In late November 2003, I purchased a vehicle from the DriveTime dealership at 9650 N. 19th Avenue, Phoenix AZ. I discovered that I paid $4000 over the blue book value with a loan at 20.9%.
On August 9, 2004, I had my vehicle towed to the DriveTime repair facility at 4515 East Miami, Phoenix AZ. The timing belt broke while driving at 65 mph on the freeway, with myself and my son in the vehicle. This resulted in an instantaneous and complete loss of power in my vehicle.
Initially, Mario Abukhader told me he was going to replace the engine with a used, not rebuilt, engine with 13,000 more miles than the original engine. He continues to insist that he made that decision because I told him it needed a new engine. This information was false, as I am not a mechanic and no repair shop had performed any repairs. I simply told him that the timing belt broke and it may have damaged the engine, and told him who the source of that information was. My many requests for information about the diagnosis of the problem went unanswered.
On August 19th, ten days later, I was told by Mario that he had decided to pull the head and send it out to see if it could be rebuilt. On August 26th, eighteen days after my vehicle was towed to DriveTime, I was told the engine could be rebuilt, and would save me $400.00.
On August 27th, I delivered a cashier's check for $900.00 for the repairs. On August 31st, Mario contacted Chapman Isuzu. Chapman contacted Isuzu Motors of America, and Isuzu Motors of America agreed to cover all repairs under the manufacturer's warranty, since the timing belt is a recall item. This occurred 23 days after my vehicle was towed to the DriveTime repair facility. I was contacted by Angela Powell, Regional Mediator and was told there was great news! DriveTime was going to save me some additional money; my portion is only $497.00!
She failed to mention that Chapman is doing all of the work for free though. When she called to tell me the new cost was $497, she did not disclose that what I was paying for was the cost DriveTime had originally agreed to split with me. The machine shop, the towing, etc. has now become MY expense.
There are FOUR outstanding recalls on the vehicle sold to me. These recalls, as described by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration/Office of Defects Information website, cover the timing belt, the brakes, the rear seat belt bolts, and the rear axle. It specifically states that the consequence of not having the work done could 1) cause the engine could stall while driving and will not restart (timing belt) which is what happened to me on the freeway, 2) that extended stopping distance could result which increases the risk of a crash (ABS brakes), 3) the rear seat belts would not provide adequate protection in the event of a crash (seat belts). There is no current legislation in Arizona regarding the disclosure by the seller to the buyer of such recalls.
Experian does NOT include recall information, CarFax does. You can also call the manufacturer with the VIN and get the same information.
A breach of the warranty of merchantability did occur. Arizona ARS 44-1267( c ) states that the implied warranty of merchantability is met if the motor vehicle functions in a safe condition as provided in title 28, chapter 3, article 16 and is substantially free of any defect that significantly limits the use of the motor vehicle for the ordinary purpose of transportation on any public highway.
It further states in ARS 44-1267(e) that if the implied warranty of merchantability described in this section is breached, the purchaser shall give reasonable notice to the seller. Before the purchaser exercises any other remedies under title 47, chapter 2, the seller shall have a reasonable opportunity to repair the vehicle. The purchaser shall pay one-half of the cost of the first two repairs necessary to bring the vehicle in compliance with the warranty. The purchaser's payments are limited to a maximum payment of twenty-five dollars for each repair.
The Federal Trade Commission states A breach occurs only if the buyer can prove that a defect existed at the time of sale. I will secure an affidavit from Isuzu Motors of America that states that all safety recalls were open on my vehicle on November 29, 2003.
I am a single parent, and have lived without my vehicle for 27 days. I have had to pay for transportation to and from work, and finally had to rent a car so I can visit my mother, who is in poor health and living in Cottonwood, Arizona. I was told when I purchased the vehicle that DriveTime researched the car's history and that if I needed major repairs we can help you out. However, when I needed to replace my clutch in May and the tires in June, DriveTime was unable to provide assistance. DriveTime sold me an unsafe vehicle, and then attempted to charge me to replace the engine with a used engine when it was possible for it to be rebuilt, and then charged me again when Isuzu has agreed to cover the repairs.
U.S.A. Click here to read other Rip Off Reports on Drive Time, formally known as Ugly Duckling which is registered under the same ownership.