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These Poor People Had So Many Problems With Their Car Dealer, Including One Very Serious One!

Hi Tony,

In November my husband and I decided it was time to trade in our Isuzu Rodeo. We began researching Honda Accords (we already have one), Toyota Camry, and Nissan Altimas. In March we decided on the Nissan Altima.

We live in Hampton, Georgia which is about an hour and twenty minutes away from Gwinnett Place Nissan, if there is no Atlanta traffic. We had seen the ads on TV for them and decided one Sunday to drive up there.

We were met by our salesperson, Brandon Tittle, who was absolutely fabulous. He found out what we were looking for and was able to answer any and all questions we had. We made a deal to trade in our Isuzu Rodeo and purchase the Altima.

In the deal, we wanted a sunroof installed into the Altima, because they did not have one in stock with a sunroof that we liked. At time of delivery, we noticed the floor mats were missing from the car, and it was agreed upon that the floor mats would be given to us when we came back for installation of the sunroof. We were happy with this agreement.

Paula Rodriguez contacted us the next day about the installation of the sunroof, and it was arranged for us to have it installed the following week. We spoke to Paula about having the floor mats ready for us when she contacted us, and she assured us she would have them when we came up.

The day my husband took the car, Paula did not have the mats. He told her that Brandon had spoken with us about placing the mats under his desks, and she told him she would go look. She did not see them and said we could come get them later.

My husband reminded her that we were over an hour away. She agreed to mail them to us. A week went by, with no contact from the dealership. We called and after a few days, Paula Fed-Exed them overnight to us. However, they were a tan color. Our interior is black (dark gray).

We contacted the dealership again, and told them the color was wrong. They told us to keep the wrong ones and they would ship, overnight, new ones. Eight days went by and the mats were eventually over-nighted to us. This was Problem #1!

Problem #2 occurred later in April, when our temporary tag was about to expire. In Ga., you have 30 days from the date of purchase to get your new tag. We contacted the dealership and were told the new tag info was "in the mail."

We contacted them again the day before the tag was to expire and they told us to come pick up another temporary tag from them. We reminded them we are over an hour away. They said they would over-night us the tag info and another temporary tag. We never received anything over night.

Two days after the tag expired, my husband called them and explained to them that we were not driving the car because we did not want to get a ticket, and could they please send us the tag information. We were told the department that handles that kind of information had recently had a lot of turnover and it would be handled immediately. Of course, it was not.

On Tuesday April 26, my husband called and made them fax to him the tag information and it was finally mailed to us, standard mail, of course. The tag information had not been completed on the form until that day, 37 days after we purchased the car, and 7 days after required by the state of Ga.

Problem #3 has now started. I have received a letter from 1st Financial, who financed the Isuzu Rodeo we traded in for the Altima. This letter is dated April 27. I have also received a phone call from 1st Financial saying they have not been paid off yet.

I have tried to contact the dealership, but as usual, no one will return my phone call. Late fees have already been added to the Rodeo account. I was told that this has not affected my credit yet, but it probably will not be to long before it does.

I have emailed a letter to Nissan, and now mailing this to you. I have contacted the Better Business Bureau of Georgia about this matter. I have also spoken with 2 Atlanta TV stations that help consumers with business problems.

I simply do not know what else to do to resolve this problem. Rick Williams, the General Manager does not return any phone calls, and at this point, I do not trust anything they say anyway. I love my Altima, but absolutely hate this dealership.

I would appreciate any help you may be able to give in resolving this problem. When this is complete, I will never go into that dealership again.

Thank you,


My Answer to Brandi . . .

Hi Brandi,

This dealership sounds like it's in real trouble. The fact that they haven't paid off your trade yet tells me that they are probably having serious cash flow problems.

This is the main problem you're faced with right now. The other stuff they did was terribly poor customer service . . . about as bad as it gets in fact, but at least they eventually resolved those issues.

However, not paying off your trade is big. Continue to complain to Nissan. Find their customer service phone number - it's probably in your owners manual - and continue to complain. They hate it when their customers are dissatisfied, and they will usually go out of their way to resolve problems.

If the dealer doesn't pay off your trade immediately you should contact your state attorney general's office for help. If you still can't get this resolved you may have to get a lawyer to sue the dealership. I have seen this before, and it's not pretty.

The bank where your trade is financed will, in time come after you for payment, and ruin your credit in the bargain. So you need to get this problem handled immediately.

Once you get all these things resolved stay far away from this dealership. Find another Nissan dealership where you can go for service. Your factory warranty is good at any Nissan dealership in the country. Good luck.

All my very best to you . . .

Tony Iorio

P.S. In the future, when you are trading a car that is not fully paid for, get a written statement signed by the Sales Manager indicating that they will in fact pay off your outstanding loan, and a date as to when that will be done.  Get it all in writing!

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