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The Main Dealer Experience


BigSi110
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Just thought, in a moment of stupidity, to open another old topic.

The one of the Land Rover main dealer experience. Had to go there earlier to buy some washer diverter jet doodah's as my one broke (correct diagnosis Mr Ralph!) yesterday.

Nice posh place and even a few older Defenders and Discovery's being serviced.

I walk into the main showroom and find the Service Dept. Enquire about the location of the Parts Dept which turns out to be out the back with a small sign, rather akin in appearance to a fire door. They gesture to it as if I've trodden in something smelly.

Anyway, I decided to quiz one of the Service Dept chaps first and casually asked him why he thought my Defender's starter motor is turning VERY slowly. He looked blank, smiled and told me he in a tone of utter disinterest that he hadn't a clue. He offered a dud battery, but I challenged him. He offered a few offhand suggestions, showed absolutely no interest in the subject (or indeed any inclination to gain a possible sale by getting a 'technician' from the workshop and charge me 30 mins labour to rectify said problem) and looked away.

His colleague said nothing. Probably only used to people wearing suits and asking what time will it be ready.

I sauntered to the Parts Dept and tried chatting to the guy there. He was more interested in his stomach than offering any kind of hospitality. I left him to it.

I then walked back into the showroom to look over a new 90 Hardtop they had. Mmmm. Nice.

Immediately, someone appeared. Smiles, courtesy and (probably) pound signs in their eyes. I told them I was just comparing the 90 to my 12 year-old 110 (door seals, floor covering, rear door lining etc) and they walked away. No attempt to engage me in enthusiastic or even semi-literate conversation. No warmth. No spark.

No inclination to see if I had the funds to make ANY form of purchase. Hell, I could have been playing hard-to-get and had £20k to burn. But no. No spark of enthusiasm from any of them.

The whole experience left me cold. So I picked up my phone and booked the 110 in for a service.

With a specialist. One who cares and called me back, had a friendly chat, listened to what I wanted from them and showed real enthusiasm for my 110.

I'll look at the starter tomorrow. May even send Lancasters a letter telling them what tricks they missed...

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That's a shame.

I only visit the main dealers for parts but have always had a good experience and been welcomed. Most commonly Wessex (Pompey) where I can get a free coffee while browsing the new models and waiting to be served. Also found Hunters in Soton parts dept very good though separated from the showroom

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Yer similar at the one in Pompey at North Harbour, no where to park in the s*dding car park as all the new stock is parked diagonally across all the spaces.

Parts is stuck in corner, they are never at the desk, they have to be called through.

When u walk in they fall over themselves until you ask for "parts" - usually it takes 15 mins just to get served, case in point yesterday. Don't want a coffee or a new Landy, i'm quite happy with the series 3 and the Defender.

When it was was Wessex LR at Clanfield the parts guys were always mega helpful and they had their own "proper" counter, not now its gone all corporate and posh...

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I took the 90 to Harwoods at Guildford to pick some parts up while going past.

Guys came out and 'Ooood' and 'Aaaaad', and said "Err Shove it here mate" next to a £40k sales RR :blink:

Frankly I was suprised, but they were great.........

There parts dept is quite good too, they don't flinch when they say "whats the reg number" - and you know its not going to help cos the 'XXXX' is from a later 90 etc, .........they just work around it

I've been pleasantly suprised,.......... and wasn't expecting to be, ...........so thats why I go back !

Not all dealers are the same, ....................only spend money with ones that treat you fairly

Nige

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Guest diesel_jim

TH Whites in Swindon are good too, they have a decent sized counter and a coffee machine!

the blokes are cool too, especially when i go in and explain that it's a "1996 chassis but with a disco back axle and a late vented front axle etc etc" :D

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A mate of mine is spending £81 on a new key fob at Taunton LR.

It's a 20 minute job and when he rings up to book it they say

"Sorry we're so busy we can't fit you in for a week etc."

Now £81 isn't huge compared to selling a new LR but service is service and you should do everything humanely possible to help.

CUSTOMERS MAKE PAYDAYS

MORE CUSTOMERS BIGGER PAYDAYS

Now, sooner or later these Main Dealers are going to feel the force of Polish work ethics as these people become established here.

Seriously these guy's have the right attitude and how long before they start making an impact on LR dealers.

You may think that I'm talking rubbish but when you've seen a Polish guy stand in driving cold rain fixing my Mums car as she needed it and, because she had helped him when he first came to the UK, not charging her you know something is going to have to change.

In fact he stood there beaming because for once he was helping her!

Tell me would you get that at a LR dealer?

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A mate of mine is spending £81 on a new key fob at Taunton LR.

It's a 20 minute job and when he rings up to book it they say

"Sorry we're so busy we can't fit you in for a week etc."

Now £81 isn't huge compared to selling a new LR but service is service and you should do everything humanely possible to help.

Quite agree, and in fact programming a key fob should take less than 10 min if all goes according to plan...

Of course whether a dealer is any good or not depends on where they are and regrettably you'll probably never get to visit the best of all ;)

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Stratstones are pathetic & I will never use them again. Their staff are just plain ignorant!!

Last year I called in to the parts desk at lunchtime and waited and waited. Staff were bustling around at other desks and I eventually butted in at the service desk and asked if there was any chance of being served? The guy said that the parts desk was closed until 2.00pm. I pointed out that a "closed for lunch sign" might be an idea and asked why nobody at the desks had thought to tell me that the parts desk was closed. "Sorry Sir I didn't see you!" was the reply. I walked off muttering about not being $$&k*ng invisible!

I wrote a suitable snotogram to Stratstone Head Office and got a barely literate apology of sorts with a promise of trade prices in the future. I haven't taken them up on that though...

I agree with HFH Harwoods in Guildford are really helpful and friendly, unfortunately my mate no longer lives near them!

Steve

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