Jim Coleman Toyota - Terrible cutomer service: lost a lifelong loyal customer
Such poor customer service that they just lost a lifelong customer.
I bought my very first new car from Jim Coleman -- a 1997 Corolla. After buying my next few in California while I lived out west, I returned to DC about 3 years ago and found myself needing to buy a new Corolla in March 2010. I returned to Jim Coleman after comparing prices at all of the area dealers (out as far as Manassas and Baltimore). Peter Lee was the salesman who helped me. He gave me the usual salesman stories (e.g., how he himself wanted to buy the VERY car that I was buying but he was forced to hold off on his own purchase so as to allow me, the customer, to take priority (SURE, Peter), and how a little elderly lady who bought a car from him had let her battery go dead and called him in the middle of the night to tell him the new car didn't work, and he OF COURSE answered her call and helped her out of her jam, because he's that nice of a guy and because customer service is SO important to Jim Coleman). But, bullsh*t sales tactics notwithstanding, the price was good and the transaction was smooth, other than an error on the paperwork indicating my delivery date on the car was several weeks prior to the day I actually picked it up.
I've spent literally the last 6 months trying to rectify this simple mistake (as it affects my warranty). It should be easy for them to handle. Peter, who used to immediately answer my calls and emails before he had the sale, has managed to ignore the vast majority of my inquiries now that he already got his commission from me. I even simply asked him to tell me who I *should* be communicating with (recognizing that he is not a customer service rep), but he failed to answer even that question or direct me to customer service -- instead he just ignored me. I contacted main Toyota headquarters' customer service after 4 months of being ignored by Peter, and they opened an official case and promised me that someone from Jim Coleman's customer service department would contact me within 3 business days. A month passed and (surprise!) no one had contacted me from Jim Coleman, so I wrote a formal letter addressed to Dale Kerns in the customer service department, asking for assistance, giving them the case number, and specifically saying I had been a loyal customer for 15 years (I even brought my car in for routine maintenace in Bethesda just to give them my business, despite living in Virginia), and asking simply for ANY communication from them even if there was nothing they could do to help me. It has now been a full month since I mailed that letter, and not a single word from Jim Coleman.
I will never return to their dealership for another purchase, or for service, because they have such terrible customer service. If you do decide to buy a car from them, make absolutely sure that there are no issues that you will need to have taken care of later, because once they have your money they will drop you like a hot potato.