Salvage vehicle sold as "Certified Pre-Owned"
KINGSTON, NEW YORK -- On May 30th we purchased from Kingston Nissan in Kingston NY, General Sales Manager Tom Gordon, a 2008 Nissan Xterra with 17,000 miles on it. When we asked why the mileage was so low we were told it was a lease return. OK, sounds good so far. Trusting the dealership.....our BIG mistake .....we didn't get a Carfax.
Fast forward to July 31st when we get a letter from NYS DMV telling us the car cannot be titled in New York without an extensive and expensive inspection because the vehicle was salvage car. We immediately contacted Kingston Nissan in person where were told that can't possibly be, they would not and could not sell a salvage vehicle without disclosing it to us. Even with the letter from DMV they were at a loss and would get back to us. We went home, bought our own Carfax and indeed the car had been totaled in Pennsylvania November 2009.
The dealership calls us back on Monday and suddenly this was no longer a lease car but one they purchased at an auction and they claim they were duped!! We were willing to negotiate a deal with them for a return of $10,000 of the $23,000 the car cost, their counter offer was only $4000 if that! They claim the value of the vehicle would only drop by maybe $2000 as salvage even after another car lot informed us the vehicle was only worth 1/4 of the value if not salvage!
After another week of getting nowhere with the dealership we returned the car for a refund but they won't include the 2 payments we have made so far. My feeling is we would never have bought this vehicle knowing what it was or paid so much. Payments made on a car using its correct value would be much lower than what we made already paid.
A complaint with NYS Attorney General has been filed, along with Ulster County Fraud Bureau and NYS DMV. I am especially disgusted by the behavior of General Sales Manager Tom Gordon as he refused to be available to speak with us when we got there this afternoon even though we scheduled our visit to fit into his schedule.