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Stevenson Automotive Group / Rip off, terrible service behavior!

1 United States Review updated:

On August 11, 2007, Stevenson Toyota Dealership at 2325 N. Marine Blvd. Jacksonville, NC 28546, phone# [protected] checked our Toyota truck. My husband had them to put in WRITING exactly what was wrong with it and the exact price. It's in writing that they did a pressure test, a engine block test when diagnosing problem. The engine block was checked and okay. Written documentation stated they would fix head gasket, water pump, timing belt, oil change & antifreeze for agreed price of $1,892. This was signed by service adviser: Mr. Gary Thornton.

My husband talked with them practically everyday concerning the truck. And every day they would try to add something else to run the bill up. One day they called & said it needs a new timing belt and the price would be $373. extra. My husband ask them how much for the part and how much for labor. They said the part was $73. and labor would be $300 dollars. My husband (one of his degrees is in mechanics) told them since they will have to remove the timing belt anyway to do the gasket, why are they going to charge for labor for something that will be taken off anyway? He inquired since they would have an old belt on the bench and a new one, what's keep the technician from picking up the new one & putting it on instead of the old one. The service advisor agreed and told my husband he was absolutely right! So, they would put the new on for the price of the part ($73.) Days later, when I read the service agreement, I discovered that the timing belt had already been included in the initial price! RIP-OFF,RIP-OFF!

Another day, they informed my hubby, truck need transmission flushed and wanted us to pay extra for that. My husband informed them not to do this service. We had just had transmission serviced and flush 2 weeks prior. Then they called again wanted to do spark plugs and charge big fee. Hubby refused to have him do this. What for, hubby can do this.They did not realize hubby knew about vehicles as they were trying to rip us off. Hubby was told truck would be ready Friday (8/17/07).

On friday (8/17/07), the service dept called asked my hubby could they keep the truck until Monday (8/20/07), and we could pick up then. Hubby gave okay.

On Monday (8/20/07), 'THE DAY WE WERE SUPPOSED TO PICK TRUCK UP' we received message on answering machine to call Gary at the service dept. Hubby called to be told that the truck had a CRACK ENGINE BLOCK & would cost $6,000.

Problem is this: on 8/11/07, they checked engine block it was fine according to them. Now, on 8/20/07, at time for us to pick truck up the engine block is cracked. If its cracked now, they DID it. We immediately went out to Stevenson Automotive Dealership to discuss this matter. We asked to speak to the owner (John O. Stevenson); we were given the run-around. Then we were told the Mr. Stevenson was not in. We were told to talk to a man named Mr. Cabolla. We informed him that we have in writing where the service dept was to fix truck for agreed upon price & where they did an engine block test and it was fine. So, if its cracked now-they cracked it! We informed him we expected them to fix our truck for the agreed upon price they put in writing. This issue was not resolved. As we were leaving it sounded like he said something to the effect of ''that's the way those ###, or NEGRO are".

NOTE: my husband & I are an interracial couple. I am african-american and hubby is white. I was quite upset by this. My husband became so angry, I had to calm him down!

8/21/07, my husband called and asked to speak to the owner (Mr. Stevenson) to discuss this matter with him (the problem with the truck and the racial overtones by an employee). He was told that the truck now DOES NOT HAVE A CRACK BLOCK!!!

Hubby asked 'are you going to fix my truck'? They told him for $595 dollars, he could come get, but he would need to 'TOW" it with a tow truck because the truck is in 'pieces/torn apart'. Now, let me get this straight. We DROVE this truck to the dealership. It was drivable, but now we're expected to 'tow' it home. Then they want us to pay them almost $600 dollars for tearing it up! They tore it up! Another request was made to have the owner to call us.

8/23/07, A man by name of Paul McCarthy, called from the dealership. He asked to speak to my husband. I told him hubby was not home but will be back in 30 minutes. I informed him that I wanted to speak to the owner (John Stevenson). Mr. McCarthy told me that he is the one who handles 6 stores for Stevenson Automotive. He REFUSED to give me contact with the owner.
I, then, asked Mr. McCarthy 'what is wrong with our truck'? He stated, I'll tell Mr._. (my hubby) when I talk to him. I asked him again, but he REFUSED to tell me anything pertaining to the truck. Now, mind you, I will be the one writing the check for pay for the work! This made me feel like "he cannot tell the 'BLACK WOMAN' what is wrong with OUR truck. He has to wait and talk to the 'WHITE MAN'! He did call back and talked with my husband. He still had no answer concerning truck.

8/24/07, at 12:00 noon, Mr. Paul McCarthy called. He informed hubby that they will fix the truck for the agreed upon price. He said the 'engine block is NOT cracked'. He stated the engine is uneven but the technician CAN fix the problem. Hubby asked him are you sure? He assured us that they could fix it. When asked about a warranty, he reluctantly said he would give us a 30 day warranty. I thought that warranty was a little bazaar for a MAJOR dealership.

So, I called his other dealerships (they have 11 of them) to find out what is the standard warranty given out for parts & labor on their work. I found out the standard warranty they give out is: 12 MONTHS/12 THOUSAND MILES. Then my husband called the service dept at Stevenson Toyota (where our truck is) to inquire of the standard warranty. He was informed: 12 MONTHS/12 THOUSAND MILES. If others get 12 MONTHS/12 THOUSAND miles, then what is this? Is this the '###' warranty? Why do I have to get the "###" warranty?

At 12:30 noon (8/24/07), my hubby calls Mr. McCarthy back and ask about the warranty situation. ALL OF A SUDDEN, now McCarthy says he does not think the work they are going to do will rectify the problem.

Note: 30 minutes earlier he gave ASSURANCES that it would/could fix the problem! Which is it? This is the Toyota Dealership. We did not take our truck to some jack-leg mechanic working out of their backyard. The dealership are the experts on Toyotas. As of today, SEPTEMBER 15, 2007, we still DO NOT HAVE OUR TRUCK! It is at their dealership. They will not talk to me. They will not give us our truck. I am appalled how this dealership has treated me. They are racist, severely mistreat customers,desire to give me the '###' warranty & intentional inflict emotional harm trying to RIP a person off.
Jacksonville is a military town (home to Camp Lejeune, the Marine Base).
So, I cannot believe how they can treat military service members like this. I am a service member of the United States Army.

My husband is a former Marine and Disabled American Veteran (injured from war). There actions are totally unfair!

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  • Pa
      26th of Oct, 2007
    0 Votes

    STEVENSON AUTOMOTIVE GROUP
    2325 NORTH MARINE BLVD
    JACKSONVILLE NC 28546
    910 455-1555

    I have spoken with the Smith's on a number of occasions in an attempt to resolve this situation. I have spoken with all of the Stevenson employees involved with this matter and I have made the following findings:

    Mr. Smith came to the Toyota Service Department with a complaint that his vehicle was losing coolant. He told us that he suspected that a bad head gasket was the problem. We performed a free diagnostic courtesy inspection. In addition we diagnosed that the head gasket did need to be replaced and received authorization to perform that repair.

    We commenced the repair and did diagnose in the course of the repair that a new timing belt would be in order. The call to Mr. Smith regarding the cost of the timing belt was made due to a lack of understanding of the repair on the part of our service writer and I take full responsibility for that. I expressed this to Mr. Smith in our conversations.

    In the course of the repair we became aware that the head gasket, while a contributing factor was not the sole cause of the coolant leak. Another factor was the fact that the lower part of the engine block had "pitted". This was incorrectly relayed to Mr. Smith as a crack in the block, but semantics aside the fact was quite simply that there was a problem with this part of the engine. Mr. Smith had done some research on his own in this area and shared with me that he was aware that this problem was not uncommon in this particular engine.

    As a result of this additional problem we felt unable to warranty the repair if the work was to be solely restricted to the head gasket repair. Our standard warranty on any repair is 12 month 12000 miles but this warranty can only apply if all recommended work is performed. As the Smith's declined our recommendation for additional work because of the damage to the engine I feel it unrealistic for them to expect us to warranty a part of the vehicle we have advised them is defective.

    As a gesture of good will, in the course of my conversation with Mr. Smith I did inform him that Stevenson would be willing to warranty the repair for 30 days.

    I returned a call to Mr. Smith who had asked to speak with the owner. As we are a reasonably large corporation Mr. Stevenson employs people to attend to various areas of the business and is unable to attend to all of these areas in person. As the Onslow county manager for Stevenson Automotive Group a serious customer concern such as the Smith's would be a matter that I would attend to. Mrs. Smith on our initial call did not express any desire to speak with me but simply told me that Mr. Smith would return home in 30 minutes.

    An area of great concern for me is the suggestion that we treated the Smith's in a different manner because of Mrs. Smith's ethnicity. As an individual who is also a member of a "protected class" I find the suggestion that I would treat anyone differently because of their ethnicity to be very offensive.

    With regards to the alleged comment made Mr. Koballa I can find no evidence of this and the limited and spurious nature of Mrs. Smith's recall of what was supposedly said do not give much credence to this allegation. In fact the only person that I have heard use the "N....." word in the course of all of these events was in fact Mrs. Smith. She left me a voice mail in which that word was used along with other threats. I have saved a copy of the voice mail should we need to review it. Despite the offensive nature of Mrs. Smith's message I did return her call and left a message to call me at her convenience. There has been no response.

    If I can be of any further assistance please do not hesitate to contact me,

    Yours Sincerely

    Paul McCarthy
    Stevenson Automotive Group

  • Ve
      3rd of Jul, 2011
    0 Votes

    We were looking for a reasonably priced used car for our 17 year old daughter. We recieved an add in the mail with a key saying we could win a new camaro or $25, 000. The minimum prize was a hundred dollars we went down there to see what they had available "just looking!", they had a nice 2009 KIA Rio on the lot with 38, 000 miles. We left there paying 15, 995 for a vehicle according to the NADA(similar to kelly blue book), a website that tells you what a vehicle is worth, was worth aproximatley $11, 000. We were told they got the vehicles at an auto auction which means they probably paid lees than $5, 000 for it. DO YOUR RESEARCH PEOPLE! If you are smart you will find what you are looking for then go home and check it out. DO NOT BE AFRAID TO WALK OUT THE DOOR!

  • Pi
      30th of Jul, 2014
    0 Votes

    All of Stevenson dealerships are huge scams. Prices are outrageous! They prey on military members and that clearly shows they DO NOT support military members at all. Leaving them with car loans that are higher than what the car is worth. Sad to see JR service members screwed over like that. They really need to investigate how they run things. After the multiple incidents I have seen, I can't believe are they in business. The smart thing is, go back few years and fix people loans to the correct price that would send people their way. The GM would have to fire everyone because they all are pretty dishonest. The devil is real and he is the Stevenson car dealership sales team.

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