.
 

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When I purchased my 2012 Challenger.....Cook Automotive was one of the two dealerships I had dueling to get my business. Cook and another dealership near Phila. each had the exact car on their lots...EXACT. List started out at $37,540 and the battle began.

I wanted to get the car for $29K out the door. From the get go, the salesman at Cook was a little demeaning towards me (I guess being a woman)....telling me it would never happen. After two days of back and forth, I got my R/T for $29K from the other dealership.

The Cook salesman pretty much gave me a bunch of crap, telling me I wasted his time and getting that car for that price was IMPOSSIBLE. The next day I drove all the way to Aberdeen in my new R/T and slapped the sales receipt on his desk. They'll never get my business.
 
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Discussion Starter #10
Until this experience, I have not had any unpleasant experiences with Cook. The salesman that I originally purchased my car from has been patently working with me on the purchase of an R/T so I have absolutly no complaints there. However, the used car manager was the exact opposite. He was arrogant, offensive, highly aggressive and downright combative. So, in light of how helpful the salesman that I have been working with has been, when its time to purchase the R/T or maybe even an SRT I will give him one and only one shot to meet my price. IF not I'll be gone like a fart in a hurricane.

As for my letter to Chrysler, I seriously doubt that it even made it past whomever looks at the e-mails. I'm sure that their thinking is that they got their money from me so now they couldn't care less about my experience with said used car manager.
 

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When I purchased my 2012 Challenger.....Cook Automotive was one of the two dealerships I had dueling to get my business. Cook and another dealership near Phila. each had the exact car on their lots...EXACT. List started out at $37,540 and the battle began.

I wanted to get the car for $29K out the door. From the get go, the salesman at Cook was a little demeaning towards me (I guess being a woman)....telling me it would never happen. After two days of back and forth, I got my R/T for $29K from the other dealership.

The Cook salesman pretty much gave me a bunch of crap, telling me I wasted his time and getting that car for that price was IMPOSSIBLE. The next day I drove all the way to Aberdeen in my new R/T and slapped the sales receipt on his desk. They'll never get my business.
I heard that same BS when I went shopping for my Y.J. Impossible to get one at my price I was told. Its below their cost bla bla bla.

I must admit you drive a hard bargin...$8540 discount and more with taxes title and processing.
 

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I heard that same BS when I went shopping for my Y.J. Impossible to get one at my price I was told. Its below their cost bla bla bla.

I must admit you drive a hard bargin...$8540 discount and more with taxes title and processing.
When I purchase a car, new or used, I research the daylights out of the model I'm interested in. I always find at least 2 cars with the exact features and options...gives me extra leverage. I noticed that my car and the one at Cook had been sitting on their respective lots for over 5 months. It took a week of negotiations, but I ended up with the car I wanted at the price I wanted.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Well I heard back from Chrysler today, and their response was pretty much what I expected.

"Thank you for contacting the Dodge Customer Assistance Center.

We at Chrysler take your complaints seriously. We regret the fact that
you have encountered this issue. We are committed to an improved focus
on customer satisfaction

Your concern has been documented, and I will be sending a letter to the Chrysler Business Center, on your behalf, so that it can be reviewed and addressed by those parties.

Thank you again for your e-mail. Should you require additional
assistance, or have any new information to provide, please reply to this
e-mail message."
 

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Well I heard back from Chrysler today, and their response was pretty much what I expected.

"Thank you for contacting the Dodge Customer Assistance Center.

We at Chrysler take your complaints seriously. We regret the fact that
you have encountered this issue. We are committed to an improved focus
on customer satisfaction

Your concern has been documented, and I will be sending a letter to the Chrysler Business Center, on your behalf, so that it can be reviewed and addressed by those parties.

Thank you again for your e-mail. Should you require additional
assistance, or have any new information to provide, please reply to this
e-mail message."
Just what you thought....a general reply. You never know though.....it might get back to Cook.
 

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Well I heard back from Chrysler today, and their response was pretty much what I expected.

"Thank you for contacting the Dodge Customer Assistance Center.

We at Chrysler take your complaints seriously. We regret the fact that
you have encountered this issue. We are committed to an improved focus
on customer satisfaction

Your concern has been documented, and I will be sending a letter to the Chrysler Business Center, on your behalf, so that it can be reviewed and addressed by those parties.

Thank you again for your e-mail. Should you require additional
assistance, or have any new information to provide, please reply to this
e-mail message."
:shakehead: I wonder if you would have got a "real" responce if your complaint had been in Italian???:4-dontknow:
 

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Just a thought - obviously a horrible expeirence that no one should be subjected to. Why not make an appointment with the owner or GM. Calmly explain your story and ask him to "make it right". Make it right doesnt just means saying he's sorry, tell him you are willing to give him one more chance to earn your business - but that he will have to take some serious steps to earn it - 1) counsel and re-train Mr. X, 2) formal apology), 3) deep discount on your purchase/trade-in, and considerations for service (e.g., free oil changes, etc.).

I did that once and the GM was flabbergasted at his employee's demeanor and conduct. (in my case it was an abusive service manager - and while bad, it wasnt as bad as your experience). The GM asked me a lot of questions and asked me to let him investigate and he would call me back. The next morning I received a call form the GM. He apologized to me and told me steps he was taking to discipline the employee. He also offered to "make it right" in 2 ways. He removed the entire labor charge on my service ticket (over $500) and gave me a letter from his desk that said whenever I came back for a car purchase, whatever the deal I reached, I was to then show the Sales Manager the letter and he would take an additional $500 off the agreed upon price.

I have been a long time customer of this dealership and he knew his employee had messed up badly. By being respectful and asking him to check into it and then come back to me, I gave him some time to get to the bottom of things and his "make good" was actually more than I would have asked for. That was 10 years ago. Since then I have bought anouther car from him and had my dodge vehicles serived by him whenever I couldnt do the work myself.

Just a thought to consider
 

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Just a thought - obviously a horrible expeirence that no one should be subjected to. Why not make an appointment with the owner or GM. Calmly explain your story and ask him to "make it right". Make it right doesnt just means saying he's sorry, tell him you are willing to give him one more chance to earn your business - but that he will have to take some serious steps to earn it - 1) counsel and re-train Mr. X, 2) formal apology), 3) deep discount on your purchase/trade-in, and considerations for service (e.g., free oil changes, etc.).

I did that once and the GM was flabbergasted at his employee's demeanor and conduct. (in my case it was an abusive service manager - and while bad, it wasnt as bad as your experience). The GM asked me a lot of questions and asked me to let him investigate and he would call me back. The next morning I received a call form the GM. He apologized to me and told me steps he was taking to discipline the employee. He also offered to "make it right" in 2 ways. He removed the entire labor charge on my service ticket (over $500) and gave me a letter from his desk that said whenever I came back for a car purchase, whatever the deal I reached, I was to then show the Sales Manager the letter and he would take an additional $500 off the agreed upon price.

I have been a long time customer of this dealership and he knew his employee had messed up badly. By being respectful and asking him to check into it and then come back to me, I gave him some time to get to the bottom of things and his "make good" was actually more than I would have asked for. That was 10 years ago. Since then I have bought anouther car from him and had my dodge vehicles serived by him whenever I couldnt do the work myself.

Just a thought to consider
Andres, that is such a smart and logical approach!
 

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Just a thought - obviously a horrible expeirence that no one should be subjected to. Why not make an appointment with the owner or GM. Calmly explain your story and ask him to "make it right". Make it right doesnt just means saying he's sorry, tell him you are willing to give him one more chance to earn your business - but that he will have to take some serious steps to earn it - 1) counsel and re-train Mr. X, 2) formal apology), 3) deep discount on your purchase/trade-in, and considerations for service (e.g., free oil changes, etc.).

I did that once and the GM was flabbergasted at his employee's demeanor and conduct. (in my case it was an abusive service manager - and while bad, it wasnt as bad as your experience). The GM asked me a lot of questions and asked me to let him investigate and he would call me back. The next morning I received a call form the GM. He apologized to me and told me steps he was taking to discipline the employee. He also offered to "make it right" in 2 ways. He removed the entire labor charge on my service ticket (over $500) and gave me a letter from his desk that said whenever I came back for a car purchase, whatever the deal I reached, I was to then show the Sales Manager the letter and he would take an additional $500 off the agreed upon price.

I have been a long time customer of this dealership and he knew his employee had messed up badly. By being respectful and asking him to check into it and then come back to me, I gave him some time to get to the bottom of things and his "make good" was actually more than I would have asked for. That was 10 years ago. Since then I have bought anouther car from him and had my dodge vehicles serived by him whenever I couldnt do the work myself.

Just a thought to consider
After I purchased my R/T from the "other" dealership....the very next day, I drove to Cook in Aberdeen, sales receipt in hand, to show the salesman in person that, I in fact did get the car for $29K. The salesman was shocked to say the least, to see me. I asked to see the GM along with the salesman and my request was granted. Long story short, the salesman did a LOT of back-pedaling, and the GM even had a hard time believing that I got the car for $29K....he had to pull the sheet on his car to see that they were, in fact, the "Same Car." There was a lot of hand shaking and apologizing and in the end I got a $100 coupon for any non-warranty work and 3 free oil changes. Needless to say, I have never gone back.
 

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Whew..........

.............what's left to say? Yes, as stated above, post Chrysler's response, IF ANY!
Keep on CHALLENGING!
 
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