If you’re looking for a dealership with integrity and fairness, please AVOID Parks Toyota of DeLand at all costs! We share our unfortunate story to reveal the true face of this dealership.
We purchased a 2014 Toyota Camry XLE hybrid from Parks Toyota of DeLand on 5/28/2018 with full payment.
The salesman, Mr. Derek Jenkins, showed us a clean Carfax sheet. However, we found out a major defect the next day—the front driver door was repainted with a mismatched color. We contacted the dealership immediately. The general sales manager, Mr. Chad Pickles, in an unpleasant way, said we bought the car, and we own it. He gave us two options: either to take it as is or come to exchange a different car. He said our best option is to exchange a brand new car because used cars will always have defects.
Before the purchase was made, Mr. Derek Jenkins showed us a sheet that marked a few minor body defects on this car; but did not mention anything about the door. When he showed us the car, he had all four doors wide open before we approached the car. He explained that he opened all doors so we can see the insides. On Memory day, the weather was cloudy and rainy. We saw the car at around 7-8pm. The mismatched color on the door was hard to detect especially with the doors being wide open. We are female physicians that are not sophisticated with motor vehicles. We gave our trust to Mr. Jenkins. However, the next day under sunlight, the mismatched color was so obvious that even Ray Charles could see. It is hard to imagine professionals at the dealership had no knowledge of it. We took this car to a body shop of Bev Toyota on 5/30/18, without saying anything, we asked the person who gave estimates what was wrong with this car, he immediately said the front driver door had been repainted, and the color didn’t not match. There were also misalignments under the door, which indicated an accident might have occurred to this car. Also, the keyless entry on this door is not functional.
This car is purchased for a beautiful young lady. She felt so disappointed when discovering the color mismatch that she does not feel comfortable driving this car as is. We searched very hard to avoid cars with accidents. We were not planning to purchase a brand new car. We also don’t feel comfortable to exchange a different car from the same dealership who presented us a vehicle with a major undisclosed defect.
We tried to reach the general manager, Mr. Louis Hernandez, on 5/30/18. We made a total of 7-8 calls to the dealer and left several messages to the front desk person who refused to connect the phone to his voicemails. Nobody called us back during business hour. I had placed a call after hour to leave a message on his voicemail without being blocked by the front desk. I also sent him an email. The next morning, Mr. Hernandez called back. Surprisingly, instead of acknowledging this fact, he insisted on having sold us a car that has a clean Carfax, denied any wrongdoings from their dealership. He stated that the people at dealership are not trained with car painting. Another thing to note, on the Carfax we saw, the odometer of this car is listed as about 18,000 miles, at time of our purchase the mileage is over 23,000. We asked to speak to the owner; he claimed that he is the owner, which we don’t believe it’s true. He said there is no cooling off period. Once we drove the car out of their lot, we own the car. We told him we can’t accept the condition of this car and would place a hold on payment but remain open to discuss the solution. He threatened to prosecute us as theft. Jesus! What a dealership! What leadership at this dealership!
We would like to place this payment to a third party escrow account until the issue gets resolved. We would appreciate if anyone can provide information on how to proceed.
We are also asking for your help to assist on finding the owner of this dealership. We are hoping to speak to the owner directly to resolve this issue in an amicable way. Although we know that Mr. Hernandez has the authority to conclude this issue amicably, we question his desire to do so at this point.
We greatly appreciate any help you may provide.