It’s been a bit since I’ve posted any kind of experience with another business on my blog but this time I felt it necessary to tell you my story about South Strand Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram in Pawleys Island, SC.
I decided to (at the time) take advantage of the surge in used car prices and trade in my 2020 Ram 3600 DWR for a new daily drive, a 2021 Ram 1500. When I walked in, the perfect color Ram for my needs was sitting on the showroom floor and to my surprise it had the trim package I was looking for. Because of the shortage in new car production, I didn’t get much of a deal which I wasn’t expecting. Next was the used car appraisal. Doing my own diligence before hand I knew the trade-in value for my truck was around $74K-$77K. My salesperson, April took my keys to the used car manager to check out my truck and give me buy bid.
The Trade-In Quote Was Shocking
I was in shock when I got the trade-in quote rom South Strand Ram. When she came back with the quote my face went blank. $64,000. Keep in mind, the retail resale value was close to $90K. This if anything should have been a red flag about how these guys operate but I decided to move forward without trading in my truck.
While April was running back and forth to get numbers nailed down I text a few dealerships I’ve worked with back in Colorado for a buy bid and they all came back at $74,000 – $10K more than South Strand! Even a few dealerships in Myrtle Beach (non Ram dealerships) offered me close to $10K more than South Strand.
The Purchase from South Strand Ram
The overall sales process went smooth. April was great. I wasn’t thrilled about having two trucks but I wasn’t about to get ripped off on my trade in. That’s when it came to meet with the finance manager. I let him know ahead of time I wasn’t interested in any extended warranties etc but the pressure was still heated up, mostly on GAP insurance which was $800+. I let him know I was planning on paying off the truck in a month or so but he insisted that I get GAP insurance. He told me I could leave and cancel it tomorrow and get a prorated refund. All I had to do was sign a cancellation paper. He even said he would send one with me. When it came time to depart, he was no where to be found so I reminded April to get that for me and send it when she could. A few days later I followed up, nothing. Finally, I was able to go into the office and sign some paperwork to cancel it – that was more than a month ago and it’s been dark. I text April letter her know I haven’t heard anything, she said she’d follow up with the manager, still nothing – to this day – nothing.
Next, we had a major issue with the title. Some how, the wires were crossed that I traded in my Ram 3500 when I didn’t and my plates were transferred from from my Ram 3500 to my Ram 1500. I figured that out when my registration came in the mail and had the same plate number of my Ram 3500. Now, the reason this caused major problems was because I had to go back down to the County Auditors office and pay sales tax on my Ram 3500 (again). I would have had to do that with the 1500 so why such a big deal? Well, because of the shortage in used cars, my 3500 trucks value shot up so I had to pay $300 more than I did just a few months ago in March. So because of their mistake on the plates, I had to spend quite a bit more money then I would have. The registration / renewal on the 3500 is much more expensive than the 1500.
Now, it’s onto additional complaints with the state AG, Chrysler, BBB etc.
Robert Hayner – General Manager
Steve Parker – Finance Manager
April Whittaker – Sales
Title Clerk – Wanda Milton