My problem with Pinnacle Nissan started with my decision to purchase a larger more practical car since My mother in law just came to visit and the little two seat convertible that I had is just not big enough.
I was enticed by the huge end of the month clearance sale and the promises of drastic savings. My experience shopping for cars and knowledge of high-pressure sales tactics was minimal at best. I was convinced that I would get an incredible deal and accepted to have my credit checked. The sales manger recommended I get into a lease because I could get into a much nicer car for less money.
I have never leased before but what he was saying seemed convincing enough. I accepted the lease proposition on a brand new 2004 Nissan Murano and proceeded to the finance manager's lair where he added numbers for GAP and warranty and. I was completely oblivious to his tactic but I didn't know any better. He convinced me that I needed all this. My 350 dollars a month payment is now 450. I felt that there was no turning back, It was more then I could afford but the high pressure sales tactic made it seem that I was already locked in and had no other choice.
I was called in a week or so later to sign another set of paperwork. I couldn't understand why but was told that nothing has changed except that Bank of the West did not accept financing and we had to switch to Nissan Motor Company as a financer. I didn't know any better so I signed the papers.
It is less than two months into the lease and I am having problems with the car. I hear a rattling noise in the engine and smell a mildew smell from the Air Conditioner as well as vibrations from the wheels. I had no intentions of dealing with it especially after my experience with the lemon that I had purchased from Cadillac.
I took the car back to the dealer and explained the situation to them. They said they would fix it but I just wanted out of the car. I wanted to trade out of it into something more reliable and less expensive. The sales man searches for two days and finally calls me back regarding a pre-owned Mitsubishi Eclipse. It is perhaps the least expensive car on their lot and has very low mileage for the year that it is. He promised a phenomenal deal to ensure that my experience with Pinnacle is a satisfactory one.
My wife and I looked at it but had concerns regarding the safety and reliability of an older vehicle. We expressed our concern to the salesman and asked him several times weather the car had been inspected , the mechanical condition and weather it has been in an accident or not. He assured me that the car had passed all safety inspections and had never been in any accidents. He tells me the car is in immaculate condition and that Pinnacle Nissan would never sell a vehicle that had been involved in an accident on their lot. They would just auction it off because they have high standards of business ethics to uphold. He assured us that the car is in perfect condition.
We hesitated but finally accepted the deal. Again the finance manager crunched numbers and advised us on adding this and told us we had to get that. The deal numbers didn't make any sense but all we could think about was the relief of not having to worry about another lemon and getting out of the Murano deal.
Again, it was less than two months and I started noticing problems with the handling of the car. I take it to the mechanic but was not expecting what I heard. The minute he pops the hood he tells me the extent of damage this car has been through. The hood has been replaced, the right fender has been replace, the left fender has been replaced, the radiator was replaced, the core support had been replaced, all the bolts have been replaced, and there are no original VIN stickers anywhere on the front end of the car. He asked if I knew that this car had been involved in such a major car accident prior to my buying it.
Once the initial shock wore off my blood started to boil, I immediately went right to Pinnacle Nissan to explain that I had been misled and I wanted my money back and for them to unwind the deal. The used car manager assured me that he will make things right. They told me that they will give all the money for the car and trade it in for any car on the lot I choose and paying only wholesale price for it. Initially we our inclination was that we wanted absolutely no further dealings with this scam of a dealership, but again we gave them the benefit of the doubt.
My wife and I agreed on a 2004 Ford Taurus. We thought it was reliable and safe and if we got it at wholesale that we could always resell it and recoup the loss. I believed that we were getting a fair deal. We sign the paperwork and are relieved that this night mare is over. Little did I know, Three weeks later I get called back into the dealership, they have to unwind the deal. Apparently the banks are not willing to finance me due to credit issues. I didn't understand, I have a great relationship with my bank, what credit issues are they referring to. I called my bank to inquire and they inform me that the problem is not my credit, but the selling price of the vehicle. They tell me there is not enough equity in the car to warrant the price and that the price is higher then the fair retail price of the car. Here I believed I was getting wholesale price but in actuality I was getting ripped off.
I am now doubting everything this dealer has ever told me and am feeling ripped off from the minute I walked in. It was a slap in the face. So I sign the paperwork to unwind the deal and go to another dealer to purchase another car since I don't have one anymore.
I started reviewing all the paperwork that I have from Pinnacle to understand the deals but none of the numbers make sense to me, they just don't add up. The words of my father started spinning in my head about how I should read every word of any contract prior to my signing, but the high pressure tactics used at Pinnacle made me feel rushed to sign since they all wanted to go home since it was the last deal of the month and they are already closed. I had no one to ask questions for clarification. I knew I should have listened but another painful lesson learned.
Thinking that everything is finally cleared up and my dealings with Pinnacle are over, I receive a call from my bank saying that my payment on the Mitsubishi is over due. Little did I know that Pinnacle did not uphold their end of the deal. They decided that they would not pay off the car and that it was still my responsibility and it is between myself and the bank. The General Manager offered to purchase the vehicle for wholesale price which means I would lose another $3000 on my deal. I am not an accountant but looking at all these numbers looks like I have already lost $5000 dollars another 3 would make it 8k. The General Manager confirms that he will not payoff the car nor will he unwind any deal and that it is my car and my responsibility. He tells me that they believe they sold me a good safe car and that a little accident does not make the car an unsafe one. I explain to him that I specifically asked and had I known it was in any accident I would have never agreed to accept position of the car. I am talking to a wall, we are at a stand still.
I am stuck financing two cars and I own only one, I cant afford to pay for two cars nor do I want the Mitsubishi. I feel that I am a victim of fraud and unethical business dealings. All I want is for the dealer to take responsibility for their actions and accept that they are wrong. It seems that I have to put up with a fight. When I told the General Manager that what he is doing is illegal. He smiles at me and tells me that there is no law to disclose the condition of the car to the consumer. He further tells me that what the dealership has done might be unethical but it is not illegal and no one can make him buy the car back. That was a slap in the face if I had ever had one. I thought I was dealing with one of the largest and most reputable dealers in town. I was right about one thing, they are one of the largest and now I understand how that came to be. I am looking for justice and to protect all the other innocent consumers from being victims of the fraudulent dealings of the large corporate conglomerate dealerships.
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