I financed a 2004 Ford Escape with Keating Ford on December 16th. I went looking for the car on December 15th as a second car for my mother. The sales person Jane Benson was headstrong on getting this used Ford Escape off her lot. I told Jane if I had to put a deposit down on the car I would. I just wouldn't be financing the car today. Jane said to me, "if you could get the car with 100 percent financing would you?" I said," yes."
The car was used but I told her I didn't want all that extra Gap insurance and ESP's. I also asked if Ford would finance a new car and she told me no. I figured if I'm going to spend twenty thousand on a car I might as well get it new with the factory warranty.
As soon as I got to the lot December 16th sure enough I sat down with my mother and the finance manager and there it was GAP insurance and an ESP. I said what the heck it's a used car this might come in handy. From the start my mother who could have had a new car kept insisting that the truck had been hit. we drove the car to North Carolina to have it registerd another thing we told Ford not to do was Register the car in Connecticut.
While driving some 500 miles away from home; I discovered the truck had bald tires and had been hit. To add insult to injury the tire went flat and it's a good thing I wasn't driving it when the tire decided to retire. I know Ford has had trouble with tires on their SUV'S before; but to knowingly sell a car with bald tires isn't that unethical?
Once in North Carolina my mother and I decided we would stop at Advantage Ford and see if we could find a new 2004 Escape that hadn't been used. That's how I got my Mustang it was an end of the year clearance. The sales people at Advantage were wonderful, let me stress I didn't go into Advantage to buy a car, but the sales people and the finance manager coerced me into staying and talking.
I told Same Brock my sales associate, I got this truck in Connecticut with 100 percent financing if I can't get that here I don't want the truck, it's not a pressing issue that I have this new truck today. Sam was understanding and returned to his finance manager and he came back to me with some new numbers. Vince Hawthorne was understanding and friendly, they popped me popcorn and gave me soda's accompanied me to lunch and the whole nine yards.
When it was time to talk to Bob Rodgers the finance manager; Bob asked to see my finance contract from Keating. I showed it to him and his exact words were, "You bought it with an ESP bless your little heart." He then goes on to tell me how the Easy Car Care Plan is crap and that I should cancel it because I am due a refund. Bob instructed Sam to get me a piece of paper and have me write out a flat cancellation because it was within the 30 days and I would get a full refund. He aslo told me I would get my check faster if I had Keating in Connecticut send my refund check to him.
Bob, then proceeded to tell me he was going to use my refund to finance another ESP and Gap plan. I told him if I have a refund coming I will get my own GAP and ESP. I want my refund, besides why do I need an ESP on a new car that comes with a 3 year warranty anyway. Bobs entire expression changed. He ushered me out of his office faster than greased lightening.
Bob wrote up the ESP and Gap anyway and I signed it, thinking I would cancel all the extra's he charged me for and was going to be paying with all these goodies with me refund. He had me leave him a check for 1500 in place of the refund check so, that it would be insurance. Mind you he told me the refund would be 1500 not 2000. He was going to put 1000 toward the GAP and ESP and he was going to refund 500 to me. My mother kept asking why do we have to leave a check?
I returned to Connecticut on January 3rd, 2005. Keating Ford had been pestering me about their dealer plates and signing some forms for the registration of the previous car. When I filled out the forms their General Manager Anthony Granichelli wanted proof the car had been paid off. Once he found out about his dealer plates from Advantage he was good to go. I told him since I was physically in CT to send my refund check to me, there was no reason for me to go to North Carolina to endorce a check or to tell Bob Rodgers that I was taking my 1500 home with me. Anthony agreed and even went so far as to take the information as to where to send my refund to. He said it would be 45 days before I would see my refund.
I called Keating on January 17th to see where my refund was, don't you know they sent my check to North Carolina! I know exactly when Advantage Ford received the check because that weasel of a sales man called me on January 7th to tell me he had my plates and oh by the way Bob wants to know what's going on with this ESP and Gap plan. I said, "Sam you were right there when I told Bob I wanted my refund." Sam was in agreement.
Now he is the problem, Keating Ford issued a refund check and I have no idea who's name the check is in no one will produce a copy of the check each dealer is telling me to go see the other. Advantage Ford held my plates to my truck, they weren't going to give me my license plates until my mother took the police there. Vince Hawthorne at Advantage showed my mother a check for 500 dollars that Keating made out to me, then he changed his story and said Advantage made the 500 dollar check out to me. Then he said Keating sent the check in their name. Well Keating said the check was sent to them in my name that was the only way they could send the check was c/o me.
Either way I now find out that I put 1500 dollars down on a new truck that I know nothing about because Bob Rodgers told me Ford gave a rebate of 1500. Vince told me my refund went as a down payment, but I was honest the entire way I didn't want the car if I had to have a refund. Vince said Ford wouldn't finance the car without a refund. Everyone said read your contract I read it and the 1500 dollars on my contract says cash from 3rd party source it doesn't say down payment from check or refund check.
Advantage certainly wasn't authorized to use my refund check as my down payment and now no one wants to show proof that they had permission to do any of this. The one thing people can't answer is 1. why would I put 1500 dollars down on a 29 thousand dollar car and not the entire 2000. 2. How come I can't see a cancelled check. 3. Ford Credit doesn't want to hear a thing they want to charge the car off as a voluntary repo if I give it back. Keating Ford yelled at me and told me to get out of their store how quickly their tuned changed. My refund went from being issued to me to Advantage Ford. On Friday Jan 22 per keating the check was made out to me. Come January 24th the check was made out to Advantage and that was it.
I will never do anymore busines with Ford and that's all we have ever owned is Ford thats a southern thing either Ford or Chevy. Watch for me on the news because I am going to picket.
I just want people to know Ford hasn't changed they lost Fair Lane Credit because of their fraudulent dealings.
West Haven, Connecticut
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