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Poor response from dealer, or am I expecting too much?


Saxacat
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Hi,

My nearest 2 dealers are 35 and 36 miles away and both belong to the same Group. The nearest of the two delivered my RAV, although as its a leased vehicle and effectively belongs to Toyota, I'm not sure if they make any money from the process.

As I've just clocked up 3000 miles on the car I thought I'd have the tyres rotated, as recommended in the manual. I rang the nearest dealer explained  to the reception what I wanted and was put through to servicing and immediately onto hold; after about 30seconds I got cut off. I rang back, was again put through to servicing, this time someone answered I explained what I wanted and was put on hold while they went to check when they could do it; I was then cut off again. the third attempt went the same way as the first; I gave up.

Yesterday morning, I rang the other of the dealers; explained to reception what I wanted, was put through to servicing, explained to them, was put on hold, got cut off. I rang again, reception apologised, put me through, but this time I ended up speaking to their head office, they put me back to dealer, reception apologised again, took my name, number and registration and promised someone would call back, they haven't. I got the tyres done this morning by a local tyre place.

I'd rang the nearest dealership twice before with queries (one about the disappearing speed cameras, before I found out my free subscription had expired, and also about the Tagashi code) on both occasions they took my details, said they'd call back, but never did.

 

I'm not getting a good feeling about this Group and am now wondering whether I need to go further afield when my first service is due ☹️

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@Saxacat, that’s very poor service even if they were not interested they could have at least told you so. Like you I expect that they did not supply the vehicle so are not really interested.  My local area has a number of dealers within a 30 mile radius but all the same franchise so not going to be very competitive I expect.

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Dealers vary, even in the same group. To be honest, I would recommend rotating tyres at the service (10k or 12 months). My dealer does it for free during service, but would charge an hour of labour if I ask to do it ad hoc.

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Hi..........in a word, staff "Indifference" 

Patience stretched to the limit with my recent purchase (3rd new RAV)

Always sourced locally for convenience & my way of supporting local jobs etc.

The last straw was at my final service 1st MOT.

No follow up despite several attempts to contact sales staff.

Always with a customer, will ring you back which they never did.

Certainly didn't want to use any showroom in the dealership network. 

Like muck in a field the dealer network was everywhere within 50 miles.

In desperation, thanks to Google I located two family owned single Toyota dealerships.

Both in different towns 40 miles away.

Put up a short email to both, instant response from one (weekend) followed by the 2nd with apology for a 2day delay (weekend off). Placed an order with the first & thanked the second for a prompt response. Received a great email from No 2 extolling my choice & wishing me all the very best.

Conclusion, parted with a lot of £'s, comfortable throughout the process, great car, thanks to a professional service from a knowledgeable guy delivered in a caring way.   

Barry Wright Lancashire.   

 

 

Back to No 1    

 

 

     

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Yes I think some dealers are slipping in their customer service when I phoned first to book my Corolla in for its first service I asked for service reception girl said that she couldn’t get through she took my number promised to call back they didn’t.

gave them the benefit of the doubt and phoned the next day managed to book it in could be due to staff shortages I suppose covid and all that.

what are the disappearing speed cameras are you on about coyote mobile cameras that is free for a month then £34 I think for a year it’s a waste of time anyway.

the speed cameras that are imbedded in the sat nav are free for the first three years with the map updates but if you update it ota you will loose the speed cameras unless you download the full update via your computer and then transfer the file to a 16 gb usb.

 

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Yeah my experiences with the Jemca franchise have been similar - The staff at the dealership have poor communication skills, never get back to you and generally display a halfhearted indifference. I always had to go to their site in person to get to speak to anyone, and would frequently have to wait at least 30 minutes even then, whether it's speaking to a salesperson post-sale, making a parts inquiry or even just dropping off my car for service (They had a key drop-off system one year which was great, but then stopped it and went back to the "Your service adviser will be out soon, just wait here and enjoy a complementary drink!"). I always bring my laptop with me when I go there because it's just become normal!

It feels like they really don't care, until they want money off you - I filled in the finance form wrong when I was buying the Mk4 and they were on that like a shot! It's quite galling the contrast of how you're treated when you want something from them, vs when they want something from you...

I find that if I want results and don't want to keep hoofing it down to the dealership, at least with Jemca, the best thing to do is e-mail their head office customer service e-mail - Whoever looks after that e-mailbox is a lot more serious about delivering decent customer service than the dealers are, and I've had much better results going that route. It's also more fun letting their own CS team experience the annoyance of nobody at their own franchise dealer picking up the phone or calling them back :laugh: 

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1 hour ago, Rav4ster said:

Dealers vary, even in the same group. To be honest, I would recommend rotating tyres at the service (10k or 12 months). My dealer does it for free during service, but would charge an hour of labour if I ask to do it ad hoc.

Thought I'd follow Toyota's recommendation and see how it goes. It only cost £20

45 minutes ago, Rosgoe said:

...what are the disappearing speed cameras are you on about coyote mobile cameras that is free for a month then £34 I think for a year it’s a waste of time anyway.

the speed cameras that are imbedded in the sat nav are free for the first three years with the map updates but if you update it ota you will loose the speed cameras unless you download the full update via your computer and then transfer the file to a 16 gb usb.

 

Unfortunately, I updated the maps in the car, before I knew this; I tried downloading the update on my PC afterwards, but it says I already have the update 🙄

 

1 hour ago, Broadway One said:

Hi..........in a word, staff "Indifference" 

Patience stretched to the limit with my recent purchase (3rd new RAV)

Always sourced locally for convenience & my way of supporting local jobs etc.

The last straw was at my final service 1st MOT.

No follow up despite several attempts to contact sales staff.

Always with a customer, will ring you back which they never did.

Certainly didn't want to use any showroom in the dealership network. 

Like muck in a field the dealer network was everywhere within 50 miles.

In desperation, thanks to Google I located two family owned single Toyota dealerships.

Both in different towns 40 miles away.

Put up a short email to both, instant response from one (weekend) followed by the 2nd with apology for a 2day delay (weekend off). Placed an order with the first & thanked the second for a prompt response. Received a great email from No 2 extolling my choice & wishing me all the very best.

Conclusion, parted with a lot of £'s, comfortable throughout the process, great car, thanks to a professional service from a knowledgeable guy delivered in a caring way.   

Barry Wright Lancashire.   

 

 

Back to No 1    

 

 

     

There's a dealership in the Borders that I might try, an extra 30miles on a round trip, but nice scenery 🙂

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13 minutes ago, Saxacat said:

Thought I'd follow Toyota's recommendation and see how it goes. It only cost £20

Unfortunately, I updated the maps in the car, before I knew this; I tried downloading the update on my PC afterwards, but it says I already have the update 🙄

 

There's a dealership in the Borders that I might try, an extra 30miles on a round trip, but nice scenery 🙂

I had updated mine ota but then I updated the full update V1 2021 via the e store if you can’t get the full update don’t know why🤷 you can always share the cars internet connection on your phone via bluetooth ( should be an option on settings on your phone to say share this phones internet connection the speed cameras should then return.

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11 hours ago, Saxacat said:

Hi,

My nearest 2 dealers are 35 and 36 miles away and both belong to the same Group. The nearest of the two delivered my RAV, although as its a leased vehicle and effectively belongs to Toyota, I'm not sure if they make any money from the process.

As I've just clocked up 3000 miles on the car I thought I'd have the tyres rotated, as recommended in the manual. I rang the nearest dealer explained  to the reception what I wanted and was put through to servicing and immediately onto hold; after about 30seconds I got cut off. I rang back, was again put through to servicing, this time someone answered I explained what I wanted and was put on hold while they went to check when they could do it; I was then cut off again. the third attempt went the same way as the first; I gave up.

Yesterday morning, I rang the other of the dealers; explained to reception what I wanted, was put through to servicing, explained to them, was put on hold, got cut off. I rang again, reception apologised, put me through, but this time I ended up speaking to their head office, they put me back to dealer, reception apologised again, took my name, number and registration and promised someone would call back, they haven't. I got the tyres done this morning by a local tyre place.

I'd rang the nearest dealership twice before with queries (one about the disappearing speed cameras, before I found out my free subscription had expired, and also about the Tagashi code) on both occasions they took my details, said they'd call back, but never did.

 

I'm not getting a good feeling about this Group and am now wondering whether I need to go further afield when my first service is due ☹️

I have a toyota dealer across from my house. I could drive there and be home in 5 minutes. Instead I drive 35 miles to an independent toyota dealer!

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12 hours ago, PAISLEY1903 said:

I have a toyota dealer across from my house. I could drive there and be home in 5 minutes. Instead I drive 35 miles to an independent toyota dealer!

AC Linwood are not bad in my experience but Bishopbriggs are better (I live pretty much equidistant from both).

I have wondered about Helensburgh Toyota though (that should be ~25 miles from you).

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On 10/8/2021 at 11:22 AM, Heidfirst said:

AC Linwood are not bad in my experience but Bishopbriggs are better (I live pretty much equidistant from both).

I have wondered about Helensburgh Toyota though (that should be ~25 miles from you).

No car of mine will ever touch AC after they tried to charge me £1300 for something that cost me £395 elsewhere... yet I stupidly considered them for my service plan... went in and asked about it to be told "we dont honour Toyota service plans we have our own ones"..   Toyota had to step in and call them... at that point I had already made my mind up... they were not getting my car..  ever...  

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35 minutes ago, PAISLEY1903 said:

yet I stupidly considered them for my service plan... went in and asked about it to be told "we dont honour Toyota service plans we have our own ones"..   Toyota had to step in and call them... at that point I had already made my mind up... they were not getting my car..  ever...  

Obviously I have had different experience (albeit it may come down to who you speak to but that is also true elsewhere).

The thing is that an AC service plan is 2/3 the price of the official Toyota one & Toyota are OK with them (I did check with them that an AC service plan was warranty compliant).

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2 hours ago, Heidfirst said:

Obviously I have had different experience (albeit it may come down to who you speak to but that is also true elsewhere).

The thing is that an AC service plan is 2/3 the price of the official Toyota one & Toyota are OK with them (I did check with them that an AC service plan was warranty compliant).

Yeah it was just the fact I had been conned, my dads been done over, my son and about 4 neighbours ... yet I still tried and they immediately said "we dont accept Toyota service plans" and only when I pushed and got Toyota involved did they say it was a mistake...  for me there just not to be trusted.  In the past hour I mentioned to someone I know and got "failed my MOT.. took it to another garage who passed it and said my pads which urgently needed replaced along with a rear wiper blade ... the pads based on average miles PY she was doing of 6000 had a good year ahead and the wiper was absolutely fine and the reason for it failing didn't even exist"...  Although not a Toyota.. and mine at the time was a Ford... my daughters a vauxhall.. I had little trust in them at all but thought the Toyota brand might be different but to hear that blatant attempt to sell me something based on a lie .. I took my service plan out with another Toyota Dealer and have had a completely different experience so far 🙂

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Some dealership cultures are based purely on the staff who run the department.  I had a great long running experience with a Skoda dealership, over 12 years and 3 cars, until the service manager was changed and happened to be the wife of the sales manager. The whole setup was suddenly turned on its head and overnight everything became a money making opportunity. It's the same in any business in my experience, people, training and culture. 

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I left the Motor Industry over twenty years ago. The pressure in After-sales was immense. Every year you would put forward your budgets and typically these forecasts expected 100% attendance (less holidays and 3% absence) at 100% productivity and a minimum of 115% efficiency. Conflict with Sales was regular as they wanted lower costs to enhance their bottom line but at the expense of yours (made worse when they had clearly overpaid for a car). All it needs was a technician not turning up on a Monday (hangover?) to wreck your figures - not to mention the disruption to customers. Dealerships were (generally) run by a Sales figure who (generally) had scant knowledge of the After-sales operation (but DID want and need the revenue it produced). Then the projected earnings from Parts. The Board of Directors just looked at the bottom line with no (or scant) regard for mitigating factors. 

I was a member of the Institute of the Motor Industry. This by the examination route after my 5 years study on entering the industry as an apprentice.

The grades then were: Graduate (now Affiliate) when you were studying prior to passing your exams

                           then     Associate, Member and Fellow

After my many years of experience I reached the grade of Fellow (apart from my day job I was also a Director of the Scottish Motor Trade Association).

I don't use these qualifications now as I did not continue my membership (£124 per year).

There was a big push by the IMI to increase membership (and therefore standards within the industry) by offering membership without the requirement for examination (based upon experience). Those of us who passed by examination were fiercely proud of the fact even though we recognised the need for a higher uptake. Naturally, we were concerned that it may lead to a reduction in standards.

The local Nissan dealership had a plaque listing all the members of staff and their qualifications who were members of the Institute but I haven't seen any evidence of that in our local Toyota dealership.

The training path for the technical side has changed immeasurably over the years and I think the IMI has stalled. It really requires the initiative to come from the top but I think that is lacking.

You can check for qualifications on their website.

 

 

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On 10/7/2021 at 11:21 AM, Saxacat said:

Hi,

My nearest 2 dealers are 35 and 36 miles away and both belong to the same Group. The nearest of the two delivered my RAV, although as its a leased vehicle and effectively belongs to Toyota, I'm not sure if they make any money from the process.

As I've just clocked up 3000 miles on the car I thought I'd have the tyres rotated, as recommended in the manual. I rang the nearest dealer explained  to the reception what I wanted and was put through to servicing and immediately onto hold; after about 30seconds I got cut off. I rang back, was again put through to servicing, this time someone answered I explained what I wanted and was put on hold while they went to check when they could do it; I was then cut off again. the third attempt went the same way as the first; I gave up.

Yesterday morning, I rang the other of the dealers; explained to reception what I wanted, was put through to servicing, explained to them, was put on hold, got cut off. I rang again, reception apologised, put me through, but this time I ended up speaking to their head office, they put me back to dealer, reception apologised again, took my name, number and registration and promised someone would call back, they haven't. I got the tyres done this morning by a local tyre place.

I'd rang the nearest dealership twice before with queries (one about the disappearing speed cameras, before I found out my free subscription had expired, and also about the Tagashi code) on both occasions they took my details, said they'd call back, but never did.

 

I'm not getting a good feeling about this Group and am now wondering whether I need to go further afield when my first service is due ☹️

If you ever need a Dashcam upgrade, consider a Garmin. Has cameras built in with regular free updates. I have the 66W and its excellent. Its not cheap but you get what you pay for (on the whole)

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My local dealer, which is independent, has two sites. Before we ordered our car we spoke with the after sales manager, who informed us that people came from at least 60 miles away, where there are about 7 dealers within a 10 mile radius.

The overall manager lamented the fact that his top technicien was going to retire, and had something like 40 years of service in the same garage.

 

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In my experience, the bigger the garage group, the less they care, especially after you've just bought a vehicle from them. In the UK it seems these groups just get bigger as they buy up smaller groups and independents and this makes it harder to find a dealership that actually cares about customers in both sales and service afterwards. I live in a small Derbyshire village, and our nearest large town 10 miles away has, like many places, an area which could be termed "Motorcity", as most of the dealerships are gathered in that one area. This area is almost totally owned by one large group with (at my last count) 9 car and 2 motorcycle franchises, together with one "Service Centre" for all franchises, so to find an independent dealership means you need to travel, and in the case of my last car (now sold and I'm awaiting delivery of a Yaris Cross) I travelled 80 miles to a dealership in Grimsby for it, right car, right price, right deal, rather than deal with this group, having had 'Issues' with them previously!

 I do appreciate that with the complexity of modern cars, the computerisation and equipment needed for servicing isn't cheap, independents can't always offer the expensive facilities and showrooms that manufacturers require of their dealerships, and this is where the collective financial 'Clout' of big groups wins out. Unfortunately, with the sales side it's all about minimising costs and maximising profits for shareholders which usually translates to poor PX prices offered and a 'Take-it-or-leave-it' attitude from sales staff under pressure from aggressive Sales Managers with a 'sell, sell, sell' attitude, and a Main dealer service department incentivising their service staff with productivity bonuses and always looking for extra chargeable (and often unnecessary) work. The days of real 'Customer Care' and dealerships doing their utmost to retain repeat business would seem to be numbered.

                     Keith.

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6 hours ago, ernieb said:

Some dealership cultures are based purely on the staff who run the department.  I had a great long running experience with a Skoda dealership, over 12 years and 3 cars, until the service manager was changed and happened to be the wife of the sales manager. The whole setup was suddenly turned on its head and overnight everything became a money making opportunity. It's the same in any business in my experience, people, training and culture. 

This. Find a dealer that you trust & build up a relationship with the staff. That is partly why I go to Bishopbriggs rather than Linwood although equidistant from both - Bishopbriggs is a smaller dealership which makes that easier. I had a great relationship with their service manager for many years but he moved on eventually 😞 & Covid hasn't made it easy to speak to the guys actually working on the car.

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I found that too - The Jemca I used to service my older Toyotas with was just a tiny little dealer but they had a proper reception desk and actual humans you could talk to and always delivered decent customer service and servicing.

Sadly they were closed down and merged with another franchise on the site the are currently at, and I experienced a huge decline in customer service and servicing. No more reception desk - Receptionist gets a tiny podium barely big enough for their computer monitor. Everyone else is hidden away so you have to wait some arbitrary length of time in the waiting area to talk to anybody.

When you do talk to someone they just give the impression they don't care and want to finish talking to you as soon as possible and move on to something else. It does seem the bigger they are the worse the CS gets for some reason!

The other dealer I go to is a bit smaller and not such a big franchise - I found them much more responsive to my communications, and the parts desk especially, but my one experience with their servicing people so far has been on par with my Jemca's in terms of workmanship and attention to detail... not very reassuring!

 

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I use a large Toyota dealer near me, they're not perfect but I've no real complaints. They have a proper reception, with a waiting area and coffee facilities. They have courtesy cars or collect from home or work at service time. The sales guy smiles when he sees me coming in as our family have bought 9 cars from him over the years........ 

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If a business doesn’t make a profit it doesn’t survive. However I do agree that many large dealership groups are run by formula and have lost sight of the need to foster and maintain local relationships. I have ordered my car from a dealer about 40 miles away rather than anyone of 4/5 ‘group’ dealers nearer. This is due to recommendation from a colleague who has bought cars from them for years.

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