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Old 4th October 2004, 14:57   #1
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My plans to buy a Fiat Petra has hit a major speed bump. When I went to inspect the car at the dealer's workshop (Fort Point Auto in Thane), they showed me a dirty car with mud on tyres and body, mud inside (on a paper covering the carpet) and RUSTED wheel bolts, brake disks and rims. When I asked what sort of a new car this was, the reply was 'don't worry, hum karke dega'!!. I said even a secondhand car will look new if someone 'karke dega'. Their response was that often new cars come out of Fiat factory in Kurla with rusted wheels. The one I saw looked like it was lying unattended on open ground for atleast 1-2 months.

I refused to accept the car and demanded to be taken to the Fiat factory in Kurla to inspect and approve a car, which then the dealer can take for regn. The dealer is saying Fiat may not allow any replacement since they took this car on a scheme that ended on sept 30, and in any case its unusual for a customer to inspect car at factory. I'm waiting to hear from the dealer after they contact Fiat. I have also send an email to Fiat asking if its true that the cars that come out of Fiat factory have rusted wheel rims and bolts.

What do you guys think ? Is it accpetble that a new car may have rust on wheel rims ? and is it ok if the dealer cleans it up ? I find that very hard to digest. Please advice.

If this dosen't resolve well, i'd like to write a letter for publishing to Autocar. Please let me know if someone as a contact number or email.
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Old 4th October 2004, 15:11   #2
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Hey Dovin,

Unfortunately your case is not a one-off. This months ACI has a similar incident in its help-line section.

Its really sad that Fiat has some of the best products in its cars, but is just so horribly let down by its miserable serive that I really do not see how it can win customer support and confidence back. Forget new products, what they need is a complete overhaul of their ASC's and showrooms. They need to close down terrible showrooms like Shaman (and as you say, Fort Point) and introduce direct factory owned showrooms that ensure good, customer oriented service.

Don't settle for a car that has been lying in the lot for months. You are paying new car money, ensure you get a NEW car.

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Old 4th October 2004, 15:14   #3
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"Karke Dega" wont do. How much ever they clean up the car, the fact that you have seen your new car like that WILL NEVER ever go away from your mind. Dont buy that car. Tell them that you have all the rights to chose the car you want from a particular lot. Mud/Dust is ok, but wheels rusting is a NO. It cud be possible that the wheels/bolts/discs are taken off another car. Take a completely car that gives u a peace of mind. Stay away from this car.
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Old 4th October 2004, 15:26   #4
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Despite reports of improving FIAT service(sales and after), I have had my reservations always. Have seen worse treatment being given out to my friends in Bangalore.
I am shocked at how these guys do business.
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Old 4th October 2004, 15:42   #5
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This is just ridiculous! I'm glad I didn't buy the Palio D.
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Old 4th October 2004, 16:03   #6
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I always had my doubts abt fiat...agreed they have good cars...but if they were really serious dont u think they wud have done something abt the pathetic attitude of their dealers?
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Old 4th October 2004, 17:18   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by [b
Quote[/b] ] they showed me a dirty car with mud on tyres and body, mud inside (on a paper covering the carpet) and RUSTED wheel bolts, brake disks and rims. When I asked what sort of a new car this was, the reply was 'don't worry, hum karke dega'!!
This is absolute crap!! Dont accept a 2nd, when you are paying 1st grade cash. A rusted car has obviously been out in the rains/storage for too long. Heck, even my Jeep has not rusted yet after a year since restoration.

There is a possibility that its a fiat siena that has been rebadged as a Petra. Dont accept this car, dont take delivery and play some real hardball with them. If things come to that, just get in touch with the Autocarindia helpline. They solved my Honda City Vtec case with aplomb, and even RJKulkarni will vouch for their thorough support against rogue dealers.

This is it. No more recommending Fiats from me until they pull up their dealerships to ATLEAST acceptable levels of service. And in this case, its not only the dealer at fault but also Fiat as a company. First the autocarindia rusted Palio case...now this rusted Petra - Absolute hogwash!!

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Old 4th October 2004, 17:35   #8
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What a coincidence. Just checked in the Overdrive quality survey, and Fiat has ranked at the absolute bottom of the dealership pile for service. Apparently they were good at test drives and all that. Its the after-cheque payment stuff that they sucked at.

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Old 4th October 2004, 18:01   #9
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Dovin,

pal my friend is just back from inspecting his petra at anuroop auto. no problems as such he inspected the under chasis , under the bonnet and the tyres too...absolute clean. the date of departure from factory is 30.9.2004. still i just spoke to him and asked him if he saw anything suspicious , he says no and he had noted the chasis no and engine no of the test drive car ...what he is getting is a fresh piece ,...

About ur scene , dont take this bull shit ...write to autocar and keep writing to fiat. dont take this car maan...

i dont think that fort point is an authorised fiat dealer , still 2 nd hand car is absolute bullshit.....

will keep u posted on that...

hope u get ur matter sorted out !!
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Old 5th October 2004, 01:24   #10
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That is absolute shame on Fiat.
Dunt u even think of accepting the car under no cicumstances.
Another thing,why dunt u go and click a few pics of the car and show it to Autocar.That will help immensely.
Try doin it pal.

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Old 5th October 2004, 01:40   #11
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Has Fiat responded to your email? Let us know what they say. Don't leave them keep calling them and emailing them and keep a copy of all emails that you recieve (IF you recieve any that is!)
This also could be a dealer nonsense. Maybe he had a old Siena in his stock yard and thought of changing it's rusted wheels with the new Petra. Which color are you buying? Don't go for any colors that were avaliable on the Siena cuz u run the risk of getting a re-badged siena.
Lastly, don't accept this car. Take the dealer to court if possible. Ask Autocar or some other qualified car expert to come and inspect the car and keep his report with you. If Fiat doesn't respond in 3/4 days threaten them with a court case. IT's high time they got pulled up. Even if the company isn't aware and its the dealer thats doing this still Fiat needs to take it's dealer to task for trying to rip off a potential customer.
As for Fiat, what can one say? I wonder how they managed to take the no. 3 position in the j.d.power survey. just when u heard reports of improving sales and service, fiat botches up with these reports. Even after the coming in of the Getz these guys didn't improve. Amazing! These guys deserve the situation they are in. If they don't improve in the next 12 months then Fiat wouldn't last in India beyond 2006.
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Old 5th October 2004, 02:26   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by [b
Quote[/b] (GTO @ Oct. 04 2004,15:48)]If things come to that, just get in touch with the Autocarindia helpline. They solved my Honda City Vtec case with aplomb, and even RJKulkarni will vouch for their thorough support against rogue dealers.
GTO,
Actually I heard from Vardhan of ACI for the first & last time in that reply. I mailed him twice again but he didn't bother to reply. After that even I'd given up. So...
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Old 5th October 2004, 15:31   #13
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I've send emails to all the people listed in Fiat web site, but no response so far. There is no phone number listed either at their web site or in the Yellow Pages. If anyone knows a phone number for the Fiat PRO, please PM me. The dealer says he has talked to Fiat and a fiat person will call me soon. Let's see. If this dosen't resolve in 2 more days I intend to try and get the booking advance back and may be try out a Baleno.

Thanks for all your advice. i'll keep this topic updated as things progress...
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Old 6th October 2004, 15:02   #14
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i was never surprisd by fortpoint
when i called up bout the palio they suggested i try a sail and were on my back about it
it was very intresting
as a fiat dealer i trust only anuroop and shaman
i wont mind reccommendin fiats for what they are but i will never recommend dealers like frotpoint ever
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Old 6th October 2004, 20:17   #15
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my friend bought a gtx some months ago to find his doors jammed and took a lot of effort to open,after checking it out we found the door hinges were rusted and the dealer said that is not covered under warranty,the leather on steering wheel cracked,the front tyres were before 22000(the car had done alignment every5000kms)due to faulty front struts and what more can u expect from a car
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