Actual test driving of vehicles was a positive experience, but when it came time to purchase the used car we decided on, that’s when things started to go bad. I had expressed that I would like to have my mechanic do a quick inspection prior to final purchasing. We were told that Kocourek service department had done a thorough general condition inspection (with no problems reported), that Kocourek mechanics were “the best in the city”, and also that the car would likely be gone by the next day. We really liked the car and did not want to lose it so against our better judgement, we went ahead and purchased the car without a third party inspection.
The next morning our newly purchased car would not start (dead battery). I took it into my mechanic and had them do the inspection that I wished I had done prior to purchasing. Besides the weak battery, there was also a leaking tire, a burnt out light, and oil leaking out of all four of the struts (recommended that we have all struts replaced – estimated this would be around $1,900). I took this report back to the Kocourek service department and the “best mechanics in the city”, and to their credit, Kocourek was willing to replace the battery, the light, and also to fix and reseal the leaking tire. However, when it came to the struts, I was told they were not willing to make any repairs, replacements, or reimbursements for the struts because it was ‘”not a safety issue”. I suppose that technically Kocourek’s inspection report just said the suspension system was “legal” and if they want to fall back on that, I guess that’s just how they do business.
The only thing I have control over here is what I have learned for myself. The first thing is that the Kocourek service department is nowhere near the “best in the city”. Either they honestly missed all those things or else they knew about them and didn’t think it mattered. Not sure which is worse. My guess is that if my mechanic saw the struts leaking oil during a short fifteen minute inspection, then it was something that Kocourek knew about but did not advertise because they ‘legally’ did not have to. The second lesson learned is that a third party inspection is absolutely a necessity when buying a car, especially a used one that is purchased “as is” from a dealer that does not feel it is necessary to disclose what you are getting ‘as-is’. All things considered, I’m not overly disappointed in Kocourek. I look at the whole situation as a learning experience and hopefully I will learn from it.