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We moved to Arizona to see burrow owls. Where the hell are all the burrow owls?

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Buying a Used Truck Part 4 - Right Toyota Sucks - Total Victory

Last Thursday (a week ago today), Erin called me from work and said that she had been calling around to car dealerships in Scottsdale and asking if they had any trucks in our price range. After hearing our price range, most did not call back.

When Erin called Right Toyota in Scottsdale the person she spoke with told her that we would not get a bank to approve us for a loan amount of $8000 because it was too low. This, of course, is a load of shit, as we have subsequently obtained a loan for much less than that, but this is what the dude told Erin and they amicably ended the phone call. Erin had stress how we were not interested in negotiating or haggling, so presumably this person didn't want to waste his time on us.

Not long after, a manager from Right Toyota named John called Erin back and said that they had "several vehicles" including "Tacomas" and "Nissans" and that they were in our price range. Erin re-emphasized what she had told the first salesman. We were not interested in haggling - our budget was set and that if we came up there and they did not have a vehicle in our price range it would be waste of their time and our time. John again reassured Erin that he understood and that they could help us, so we agreed to go to Right Toyota after work.

When Erin arrived home, we first went to Desert School Credit Union and obtained our own financing. This is a fantastic idea. We got a great interest rate and they were very nice and helpful. It's also a great bargaining tool. Furthermore, auto dealerships have deals with Desert Schools (and, presumably other credit unions) that allow the dealerships to handle everything for you so you don't have to run back and forth to the credit union. Also, many dealerships have special representatives, usually the fleet sales or Internet sales people, who are your V.I.P. sales correspondent. They understand the banks terms and they can help you more efficiently.

After getting pre-approved, we drove all the way to North Scottsdale (over 1/2 hour from Tempe) to Right Toyota. At this point Erin has already driven to and from North Phoenix that day, an around-trip journey of over 1 hour and she has not eaten any dinner. So when we arrived at Right Toyota we expected to be shown the trucks on our range, make a decision, and be out of there.

When we got there the person we had an appointment with was gone. Strike 1. We waited around for several minutes until we were paired up with a salesman named Corey. Corey seemed nice at first, but he was turned out to be a condescending, arrogant jerk. Strike 2. One of the first things Corey brought up to us was that he knew our price limit. He then lead us to the used truck section. Things quickly began looking bleak. There were 3 used Tacomas, the oldest of which was a 2004 and $19,999 - only $11,000 above our budget! Strike 3. The other trucks were a Frontier ($13,999) and a Mazda ($12,999). We were immediately skeptical. After looking at the used trucks out front, Corey took us on a ride around the lot to see what else they had. They didn't have anything else.

We all returned inside while Corey went to ask the illusive John, the manager Erin had spoken to, what he was referring to. We never did see John (coward). After this wasted time, we returned to the trucks out front.

The Frontier was not automatic, so that quickly disqualified it. The Mazda seemed nice, but was way out of our price range. Corey then began trying to sell us on the Mazda. He said he knew our price range and that we could work with the price. We again voiced our skepticism that a truck for $12,999 would go for $8000, but he reassured us that deal could be met and so we agreed to test drive it.

We test drove the truck amidst Corey's snide remarks. I think he resented being put in a situation where he was sure not to make a sale and I think he could sense that we were skeptical, and, if things didn't go our way, we could get disgruntled. The best way to avoid making a sale, of course, is to make snide comments. Great work, Corey.

The truck drove well, so we returned inside talk about buying it. We sat down at a desk. We had been in such situations a lot recently, so our patience was gone quickly. Of course, Corey took longer to come back with numbers than any other dealership had. When, after a ridiculously long time, he did come back, the sheet had the price of the truck at $12,999. We instantly saw red. What the hell?!?! Corey tried to talk to us about prices, but we weren't having it. We repeated that we had been very clear that we were not interested in haggling. We would not pay more that $140/month. He tried to make us think that was impossible, but we weren't having that either. He asked us what we would be willing to go up to. We said $140. He said we needed to be flexible. We said we did not need to be flexible. We had been very clear that we never intended to be flexible. He then went back into their stupid office.

He returned from the stupid office and tried to pass us off onto a manager. I don't remember the dude's name. He started in on some sort of spiel about how there was no way they could sell that truck at our price. We had seen all this negotiation crap before, but we had been extremely clear throughout this process that we were not interested in negotiating. We wouldn't have come if there were not trucks for us. Other dealerships had been honest.

While I was sitting here looking at this guy, all the frustration of the day and the truck buying experience came upon me at once. We had been totally lied to. I know it sounds silly to get upset that a car salesman lied to us to get us in there, but, honestly, we dealt with many dealerships before and after Right Toyota and they were all mostly honest. The most infuriating thing was that one person had (correctly) discouraged us from coming to Right Toyota, then Shitty John the Cowardly Manager called back and told us to come!

We kind of let this dude have it. I told him how we were not interesting negotiating. I told him how they had lied to us and how John had told us there was something for us and there was nothing. I told him how clear we had been the entire time about our budget. I told him how it was bullshit that Erin had driven all the way from North Phoenix and to Tempe and how they had dragged us all the way from Tempe to Scottsdale. He looked pretty taken back. I don't feel too bad about getting mad at him, because I made it clear that we understood it wasn't his fault, and I said that I would greatly prefer to have this conversation with John. This guy told us that John had gone home, but he said he would be happy to have me talk to John if he was there. It was incredibly shitty of Shitty John to pawn us off on his coworkers. He said, sheepishly he could give us the truck for no less than $11,999. He said I was "upset" so nothing he would say would make me happy. This was the last straw. I got up and said I we were going to dinner before I really lost my cool. We then left Right Toyota.

Right Toyota sucks. Check out their rather lengthy bio at Compare that to no real entries for Tempe Toyota and only a couple entries for Tempe Honda on which the issues have been reconciled.

After leaving Wrong Toyota, we hit up some other dealerships in the area and talked to some more weirdos. For the most part, even though the people were odd, they tried to be helpful and didn't try to lie to us to get us to buy any particular vehicle.

It's amazing how painlessly the whole saga ends. The next day we did some looking on and Erin found an 2002 Nissan Frontier Desert Runner at LeSueur Auto in Tempe. This place sells late model, used VW's, Audi's and Mini's. They had no real interest in keeping the Frontier, which they got on a trade in, so they sold it to us for Kelly Blue Book wholesale. We paid significantly less than $8000 for it. The funny thing is that Tempe Toyota had the same exact truck, same miles and everything for $11,000. That's actually pretty close to the KBB retail value of the truck. The dude at LeSeuer was named Dave. He was about our age. He was really laid back. He didn't seem like a used car salesman at all. We test drove the truck, they cleaned it up and we bought it. It drives better than the Tacomas we test drove at Tempe Honda - even the gold one! We're going to have it check out and get a tune up at Salem Boys. Even if we need to fix something on it, it will still be way cheaper than any of the other trucks, which weren't in any better shape anyways!

We totally win! Here's a picture of the truck! WOOOHOOO!!!

Truck 3

Where are they now?

Eric and Erin went on to drive the nice truck they got for cheap. They rule.

Marv called to say he had a beat up old Jeep. He's still a nice dude who's probably still driving his ambitious managers crazy.

The Gold Toyota Tacoma is, as of April 10th and according to their website, still at Tempe Honda. Go buy it from Marv. Tell him Eric and Erin sent you.

Robert, the manager from Tempe Honda, is still in denial about what "no-pressure means."

Sonny Stubbs from Big Two's used lot is still way cooler than you'll ever be.

Corey from Right Toyota wishes he was as funny as he thinks he is.

Shitty John the Cowardly Manager from Right Toyota still sucks. A lot.

Dave from LeSeuer is taking it easy.


Anonymous Jen + Kev said...

YAY!!! Congrats on the new truck!!! haha at first when I thought of you guys driving a truck I couldnt really picture it- but then I thought that I was thinking only of you guys driving it around worcester- Anyways having in a truck in AZ seems way better of a match. What a great car to have around there for all your camping and hiking adventures. I want to go off roading to some great hike when ever we get out there to visit!

10:14 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What a Riveting Tale! I sat down to read part 1 of the truck buying saga, and was so hooked I had to find out what happend.

Buying a car has to be the biggest pain in the butt thing there is. Reading your story brought back so many unpleasent memories of sitting at a desk across from some money-hungry low life. So I'm glad you've finally finished the process. Congrats on getting a great deal.. kinda makes me feel like I got ripped off a bit with my last car! haha oh well.. Next time we need a car, I'll be sure to re-read these enteries to get fired up!
Talk to you soon,

-Kevin R.

5:50 PM  
Blogger BillyPru said...

Right Toyota, FAIL!

1:06 PM  

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