Nearing the end of his lease on a Chevy Equinox, Tom wanted to turn the vehicle in before he used up his allotted miles, and drop it from his insurance as soon as he could. The dealership he leased it from, their lot clogged with cars and trucks that nobody particularly wants to buy, wasn’t really keen to take it back. So Tom got creative.
Coming to the end of our lease on a Chevy Equinox, we decided to turn it in just a couple months early as we were closing in on our allotted miles and we had already paid off the lease in full. I contacted the dealership I leased the car from and was told their lot was full and they were not taking in any return leases. (without even telling them I was an early return) They directed me to their other dealership roughly 15 miles away. A long and busy 15 mile stretch at that. I called the local Buick/Pontiac/GMC dealer in town and was told his lot was full since they had been taking in all of Chevy’s leases and that he could take it but not for a week or so due to space issues. While I appreciated his efforts, I wanted to drop this car from my insurance ASAP and felt that the dealership who made the “sale” should follow through and complete it as well.
A tad irritated, I called GM customer service. Was told I would receive a return call the next day with a resolution and a dealership to return the car to. I did receive that call and was given the same dealership to return the car to (~15 miles away) and was informed I can conveniently return the car any time between 8:30 am and 4:00 pm Monday through Friday. I kindly explained to the customer service rep that now not only did I have to drive out of my way but I also had to take a day off of work to return this car.
She conferenced in the dealership and I spoke with a rep who gave me the same schedule. We went over the same details and she put me on hold, came back and asked if I was planning on purchasing a new vehicle. I asked why that should matter and responded “if it helps me then yes, I’ll buy two”. (I had no intentions on buying a new vehicle) She returns and says they will make the exception and to come in next week to speak to a salesman about a new car and they would return my lease.
After hearing that conversation I placed another call to the conveniently located Chevy dealership, where I originally leased the car, spoke to a salesperson and informed them I was ready to purchase a new Chevy Traverse that night. Sure enough my lease return was not a problem at all. So I went down, played the game, even test drove the new truck and picked a color they just so happened NOT to have on the lot. The manager (clearly unwillingly) accepted my lease return and is going to call me when he gets more inventory.
Pretty sad when a troubled automaker is providing such abysmal customer service. Also comes to no surprise that it seems they are probably taking them in faster then they can get them out the door, creating space issues on their lots.
Call it lying or cheating, I don’t really feel bad about wasting their time. They were quick to provide such great customer service when I first leased the car and got credit for the “sale”, they need to follow through on their end and complete it.
Bending the truth is not necessarily a tactic endorsed by The Consumerist, but it’s worth noting that a space on the lot suddenly opened up when Tom was about to buy a new truck.