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Green Mountain Boy
Picture of Jus228
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All I can add is never go to a shop that runs a flat rate system with their techs. I've seen it turn good mechanics into hacks trying to make a decent living.

!~God Bless the U.S. Military~!

If the world didn't suck, we'd all fall off

Light travels faster than sound, this is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak
Posts: 5495 | Location: Vermont | Registered: March 02, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Page late and a dollar short
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Originally posted by Black92LX:
Not all of us in dealerships are crooks, please remember that

This is very true also I don't consider them crooks as they have always up front with their prices. I just don't get the extreme discrepancies in prices at least that I have experienced.

Oddly enough after owning Ford, Toyota, and Audi the best service and prices were at Audi.

A lot of variables in pricing for multiple reasons.

One, retail pricing is suggested. MSRP pricing, as you know manufacturers suggested retail pricing. Being suggested, that is just that. Years back, dealers using a matrix, escalator, double cost, whatever you want to call it was not commonly used. Today with higher expenses, more dealers than less use these formulas to raise customer retail prices to increase gross profit. At least in the automaker I work in the percentages between dealer cost and list has stayed the same over the years. When we had printed paper price books there was a disclaimer that stated dealers were free to sell at whatever pricing they desired, the list (retail) and wholesale (repair shops) were only suggestions.

Collision shop parts sales are particularly cut-throat, with the competition from aftermarket manufacturers, the pressure from insurance companies for price concessions and the willingness of one dealer wanting larger market share to cut prices under the competition's, well it gets real ugly. A business trying to get by with a three percent gross (over dealer cost) profit margin gets ugly real quick. There are volume purchase discount programs by automakers but still these are not double digit discounts, usually single digit low percentages which do add up over time.

Mechanical wholesale parts sales are starting to get into the same cut throat mode. So the next profit area is retail over the counter sales or the in house service department.

The Internet has made things more competitive and uglier in a lot of ways. For one, anybody here that wants to purchase and use original equipment parts there are a multitude of dealers offering a low price alternative to your local new car dealership. Be careful though and compare, I do this comparison a lot of times with retail customers. These website dealers usually make up the difference of the cheap sale price, sometimes as low as dealer cost or a couple of percent over that by charging higher shipping and "handling" (?) charges. Well, the handling charge in my opinion is the difference between dealer cost and MSRP or whatever sale price the dealership mandates and this pays me for my experience as this has been my career since 1970.

This brings up another point. The manufacturers are promoting the premise that anyone can look up parts on the 'net and order them online. Sure, oh, it's so easy until something goes sideways. You should look at the amount of "user notes" our crew has inserted in the electronic parts catalogs to clarify unclear applications, how to identify items, a particular good one was I.D.'ing u-joints by Spicer numbers. Except for me none of our guys (20-30 years each experienced) had no clue what those numbers meant. Or figuring out that the break date for first/second design in incorrect by three months and how to easily identify the difference between them. The catalog only gives a part number, that is all. I have to be paid for my experience, you get a part from me right the first time (almost) every time, we all get bitten once in a while.

Just a little clarification from my side of the counter.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: shovelhead,

"Leaders become great, not because of their power, but because of their ability to empower others." -John Maxwell
Posts: 5091 | Location: Livingston County Michigan USA | Registered: August 11, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Quit staring at my wife's Butt
Picture of XLT
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they wand 900 dollars to change the right side exhaust manifold on my f150
Posts: 4451 | Registered: February 09, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of henryaz
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Originally posted by XLT:
they wand 900 dollars to change the right side exhaust manifold on my f150

That's probably for $800 worth of Kroil to loosed up the rusted bolts.
On the Toyota F/2F engines (which were copied from the GM 235 inline 6), the exhaust and intake manifolds are siamesed together, in that some of the bolts/washers hold a piece of the exhaust, and a piece of the intake. Instead of all holes, each manifold has some "half holes" that come together under a bolt/washer. Best upgrade to do is install studs, instead of using the factory bolts.
Posts: 7687 | Location: South Congress AZ | Registered: May 27, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Not really from Vienna
Picture of arfmel
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Just got finished with an extremely frustrating attempt to purchase a new Hyundai Sonata based on the dealership's website advertised Hyundai "better than ever" $6500 rebate. Which through typical dealership smoke and mirrors, they attempted to reduce to a $4000 rebate. And argued over it until I finally lost my patience and walked out. Salesman and sales manager followed me out to my truck trying to fix things up but they never would honor the deal their website specifically and clearly stated. On the specific vehicle their website was advertising. I did get the manager to admit that their website was "misleading".

This message has been edited. Last edited by: arfmel,

Posts: 22457 | Location: Young American Teen Club | Registered: January 30, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
It's pronounced just
the way it's spelled
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I wouldn't mind paying the dealerships to do the work or for the parts, but they all seem incompetent or crooked. I've been told that tire treads were separating (they weren't), and that I wasn't told that (my wife was in the car when they said it on speaker phone). I've been told the vibration that happened when I apply brakes is a bent rim, that strangely has no effect when I'm not braking and I was told that just before the maintenance agreement expired. I told the dealership to replace a cabin filter and they screwed that up. I most recently took my truck in for warrantee work and an oil change. They didn't stock the battery cable for an F-150, and asked me if they could keep the truck over the weekend. Well, since the truck wouldn't start or charge without it, sure. Then I got the truck back, it had a vibration at highway speeds it didn't have before. Guess what, a tire rotation is included in the oil change. Oh, and that airbag recall from last year? I have a vehicle that still hasn't gotten it changed because the dealerships still doesn't have the part, and mine is "low priority", however they determine that.
Posts: 720 | Location: Arid Zone A | Registered: February 14, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Page late and a dollar short
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Nuclear, I too agree that incompetence runs rampant. It used to be that people getting into the business of automobiles had an interest in the product,not today. The mantra of today is that anyone can be put into any position, we can train them. I do not believe in that, some are just not going to grasp the concept.

Over the years some of the things I've heard service advisors tell customers...........especially if the issue is connected with flush services.....

On the battery cable stocking issue. I can't speak for Ford but in my manufacturer's "world" it's pretty much not up to us. We can stock whatever we want as long as we are willing to deal with the consequences, those being not able to return those parts that do not sell. If we want that protection of the inventory we have to allow the manufacturer to control what we sell from our stock, how many we stock and if and when we are allowed to start stocking items. Also there are fnancial reasons for towing the auto manufacturer, "performance bonuses" that go to the dealer and in some cases to the department manager but not to the counter persons, the ones dealing with the fallout daily.

On the air bag recall part,don't get me started on that issue. I assume this is a Takata manufactured bag. What a cluster**** that mess is. Some cases, recalls issued on recalls, yep, true. That would not be the first time that I have seen a recall that states "a solution for the issue is not available at the present time", so in the meanwhile after the customer has either received a notification letter or heard of it from the news media they start climbing up our wazoos DEMANDING an immediate resolution regardless that there are, say 500k vehicles involved in this recall and that person is more important than the other 499,999 customers out there. Not to trivialize the customer's concern but we have no control over the issue, we get to deal with the fallout.

Or better yet, my favorite. I got my a** chewed out by a service manager once because of the manufacturer's failure. Late 1990's Pontiac Grand Prixs had a problem, the headlight lens was bonded to the reflector and the glue under the "right" conditions would allow the headlight lens to separate and fall off the backing. We were seeing a lot of these and a lot of them were not under warranty. So at about a hundred dollars each, customers were not too happy.

I took a call one day from a GM customer service rep from the call center inquiring if we had the part. After affirming we had them in stock the rep then told me "I feel you should give the customer a discount on the part as it is not his fault it failed" to which I said "You should warranty the damn thing since we did not build the POS".
So for about two months or so whenever a customer came in over the counter to buy a headlamp I told them to call customer service and complain and they would most likely get assistance. Hey, turnabout is fair play. So after awhile our service manager called me into the office and said not to do that, our zone rep was not too happy with me specifically for telling customers to call in. Too bad, so sad. I said to him "why should we take a hit and discount them? Did we specify the shit glue they used or the failed manufacturing process?" He could not fault me for my reasoning but he did say to reword it to say "call and express your displeasure with the product".

"Leaders become great, not because of their power, but because of their ability to empower others." -John Maxwell
Posts: 5091 | Location: Livingston County Michigan USA | Registered: August 11, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of mikeyspizza
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I find the NAPA Repair Estimator to be useful. Don't know what it's based on. Enter vehicle, zip code, and then choose from list of repairs.
Posts: 2511 | Location: North Carolina | Registered: August 16, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Go ahead punk, make my day
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BMW - expensive

Old BMW - even more expensive

BMW dealership - really expensive, but you get 'free' coffee while you wait. Razz

If you didn't know this, lean forward and choke yourself!
Posts: 38199 | Registered: July 12, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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