Originally Posted by WhittleD
I just purchased some new tires for my LT. Feeling loyal I went to the most local BMW dealer where I purchased the bike and ordered and made my appointment. I did get the work done there because I already ordered everything, the problem is I stopped by a more local dealership of a different brand and asked about the same tires. I could have saved $100 on the tires and after getting my invoice I found I could have saved another $100 on service. When I mentioned the quote I received at the other dealer, they just shrugged and swiped the card. How loyal should I be?
That is a problem, unfortunately, and pardon the legalese, it's ex post facto
. The work had already been done so they had you. This doesn't necessarily mean you should paint a black "X" on your BMW dealer's door and shun them. If you have competitive quotes ahead of time that gives you some leverage and gives the dealer room for negotiation. If he doesn't, you gave him the chance and so take your business elsewhere.
The attitude of giving you "...a shrug and swiping the card" doesn't sit well with me. The old rule of 10 to 1 still applies. Losing one customer usually results in 10 more not going there either.
Were you dealing with the service manager or the owner or just one of the service people? A phone call to the owner never hurts. You may not get any compensation for your earlier service, but the owner now has a chance to make amends the next time you're in the shop. If he doesn't, so be it.
Pardon my getting on a soap box, but here it goes. What I'm hearing is that there is this attitude by some BMW dealers that they're the only game in town and therefore call the tune that we, the customers, must dance to. (I realize that not all dealers are like this.) My closest dealer is about 15 miles away. The next nearest dealer is 75 miles. After that, it's over 100 miles. These are geographic monopolies, meaning there aren't enough customers to maintain two or more businesses dealing with the same products or services. So, the dealer sees that business is down and contributes that to the economy and figures there's nothing he can do. But, if he hears that it's his fault because his prices are too high or his service is sloppy and now his former customers are going elsewhere, even if it means a round trip of 150 miles, then he better do something or he's going to fail. So, by all means, let him know.
I know this isn't a great solution and we all know it isn't a perfect world, but there you have it.