Kia ftl
September 17, 2007 10:25 PM   Subscribe

Bought a used car from Kia, with warranty. Two weeks later it's needing repairs and after numerous promises for a loner, we're being denied. "Boss said no, you'll have to pay for a rental" What can we do?

We bought a used car from Kia (Texas) two weeks ago, which included a warranty. Went back with a short list of things that needed to be repaired (airbags/anti lock brakes). They agreed to the repairs, but have been giving us the runaround for two weeks.

They finally set a date, and today my husband dropped the car off and was given a ride to and from work by the dealership. When he arrived at the dealership after work today, he was informed the car had not been worked on and they denied him a loner car to use tomorrow, which they had promised several times in the past plus they said it to his face today before work. They want to keep the car overnight (our only vehicle) and are now telling us we have to pay for a rental. Is there anything we can do to get the loner car they promised us from the beginning?
posted by Sufi to Travel & Transportation (15 answers total)
Speak to the manager, kindly but firmly - be nice enough that they feel they can't be rude to you, but not so nice that they think they can walk all over you.

I would also take a look at the warantee. Does it say anything about this situation?

Also, I have no idea if the US has this, but in Australia we have a 'cooling off period' for car purchases. If you're covered by this you could kick up a stink and threaten to invoke this to get all your money back. That will scare them pretty quickly.
posted by Lucie at 10:55 PM on September 17, 2007

Lemon Law!
posted by idiotfactory at 11:00 PM on September 17, 2007

If you have something on paper that says they owe you a loaner if overnight repairs are immediately necessary, then you're all set.

If not, you are being extracontractually dissed, and you need to get creative. Now, what did you say the name and address of this dealer was?
posted by gum at 11:41 PM on September 17, 2007

Were you promised the loaner (not a "loner") before you bought the car? Who made the promise? If beforehand you will have a better claim that it was part of your contract. If only afterwards, you can just argue that they should fulfill their promises. If you can't convince the manager, try calling customer service.

If that doesn't work, keep receipts for your extra expenses, and try writing to get them reimbursed. Expect that you might not.
posted by grouse at 12:05 AM on September 18, 2007

Response by poster: My husband says the loaner (appreciated grouse) was promised before anything was signed.

A couple had just driven the car to the dealership and that was sold to us before a thorough inspection was given. Our sales guy said if there were any problems we could have it sent for repairs right away and a loaner car would be provided.
posted by Sufi at 12:15 AM on September 18, 2007

Response by poster: I should add that we have not yet received a copy of the warranty and we do not have the loaner promise in writing.
posted by Sufi at 12:19 AM on September 18, 2007

That is good. Now you can argue that part of the reason you bought the used car from this dealer at a large markup over the private sale value is because they promised that they would take care of any repairs without any added inconvenience or expense for you.

Now is there anything in the written contract that guarantees the loaner? It's also important to know whether anything in the written contract specifically excludes it, or says that the whole agreement is in the written contract and oral promises cannot be relied on. I'd imagine this is the case, but that only weakens your argument; it doesn't obliterate it.
posted by grouse at 12:23 AM on September 18, 2007

Welcome to Kia.

My friends had a devil DEVIL of a time with an 03 ...whatever their "luxury" sedan is. Kia's got a nice warranty, but getting them to honor it is an uphill fight that's controlled by regional repair managers---NOT in house personnel.

The regional repair manager's JOB is basically the same as an insurance company's claim adjuster---that is, to find any and every reason why Kia should not pay for your repairs/rentals/whatever. They specifically make this person have more authority than the local manager/owner so that you CANNOT use customer service complaints as a way to get what you want...i.e. it's not the manager's fault. You also CANNOT go over the head of this repair manager. The store manager won't even question it, because if he does the repairs after she's declined them, it all comes out of his pocket.

This is true with ALL kia warranty repairs, they ALL have to be approved at a regional level.

The reason they declined my friends (now) dead 03? The timing belt cover was "loose"...not really, which allowed "dust" to enter the timing belt area, which caused it to 20k miles. Timing belt failed while car was accelerating, which completely wrecked the motor. After threat of a lawsuit, the local dealer fixed the timing belt for 50/50 cost split, but then wouldn't/couldn't honor the motor warranty. This was after denying a claim to fix a dead alternator because the headlight had been fixed by someone other than the Kia garage.
posted by TomMelee at 4:50 AM on September 18, 2007 [1 favorite]

You have to make it costly for them to not keep their word. Have someone drop you off at the dealership in the morning. Say you're not leaving until they lend you a car, no charge, or your car is fixed. Tell anyone who walks in, be it employee, customer, window washer, etc why you're still there. Ask them if it's worth losing all of their sales that day to not loan you a car. This is your mantra: "I'm sorry, I can't leave until you give me a car."
posted by almostmanda at 5:07 AM on September 18, 2007

Kia's warranty is 5 years, 60,000 miles, regardless of whether you are the original owner. Unfortunately, there is no corporate promise of loaner cars for overnight trips to the dealer for warranty work. There is a program where Kia dealers can keep cars as loaners which is subsidized by Kia, but the dealerships are not requried to participate.

One thing to note is that your warranty is good at *any* Kia dealership, not just the one where you bought the car. If you can find a dealership that treats you better, go for it.

I have a Hyundai (owned by the same parent company), and from what I can tell, both brands weren't really too picky when setting up their U.S. dealer networks. What this means is there is a wide variation, and only loose control, of policies from one dealership to the next.

Unfortunately, no warranty implies use of a loaner unless it is speciifically mentioned. Kia's warranty doesn't mention it.
posted by Doohickie at 5:53 AM on September 18, 2007

Call Kia Customer Service. Tell them your situation (especially that the car was not inspected prior to your purchase) and they should be able to help. I would also throw in something along the lines of "why should I ever buy a Kia again".

Same thing happened to me a few years back so I don't remember details but that seemed to work.

Oh yeah - don't buy a Kia again! Good price but crappy car.
posted by doorsfan at 6:35 AM on September 18, 2007

Also, try the salesman who sold the car and not the parts department. Let him be your advocate.
posted by 4ster at 7:09 AM on September 18, 2007

This is a Kia, not a BMW. It's hardly surprising that they won't give you a free loaner. They probably only have one. The salesman can be your friend here. He made the promise, push him to live up to it.
posted by caddis at 7:29 AM on September 18, 2007

In my state you can return a car (or any purchase over like $5k) for any reason @ all within 14 days. Might check into that.
posted by TomMelee at 6:25 PM on September 18, 2007

Oh yeah - don't buy a Kia again! Good price but crappy car.

Actually, one of the reasons I bought my Hyundai was that my previous car was also Korean-built (a Ford Aspire, aka Kia Avella), and it was one of the most trouble-free cars I've ever owned. It's still running fine for the guy I sold it to, approaching 150,000 miles.
posted by Doohickie at 1:15 PM on September 24, 2007

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