The transmission repair of my newly purchased Ford Explorer has placed us in a tenuous position. Your refusal to immortalize our discussions in writing frustrates me considerably. Your refusal on behalf of Bob Fish Buick GMC is not something that, in my opinion, would sit well with the Late Bob Fish, the Better Business Bureau, the Consumer Assistance Department of the Wisconsin DOT Dealer Section, or even an arbitrator.
As you are aware, the vehicle was purchased on 3/23/2012. I took possession of the vehicle with 71,743 miles. Nine days and approximately 900 miles later the transmission began to slip horribly, will not engage properly causing the engine to race, catch the transmission and the vehicle lurch forward unsafely.
I brought the vehicle for inspection to your dealership on April 4, 2012. Your dealership inspected the vehicle indicating they could not diagnose or properly fix the problem. The error codes were provided to me and instructions for me to "bring it to a Ford Dealer". The same day, the vehicle was delivered to Ewald Ford in Slinger, Wisconsin. Per their Service Technician Jay Stabl, the transmission is in very bad shape and in need of replacement. Specifically, their Service Records indicate "the fluid is burned . . . damage to trans . . . possible servo bore damage and a burned clutch". Ewald offers a repair price of $3,750.00. Burned Transmission fluid is very dark and has a strong burned type smell to the fluid. Jay informs me this is not a single occurrence problem and develops over time as there was not “catastrophic” event leading to the condition of the transmission.
I called your dealership inquiring what to do next. I spoke to you initially indicating you can "beat that price" and offer to replace the transmission for $3400.00. Discussions ensue with your indicting the "best you can do is" $2500.00. Not understanding how this could happen, I felt I needed to understand the condition of the transmission better. I called Badger Transmissions, located in Brown Deer Wisconsin, as I am aware of them through their reputation. They indicate a completely rebuilt a transmission on my vehicle between would cost between $2,000.00 and $2,500.00, but would know the specifics once the transmission was opened up for inspection. We also talked at great length about the condition of the transmission and how it may have gotten that way. Basically, it is once again confirmed to me that the condition of the transmission is not related to a catastrophic event. It develops over time, and with the fluid being burnt, it would be very apparent had the transmission been looked at during the inspection process.
I again call you and relay you this information. You indicated the transmission could be repaired in the amount of $1,850.00 from DJ's Transmission service including a 2 year 24 month warranty provided by DJ’s Transmission. I authorized the replacement of the transmission. You indicate there will be no compensation on behalf of Bob Fish Buick GMC and are unwilling to provide any dollars toward the cost of the repair. Bob Fish Buick GMC learns my expectation as being that the vehicle be repaired at no cost to me. So, we are at an impasse.
Bob Fish Buick GMC refuses to incur the costs of the vehicle repair indicating the vehicle was sold “as is as shown w/ no written or expressed warranty”. That is simple enough to understand and it’s clearly written on the contract of purchase. I purchased the vehicle in good faith knowing the reputation developed over the years of Bob Fish Buick GMC, and was very satisfied with both the Sales and Service Department because of a previous vehicle purchase from your dealership.
I purchased this vehicle in good faith and trusted that Bob Fish Buick GMC would use the "reasonable care standard" in divulging the condition of the vehicle to potential customers. My review of Form MV2872 “Wisconsin Buyers Guide” (which was posted on the window of the vehicle prior to purchase and given to me at closing), I note you, and another Bob Fish Buick GMC representative named Gary C, inspected the vehicle on 1/7/2012 certifying the guide is accurate.
There are checked boxes on the guide specifically indicating there is no shifting problem, no abnormal noise or vibration, or visible cracks or damage to the cases or housing. On the reverse side of the guide, under the “definitions section’ titled "What Is Inspected" the drive train is defined as to include the following, as equipped; transmission, transaxle, differential, U-joints, CV joints, transfer case and clutch. Clearly this section applies to my vehicle as the transmission requires replacement.
On this same side of the Wisconsin Buyers Guide, the definitions section continues defining other issues including: Fluid Levels Low defined as including the following, as equipped; engine, transmission, differential, transfer case, radiator, battery, brakes, power steering, and windshield washers
My research on this transmission replacement proves there would have been apparent damage to the transmission noted had the vehicle been properly inspected. Had the condition of the transmission fluid been inspected, in which you certify that it was on the vehicle condition report, this vehicle’s transmission issues would have been apparent due to the overwhelming smell of the burnt transmission fluid. This condition would have required your dealership to notate the proper condition of the transmission on your report to consumers. It is here I feel the duty to correctly and thoroughly inspect the vehicle was breached by Bob Fish Buick GMC. Your failure to completely inspect the fluid in the transmission resulted in an erroneously completed Wisconsin Buyers Guide.
I simply hope that we can come to an amicable resolution for all parties barring litigation. My hope is that your dealership will at least “meet me middle” of the $1,850.00 cost of replacing the transmission, but please understand my expectation is for Bob Fish Buick GMC to replace the transmission free of charge!