Last summer, I rented from Enterprise in Wausau, WI. The rental I had reserved was not available, so the office issued me a Chevy Cobalt. The agent had me fill out the vehicle inspection report before even seeing the vehicle. I declined purchasing insurance on it, as my credit card covers rental cars.
As I was heading to my family reunion (with my mother's vehicle right behind me) the Chevy Cobalt overheated, decelerated, and was pulled to the side of the road. There was no accident or collision. It simply stopped running as I guided it to the shoulder.
Within a few short minutes a State Trooper showed up to check on us. At this time I had tried the number the agent listed on my rental agreement. It was a dead end. I ended up calling ERAC's 1800
number, and after almost 2 hours, a series of complaints, and getting a run around, I reached a representative who instructed me to have the vehicle towed to Southbend Regional Airport. This wasn't the closest enterprise location, but I agreed.
I stayed with the vehicle the entire time, and even rode with the tow truck driver to the airport. While at
the office in Southbend the representatives there verified that there was no accident or collision, and that the car malfunctioned on its own, and had nothing to do with a driver error. The office was quick to
apologize, and get me into a new vehicle with a new rental agreement attached to the original. The young lady told me that since this was the fault of a poor vehicle that shouldn't have been on the road, that my credit card would not be charged. Before leaving, I asked her what was going to happen to the Chevy Cobalt, and her response was, "Don't worry, it's not your problem". We thanked each other as my mother and I exited the office. The last time I saw the Chevy Cobalt, it was still sitting on the tow truck at the airport.
I got into the new car, a Nissan, and continued my journey. Upon returning the Nissan to the Wausau office, I was assured again that since the vehicle's malfunction was not my fault, I would receive no charge. Weeks later, I received a bill for approximately $4,700.00 of repairs that were made to the Chevy Cobalt.
I tried contacting district managers, loss prevention, and the original clerks, all of which forwarded me to someone else that was unable to explain this injustice. One of the higher ups even accused me of being a liar on a few occasions. ERAC forwarded the claim to the NCO, and I explained the whole ordeal to them on more than one occasion. They explained to me that I would be taken to court over the matter.
I've tried contacting the company on several occasions regarding this matter, and have received no cooperation. have requested a copy of my original rental agreement with the secondary attached agreement (from Southbend) be sent to me. My requests were denied. Since Enterprise originally waived the cost of the rental, and my credit card was never charged, my credit card insurance will not cover the damages repaired.
It's been 7 and 1/2 months since this nightmare began. I've been promised callbacks and resolutions, but never received them. I have however been receiving quite abrasive calls from on Damage Recovery/Loss Prevention employee, but even he has changed his story a few times in the past couple months. The VP/General Manager is currently investigating things and claims that he is only now learning of the issue, but I have emails confirming that he was alerted to the complaint over 7 months ago, and has refused to call me.
I've heard rumors (from people within ERAC) about how when this company shorts themselves on vehicles, they put ones back on the lot that are awaiting repairs. I think this is what might have happened. I also learned recently that the Chevy Cobalt rented to me was recalled for transmission problems, one of the most expensive items replaced on the invoice I received. It occurred to me recently that when I rented the vehicle it still had almost 9000 miles left on its manufacturer's warranty.
Not too sure what's going to happen next, but I do know that there is no reason for a company to behave this way. I'm currently preparing to be taken to court over this matter and am beginning to alert media sources in both states of the story. Stay tuned.
Save yourself, your friends, and families the trouble, never rent from the Enterprise group.