Moved to be part of review-> discussion.
Thanks Bharath, every one for your advices. I was onsite for few months, site went down for upgradation and hence couldnt update my buying experiences further.
I updated it elsewhere and updating here again for completeness, apologize the delay.
More events unfolded in the following days- Due to my work couldnt update continually, but here is the complete summary.
Sensed a ray of hope after writing to mangesh, fiat-india website feedback section (The site gave in an error after i clicked the submit button, not sure if it reached their database). Got a mail from mangesh that the issue is taken up with the dealership.
Me, my brother and my father discusssed in the interim about the happenings.
Our opinions were divided - i was strong in going for cancellation and did not want to deal with the people who didnt have basic ethics in their business. We could book at the Fiat dealer in Erode or Salem for the same car, even if it is priced higher, and get it registered in coimbatore. But it means atleast 2 trips to these places and delay in getting hands of the car. My brother was interested in a compensation - be it a discount or a free accessory. But my father made a point - "If the car was waiting for 7 months to reach me, it had to be special. We shall take it as our fate and move on. Cancelling the car at this point means distrust to the car dealer and we would fall in their mouths unnecessarily which i dont want to do" Though i did not like the logic in his point, the positiveness and humanness in his words moved me. It reminded me of the initial words in the tamil movie - Pannayarum Padminiy'um where the director spells - "The fate and owner of a car is decided at the factory itself while it is made". We decided to stick to our father's words and move on from the point of cancelling it out.
Got a call from the manager of CAI Fiat Mr.Yuvaraj to my brother on 12th August 2014 afternoon. He sought unconditonal appology and told him that he was not aware of any proceedings so far on this particular booking case and lot happened without his knowledge (This statement is in controversy with Madan's words where he told that he updated the situation to his manager more than 10 times). He further said- "Sir, why have you taken the matter everywhere, we would have settled it ourselves. What do you want, tell me, we can make it happen?". So my brother did not push out for cancellation but instead asked for a cash discount and to which yuvaraj said "Sir, thats not possible. We are giving you the car at a break-even price. Any further reduction on the price would result loss in our books". Getting reminded on my fathers words, my brother did not further press it but asked for a remote locking as a freebie for compensation to which the manager yuvaraj readily agreed. He asked him so many times in the call - "sir, please send mail to mangesh immedieately that the issue is sorted out between us and close the loop" to which my brother said that he shall defnitely say that after taking delivery of the call.
My brother also got a call from Madan, the sales person on the evening of 12th August 2014 seeking unconditional appology. My brother was thrilled and was happy that atleast there was some impact on the complaints.
Meanwhile, as requested by them, my parents visited the showroom and paid in the balance of money of 60,000+ totalling the payment so far to 5,70,304 the day before registration (13th August 2014) so that the car could be registered on 14th of August and we could take in the delivery of independence day August 15,2014 evening.
I got again stuck with work and could not travel with my brother on night of 14th August 2014 to coimbatore for the delivery day. My brother waited for me,, but he had to go alone on early morning of 15th August 2014 to coimbatore from bangalore. When he picked up my parents and went to the CAI showroom around 5 PM, he was taken aback with the hospitality. They were welcommed with a boquet of flowers and the car was already placed in the delivery area with garland on its front grille. It was neatly cleaned. The watchman even had lemons bought readily to be put on all the 4 wheels to get crushed, as a symbol to wade off the negativity. Madan and Vadivel were already present on the occasion though it a long holiday to many. My brother was surprised when somebody got introduced to him as Vadivel on the delivery day, as he was thinking the person who barged in the negotiation without even getting introduced was vadivel. when asked for clarification with Madan, he was told that that guy was Mohan and not vadivel. My brother bought an Honda City i-Dtec recently and was thrilled about this welcome as it was first of its kind. But sadly, that is the only good part to write on about the delivery.
While my brother was casually going around the car as a general inspection, he was surprised to see the non presence of reverse parking sensors (Difficult to spot it on,since the car itself is black color) that was promised as a part of the deal. When asked with madhan, he was told - "Sorry sir, it was not fitted".
"Why? You were supposed to fit it?"
"No sir, I told you during the deal that i shall try to get in the parking sensors. But, as you already got in remote locking, we cant give you this".
-- What a clever twist of words. He reserved in the anger for blowing it out in total sometime later.
He was shocked to see the number plates not fitted in. When asked got the reply as -
"No sir, in coimbatore we never give in number plates for free to any of the customers. They have to fit in themselves".
"No, iam not asking about the high defnitition secure number plates that you fit in for a cost, iam asking the basic number plates that you are supposed to give".
"Yes sir, i mean the same, the basic number plates. We dont provide it". I wondered what is the amount they charge in the name of standard fitments.
While this discussion was going on, my brother got a call from Yuvaraj, the manager. He expressed his grouse on the number plates to which yuvaraj. My brother also clarified yuvarj that it was not vadivel, but mohan who did not behave properly during sales discussions as it was a case of mistaken identity. Yuuaraj agreed to provide the normal number plates and asked my brother to hand over the phone to madhan. Madhan said - "ok sir, ok sir" in the phone and then agreed to fix in the number plates on their expense when the car is brought next to showroom sometime next week as it involves in some time.
They turned in to finish off the rest of the paper work. My brother was surprised to see that there was no manual and service coupons. "Sorry sir, those things got stuck in stockyard. Shall provide it next time when you visit the showroom". He was at his peak of fist already. No RTO payment challan also was handed over- when asked "In coimbatore, we get the challan only the next working day of the RTO. As today is holiday, we can get it on saturday or monday".
There was no extended warranty receipt handed over- when asked he was taken a back of the shock - "Sir, it was not in our deal. We already have given you the maximum offerings. The price of the car is 6,76,xxx and we subtracted 1,00,000 as discount to which it comes as 5,76,xxx when we subtract the extended warranty of 6629(if i remember corrrectly), then only we can offer you the car for the price of 5.7 lakhs that you asked for".
What a cheap world of business tactics. A customer could not be humilated any more further than this. I clearly remember the promise made by them for extended warranty as i kept on reminding it once a while during the negotiation Knowing FIATs reliability. With FIAT, opting out of extended warranty is like facing Shoaib Akthar's delivery on the cricket pitch without ab-guard which any one in the world would never do, or, atleast me. So there was no question of that. How on earth could they take away something that is promised if it eats into their profits or make them poor. Why are you agreeing to sell in at a first place, if it means losses to you ? Had me in the place, would have refused for delivery. Let the car rot in their place and become a symbol of disgrace and falsification than me getting tense on seeing it everytime about the cheating made on me.
My father, meanwhile was turning a little impatient as they had to visit their native deity temple the same evening with the new car and a pooja is already planned for it and the priest is waiting for this purpose. So, my brother put pause on the discussions asked the sales team to wait in office (My parents felt unaspicious to argue on the delivery date) send off my parents to the temple and he went alone to fight the battle.
He shouted on the sales chaps, after being patient all these times (I would not have taken delivery if i had been there. Words are words to me.) and vadivel himself accused madan infront of my brother for making promises that he could not fullfill.
Funniest was this answer from madhan-
"Sir, if i should give you the extended warranty and reverse parking sensors, management will deduct the money from my own salary". We are living in a world where even the pizza delivery staff are itself not held responsible for not keeping up the 45 minute delivery deadline
My brothers phone went on low battery and he could not get speaked to Yuvaraj again. It was 07:30 PM already and there was no one to report to. My brother left the place in utmost state of despair.
The next day (saturday, Aug 16,2014) my brother made a call to yuvaraj. He told about the unprofessional attitude and unethical behaviour from madhan. Yuvaraj's answer was more a kind of foreman's than a managers - "Sir, madhan very recently joined our crew. He doesnt know how to deal and promise the customers. I shall look into the file of yours, i dont know what is promised and what is not. I will get back to you on monday morning with the answers".
Is the sales file some sort of black box of an aircraft where all the points are recorded? Will wait and watch on monday.
Iam sick of writing,cribbing and agitating these days apart from my hectic office schedules.Few lessons learnt the hard way and worth sharing-
1. Never trust words of sales people, get everything in writing. A simple pre-filled template could be prepared and put on our forum so that everyone could take it to sales team and get it signed. There is no proof for the customers, words remain words and get dilluted in air or gets blown out, like by these unprofessionalists.
2. If you cant be physically present during delivery and predelivery, dont rush to buy a car.
FIAT also stopped responding and no point in haggling any further. Decided to take the experience positvely and move on in life to make it more interesting
Sorry to hear such a horrible state of affairs. More than FIAT, the dealers of FIAT are pulling it down. The problem is FIAT does not have a say in as they do not have a market share where they can dictate. Most of the times the dealers have the upper hand.
We as a group will have to blacklist CAI dealers until they improve on their service. It does not matter even if he is the only dealer in coimbatore.
For service I believe you can still visit True Sai in Salem and I have heard many good reviews about them
I hope all this is a one time negativity and you have only positive innings with your Punto throughout the ownership. All the best!!
Very sorry state of affairs and very disappointing too.
While at True Sai, I did hear from them that many from Coimbatore visit there for service and that they were not happy with CAI. I didn't fully believe during that time. It now seems true.
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