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Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: United Kingdom
My experience of dealers is generally positive, but a few have given hints of not caring much.
Motor Village Oxford
Bought my MiTo here, as did my Sister. Willing to negotiate a bit (but not loads) on sale price, decent communication before collection and courtesy call afterwards. Never been a quibble over warranty work, car always washed and vacuumed on return. Have been back several times with various issues on the two MiTo's & it's been largely hassle free, though some faults have needed repeat visits. Main negatives would be the wait for courtesy cars - up to two weeks, which started to wear thin when returning with a recurring problem on my MiTo. Plus servicing costs - my Sister & Mother were both quoted more than £350 for the first 18,000 mile service on their MiTo TwinAir and 500 TwinAir, which I think is horrific. That price isn't unique to them, though.
Thames - Slough
Approached them by phone re purchasing a brand new Giulietta. The facelift G was just launched so they couldn't get the monthly payment down enough for me to order but I would go back - the sales guy worked his a*se off to get the price down and unusually (given I've been a car salesman) I genuinely believed he had no room left for manoeuvre. He let me go for a test drive even though was unsure if the figures would stack up. Had it been now I think I would've got the price, but the discounts weren't what they are now. It seems a busy showroom, which can be annoying, but it's essentially Fiat, Alfa and Abarth all shoe-horned into a space only really big enough for Fiat. Had an interview for a service job there, didn't get it, but got the impression the service manager took things seriously.
As above, approached re Giulietta by phone and previously in person about MiTo. Always very good to start with, but despite taking details following me going in to speak about MiTo, they never followed it up. After phoning about Giulietta they tried to get a deal together but appeared to lose interest much quicker than Thames. Seems like a very nice (ex Porsche) showroom though, and there appeared to be happy customers around when I called in.
Also had dealings, mostly by phone, with Research Nuneaton, Meridien Milano (Hampshire/Dorset) and TH White (Swindon). Research didn't have a sales person to come to the phone when I called, so only got as far as the receptionist. I didn't bother to phone back. Same with TH White - no one could speak to me when I phoned up, recommended I called back. Didn't bother. Meridien Milano were helpful when taking details down of what I wanted and the sales guy said he'd ring back with figures, but never did. Given Johnsons and Thames both phoned me back I just stuck with them and didn't bother with Meridien Milano again.
Obviously Research, TH White and Meridien Milano may all be better in person, but first impressions count for a lot, and Thames & Johnsons seemed to try a lot harder.