• Report: #1059567

Complaint Review: Serra Toyota Decatur Alabama

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  • Submitted: Sun, June 16, 2013
  • Updated: Sun, June 16, 2013

  • Reported By: Phyllis — Crane Hill Alabama
Serra Toyota Decatur Alabama
309 Beltline Place POB 1588, Decatur Al 3563 Decatur, Alabama USA

Serra Toyota Decatur Alabama Front Axle Assembly Improperly Installed by Toyota Manufacturer on 2013 Camry L Decatur Alabama

*Consumer Suggestion: Toyota Help

*Consumer Comment: What is a "front axle assembly?"

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We purchased a 2013 Camry L VIN# 4T1BF1FK7DU678180 Serra Toyota of Decatur, Alabama on May 24, 2013. Exactly three weeks to the day on June 7, 2013, 3:00 PM the Front Axle Assembly Broke on this car with my wife driving it after returning home from shopping. this car only had 606.3 miles on the odometer when this happened. My husband immediately called Serra Toyota of Decatur requested to talk to Travis Acklin. My husband relayed the problem to Mr. Acklin our salesman who had sold us the car and he advised us to drive the car to them which is about 70 miles from our home. My husband advised Mr. Acklin that this car is unsafe to drive. Mr. Acklin then asked if we had towing covered under our insurance. My husband advised him, that we shouldn't have to use our insurance to cover this as this car is a brand new vehicle and havn't made the first payment on the car. My husband then told Mr. [continued below]....

..... Acklin that Serra Toyota neede to send a Flat Bed Tow Truck with a loaner car and pick up the car and return it to Serra Toyota. He also told Mr. Acklin that he was very upset as his WIFE could have been KILLED in this car if the Axle had broken on Interstate 65. Mr. Acklin said he would need to talk to the Service Manager and he would call us right back. Kim from Serra Toyota contacted us at 4:45 PM that a wrecker and loaner car is in process. River City Towing arrived at our home at 6:14 PM June 7, 2013.

We received an Automated Phone Message from Randy Holbert on June 11, 2013 at 10:05 AM saying that our part had been received at Serra Toyota and when can we come and get the part or make arrangements to have it shipped. My husband immediately called Serra Toyota and asked to speak to Randy Holbert. He was transferred to the Parts Deparrtment and spoke with Bradley Terry. My husband asked to speak to Randy Holbert and was told by Bradley that Randy Holbert was fired March 4, 2103. My husband then asked Bradley what part or parts had come in for our car. Bradley told my husband that there was one part and it was the Front Drive Shaft. My husband then informed Bradley about having it picked up or shipped as to what is going on at the dealership. As our Camry is in your shop as we speak. Why would we need to come there and pick up a part? Then my husband then asked for the Owner of the dealership. Bradley informed him the owner is Joe Bongiovanni. My husband asked to speak with him, was transferred to someone else, Joe Bongiovanni was not there. Kim took the call and offered her assistance. My husband explained the situation to her, she said she would notify the appropriate people and take care of it. Finally at 3:18 PM June 11,2013 Joe called and said they are working on our car and the mechanic told him the car had hit a curb. My husband told Joe that there was no way that could have happened. My husband imformed Joe that the wrecker driver Daniel had a hard time loading the car onto the flat bed. Daniel had to use chains and WHINCHED and drug the car onto the flat bed. NOTE: We took pictures of the whole loading process of our Camry onto the flat bed. Joe then informed my husband that the car should be ready to be picked up June 12, 2013. My husband advised Joe that we wanted to see ANY PARTS REMOVED OR REPLACED on the car and not to be discarded.  My husband asked Joe if he would be at the dealership on June12, 2013. Joe advised him he would be there all day.  

We called Serra Toyota Wednesday June 12, 2013 to speak to Joe and was advised that he was not there. My husband told Amanda the operator to find him and to return the call. We did not receive any calls from Joe. We left for Decatur at 11:00 AM June 12, 2013 and arrived at 12:10 PM. We called Serra Toyota asking for Joe and was advised he was not there. Informed Amanda that we were in town and to have Joe call us when he comes in. My husband advised Amanda that we would not come in and wait on Joe, but we would get lunch first. At 2:33 PM Shane called from Serra Toyota, advised that Joe would be back at 3:45 PM. We arrived at 3:45 PM at Serra Toyota was greeted in the lobby by Tom Wassum and Joe Bonsiovanni and taken to the service repair shop. Our car was on a lift and the front axle assembly part was there laying on the floor. The mechanic pointed out very minor scratches on the bottom of the front cowl unit on the right side and said that is where the car had hit a curb. But there were other scratches in the middle of cowl also. He tried to point out other supposed damage under the car. We advised the mechanic that this car had ABSOLUTELY not hit anything, that the scratches were caused by the wrecker driver using chains and having to whinch the car onto the flat bed. We took pictures of the under carriage of the car as well as the Front Axle Assembly that they removed. We observed no dameage to Front Axle Assembly except the ends where it bolts to vehicle the nut was stripped as well as the bolt was stripped. There was no visible damage to the boot or the locking ring. We believe this was done when the car was assembled by Toyota. We advised Joe we had wife's laptop with pictures to substantiate and prove our case. He had no interest at looking at these. My husband pursued the matter and wasn't leaving until they viewed these images. He led us to a small secluded office away from the main showroom floor. My wife set up the computer and loaded the pictures so Joe could see them. Joe stated that he was not interested,and started yelling at my husband. My husband told him not to raise his voice, that you should respect your customers and that this was very poor business practices. Joe stormed out saying "We are done here." We informed Joe that there would be complaints filed about these allegations. My husband asked Tom, the Parts & Service Manager, his last name and then asked him to spell it, which he replied "Figure it out for yourself." I don't understand how these people can be so blatantly rude to customers who help keep them in a job. 

This is our second complaint against Serra Toyota of Decatur. They are a company that are very dishonest and not trustworthy for anyone to do business with!!!

In closing we hope this complaint somehow saves lives and other auto consumers that are thinking about buying a Toyota to rethink that decision. Our future concerns are the safety of this vehicle. We have grand children and would be hesitant to take them anywhere in this vehicle. We hope and pray that this is the only problem we will have with this vehicle!!! In hindsight, we pray and hope that auto consumers research online whatever vehicle they are considering purchasing. We didn't. It is ashame that you can't trust anybody anymore. It is all about the GREED!!! by businesses. For our hard earned dollars. There is no more Quality Control in the United States anymore.

God Bless and be safe to all.

This is an honest sight that we just found out about. Thank God for the owners of this site. Time for the Americans to stand up. Thank you RipOff.com.


This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 06/16/2013 12:44 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Serra-Toyota-Decatur-Alabama/Decatur-Alabama-35603/Serra-Toyota-Decatur-Alabama-Front-Axle-Assembly-Improperly-Installed-by-Toyota-Manufact-1059567. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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#1 Consumer Suggestion

Toyota Help


Sorry to hear of your troubles with your new car. The first thing you need to do is contact Toyota Motor Company and tell them all you have stated here. 2nd, if you can have your car towed to any dealer other than Serra! If AS Serrra claims the damage was caused by you hitting something file a auto insurance claim as well. Serra will not be able to BS your insurance company when they see there is no damage from striking any object. If Serra does not or is unwilling to help you be sure to escalate your claim with Toyota Motor Company. And last do not be afraid to get legal help. Sometimes a simple letter from an attorney is all it takes to clear matters up. Be sure to keep notes and date and names of who said what. Also type a letter to Serra and tell them what you expect to be done and by what date and keep a copy. Sad, but in this day a verbal agreement means nothing.

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#2 Consumer Comment

What is a "front axle assembly?"

AUTHOR: Josh - ()

I am having a lot of trouble following your complaint, and I am really inclined to believe the dealership here.  First, cars don't have a "front axle".  That would make it impossible to turn the steering wheel.  The part is called a "driveshaft".

Second, I fail to see the safety hazard.  The only thing that would happen if the driveshaft broke is that you wouldn't be able to drive the car.  And I really fail to see how it can break while driving.  In fact, I am not sure how the damage you are describing could happen at all.  If you hit a curb hard enough to mess up the driveshaft, the whole front end would be trashed.

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