Difficult Test drive experience

SAM

Well-Known Member
First Name
SAM
Joined
Dec 29, 2020
Messages
103
Reaction score
98
Location
Central Jersey
Vehicles
Premium MME4X Iconic Silver on order
Country flag
I’d love a social experiment to figure out what’s going on here, but at this point the whole experience turned me off, and was a little exhausting —so I’ll definitely be moving on to another dealership. I’ll hopefully not experience too much of a delay by changing dealers, but when I first mentioned that my build date is 3/1 the rep said the delivery date was an estimated 8-12 weeks! Might as well get a GT if that’s the case...but given my overall experience was bs, that might’ve been as well.
I don't think they're all bad. Just need to find a good one. So far, so good for my dealer.

They're my local dealer (15 minutes away), so I selected them as dealer when I ordered online. I had a few back and forth exchanges with them via email and text. On Jan 28, I got an email from them saying their demo car was arriving between Feb 24 and Mar 2 and to reply if I wanted to be put on the list for a test drive. I did.

I was exchanging emails with the dealer rep on Feb 23 because I'd gotten my build week from Ford and asked about the demo. He said it just arrived two hours ago! So, I arranged for a test drive the next day, showed up at the pre-arranged time, he handed me the key and said "do you need me to come with you?" I said no and off I went.

Needless to say, a good experience. They knew I had a car on order with them and treated me very well. Also, I have never dealt with this dealer before.





Advertisement

 

janitorjim

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 19, 2020
Messages
640
Reaction score
1,513
Location
plano
Vehicles
ford f150 2001, explorer xlt 2013
Country flag
Ok so I’ll share my experience, I just left a few minutes ago.

I live about 40 miles from the dealership I ended up selecting due to them promising to not do any ridiculous ADM charge ups.

I contact the dealership Friday and confirm that I have a reservation and would like to come in to test drive since my vehicle is scheduled to be built in a few days. The sales rep is friendly,asks me what time I’d like to come in, we set a time, I receive a text confirming.

Today, I arrive on time for my appointment, and the receptionist sends someone over to take my ID. I wait a few minutes after handing over my ID and the rep returns and tells me I won’t be able to do a test drive “because they don’t have any cars available/ the person I spoke to must have been misinformed “. I explain that’s odd, since they confirmed before setting the appointment and clarify I drove 40 MILES today explicitly for this test drive. I remind him I’ve already reserved a car. He apologizes, a bit nonchalant/passively. I grit my teeth and leave.

As I’m heading to my car guess what I see...a couple pulling out in a grey mach-e. I decide to wait and see if they return because “maybe they just purchased theirs and are happily driving theirs home”. While I wait I call another dealership to see if they have any available to test drive and they confirm they do. As I’m getting ready to leave for the other dealership I notice the couple has returned. I stop for a second to chat them up — low and behold they just wrapped up a test drive! We exchange a few pleasantries about our mutual enthusiasm about the car and I head back into the dealership.

A salesman asks as I enter if he can help me with anything l, and I let him know that I’d love to test drive the mach-e out front if there aren’t any other folks on the waiting list. He says sure, comes back with another gentleman who confirms I’m on the list. I chat with this gentleman for a bit, but get the sense he’s sizing me up a bit...which seems odd since I’ve again mentioned in passing I already reserved my model, I’m just interested in test driving before it’s actually delivered. I entertain him a bit, sure why not talk the shape of the EV industry and show just how obsessively I’ve been researching EVs for years.

A few minutes later another guy comes up and gives a whole “I’m sorry no one is available today to assist you with a test drive today” but that I’m welcome to take a look inside. I decline, noting I’m pretty familiar with the interior after poring over photos, reviews and videos for months and made the trip to get a feel for how the car drives and promptly leave. By this point this whole charade has went on almost an hour past when the scheduled test drive. I calmly left, reiterating it’s really bad customer service to deny someone who’s already paid the ability to test drive when you’ve confirmed it (I didn’t even mention letting other people test drive with little to no explanation)

I’d like to not assume anything but for reference the couple who I literally saw leave and return for a test drive during my reserved time was White. I’m a Black man, who honestly is glad my wife wasn’t with me because the entire experience was enraging/humiliating and she likely would have discouraged me from even bothering with Ford at all...and honestly depending on if I can change my reservation to another dealership or have a satisfactory explanation — may just decide to get something else altogether.

The only scenarios I can assume are:
a) these were some weird racist discriminatory assholes
b) they’re trying to block reservation holders from driving Mach-E’s fearing they’ll cancel (which seems unlikely since they won’t have a problem marking up and selling for even more)
before getting to the second to last paragraph I was going to ask what you ended up posting. A story worth pass on to Ford if you ask me.
 

generaltso

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 24, 2020
Messages
3,054
Reaction score
4,378
Location
Vermont
Vehicles
2021 MME Premium AWD SR Infinite Blue
Country flag
when I first mentioned that my build date is 3/1 the rep said the delivery date was an estimated 8-12 weeks! Might as well get a GT if that’s the case...
That part may not be far off. My car was built 1/19 and the current ETA is 4/2.
 

BillK

Active Member
First Name
Bill
Joined
Jan 25, 2021
Messages
30
Reaction score
80
Location
Texas
Vehicles
Volt, Zero SR/F, various ICE motorcycles
Occupation
Retired-ish
Country flag
...
The only scenarios I can assume are:
a) these were some weird racist discriminatory assholes
b) they’re trying to block reservation holders from driving Mach-E’s fearing they’ll cancel (which seems unlikely since they won’t have a problem marking up and selling for even more)
I would tend to go with "a".
I'm white and I see casual racism so often. It's distressing, everywhere, and worth calling out.
But there is another possibility. Some years ago I finally made up my mind and went to my nearest Tesla showroom to buy a Model S. I brought a checkbook (to pay full amount, or could put it on a card) since they had one in stock that I liked.

I had been in my garage wrenching on motorcycles that day and probably looked a little shop-worn when I went in. It was as if I didn't exist. Tesla reps refused to make eye contact or speak to me even as they greeted and approached others.

As part of my industrial component business I trained sales reps to never pre-judge a contact. You never know who you are speaking to. Car dealer sales reps at are absolutely the weakest link in OEM business. That's why ordering cars online has become so popular. No, I never bought that Tesla. If you aren't totally put off by the way you were treated to the point you would rather get a Polestar 2 instead I might recommend writing a condensed version of your post to share with your regional sales manager for Ford asking whether you were treated appropriately in Ford's eyes.
 

ToddH

Member
First Name
Todd
Joined
Dec 16, 2020
Messages
24
Reaction score
72
Location
San Jose, CA
Vehicles
2021 Mach E RWD X Premium
Occupation
Retired
Country flag
@PCProAM I don't care if there's some other explanation they might have, that's a typical racist ploy. I know about this kind of crap from friends that had that experience clear back in the 1960's. Being white, it never happened to me.

My friends are black and were students at San Jose State and Olympic caliber athletes (Speed City). They were looking for apartments or rooms to rent. They'd see a vacancy sign and ask about renting. The manager(s) would say something to the effect of "Oh, I forgot to take that sign down. I'm sorry but the room /apartment is already rented." Well it wasn't rented. One of the guys had a white girl friend. After being refused a few times they tested what was going on by sending the white girl friend. Amazingly, they rooms/apartments that had just been rented were vacant again and she was able to rent them.

Now I live in an area that supposedly isn't a bigoted area. It is. It's usually hidden. Not talked about. I've seen it. Heard it. And know that not being the victim of it doesn't make it ok. That dealer needs to take action or be put out of business. Please stand up for your rights. What happened was unacceptable. I wish I could correct it myself. If I knew my dealer did anything like that and didn't correct it, I'd let everyone know and would hope that the dealer was run out of town.

I know you're used to dealing with this kind of crap. My best to you and hope that the day comes when it's just bad service...not racist.
 

buffasnow

Well-Known Member
First Name
Jeff
Joined
Oct 20, 2020
Messages
337
Reaction score
586
Location
Buffalo, NY
Vehicles
Grabber Blue FE, 85 Mustang GT (pasturized)
Country flag
The other problem the on-site specialist who confirmed my test drive *already knew I had a confirmed order*. Why waste my time and tell me to drive up instead of just saying “sorry we don’t have any test drive units available”? It’s not as if I’m going to cancel my Mach-e order for a Ford Escape. If what you’re saying is the case, they could have saved everyone time by saying that over the phone. Somehow when I show up though...
Ford should not tolerate racism on the part of any dealer. They should be looking into this incident.

Dealers who lament about the "Tesla model" of sales destroying the dealership model need to do a little self reflection and think about why so many consumers *hate* the dealership model. There is a reason those stereotypes exist. If they spent as much time innovating and making the consumer experience better/adding value as they do moaning, people would flock to them.

Regarding the test drives, RCProAm's dealership does just not seem to get it. When customers have a good experience, they are happy. When they have an exceptional experience, they tell others about it. When the opposite is true, informed consumers stay away in drives. My sales guy has kept me updated throughout the process. When I picked up my FE yesterday (dealer's first retail delivery), he spent a lot of time asking me questions because he knew I had (Forum) knowledge he did not and he wanted to learn to better help his next MME customers. When the demo car arrived two weeks ago, he called me at 10AM and asked if I wanted to drive it. I was there at noon.

My neighbor has now ordered an MME from the same dealer. That's how this whole process works, but sooooooo many dealers/salespersons don't seem to grasp this.
 

jeffdawgfan

Well-Known Member
First Name
Jeff
Joined
Dec 17, 2019
Messages
234
Reaction score
330
Location
Georgia, USA
Vehicles
2021 Mustang MachE AWD ER, 2019 Ram 1500 Laramie
Occupation
Retired Navy / Veterans Administration
Country flag
Ford should not tolerate racism on the part of any dealer. They should be looking into this incident.

Dealers who lament about the "Tesla model" of sales destroying the dealership model need to do a little self reflection and think about why so many consumers *hate* the dealership model. There is a reason those stereotypes exist. If they spent as much time innovating and making the consumer experience better/adding value as they do moaning, people would flock to them.

Regarding the test drives, RCProAm's dealership does just not seem to get it. When customers have a good experience, they are happy. When they have an exceptional experience, they tell others about it. When the opposite is true, informed consumers stay away in drives. My sales guy has kept me updated throughout the process. When I picked up my FE yesterday (dealer's first retail delivery), he spent a lot of time asking me questions because he knew I had (Forum) knowledge he did not and he wanted to learn to better help his next MME customers. When the demo car arrived two weeks ago, he called me at 10AM and asked if I wanted to drive it. I was there at noon.

My neighbor has now ordered an MME from the same dealer. That's how this whole process works, but sooooooo many dealers/salespersons don't seem to grasp this.
Short Term Corporate Memory. A salesman (saleswoman) makes a sale to a customer. What is the chances that this sales person will still be at the same dealership in 3-5 years for another sale to same customer. Car Sales personnel jump ship and move around so much it isn't even funny. This is one reason that they typically know so very little about the vehicles. I had a guy that I bought a truck from in 2005 at a Nissan dealership. For the next ten years or so I got periodic emails from him asking if I needed a new vehicle. I think in that time period he worked at at least five different dealerships or car brands. The turn over is horrible.
 

BadgerGreg

Well-Known Member
First Name
Greg
Joined
Dec 2, 2020
Messages
149
Reaction score
375
Location
Michigan
Vehicles
Mach E Black Premium ER AWD (ordered)
Occupation
Engineer
Country flag
The only scenarios I can assume are:
a) these were some weird racist discriminatory assholes
b) they’re trying to block reservation holders from driving Mach-E’s fearing they’ll cancel (which seems unlikely since they won’t have a problem marking up and selling for even more)
I feel terrible that this happened to you. There’s no excuse for that kind of treatment.
 

photocyclist

Well-Known Member
First Name
Christopher
Joined
Feb 12, 2021
Messages
49
Reaction score
61
Location
Atlanta
Vehicles
2021 Mach E
Country flag
Sorry to hear about the bad experience at Mall of GA. Don't know which direction that "40 miles away" is - but Gwinnett Place ford has a Red premium loaner, and Hennessey Ford in Chamblee has a White Select and White Premium loaner. Options if those are not too far from you.
 

Maquis

Well-Known Member
First Name
Dave
Joined
Dec 21, 2020
Messages
548
Reaction score
674
Location
Illinois
Vehicles
2021 Mach E Premium; 2017 F150 XLT; 2013 Explorer XLT; 1965 Mustang Convertible; 1953 Chevy 3100
Country flag
1) Yes, I was never able to do a test drive. But it was because my car was the first MME within 100 miles of where I live.

2) What you have experienced really pisses me off! Escalation to Ford corporate is definitely in order. I hope everything works out for you eventually, and you end up with a great car!
 

Jako607

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 26, 2021
Messages
149
Reaction score
271
Location
92104
Vehicles
2019 Bolt
Country flag
I agree with previous post that it was most likely not wanting to waste time with someone who wasn't gonna buy a car from them today. Not that it makes it any less $hitty but that'd be my guess cuz that also happened to me at my local Volvo dealership when I had a pre-order in on the XC40 Recharge...and the dealership experience was so bad, not to mention they wouldn't let me test drive the vehicle, I wound up cancelling my order.
One of the few upsides to the dealer model is there are usually several to choose from (hopefully) in any given county so I wouldn't definitely just take my business elsewhere. And although I recognizet thisisn't possible everywhere (or even something some people would want to do), I found a MME on Turo so rented it for 2 full days so I could really get a proper ownership test experience. It worked great for me and was worth the money cuz it helped me be sure it was the vehicle for me. Being able to park it in the garage, charge it overnight, take it on my usual errand runs etc was invaluable for deciding if I wanted it. I'll give credit to Tesla on this one cuz they gave me overnight test drives in the past on both a Model S and Model 3 when each of them first came out...in those cases it really helped me decide it was NOT the car for me, but at least I got to do it. Wish more manufacturer would/could do this.
 

ArtyMachy

Well-Known Member
First Name
Arthur
Joined
Aug 11, 2020
Messages
64
Reaction score
73
Location
Canada
Vehicles
Hyundai Santa Fe
Occupation
Manager
Country flag
Sooner the Ford moves to full online ordering the better..... cut out the horrible experiences with dealers ! This type of treatment should never happen. I think they would let you test drive it if you didn't mention your reservation, but it is still inexcusable!
This type of behaviour might cost Ford than what they think. I bought a Tesla last year and I can tell you that the online buying experience form test drive to setting up the pickup appointment was awesome. Sorry it happened to you ! Plaster your story all over the internet with the name of the dealership in bold letters. Trust me it makes an impact ! They should call you back with an apology !
 

J Duce

Well-Known Member
First Name
Jean
Joined
Dec 10, 2019
Messages
239
Reaction score
206
Location
Jamaica, NY
Vehicles
2017 Explorer Sport
Country flag
Georgia, Dealer is Mall of Ford Georgia (pretty far outside the city of Atlanta proper)
Ok.

by the way, sorry to read about your experience with the dealer. I would have given them a piece of my mind and let them know you are taking it to corporate as well as their Mgmt. On top of that, I would change dealerships based on principle.

I am fortunate to have a supportive Sales manager though some of the others seemed unimpressed or cautious about EV. However, they perked up when I mentioned that people traveled far to buy them and that EV will become more prevalent. I mentioned they better hop on the train or be ready to lose.
 
OP

RCProAM

Active Member
Joined
Jun 23, 2020
Messages
37
Reaction score
59
Location
Atlanta
Vehicles
Mustang Mach E
Country flag
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #45
Short Term Corporate Memory. A salesman (saleswoman) makes a sale to a customer. What is the chances that this sales person will still be at the same dealership in 3-5 years for another sale to same customer. Car Sales personnel jump ship and move around so much it isn't even funny. This is one reason that they typically know so very little about the vehicles. I had a guy that I bought a truck from in 2005 at a Nissan dealership. For the next ten years or so I got periodic emails from him asking if I needed a new vehicle. I think in that time period he worked at at least five different dealerships or car brands. The turn over is horrible.
Re: Short Term Corporate Memory

The messed up part - my wife is also in the market for a replacement car. She's got a VW that's at that 150k mark and at this point it was going to be easier (and safer for her) to just buy a new one. They didn't lose just the reservation I came in with, that experience definitely lost them another potential sale.
 

Advertisement





 


Advertisement
Top