Enterprise Rent-A-Car Complaint - Used Car Sales SCAM
TAMPA, FLORIDA -- Trusted Car Salesman (patient) – his belief in the 109-point inspection and 12 month warranty and how there is “no way I could go wrong, and he would take care of me”.
Visited Enterprise Car Sales (Hillsborough Ave, Tampa). Decided on a 2006 PT Cruiser with under 38k miles priced at $8.999.00 ($1k below blue book). Took for test drive, but did not drive above 40 mph. Finance Manager was to see if she could secure a loan for me within the $200.00 per month payments and no money down as I requested. Requested money to hold the car. They do not take credit or debit cards (now I know why – I would have be protected) and took $30.00 cash – that’s all I had.
Received a voice mail message that I was approved for $200+ per month and to call back for details. I returned call and received voice mail. No return call that day.
Called Car Salesman to let him know I would be by. Brought family with me. Paperwork was presented and signatures requested. One of which, Repurchase Agreement, indicates that I can return the car in 7 days if not satisfied, either pick out another auto or get my money back less $200.00 (for documentation and cleaning fee). I was informed I was capped out by loan company for $9500.00. They stated I would need $600.00 down, and I could not include the Bumper-to-Bumper warranty for $1950.00 and could only afford the GAP for $479.00. Told them I didn’t want the GAP and to apply it toward the $600.00 down. They stated that could not be done and it would be backed out of the loan. They stated I needed the GAP and that they didn’t get a commission on selling this. It showed the lender that I was serious about being responsible and intended to pay the loan in full.
I signed all paperwork. I stated the interest rate was high at 15.75 but they said that was good for me and the other lenders wanted up to 20%. She said this was a friend of hers at the lender and she called in a favor for me. She said there was still a balance of the Manufacturers Warranty but wasn’t sure what it was. They told me I could check it out to see what the warranty was for that year. They forg to collect the $600.00 check from me and to give me the other key. Tank was filled ½ full. As I drove the vehicle home I noticed that there was a bad vibration at higher speeds. Arrived home and told my Uncle about vibration. He took the PT Cruiser for a test drive and I went as well. There was a vibration at lower speeds, but were difficult for me to detect until he stepped on the gas. He thought it was a motor mount by the feel and the reaction of the vibration or how it occurred.
I searched the Internet for similar problems and found “UPDATE: On the vibration problem on some PT Cruisers. I have a 2007 and a 2006 PT Cruiser. The 2006 had a vibration at 18-20 and 40-50 mph. Very irritating. Took to a local Chrysler dealership to have the service manager tell me at 22,000 miles there was nothing that could be done. Took the vehicle to another dealership and they ask me to leave it a few days. They contacted Chrysler and fund the driver’s side axle shaft was the culprit. Chrysler told them to order a turbo axle shaft, which is balanced. They put it in and the vehicle is as smooth as silk. The standard axle shaft is not balanced but the turbo axle shaft is balanced and it made as much difference as night and day.”
Called Enterprise next morning to let them know of the axle imbalance. They claimed no knowledge of defect and said they would research and get back to me. They also made the comment “Oh good, this would be under warranty and won’t cost us money”. No apology to me. Sure makes me feel like things are going to get taken care of well as long as it won’t cost them money.
Received call from Car Salesman that they forgot to get $600.00 check and he would get it from me on Saturday when he came my office for his treatment. I asked him what about the axle problem. He told me I could bring it back at my convenience and get a loaner. I explained to Car Salesman why I dealt with him. I do not have any time to be down and inconvenienced. I needed a reliable auto. He said he would pick up the PT Cruiser on what happened to be 8 days after signed paperwork – leaving me out of the 7 day return if not happy. Then he would get the axle fixed. He would return the PT Cruiser to me the following Saturday. No apology for what’s happened to this point.
Day 2 I try to start PT Cruiser. Click, click, click, click. Try again and it starts. Now I know I’ve got a lemon and why they are trying so hard to get the deposit of $600.00 not to mention the promised repair work out of the 7 day return policy. They obviously are aware this is a lemon. How could a 109-point inspection have been done on this car that has presented these kind of problems in only 2 days? I am, now, putting 2 and 2 together and decide that I am returning the vehicle to them and intend on canceling the contract. My friend went with me to return the vehicle. I was greeted by the Car Salesman and I told him I was there to return the car and cancel the contract. He wanted to know why and I told him of the events and that I didn’t trust him or anyone there and didn’t want another vehicle – they were trying to sell me a car that they knew had problems and I did not want to do business with them. He states he would make me happy and do right by me besides he had 98% satisfaction. Guess I fell in the other 2 %.
He then states that they just received the recall on the half axle on Monday. Another lie. I told him that I gave him the benefit of the doubt and that he was doing what he was told to do. He disclaimed that saying no that is not the case. He then asks me why I didn’t call him directly instead of just showing up there. Told him, it would just give them more time to cover their tracks and time for better lies. I then pointed out to him that on my 12 month warranty they never verbally disclosed about the $50.00 deductible per service repair. He gives me this dumbfounded look and stated he never heard of it and asked if he could take it to Finance Manager. Finance Manager comes in with a newly printed warranty that does not include the deductible terminology and states that she doesn’t know how it printed out like that. She tries all her smooth talking and states that because of my bringing to her attention about the axle half shaft she has spent the entire day calling all buyers of PT Cruisers and informing them of the recall.
Believe that one? Finance Manager proceeded to show me the FEDEX receipt that was shipped and it couldn’t be stopped. I told her to cancel the contract, the entire agreement involving the car and to sign something that she was in receipt of the car. She refused. Told me the financing company will want $200.00 to cancel and that she was trying to come to some agreement with me but I wasn’t listening. She wanted me to look at her screen for this and that and I refused. I saw her in her office at the computer. She apparently changed my file to cover her tracks. Can I prove it? As my friend said, “if there was any gray matter, it was all cleared up with the changing of the warranty document, and this was no legit business”. I left there with their refusal to sign anything that the car was in their hands and Finance Manager hoped I would get over my anger with them. She said to give her 2 hours to see what she could do. Never heard from her. I didn’t expect to. When I returned home I searched the Internet for the RECALL which was suppose to be issued the Monday before I purchased the vehicle. No such recall. Imagine that . . . another lie. Another confirmation they knew what was wrong with the vehicle.
Next day I receive a voice mail from Manager to give him a call regarding the purchase of the PT Cruiser.
Next day I called Attorney General’s Office. Informed that I owe the $200.00 because I signed the paper. It doesn’t matter that they lied, the car is a lemon, or that they knew and were trying to get one over on me. I signed and I owe. 9:50 a.m. I called the Manager and got his voicemail. I left a message to please return my call. Manager left me a voice mail stating to call him from 5-7 p.m. Called back at 6:47 p.m. and Car Salesman answered. Said Manager had just left, but Finance Manager was available. I asked if their position had changed and he said no. Told him I didn’t want to speak with Finance Manager and to please have cancellation paperwork ready for 1:30 p.m. tomorrow and I would have the check for $200.00 and to have my $30.00 cash, that I left to hold the car, ready as well to return to me. I told him to please make sure the paperwork is ready and that I would take time to read through before signing. He said he would be by my office tomorrow if that is okay. I told him we would not conduct business there and it did not have anything to do with his treatment. He said that he didn’t mean that, wanted to see if I was comfortable treating him. Told him that no discussion of the car would take place and it belonged outside of my office again, it has nothing to do with his treatment.
After work I went to Enterprise with my check and to cancel transaction. Receive a call from Car Salesman that he had my $30 cash to give back to me, but forgot. I just told him last night that no business would be done at my employment. I now also know that I won’t see my $30.00 either. He asks when he can give it to me and I told him to give it to the front desk when he comes in 2 days from now. Just another little game he’s playing. Then I receive a call from lender stating they hold the loan for my car and needed information. I proceeded to tell her that I returned the car last Friday and am on the way to cancel the sale because they are a SCAM. She asked me to repeat myself and “You gave the car back?”. She said she would call me later. Called Enterprise to let them know I was on my way. I arrive shortly after 1p.m. and Finance Manager tells me to come in to her office. There is another couple (potential buyers in another office). She’s typing up the cancellation and I ask her who to make my check out to. She then informs me that she cannot take a personal check it has to be cash or certified check/money order. I asked why no one told me. She states Manager should have told me and she would have but she heard that I didn’t want to talk to her.
Well, I would have if she told the truth at anything. That the paperwork did not state it had to be so. She refused to take my check and I told her I wanted to talk to the manager. She fakes a call and somehow loses him and then can’t get him back. Another game. I call my uncle and tell him trying to make it difficult and playing more games. I call my mother for advice (I know I only have one more day before they hold me to the contract and I now see how difficult and at what depth they are going to try to stick it to me. I walk outside her office near the entrance door and tell my mother what they were trying and the worst word I used was “bull crap they were pulling”. Finance Manager comes out of her office and confronts me while I am on the phone with my mother to remove myself from the property. I said “Are you going to take my check?” She stated if I didn’t remove myself from the property she was going to call the police. She started dialing her phone. Low tactics. She didn’t want the potential buyers to overhear the SCAM they pull there. I’ve never been threatened with calling the police on me – I’ve never given cause and never will.
So humiliated, I left and went to the bank for a certified check. I explained to the Teller what I was being put through. I didn’t know who to make the check out to so she called and asked for Finance Manager. She was transferred to some man’s voice mail. She called back again and explained that she was issuing a check and needed to know who the check is to be made payable to. She is then told “Enterprise Car Sales”. I call my uncle to meet me at Enterprise, for I will not go alone again – not without a man or a witness. We parked at parking lot next door so they wouldn’t leave when they saw my car and we walked to Enterprise. Finance Manager is not in her office and Manager is motioning with his finger (just a moment) since he was on the phone. I see Finance Manager look at me through the window in the entrance door and she walks a little faster out to the parking lot.
Manager takes us to his office and edits Finance Manager’s release letter and he starts with his speech. I told him we all know what happened here and don’t tell me that you were going to take care of things. I had no faith in them and everything they pulled left me with an awful taste for Enterprise. He said “sorry”. My uncle and I left and another salesperson was outside having a cigarette and sarcastically said did Manager take care of you and make you happy. I said well, he ripped me off. My uncle asked her how she could work at a place like this. She said it was a great place to work and I told her “only if you enjoy scamming people”.
Am I really free of this transaction? Only time will tell. But now it is my time to tell so I can save others from this scam.
Lesson learned? – it cost me over $200.00, but I am passing it on to you for free. $180.00 in lost business because I had to cancel appointments on Friday (a business I just recently started); total of 326 miles or $58.00 in gas (counting everyone that came with me) and $30.00 cash I will probably never see. So I am out close to $500.00 and they are considered to not be in the wrong by our Florida law. Please don’t be in a hurry with paperwork and really think what you are signing. Looking back now, I would have never agreed to the $200.00 forfeiture, for the only reason I personally would have returned the car was due to a lemon or dishonesty. Listen and watch for the red flags or puzzle pieces, don’t wait for the puzzle to be complete. It is unfair and unjust, but used cars do not fall under the Florida Lemon Law, nor is there a 3-day to rescind.
They can be selling me a lemon and pulling lie after lie, but there is nothing wrong with that in the eyes of the law. I signed the paper and that’s all that counts. Even though on the backside of this same document is the 109-point inspection that has AXLES and ELECTRICAL/BATTERY checked. The only thing that appears to have been checked on this auto is that the part was there, not that it was actually working. And, they do not take it for a road test. Who inspects a car and doesn’t give it a test drive?