My 2016 Dodge Grand Caravans transmission died in the middle of rush hour traffic on Colorado Blvd the Thursday before Easter. There was no warning, no check engine light, nothing. Thankfully, my four children were not in the vehicle with me when this happened and no one got hurt.
Because I did not purchase my vehicle new (I bought used in May 2017 from a rental car fleet) and the mileage on the vehicle was high, none of the power train warranties were extended to my vehicle. The latter was in addition to the fact that my vehicles VIN was supposedly not on the massive recall of transmissions on 2016 Dodge Grand Caravans...fascinating that my three year old vehicle had a massive transmission failure and was magically not on the recall list when I contacted Chrysler Dodge.
My vehicle was towed on Good Friday to the nearest dealership, which happened to be AutoNation Dodge on Arapahoe. Not once was I offered a loaner vehicle or rental vehicle while diagnostics was being run on my vehicle. I am a single parent of those four beautiful children and cannot go without a vehicle, as I have no immediate family in the area with whom I can bum rides or borrow a vehicle. I put myself in a rental car so I could get my kids to and from school and make my commute to work. Chrysler Dodge FCA had indicated that I would possibly be eligible for a reimbursement on the rental car up to $35/day, pending the final diagnostics/cause for failure, so I squeezed my children and I into the smallest vehicle possible to accommodate this, all the while fronting the money for the tows and the rental car.
I contacted my FCA case manager almost every day, substantiated by my cell phone bill/call logs and emails. I never received a call from AutoNation Dodges service supervisor, Britani. A week into this process, my FCA case manager, Robin, even indicated that Britani initially told her that my vehicle wasn´t even at the dealership. Every day that these stalls, delays, and communication games went on between my FCA case manager and Britani/AutoNation Dodge, was an additional day that my vehicle was not being worked on and an additional day of rental car expense. The sole source of communication to me with regards to my vehicles status (whether diagnosis and go forward repair) was through Robin, my FCA case manager, having never been contacted by Britani. When I called the service department asking to speak to Britani, I was always sent to voicemail with no call back (again, I have the AT&T cell phone bill/call logs as printed evidence to substantiate this).
These games continued for almost 7 weeks. During that time, I had to pay for a rental vehicle just to go on a planned vacation/PTO to Mount Rushmore with the kids. Ironically, of course, the repairs on the vehicle were finally finished while I was in South Dakota with my kids. During that time, I received a phone call from Britani with a voicemail that accused me -- the customer -- of blocking her phone calls. I kept the voicemail as evidence, as well.
After 6+ weeks of fronting rental car expense, and also expected to pay a $1,000 deductible for a complete new transmission on a three year old vehicle, I went to the dealership to pick up my vehicle on June 5, 2019. AutoNation Dodge had had my vehicle since Friday, April 19, 2019. I demanded to speak with Charles (Chuck) Halbwachs, my email correspondence with FCA, my cell phone bill/call logs, and saved voicemail from Britani in hand. In reviewing the repair order, my vehicle had a promise date of May 10, 2019 -- almost a full month earlier. Additionally, even though I had verified my phone number with the service department every time I called them -- even leaving my cell phone number in the unanswered voicemails -- the repair order HAD THE WRONG CONTACT NUMBER ON IT. Clearly, AutoNation Dodge was NOT waiting on me. Clearly, I was NOT stonewalling their efforts to work on the vehicle. Clearly, AutoNation Dodge on Arapahoe/Britani had not done their due diligence to make sure that they were calling the correct phone number, particularly when they supposedly could not get a hold of me.
I made all of this very clear to Chuck, who vowed that he would review my case with his area supervisor. He even made photo copies of my cell phone bill/call logs and emails, purporting that I had a very good case to receive reimbursement for the rental car expenses in excess of the promised delivery date of May 10th. I took Chucks card, and emailed him later that same day the rental car bills for the past 6+ weeks (totaling $1,600+), believing in good faith that Chuck would make this right.
I was wrong. I have followed up with Chuck politely and periodically since June 5, 2019 with no response aside from one voicemail dated Monday, June 10, 2019. I have lost my patience and can see that on top of a lack of customer service from the entire dealership, unprofessional staff (Britani), that there is an intent to deceive and no desire to make the customer whole -- even when the dealer was at fault. I ABSOLUTELY will make sure that I get the word out about Britani, Charles (Chuck) Halbwachs, and AutoNation Dodge on Arapahoe, in addition to informing potential Dodge buyers: Buyer Beware.