Nov. 18, 2015, at Podoll with friend. Friend said that I didn't need to get car inspected since dealer did that already. I disagreed. Chris ********, Finance Mngr came out of his office to say, "I couldn't help overhearing. I think I can help you out." Then he assured me that all cars inspected so that Podoll could take car of their customers. He explained that Podoll was a small family owned business and didn't have a mechanic on staff; they got cars inspected by ********** ******. Inspection sheet, which I have in my possession, showed that all that car needed was new brakes, new windshield and oil change. Sheet also showed all that taken care of before car put on the lot. Chris did not tell me that Podoll runs ********** ****** or that Kevin ******** brother-in-law, Kyle *********, is Recon Manager at **********. I told Chris, "I'm trusting you, and this is all my money." Was not exaggerating. I trusted Chris and the ********** inspection sheet that he Purposely interrupted conversation to show me. I naively bought the car. Dec. 12 (about 3 weeks later),car overheated in snow storm. Called Podoll. Jose ******, the General Mngr said get to safe place. Call Warranty office (********) and leave after hours message. Did so. Limped home, stopping several times to let engine cool off (even at red lights, I had to turn off the engine). Next a.m. (Sunday, 1/13) found NO antifreeze in radiator. Filled radiator with antifreeze. Drove to auto parts store to get advice. One guy said should not have run out of antifreeze--did I perhaps have a leak to engine (i.e. Blown Head Gasket)? I didn't know. Drove home, happy to not overheat. Less than 1 mile from home, engine shuddered violently. Engine light came on. Immediately called ******** (AD) left message. About than 1 min. later Craig from AD called to say--get home if not far. Don't drive after that. I Should Have tried to return the car at this point. But chose instead to be trusting--this time of Brad at ************************* where car was towed to the next day (Mon., 12/14). Brad said didn't think blown head gasket. Also said that he couldn't do any work until diagnosis done--and AD wouldn't pay for any diagnosis. Also said that AD wouldn't authorize any work until diagnosis done. I called Podoll. Spoke to Jose who first said: "What do you expect? You bought a used car." At this time, I thought it had been Jose who interrupted my friend and me to show inspection report. Said not happy he did that. Jose did Not say wasn't him, only said he was good at his job, selling cars. I said he needed integrity. Then Jose Yelled, "Okay! I'll pay for the diagnosis!" And hung up. Next day Brad drove car trying to get car to overheat- he'd misunderstood what was issue with car. I said wouldn't overheat now that antifreeze in radiator. Then he said needed thermostat and 2 cam shaft parts. NO indication of Blown head gasket. He kept car until Thurs (12/17). I paid $100 deductible, glad to have car back. Over holidays, fluid leaking from under car. 1/4/16 Went back to ********** for redo on one of parts replaced. Then over next week had to go back 2 more times since engine light kept coming back on. Once replaced another camshaft part. Last time(1/11)he did Relearn on engine. Went to non-warranty authorized mechanic 1/13 for General inspection of car. He did inspect., came out with report and asked 3 times if I could return this car. Was terrible. Oil leaks, dangerous struts, radiator hose leaks "Excessive sludge" seen in engine. Trans. fluid very burnt. Called Podoll very upset now. Said I want to return car. Jose said, not going to happen. Chris B. said "What do you expect? You bought a used car." Called days in a row for owner, Kevin (KP) called. 1/19, engine light on again. 1/20, filed complaint w/State. 1/21 KP called. Engine light on and off. 1/22, got diagnosis: Blown Head Gasket. Estimate Re:struts/leaks/gasket-$3800. KP 'no refund.' Now since Dept. Rev. complaint now on desk: $0 repairs.
I would like Kevin ****** to respect the fact that Chris ******** interrupted my friend and me in order to move the sale forward, quickly--and in doing so, Chris actively talked me out of getting a truly independent inspection done on vehicle. If Chris would not have assured me vehicle was well inspected by mechanic who does not work at Podoll, I would have gone to my own mechanic--and would have Never purchased the car. I would like Kevin ****** to have integrity and provide me with a full refund.
Kevin may say that the inspection was only for safety issues and was cursory, visual inspection--yet struts leaking are safety issue. And suspension issues seen with visual inspection. And oil leaks apparent by looking. Also--Chris ******** purposefully presented inspection as just as valuable as any independent mechanic's inspection.
Another important factor: Before I went to Podoll,, I did quickly scan reviews of ****** Auto Brokers online (DearlerRater, Google, Car Gurus). The last 2 sites showed some and some positive and negative reviews, with all negative reviews seeming so overwrought that I found it easier to believe the calmly written positive reviews. *************** shows mostly positive reviews. I did not know, before I went to ****** that 1) ****** has history of paying $20 in gas for positive reviews on Google and Yelp. (Both those sites have now been alerted to this practice). And 2) I also did not know that ****** has history of regular monthly salesperson contests to see who can the most 5 star reviews on ***************. Please see attached screen shots of Facebook posts soliciting positive reviews April and May 2015. Also, a few days before the car overheated in snowstorm, I had picked up title (which I have Never taken to DMV), Dustin, the salesman (not a manager) asked me, naively if I would go online and give him a positive review. They were having a contest. Sounded like he wanted a Christmas bonus for good reviews. If car had not broken down so thoroughly I likely would have given him positive review since I still think he is a good guy. Think he is at job that seems to not share his ethical standards. So, though ****** does not solicit positive reviews in a Public Fashion anymore, they still solicit them by word of mouth. It is illegal to pay for reviews and, at the least, not okay to have employees, former employees and friends write 5 star reviews as a favor to salespeople and the business. In late Jan. 2016 former salesman, Sam ***** gave ****** 5 stars on Google (now removed). These practices lead the general public to trust them much more than is deserved. This was the case with me. Had I seen only Un-solicited and/or Un-paid for reviews for ******, I would have been, at the least, very very cautious at ******.
Note: It is also illegal to post fraudulent negative reviews online, in retaliation for honest and substantiated negative reviews. This happened with a "*********" on Yelp. A very unhappy ****** customer (**), along with her mother and grandmother had to fight to get money back from ****** and posted negative reviews online. In apparent retaliation, on May 21, 2015, a "*********" posted a scathing review of **'s workplace online--even naming ** by her full name in possible effort to get her fired or at least reprimanded. Yelp was alerted to the fraud and removed the content of the review. http://www.yelp.com/not_recommended_reviews/eye-candy-salon-and-blow-dry-bar-colorado-springs Also, May 21, 2015, ********* posted glowing review for ******, on BBB site. http://www.bbb.org/southern-colorado/business-reviews/auto-dealers-used-cars/podoll-auto-brokers-in-colorado-springs-co-87344773/customer-reviews?cacheit=y
Since (only the first) estimated repair costs are already Over One-Half my purchase price of car ($7534.10), I think it is best to just return car for full refund. I do not think 3 weeks of driving any vehicle before major problems occurred is worth $7534.10, or half or any portion.
I am very sorry that Margaret ******** has had problems with her vehicle. We try to go above and beyond to help customers that treat us with some respect. We have reached out to her to try and attempt to fix the safety problems with her vehicle with no luck. She is unwilling to take any blame on her decision to not taking it to her mechanic. We at no time made her purchase the vehicle. She drove the vehicle while it obviously needed attention further damaging the engine. She has made false claims against our business and every time we turn around her story changes. She filed a Dealer board complaint against us telling her story and the Dealer board found we did noting wrong. We hate that this lady keeps badmouthing us but her story is false and we will not be falsely accused anymore. If she continues to put false claims against us we will be forced to sue for Defamation.
(The consumer indicated he/she DID NOT accept the response from the business.)
I do not accept this response by P***** Auto Brokers (P***** & Associates, LLC). In contradiction to their statement, P***** staff has not "gone above and beyond to help" me. Rather, it started off (with my first complaints) the complete opposite. Both Jose ******, General Manager, and Chris ********, Finance Manager, stated to me (each separately): "What do you expect? You bought a used car." The last 2 times I attempted to call P*****, Jan 27, 2016, I could not get through to P***** at all. My calls were routed to an odd automated system that said I must dial 00 to get company directory--but when I dialed 00, the message kept looping back to the beginning. There was no way to get through from my phone to the dealership--appears to me that my calls had been blocked by P*****. That is not going "above and beyond" nor is it indicative of having "reached out." When I initially, repeatedly left upset messages for Kevin P*****, the owner, HAD NOT "reached out to me to try and attempt to fix the safety problems with my vehicle with no luck." Day after day I left messages with no response from the dealer. Kevin only called me the day after I wrote negative review on Yelp.com regarding my experience. The day Kevin the owner called me, I told him that because I had not heard back from him, after many calls, I had, the night before, emailed my complaint the State dealer board (Dept. of Revenue, DOR). This information was not withheld from the owner. I was trying to negotiate with Podoll and not doing a good job of it, since this is so out of my league. I did say on phone to owner of Podoll that I would seek legal counsel, not offer for $ to repairs, previous to my email to Podoll. After this, my brother got involved on my behalf and when I had misunderstood what my brother had emailed to me about negotiations with Podoll, I did ask, in an email contradictory to phone call, asking if offer to help get some repairs done was still good. Yet, I have to say that my statement on the PHONE, was said Right After Dave ********, owner of********************** (***) warranty company, had 1st yelled at me for minutes over the phone, saying that I had broken the car. This was all my fault. Podoll had sold me a car in such good condition. What did I do to it? Dave said that I should have car towed when it first overheated. Why did I only leave a message on the ****************** warranty company voice mail, after hours that weekend evening? Didn't I know that to drive a car that way could cause the head gasket to blow? Why would I do that to a car? I then explained to him that I called Podoll, and talked to, Jose, General Manager of Podoll, ONLY AFTER I had pulled over and STOPPED CAR IMMEDIATELY when car started to overheat. I explained to Dave, that Jose told me to make sure that car was safely pulled over and to call and leave message at ******** warranty company after-hours voicemail line. Which is what I did. I let car cool down for 20 minutes or more, in midst of snow storm--EACH TIME I pulled over--whenever needle got toward the H. I also stopped engine each time I was at a stop light. Though I was only, under normal circumstances 10 or so minutes from home, it took me well over an hour +, to get home. I told Dave from *** that I did what Jose told me to do. I also explained to Dave of *** I let the car cool overnight in continuing snowstorm and when I checked the antifreeze the next morning I found that I had ABSOLUTELY NO ANTIFREEZE IN RADIATOR OR RESERVOIR. Dave replied to me that that was too bad that Jose gave me the wrong advice. He should have never had told me to simply leave a message. As far as driving the car with engine light on in the times after ************************ 4 repairs of car. I explained to Dave of *** that Brad of ******** told me that, in the first day of his diagnosis of car, he drove the car quite a while, trying to get it to overheat again (never did). I asked him if engine light was on and he replied that it was, when I asked him if that would hurt the car, Brad said that it wouldn't. I also reminded ******** that car would not overheat since I had just filled radiator and reservoir the Sunday before it was towed to his shop. I also explained to Dave of *** the day after it overheated in snowstorm and I found no antifreeze, that I had filled radiator with antifreeze then driven to auto parts store for advice. I don't recall if I told all the following to Dave, but: they thought I should have checked out for previously blown head gasket-since a car will not just run out of antifreeze in less than a month after purchase, unless something else is wrong. However, I do know that I let Dave know that on way home from store, just blocks from my home, the car engine shuddered, then the engine light came on. At that point, I called ****************** after-hours line and left a second message. Within minutes, Craig from *** called me back and told me to get car to safe place they will tow it the next day. If so crucial the 1st time that I HAD NOT let car cool periodically and make it home the previous night, why did Jose tell me to just leave message? And also, why did Craig call me back within minutes after my second call, but not the first? Also if so crucial to not drive car with engine light on, why did ******** owner tell me that that was what he was doing when trying so hard to get car to overheat? And when I asked ******** whether any signs of blown head gasket, Brad always no, no indication of this. Furthermore, when engine light on time and again. ******** assured me was okay to drive and was also okay to drive when light would come on-off-on. Even day that I took to my mechanic (not warranty mechanic), 1/22/16, engine light was off in a.m. I called ********, talked to Craig; told him was trying to get diagnosis from my mechanic but light off. Craig said engine light can come on for various reasons--even a loose gas cap. Craig was not worried about light off (on later) that day. So no, I do Not accept your statement that I "drove the vehicle while it obviously needed attention further damaging the engine." Furthermore, I do Not accept Podoll's response that they had "no luck" with their "attempt to fix safety problems with her vehicle" As far as my EMAIL goes, I am emotional, out of league with this and I don't know what to do. That day, I thought, okay, my mechanic said can start with some $ for problems. Before I sent email, my brother talked to Kevin about car (1/26/16). My brother emailed me about talk and I misunderstood my brother's email, thinking he meant that Kevin would do nothing toward repairs or any recompense. He later told me he meant K offered not so much (Kevin said I could try to sell the car as is. Not good option since car worth so little. Kevin also offered $1500 for all repairs, but not much considering what is needed.) but he would try again. 1/28/16, he did and talk was bit better. 2/4/16 the day AFTER the $3800 estimate (for FIRST repairs only) was emailed to Podoll, DOR formally notified Podoll I had filed a complaint. My brother also called 2/4/16, hoping that now in light of $3800 estimate, $$ would increase for repairs. But Kevin said that since I complained to DOR, he would not talk to either one of us. Kevin also told my brother that I had filled the complaint with lies about P*****. I have not been able to call P***** since 5 days after head gasket diagnosis, 1/28/16 (see above) and my brother has not been allowed to talk to P***** since 2/4/16. I have been getting rides with coworkers, friends, Uber rides and renting a car since the car was correctly diagnosed with a blown head gasket 1/22/16 since my mechanic advised that I should not drive car with this diagnosis. 1/22/16 I emailed Brad at ******** that my suspicions of blown head gasket confirmed. I did not hear back from Brad from ******** until the day the same that Kevin P***** received the DOR complaint and told my brother that he would speak to neither my brother nor me. 2/4/16, Brad wrote me: "You were convinced the head gasket had a problem even though none of the problems told to you by other shops actually presented themselves during the time your vehicle was here." So, if P*****, ********, *** has problem with my driving the car after Brad from ******** assured me that okay to drive if engine light comes on and off, then I can say that if indeed head gasket had been blown all along, then I'm sorry I trusted Brad's opinion over that of auto parts store people and my own suspicions. I took Brad as authority. Re: Podoll's response that "She filed a Dealer board complaint against us telling her story and the Dealer board found we did noting wrong." I talked with the investigator this a.m. who told me that isn't true. He's still investigating. Re: P***** saying: "put false claims against us we will be forced to sue for Defamation." It is not defamation when documents support claims.