On November 27, 2015, one of the author’s friends went down to the Chapman BMW dealership to buy a used BMW 328 listed on the site. Kenneth Smith, a sales rep for Chapman, said that the car was no longer available, but that he had another one that was very similar.
It hadn’t yet been listed for sale and was “currently in the shop” getting prepped to sell. Mr. Smith took him back to the service shop, showing him the car (2013 BMW 328i). He kept touting all the benefits of buying a “Certified Pre-Owned” vehicle from BMW due to the “thorough and rigorous inspection” each vehicle goes through before going on the lot.
Smith provided multiple assurances that any repair needed outside of regular maintenance would be covered under the CPO 100k mile warranty and that there was nothing to worry about, given the car had only 38k miles. The “CPO extended warranty” sounded too good to be true. Mr. Smith said it wouldn’t be ready for a few days because the dealership had to replace the tires and wanted to ensure there was nothing else that needed repair.
The customer signed all the paperwork and was told to come back the following Monday to pick it up. Here’s the copy – purchased 11/27/15 with 38,732 miles. adot That Monday, he was told that it wouldn’t be ready and that they were still in the process of changing the tires and inspecting it to see if any additional work needed to be done, but that it should be ready the following day. On Tuesday – another call that the car still isn’t ready.
A few days later, it was finally ready. It was missing the second key, but Kenneth Smith reassured him that the dealership would order one and send it to him. To this day, the key has never come, nor has the dealership even called with an update. Here’s a follow-up email to him (about 3 weeks after purchase) inquiring about the replacement key after attempting to call numerous times and not getting a call back .
No response on this, either. keyemail Three weeks later, on December 19th, the car began showing “Drivetrain Malfunction – Reduced Engine Power”. You’d figure this would be under warranty, right? After the diagnosis and inspection, Mike Reeves (service writer) said that the customer had “damaged the clutch” and that it would not be covered under warranty due to “outside influence” and that to repair it, was going to cost over $3,100.
Remember, he just purchased the car three weeks ago and drove it only 1,900 miles. Yet, somehow, he ruined the clutch and is liable for a three-thousand-dollar repair? He has plenty of experience with both manual and automatic. He drives it to and from work – it’s not as if he is drag racing it up and down the street.
He then spoke to the Service Dept. manager, Garrett Odell, and told him how frustrating it was to buy a vehicle that supposedly had passed a rigorous inspection, only for it to break down with no warning. Garrett made no effort at all to be understanding of the customer’s position. He stuck to the corporate policy lines and continued to tell him there was nothing he could or would do.
See his first email below: email2.png After a few other calls asking for Chapman BMW to stand by their warranty and product, and to treat their customer fairly, he was left with nothing. Same response and excuses. He then notified Garrett that he would be filing a complaint with the Better Business Bureau and would send him and Mat (General Manager) a copy of it. 1111 Here’s a copy of the complaint: 2222 After forwarding Garrett the complaint, he tried to tell the customer not to make any “online posts/threats”, or he wouldn’t get any assistance from the dealership (reminder — this was after numerous calls and consistently being told there was nothing they would do to help).
It was pretty easy to read between the lines that “hush money” might be on the table if he agreed not to notify the BBB and make them aware of these unethical business dealings, but he felt strongly that consumers deserved to know the truth and that the business be held accountable for their actions. 333 Shortly after this, Jim (Sales Manager) called him and with heavy reluctance, offered to pay for half of the repair. The customer would still be liable for $1,600. At this point, after being tired of dealing with it and in need of his car back, he advised them to go ahead and make the necessary repairs.
444 Here’s a copy of the service record/bill he was forced to pay — 555 Credit card charge: 666 He’s still hoping to one day receive the 2nd key. Although he’s really enjoyed the BMW since then, this was by far the worst experience he’s ever had purchasing a car. They had had numerous chances to be fair and make the situation right. Yet they insisted on doing absolutely nothing at all and hid behind “corporate policy” until he filed a complaint with the BBB.
It’s unfortunate – he had high hopes for Chapman BMW Chandler, and they failed every step of the way. Does BMW (Harald Krüger) stand behind the service of their dealerships? Is “certified pre-owned” just a dealer gimmick to charge more, and not actually service vehicles when you have a problem? Will Chapman BWM in Chandler continue to behave this way in deceived unsuspecting customers?
See their reviews on Edmunds and BBB to find out that this isn’t an isolated incident. We will update this post if and when we hear back from the dealership and/or BMW North America. However, it looks like Kenneth Smith (sales), Garrett Odell (service), Mat (General Manager), and everyone else in this story don’t work there anymore.
Who knows what happened. Update 6/1/2017: We have received other horror stories such as this trickle through about Chapman Chandler BMW from other customers: ShaneOHanrahan Shane, since you are the current General Manager, we want to know– are you listening and will you take care of your customer, though he’s been chasing this for over a year?
Reason of review: Warranty issue.