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      12-03-2008, 08:04 PM   #1
aggs400
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Bad dealer experience at Thompson – beware!

I was trying to take a wheel off the car, and the key for the wheel lock deformed (it is made of a cheap aluminum). I called the Thompson, they said they would get me a new key under warranty, as long as I bring the original damaged back.
Today I went to my new wheel lock key, and it did not fit. Mechanic said that the wheel locks are also deformed and will have to be replaced, mechanic said he sees no reason to cut them off, he said he will be able to hammer the key in the lock and take the lock off. Customer service rep at Thompson told me that locks have to be cut off, that would take 2 hours of work, and together with parts would run around $200. I told him what the mechanic told me, but the answer was the customer service knows better. I said that it should be covered under warranty, cause I should be able to get the wheels off the car. He answered, it is not a factory defect, and the warranty will not cover it. He said “you did something to it” Yes I did something to it, I was trying to get the wheels off the car, but since they were over tightened, the locks got damaged. The is the first time somebody tried to take them off after BMW put them on. But he said that it is still not a factory defect and warranty would not cover it.
I did not stay there, went to my local mechanic he got the wheel locks off in 10 mins, charged me $15 for the job.
Out of principal I decided to call BMW customer service rep. I told them about my experience, and asked them to refund the $15, again, just out of principal. They called the dealer, and the dealer told them that the reason they did not do the job under warranty is because I had after-market wheels and locks. But my car has OEM wheels and locks. The dealer lied to customer service, and wanted to rip me off for $200. Just beware!
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      12-05-2008, 10:33 PM   #2
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Just keep in mind that you can afford an M3, they can't... Makes the bad experience less bad...
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      12-05-2008, 11:18 PM   #3
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Just plain bad customer relations. With the economy in the tank they should be bending over backward (more than normal) to please customers.

It has nothing to do with who can afford or not afford an M3. I'm sure the owner and managers of the dealership can afford one. It's not about prestige, it's about satisfaction.
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      12-06-2008, 12:22 AM   #4
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Wow, it really seems like they were trying to give you the run around. That's pretty sad that they were going to charge you $200. I'm assuming that's mostly labor? As you said, your guy did it in 10 mins, so its pretty obvious they were trying to screw you.
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      12-06-2008, 11:01 AM   #5
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dealers always rip you off with labor, but that sure is horrible customer relations
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      12-10-2008, 08:28 PM   #6
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Sounds like a bad experience, especially lying about the OEM wheels and locks by the dealer.
Curiously, how did the key AND lock both get deformed? My experience has been that the key and lock are both of high quality metal. Also, BMW wheel bolts are usually tightened to 88 lb/ft of torque, which really is not that tight...
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      12-11-2008, 09:30 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Atny286 View Post
Just keep in mind that you can afford an M3, they can't... Makes the bad experience less bad...
well said!
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      12-12-2008, 09:32 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shchow View Post
Sounds like a bad experience, especially lying about the OEM wheels and locks by the dealer.
Curiously, how did the key AND lock both get deformed? My experience has been that the key and lock are both of high quality metal. Also, BMW wheel bolts are usually tightened to 88 lb/ft of torque, which really is not that tight...
Looks like the locks are of high quality metal, but the key looks like is aluminum. I do not know how much force was used on my paritular bolts.
How they got damaged i am not sure. When I went for a 1200 mile service, i told the dealer that i am getting viabrations from the steering wheel, and probably front wheels have to be balanced. The dealer noted my complaint and said that he will check on it. When i picked up my car, i did not have time to ask if something was done to resolve the vibration, but when i drove the car after the service, vibration was gone. I asumed they balanced my front wheels. In a month or so, i noticed a nail stock in my rear wheel. I took the car to a tire specialist to get it fixed. The needed to take the tire off for a proper patch. They told me that my key for the wheels locks was deformed, and i need to get a new one. But meanwhile, they had a set of BMW wheel lock keys, and were able to fix my tire.
Only went to Thompson to pick up the new key, i noticed that the new key did not fit into the locks. I told the dealer it was a wrong key, but it turned out, the key was right, but some of the locks were damaged also.
Who exactly damaged the key and the locks I do not know. It may have been the dealer on a 1200 mile service, or it may have been the guys fixing my flat. The reason i see the locks and the key getting damaged is somebody overtightened the locks. Only the factory and the dealer where putting the wheels on the car. The reason i think its the dealer, is because i had a flat on the rear tire, and the locks were damaged in the front.
But in any case, it should be covered under warranty, because i should be able to get my tires off.
If anybody wants, i can post the pics for damaged locks and keys later on.
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      12-21-2008, 10:07 PM   #9
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Thompson,

If you are out there you will not get my buisiness, I am in the market for a 4.4 for my wife
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      12-25-2008, 09:59 PM   #10
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I would wholeheartedly recommend Thompson BMW. I've purchased my 325xi from there and service my M3 there (and my previous e46 M3). They have for the most part been pretty straight shooters, and they seem to also be mod-friendly. Wayne is my SA. Shaheed is my sales/client advisor. Never been lied to or bullshitted.

Sorry to hear about your experience, but my guess is that is the exception not the rule. Among my co-workers, approximately 10-12 of us do business at Thompson. Previously, we purchased and serviced all our cars at West German. We have ALL moved to Thompson due to service issues with WG.

Who is your SA? Did you speak to the service manager?
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      12-26-2008, 12:27 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cut2qr View Post
Thompson,

If you are out there you will not get my buisiness, I am in the market for a 4.4 for my wife
Because of one random internet user's story? Nice, makes perfect sense. I'm sure if that is how you make decisions, they are better off without a customer like you.
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      12-26-2008, 12:29 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patricius View Post
I would wholeheartedly recommend Thompson BMW. I've purchased my 325xi from there and service my M3 there (and my previous e46 M3). They have for the most part been pretty straight shooters, and they seem to also be mod-friendly. Wayne is my SA. Shaheed is my sales/client advisor. Never been lied to or bullshitted.

Sorry to hear about your experience, but my guess is that is the exception not the rule. Among my co-workers, approximately 10-12 of us do business at Thompson. Previously, we purchased and serviced all our cars at West German. We have ALL moved to Thompson due to service issues with WG.

Who is your SA? Did you speak to the service manager?
+1, wayne is a good guy. So is Kara, Andi (the Asst. SM), Dave is also really good. Chris the head tech and my tech (Ryan) are also very, very good. The SM is a down to earth guy named Mark. I don't like their sales department (think they are crooks) but the service department is spectacular. I'm sure not everyone will always be happy, but my bet almost all of their customers are very happy.

Cheers,
e46e92
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      12-26-2008, 01:16 AM   #13
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+1, wayne is a good guy. So is Kara, Andi (the Asst. SM), Dave is also really good. Chris the head tech and my tech (Ryan) are also very, very good. The SM is a down to earth guy named Mark. I don't like their sales department (think they are crooks) but the service department is spectacular. I'm sure not everyone will always be happy, but my bet almost all of their customers are very happy.

Cheers,
e46e92
Everyone who I know has similar great service (and sales) experiences. I've yet to purchase a new car from them, so I can't speak about their new car sales team. Shaheed in pre-owned sales is great though. I'll stop by here and there just to shoot the shit with him and see whats new.
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      12-27-2008, 01:57 PM   #14
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The reason i went to Thompson on the first place is cause i heard only good things about them. Things like Patricius and e46e92love have posted, my friends went there, and only good things to say about it.
I am just talking about my experience, and true, one bad experience does not make the dealer as a whole bad. But, if more people have bad experiences at Thompson, that may make the dealer as a whole bad. I personally will not go there again.
Keep in mind, Thompson decided to do major reconstruction on their premises while the economy is bad. May be they decided they needed to make more money by trying to charge for services...
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      12-27-2008, 09:52 PM   #15
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maybe the person was helping you were a$$ hole F??K him you can call the manger?
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      01-07-2009, 12:38 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aggs400 View Post
The reason i went to Thompson on the first place is cause i heard only good things about them. Things like Patricius and e46e92love have posted, my friends went there, and only good things to say about it.
I am just talking about my experience, and true, one bad experience does not make the dealer as a whole bad. But, if more people have bad experiences at Thompson, that may make the dealer as a whole bad. I personally will not go there again.
Keep in mind, Thompson decided to do major reconstruction on their premises while the economy is bad. May be they decided they needed to make more money by trying to charge for services...
May I ask which SA you dealt with? Did you talk with Mark Ambolino, the SM?

Cheers,
e46e92
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      12-27-2009, 02:28 PM   #17
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F--king crap. I just realized that I don't have my key for the wheel lock. Couldn't find it anywhere... Here I go to the stealership.
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      12-31-2009, 09:51 PM   #18
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Just keep in mind that you can afford an M3, they can't...
Not necessarily.
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      01-11-2010, 10:06 PM   #19
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Some dealers are awful I had a bad experience last week. I needed oil top off since I didn't have time to get the oil changed. My local dealer (BMW of the Main Line) which I brought the 2 cars from once knew it is M they refused!!!! I told the foreman I got the oil toped off at your dealer in June for free, He still refused. I ended taking the car to Devon BMW they changed the oil (it was due) and told me I can come any time for top off for free and it is covered under warranty... Same dealer (BMW of the Main Line) wanted 4hours to activate my alarm ( I installed it myself) while the bulletin says 30 minutes and the rest should be covered under warranty
Quote:
Originally Posted by aggs400 View Post
I was trying to take a wheel off the car, and the key for the wheel lock deformed (it is made of a cheap aluminum). I called the Thompson, they said they would get me a new key under warranty, as long as I bring the original damaged back.
Today I went to my new wheel lock key, and it did not fit. Mechanic said that the wheel locks are also deformed and will have to be replaced, mechanic said he sees no reason to cut them off, he said he will be able to hammer the key in the lock and take the lock off. Customer service rep at Thompson told me that locks have to be cut off, that would take 2 hours of work, and together with parts would run around $200. I told him what the mechanic told me, but the answer was the customer service knows better. I said that it should be covered under warranty, cause I should be able to get the wheels off the car. He answered, it is not a factory defect, and the warranty will not cover it. He said “you did something to it” Yes I did something to it, I was trying to get the wheels off the car, but since they were over tightened, the locks got damaged. The is the first time somebody tried to take them off after BMW put them on. But he said that it is still not a factory defect and warranty would not cover it.
I did not stay there, went to my local mechanic he got the wheel locks off in 10 mins, charged me $15 for the job.
Out of principal I decided to call BMW customer service rep. I told them about my experience, and asked them to refund the $15, again, just out of principal. They called the dealer, and the dealer told them that the reason they did not do the job under warranty is because I had after-market wheels and locks. But my car has OEM wheels and locks. The dealer lied to customer service, and wanted to rip me off for $200. Just beware!
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