This report concerns the inconsiderate and unethical business practice of telling someone a product is available for sale when it really isn't.
On March 12,2009 at 5:30 p.m. my son called Life Style Cycles in Anaheim regarding a 2005 Road King motorcyle they had listed on their website. He was told that the bike was still available and to come on down on the 13th.
We drove over 70 miles to the dealership and saw the bike I wanted to buy. The price tag was still on the bike when we arrived. While waiting for someone to offer assistance (which doesn't really occur at this place), we looked at some other bikes to get ideas for customizing the bike we were going to buy. This all took place in about 15 minutes. Tha is when we walked back over to the bike in question, and to our utter disbelief and shock, saw a SOLD sign on the bike.
We waited around for another ten minutes before someone came up and asked if everything was okay. We explained that we were told the bike in question was still available and now it had been sold right out from underneath us. It was worse than that! We were told that the bike had actually been sold the previos night in an Ebay auction.
We asked when, since we had called right before the dealership closed the night before. The salesperson (a real a*s) said it was after they had closed. This we were to find out later was a bold faced lie!
This sales person then tried to interest us in a bike costing $3,000.00 more than the one we had come in to buy. In the course of discussing the feeling that we had been decieved as to the availability of the bike we came in for, it was revealed that that the Ebay auction had actually ended the previous day at 1:30 p.m., a full 4 hours earlier than my son's initial phone call inquiring about the availability of the motorcycle. They new the bike wasn't available when they talked to my son and had us drive down so they could try and sell us something more expensive.
But that's not all. After expressing our displeasure and our feeling that we had been totally deceived, my son asked what they would be willing to pay for the motorcycle I was offering in trade. Kelley Blue book is $9,898.00 and they offered $9,000.00. We said we had a standing offer from another dealer for a trade in of $10,500.00 and asked if he could go a little higher (the retail selling price for this bike ranges between $10,900 and $13,500.00). He replied that he couldn't go any higher than $9,000.00.
At that point we left to go to lunch. Over lunch we decided to go back and accept his offer of $9,000.00. After looking at his computer and walking in a back room, the sales person came out and told us that he didn't want to make the deal. When we asked him what had changed in 90 minutes, he said our attitude earlier made him decide not to business with us.
Our "attitude" consisted of being upset that we had driven over 70 miles to buy a bike that had been sold 24 hours earlier. Our "attitude" alson consisted of feeling that we had been subjected to a slick version of bait and switch.
I can tell you, we were not the only people walking out of the place with a bad taste. There was another person that had come in for the same bike and found that it was sold and they tried to sell him a more expensive model.
This was the worst shoppong experience of my life and I am 57 years old! I totally understand that they had a right to sell the bike before we came down, however they should have been upfront with us and told us that it had been sold the previous freaking day.