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      11-26-2012, 09:02 PM   #1
Second Lieutenant

Drives: '12 135i MT LeMans
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Ottawa, Canada

iTrader: (0)

A terrible sales experience at local dealership

Hi all, (for the phone conversation skip to the bottom)

Been lurking for a while now.

I went to the local dealership to try the new 3 series a couple months ago,
I went for a test drive with an a Sales Associate #1 (a woman) who was extremely personable and very nice.

However during the course of the test drive it was clear to me that she didn't have a solid understanding of the products. She informed me that the 3 series in luxury,modern, or sport line all had adaptive suspension which could be tweaked.

As I was leaving the dealership, I thought I would try the 135i for kicks.

She was busy with a client so another associate went with me, (sales associate #3). The test drive was incredible. That first impression as I put my foot down, put a huge smile on my face. From that moment I knew what I was getting - I was hooked. Not only that but I was really impressed by this Associate, not pushy, knowledgeable, polite and professional.

After that test drive I returned to the dealership on a different day and requested that I deal with someone who has more knowledge on the products. After all I wouldn't want to have an order put through with the wrong options ticked off (its happened before).

They said no problem and introduced me to sales associate #2. This fellow was was very knowledgeable but extremely hasty and pushy. He insisted that I get the DCT 7 speed auto. Saying that it could shift faster than me, yada yada... I didn't care for it, I made it clear that I was after a manual trans. Very direct and forward, I'm sure many would appreciate his style of salesmanship but it wasn't for me.

This was my initial researching phase where I was getting familiar with the cars and doing mostly test drives at various dealerships.

Fast forward a couple of months. I wanted to return to that dealership and deal with Associate #3, who at the time seemed like the right choice. I put in a request to be transferred to deal with him directly, no disrespect meant to the others.

I got in contact with him and he was was excited and right away we agreed to come in this past Saturday and look at some options.

After explaining what I was after:


He mentioned they had great deals on 2012 models but no manuals.

In the end he insisted he had such a good deal on a test drive car they had that I would wanna go for it.

It was a white 135i with red boston leather (987km on it)

Here is the deal I managed to negotiate:

43,200 MSRP of CAR

+$2,000 Navigation
+$1,950 Premium Pkg
+$3,700 Executive Pkg
+$1,950 7sp DC transmission

$52,800 Total MSRP + Fees + Taxes

- $5,016 Discounted 2012 Model 9.5% off
- $2,400 Discounted Demo with 900+ km

Total Sales Price $ 48804.36 (with PDI & Fees) TAX EXTRA

A great deal? Maybe. After some thinking sat/sunday I decided against it since it wasn't the right car for me. It didn't have the 2 main things I was looking for: Manual & Msport.

Today I phoned him back to let him know that I was going to pass on it. I mentioned I wanted to look at a 2013 model in manual.

The phone conversation went something like this:

Me: "I want to look at a 2013 instead since there doesn't seem to be any 2012s close to that spec in all of Canada."

SA: "Ok well what we can do is have you come in and we can put an order for one and we'll have a look to see what we can find."

SA: "That way we know you are committed."

Me: "Order one? I want to know if you can find one close to what I'm looking for."

SA: " Yes the only we can go forward is if we get some sort of commitment from you. "

SA: "If you come in we can place an order an proceed from there."

Me: "I want to know what you have available before I do an order up.I don't care if its exact as long as its close."

SA: "If you come in and put a deposit we can do a search on our system to find the right car for you"

Me: "wait you can't do a simple search to see if there's any 2013's in manual available or on their way?"

SA: "I can't do that its on a separate system that only our manager has access to, and to do that we gotta call every dealer and see what is available."

SA: "If you come in and put a deposit down we can find the right car for you and go from there."

Me: " I'm sorry but I've NEVER been asked any dealership to do up and order and put a deposit to simply find out if there is a car in the spec I'm after coming in."

Me: "This sounds very shady. I know you're looking to sell the car but I'm quite disappointed."

SA: "You'll find this is quite normal, its not shady at all."

Me: "ok thanks ------ , thank you."


I called up BMW Canada to let them know what happened. The guy on the phone was as puzzled as me. He said it was not normal thanked me for getting in touch and that my complaint will go to the right person(s).

Its a shame because there is only one other dealership in Ottawa and its farther away. Limits my options since I don't really expect to go back there after this experience.

Its clear he didn't understand my needs as a customer. I hope I wasn't to unreasonable in my requests. I'm sure they are used to having cars fly off the lot with quick easy sales from business folk.
For me its a huge decision and I've been saving money for a long time.

I want to make sure I get the right car, and not regret my decision.

Thanks for reading.

Sorry for the long post... Just wanted to vent.