Drove from about an hour away to take advantage of a "great" deal on a car I searched for months to get for my daughter.
Contacted the dealership on Saturday via email and got a prompt response, of course asking for.my phone number. I reluctantly gave it, because I dont like to be put on call list, but I figured since I'm gonna do business with them, what's the harm?
Monday AM comes and I headed up, arrived in Bay Minnette 30 mins after the dealerships opened, but since they are a "group" of dealerships I had to call to find out which one actually had possession of the car...no problem; the Chevrolet dealership (first one you come to arriving from the south) pulls it up and tells me the car is at the jeep dealership, so off I head.
Pulled into the Jeep dealership and there it is, sitting in the parking lot, so I'm thinking, great they've pulled it off to the side because they know I'm coming. Car is even better than the description, so I start getting excited. Months of searching over, I finally found the perfect car for my daughter, reliable, safe, and economical.
That's when things start to go wrong...walk into the showroom and literally have to stand in front of a salesman's desk to get his attention. Dont get me wrong, I'm usually annoyed at being mobbed the second i drive onto the lot, but this is Monday AM and no one seems interested in selling a car? Anyway; salesman was very polite when he realized I'm not just browsing but had a reason to be there. I tell him about the car, he says, "great, let me get a copy of your license and take it for a test drive." So he does...meanwhile I walk out to look at the car a bit more. 10-15 minutes go by, and I'm starting to wonder what's going on. Cant be my license, I'm retired military with an excellent credit score, and I'm a cash buyer.
Salesman eventually walks out and says, "the owner of the dealership was thinking of buying this for his son, so his wife has the keys, but I'm trying to track her down." Hmmm.... that's odd, why would they advertise a car that the owner of the dealership doesnt want to sell? Another few minutes go by, and the inevitable happens..."car is sold," the salesman says.
What?!? The dealership owner, CHUCK STEVENS himself has purchased the car for his son?!?
Now, look I understand that it's a dog eat dog world and if another consumer had walked in 10 minutes before me and plunked down the money for the car, I'm fine with it...that happens, but when a dealership puts a car out for sale, and then choses to NOT sell it because the guy who owns the dealership wants to keep it, that's BS!!
Bottomline; I wasted about 2.5 hours round trip to buy a car that was never actually for sale, but I'm glad that the salesman was honest enough to tell me the truth...although being lied to wouldve likely not made me as angry because conceivably another buyer "couldve" walked in right at opening and bought the car, but that's not what happened. I'm not naming the salesman to protect him from retribution.
Just beware, and dont be surprised if the car you want isnt available from Chuck Stevens because it's in Chuck Stevens' personal garage.