the secret society of car repair people|
Next, hours of negotiation ensued
between the car sales guy, the manager and me.
They started by offering to reduce the price of the
Mustang to $8,450 and to buy the truck for $1,000. I countered with an offer of
$5,300 for the car, demanded $2,700 for the truck and insisted they throw in a
pair of roof racks, an accessory for the new Honda CRV at home.
back-and-forth proposals, we ended up buying the Mustang for pretty close to retail
value, got trade-in value for the truck and a set of roof racks. I felt defeated,
though my daughter perceived me as heroic.
But on the way home, we noticed
that the car seemed to slip when shifting between 40 and 50 mph. Why didn't we
hear that during the test drive?! It sounded like a subtle, but potentially ominous
transmission problem. The next day at 7:30 a.m. we took the car (on which we had
a two-month warranty) back to the dealer and asked them to service it. Long story
short, the mechanic said it was a "lockup of the torque converter,"
a standard characteristic of these cars. He might as well have been speaking in
Japanese. He claimed it was normal, that there was nothing to fix.
of that, the roof racks were the wrong kind and did not fit the Honda CRV.
My husband didn't buy the mechanic's story and insisted that we
return the car, tear up the co-signed loan note and retrieve the
truck. I called an unrelated third party, a local Ford dealer, and
asked the service technician if the torque converter lockup is a
common phenomenon among Mustangs. He confirmed that this was true,
and explained it had to do with the mechanic coupler ... continuing
on in the gibberish that was incomprehensible to me.