Evia Auto Sales — Shady Business Practces
On April 16th my fiancee and I walked onto the Evia lot looking for a minivan. We found a 2003 Windstar, and had the unfortunate bad luck of meeting Scott, the "Sales Manager."
While waiting for a test drive, I was asked by another salesman on the floor (Who I'll call Goatee) "So, do you plan on trading in anything?" I replied:
"I'm not interested in discussing financing until I get a firm offer on the car."
Goatee's response? "Whatever..."
Fast forward about an hour or so...I test drive the car, look under the hood and body, all seems well. It looks like a good prospect, but I need to leave for work. I leave my fiancee to negotiate the details of the purchase (my first mistake), and give her $2500.00 cash for the down payment(my second mistake.)
Evia prides itself on 100% Approval for all financing; so I felt confident that my fiancee would do alright. The asking price was $10, 999; I told her to negotiate between $7, 000-$8, 500. Scott opened the negotiation by stating that "he could go as low as $7, 499.00" Bingo! So, my fiancee tells him to go ahead and get her credit approved. He comes back with a financed amount of $5600 dollars, and a required down payment of $2500.00, so she hands over the cash (HUGE MISTAKE!)
He also tells her that a "2 Year 24, 000 mile warranty is REQUIRED by the bank" in order for the loan to be approved, to the tune of $1380.00 more. He quietly folds it into the loan payment, balloning it to $224 a month for 42 months.
I call from work to see what's going on, get the numbers to do the math, and see that somethings not right. Then she tells me about the Forced Warranty.
I flip, do some research on the Internet, and discover that this is an "unfair business practice" in the truest sense of the word. Basically, it's a total scam to let the car dealers pad their profits: you can buy your own private warranty for less that half the price of the Dealer's quote. AND...IT IS COMPLETELY OPTIONAL!!!
We schedule a time to go back to the dealership to drop the (totally optional, but they'll never let you know that) warranty from the price, voice recorder hidden in our pocket, and see if they'll negotiate according to the quoted price of $7499.00. They wont. They whine and moan that they're not going to have enough to cover the cost of the van, etc. etc. while I'm thinking "If you wanted to make a profit so bad, why did you lowball the base price and try to pad it with a useless overpriced warranty? Could it be because a pretty young female was sitting across from you at the time?"
Long story short, I ask for my $2500.00 back. They claim that they can't pay it "because they don't have access to it..." Yeah, right. I ask them how they pay for cars at the Auction; then...Goatee whirls around in his chair and asks me:
"What's your ###IN' PROBLEM? You were an ### when you came in here a few days ago...are you always like this???"...As my voice recorder is rolling.
I inform him that I'm recording the conversation, and smugly watch as he ### his pants!!!
He claims it's "illegal" (It's not in New York, ) They tell us to leave, I say "not without my money", they call the Cops, we call the Cops, and they finally agree to "Send us a check on Tuesday." We'll see if it ever arrives.
Meanwhile, I've contacted all my TV News Bureaus, and two newspapers...and I'm lovin' it all.
Word to the wise: do a quick Google search for "Forced warranty scam" before you even consider walking onto a used car lot. Better yet, just get your own financing before you even consider letting the dealer "do you a favor."