2k1Toaster
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Re: Car in shop--who pays for loaner?

Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:08 pm

cwerdna wrote:^^^^
Since Lexus was mentioned, I'll mention a side story. I've never owned a Lexus but actually was loaned a Lexus HS 250h for a week sometime between 2009 and 2011.

Ages ago, there was some social media contest thing re: Lexus HS. If you got enough people to vote for you, you could win the use of a Lexus HS for a week. There was also some drawing (I think) to receive a 2 or 3 year lease of it.

I barely made the cut for the HS for a week. I picked a dealer near me and picked up the car. I recall signing some sort of rental agreement and the owner was a bank w/Japanese name (it wasn't well known IIRC so probably not UFJ, Mizuho or Sumitomo). The car was brand new with almost no miles on the clock but already w/Lexus of Bellevue service loaner decal on the back window. I told the service guy I'd be putting a few hundred miles on it. He didn't care. I asked what the arrangement was and what the deal was w/the weird bank. IIRC, Toyota apparently allocates them cars as loaners. The dealer leases them and uses them as service loaners. At the end, of lease, the dealer buys them and sells them as used cars.

Because I won and picked them, they got allocated 1 more car (for the above). So, it sounded like a win win for them.


Yes Toyota does most of that weird marketing stuff though the Lexus brand.

For example we just had the US Open (golf) in town and this dealership got allocated about 50 RX and NX SUVs just for the event. They all got plastered with logos for the golf stuff and the dealership. When the tour left, they all went back to the dealership to be sold as used. A "used" fully decked out 2018 RX with 50-60 miles on the clock for $10k less than the base. And there were about 50 of them. All gone in 2 weeks. That's good movement for a $50k vehicle... And because of those sales, they get even more allotment for the 2019 models. I believe the dealership did keep 2 of them on as loaners because everynow and then you see it driving around still with all the dealer and golf stickers on it.

I am really surprised that more people don't realize that a dealership in the US is not the same as the company that has the logo on the cars they sell. This is the exact thing that Tesla is fighting to allow, direct auto-maker to consumer sales without requiring a 3rd party dealer.
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LeftieBiker
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Re: Car in shop--who pays for loaner?

Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:09 pm

Nissan, the big company in Japan that's actually "Nissan Motor Company", does NOT provide loaners.


Yes, semantically that's true. But since no one refers to "Nissan-affiliated dealers" when we talk about a loaner from a Nissan dealership, it's common usage to just write "Nissan."

Cwerdna, the OP was talking about a long-term stay in shop because a dealership was unable to diagnose a problem under warranty. This is the kind of circumstance in which loaners are expected. The situation wasn't a simple warranty repair.
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cwerdna
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Re: Car in shop--who pays for loaner?

Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:12 pm

2k1Toaster wrote:I am really surprised that more people don't realize that a dealership in the US is not the same as the company that has the logo on the cars they sell. This is the exact thing that Tesla is fighting to allow, direct auto-maker to consumer sales without requiring a 3rd party dealer.

I'm embarrassed to admit I didn't realize this (for US dealers) :oops: until I saw Tesla getting into battles with entrenched auto dealership groups.

I now tell people to Google tesla franchise laws for background info. I suspect that before Tesla, a healthy majority of Americans had the same incorrect beliefs (about automakers owning dealerships of their brands). And with Tesla battles, perhaps the majority has gotten smaller?

I have no idea about the arrangements outside the US.

It doesn't help much when the Nissan-dealer shuttle driver calls me (for pickup) and says "this is Dan from Nissan". He doesn't even say his dealer's name.

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2k1Toaster
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Re: Car in shop--who pays for loaner?

Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:17 pm

dvu wrote:Thanks for that... I've always own EU brand and one Lexus beside the leaf so I wasn't aware of this. It has always been as you described, gotten a pretty decent loaner.

Definitely a good to know so I don't go screaming at Nissan SA when I have to Uber home. Lol


Again brand has nothing to do with it really other than how valuable they think you are. The local Toyota dealership has given me a loaner before for a few of the services I've brought the Prius in for like brake pads around 160k miles. I didn't buy it there, never service it there except for the stuff that annoys me to do myself or I can't (windshield (x3 or x4) and brakes so far). But we did buy a Prius C from them years earlier and had the "free services" done there. They are free to us, but the dealership bills Toyota Motor Corporation and gets profit from them. So in return, I was a customer than brought in revenue in the past.

Likewise my local Nissan dealership completely changed their tune when I rolled up in the Lexus to pay for the Leaf TCU upgrade. Adamant that they can't provide a loaner because they were low on stock... Yeah right. I just look like I'm too broke to afford a new car in my t-shirt and jeans and the loaner money would be wasted on me. I Ubered it back to work since the shuttle service would take 1.5 hours to go 10 minutes with all the stops (there were 5 others in the van already) and home that evening. A week later or so (why are these TCU upgrades so hard for them to figure out!?) I pulled up to pay on my way home in the shiny RX. As I was paying "oh, why didn't you ask for a loaner we could have given you this brand new Maxima for the week". He obviously sees a hundred of me every day so didn't realize I did ask and he lied to me.

Anyways, this speaks poorly of the dealership, but is common. It has nothing to do with Nissan the company. And complaining to Nissan will get you nothing more than a "we are so sorry" letter that they have printed by the millions and could care less about.
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2k1Toaster
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Re: Car in shop--who pays for loaner?

Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:19 pm

LeftieBiker wrote:
Nissan, the big company in Japan that's actually "Nissan Motor Company", does NOT provide loaners.


Yes, semantically that's true. But since no one refers to "Nissan-affiliated dealers" when we talk about a loaner from a Nissan dealership, it's common usage to just write "Nissan."


Agreed. I do it too. But the point is that the "Nissan affiliated dealers" are who you make the deal with and who control the loaner car keys. "Nissan Motor Company" has nothing to do with it even though it's their logo plastered on the side of the building. This misleads people to thinking "this car lot is owned by Nissan" and that's absolutely not correct.
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dvu
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Re: Car in shop--who pays for loaner?

Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:20 pm

But doesn't the "brand' US corporate have anything to do with the private dealers?

The luxury brands, Mercedes in particular has a level of customer service that has to be met by MB USA from what my SA told me. MB service department is top notch in my area and Lexus is equally great if not far behind.

The private dealers represent the face of the brand, it's bad business just like any franchise, it's bad business for everyone if one dealer screw up.

2k1Toaster
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Re: Car in shop--who pays for loaner?

Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:29 pm

dvu wrote:But doesn't the "brand' US corporate have anything to do with the private dealers?

The luxury brands, Mercedes in particular has a level of customer service that has to be met by MB USA from what my SA told me. MB service department is top notch in my area and Lexus is equally great if not far behind.

The private dealers represent the face of the brand, it's bad business just like any franchise, it's bad business for everyone if one dealer screw up.


Yes those are franchise agreements. The "level of service" guarantees in the contract between the franchise and the brand company are really not all that high. It is really just the minimum bare level. Just like most fast food places are independent franchises. If you want to put the name up to attract customers you have to play by a set of rules.

The agreements are much more on the finance side. Remember customer service is only as important as the bottom line. Agreements for "you have to sell X cars a month minimum" or requiring them to agree to nation wide sales and incentives going on and even stupid nit picky stuff like the sign has to be of a certain size, these certain posters have to be up in the showroom or some of my favourites are plaque walls. I believe MB has a clause that forces the dealership to show an employee achievement wall in the showroom. Walk into any MB and it will be visible. Some, like my local one, has it hidden in the hallway by the elevator to the underground dungeon... I mean showroom. Others like the one further away has it on display right behind reception. It's about brand cohesion for sure. But loaners don't make that cut.

Like I said, I believe the only automaker to even prioritize loaning is the fancy-beetle company, Porsche. And with the markups they get, and the low volume of sales in the US, they can afford to have loaners out there especially when it translates to sales more often. If you drop $300k on a car, you're not even blinking about what the payments would be on that. It's just another night on the town and you got a new toy. In 2 years at the first major service, they get you in another shiny brand new car. Lets talk trade-in.
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2k1Toaster
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Re: Car in shop--who pays for loaner?

Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:40 pm

dvu wrote:But doesn't the "brand' US corporate have anything to do with the private dealers?

The luxury brands, Mercedes in particular has a level of customer service that has to be met by MB USA from what my SA told me. MB service department is top notch in my area and Lexus is equally great if not far behind.

The private dealers represent the face of the brand, it's bad business just like any franchise, it's bad business for everyone if one dealer screw up.


For example here is part of a Lexus agreement between "LEXUS, A Division of TOYOTA MOTOR SALES, U.S.A., INC." and a dealership. This is really the only "customer service" part of it:


VIII. DEALER SERVICE OBLIGATIONS

A. CUSTOMER SERVICE STANDARDS

DEALER and DISTRIBUTOR agree that the success and future growth of
the LEXUS franchise is substantially dependent upon the customers'
ability to obtain responsive, high-quality vehicle servicing.
Therefore, DEALER agrees to:

1. Take all reasonable steps to provide service of the highest
quality for all LEXUS Motor Vehicles, regardless of where
purchased and whether or not under warranty;

2. Ensure that the customer is advised of the necessary repairs and
his or her consent is obtained prior to the initiation of any
repairs;

3. Ensure that necessary repairs on LEXUS Motor Vehicles are
accurately diagnosed and professionally performed; and

4. Assure that the customer is treated courteously and fairly at all
times.


Here's a public copy one: https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data ... 10-2_4.txt

Notice how it drones on and on and on about things like keeping enough cars on the lot, only using OEM parts, and making sure things look pretty and up to the Lexus standard. Then the part about customer service gets 4 bullet points that are completely subjective. #2 is standard contract law liability. If you perform un-authorized work, you may not get paid or worse if it causes a problem! #3, is the same deal. Don't screw up work and make liability claims. #4 actually has nothing to do with how you feel as a customer and everything to do with federal laws regarding discrimination.

VIII. A. #1 is the only thing that has anything to do with how you are treated as a customer. As you can see that single sentence entitles you to nothing. It is all up to the dealership. But if you are chronically a jerk to customers and those driving the brand in for service and Lexus agrees with the customers, then they may fine you up to making you take down all Lexus-y things.

The agreement I've seen was basically this word for word a while back. I am sure they could modify it for every dealer, but really why bother
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cwerdna
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Re: Car in shop--who pays for loaner?

Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:41 pm

2k1Toaster wrote:Like I said, I believe the only automaker to even prioritize loaning is the fancy-beetle company, Porsche. And with the markups they get, and the low volume of sales in the US, they can afford to have loaners out there especially when it translates to sales more often...

Tesla has, sorta. https://www.tesla.com/Blog/creating-wor ... -program-0 was posted and that was true for awhile, until people stopped receiving Teslas. There are tons of reports of people receiving random other cars.

A few months back, a co-worker was given a loaner for his Model 3 (ended up being in the shop for over 2 weeks to fix a minor issue). They were out of Teslas and he received a Chrysler 300C. He felt it was a terrible car and was unhappy with that. After a few days of that, he went back to swap it for a Model S loaner (much more appropriate given what he paid for his 3 and that we have free charging at work, not free gasoline).

I just found https://insideevs.com/musk-tesla-servic ... s-x-p100d/ but I have no idea how true that is at all nowadays, given the above.

Around here, it seems pretty common for luxury dealers (e.g. BMW) to provide service loaners.

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LeftieBiker
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Re: Car in shop--who pays for loaner?

Thu Sep 13, 2018 12:31 am

But the point is that the "Nissan affiliated dealers" are who you make the deal with and who control the loaner car keys. "Nissan Motor Company" has nothing to do with it even though it's their logo plastered on the side of the building. This misleads people to thinking "this car lot is owned by Nissan" and that's absolutely not correct.


I don't think that you're deliberately trying to mislead, but you're giving the impression that the dealership owns and is responsible for leased cars (going back to the OP's case) and this isn't the case. NMAC owns the cars, Nissan essentially owns NMAC, and dealerships have to abide by Nissan/NMAC's rules in dealing with lessees. So expecting "Nissan" to provide a loaner for warranty repairs that take weeks because the dealership is incompetent is closer to being reasonable than just dismissing the idea of a loaner in that case as a right, instead of a privilege granted at the dealership's whim. There is a Hell of a lot wrong with the US franchise system, but there is still a direct link between your leased Nissan and Nissan, via Nissan Motor Acceptance Corporation.
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