Troubleshooter: New vehicle problems

February 17, 2009 5:22:01 AM PST
When you buy a new vehicle you expect it to be problem free. Tony Johnson bought a new 2008 GM Sierra with a sticker price of $51,000. Shortly after buying it, he found rust throughout the truck. He tells Troubleshooter Diane Wilson, "All the blots everything's got oxidization on it. Pretty much everything to the floor board of that truck is rusted which indicates to be the floor board has been flooded."

Tony looked long and hard for this truck as he actually found it on-line at a Florida dealership. He drove to Florida to get the truck and bought it from a local dealership for a total price tag of more than $51,000. As soon as Tony noticed the rust, he went straight to the dealership. He adds, "They looked at and said it wasn't normal and in their opinion it had been exposed to salt, they didn't say flooding."

The next call went to the manufacturer. Toy says, "I contacted General Motors and the only thing they're willing to do is rip everything out, repaint it and put everything back in. This is unsatisfactory, you should have to do this to a brand new fifty thousand dollar vehicle." Plus Tony says besides the rust, he found other problems. He adds, "It's already started to show up minor glitches in the electrical system. The lights are not coming and going like their supposed to."

Tony called Troubleshooter Diane Wilson. He says, "I bought a new truck. I paid for a new truck that's what I want. I'm afraid it's going to cause problems in the future." Troubleshooter Diane Wilson got in touch with GM and they investigated. It took some time, but Tony says they offered him two options. One, they'd take the truck back and pay what Tony still owes on the truck. Two, they'll make him a new 2009 pick-up similar to his 2008. However, they want him to pay the difference in MSRP between the 08 to 09 which Tony says is $4,300. A price he's not willing to pay. Tony adds, "I don't seeing driving a truck 300 miles to cost me $4,300 to cure their problems."

A rep for GM would only comment by saying, "We tried to work with the customer on a resolution to his complaint, but he declined our offer". Tony says he's willing to take this to court to get what he feels is right, which he believes is a new truck without paying any more than the price he agreed to pay in the beginning.

The lesson here, despite not expecting to find any problems with a new car, check it over thoroughly before you sign on the dotted line. Tony says that's something he'll do from now on whenever he buys a new vehicle.


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