I received an email from Grossinger Auto Group regarding their Black Friday sale on Friday, November 23rd 2012. Doors were to open at 5:00 am. It was to be a first come, first serve arrangement with the first person in line having their pick of the select cars available at 30% off sticker price. 30% off is a very very good deal and I picked the car I wanted to get. This was on Wednesday, two days prior to the sale. With the car that I wanted selected, a Kia Optima, I then called my salesperson at the dealer to make sure I had all the correct information and that I had "all of my ducks in a row". I was getting financing through my bank and I let them know this. I was told I needed a check as a down payment. And I would then get the final figures of the sale to take to my bank to have a check written for Grossinger. We discussed this in detail as I wanted to make sure that there were no glitches. I was told which door to line up at. I don't generally wait in line for events like this, but I figured with the savings that I would realize(approximately $10,000), that it would be worth it to camp out in front of the door for the evening.
I arrived at Grossinger Kia at 10:00 pm on Thanksgiving night and I was the first in line. I assumed that, having done all of my homework on this, that I would soon become the proud owner of a Kia Optima. So, I dressed as warmly as I could and spent the next 7 hours in 35 degree temperature with a stiff wind in my face. I thought, OK, I can get through this as it was a small price to pay for a great deal on my car. So when they opened the doors at 5:00 am, I sat down with one of the managers at Grossinger and started discussing the logistics of obtaining my new car. The manager, who's name I did not get, then told me that I needed my financing complete, with a check in my hand to get the car. This was completely contrary to what I had discussed with my salesperson Sylvia Kyobe. I finally told them I will just write them a check for the total amount right then and he said to me, "Oh, why didn't you say that? We just sold the car over there", as he pointed in the direction of the desks across the room. I truly couldn't believe my ears and told him, "No, I was first in line". He then just shook his head and said there was nothing he could do about it and that the car was sold to someone else. Nowhere in the ad did it mention that you needed full payment for the car at the time of writing up the paperwork. Not only that, but I discussed at length the protocol of obtaining the car. I followed those steps exactly as instructed and they "sold" the car out from under me. Now, I know they had no incentive to sell this car to me, as they would have lost considerable money on the deal, but that was the deal and I believe they had no intention of selling me the car in the first place.
The next day, I spoke with several other dealers around the Chicago area and they ALL had pretty much the same thing to say about Grossinger. They are dishonest business people. One sales manager at one of the other dealers told me that he had many many calls on that Friday and Saturday with the same story I had about Grossinger and their black Friday sale. I hope something can be done about Grossinger's deceptive practices as it would be a shame for them to continue misleading good people.