Peninsula Dodge Folded - good riddance!

Posted in the Redwood City Daily News Forum

Since: Aug 08

AOL

#1 Dec 6, 2008
Why is Peninsula Dodge Hyundai in Redwood City out of business (RCDN, Dec. 6)? I'll give you a clue!

Approximately a year ago, Peninsula Dodge sent a mass promotional advertisement to have an oil change, a 30 point (?) checkup and a tire rotation for under $30. Since I own only one vehicle, a Dodge Caravan, I decided to take them up on their offer. My wife and I delivered our van with the mass mailing brochure early and had breakfast. When we returned, the service manager representative said that they could not change the oil as the oil pan plug nut head had been damaged and "rounded" off and the "threads stripped." They wanted a $100 to fix the damage they needed my authorization to replace the plug. The cost of the plug alone was around $30. I asked them if they had rotated the tires and conducted the 30 point inspection and they replied that they did not. I asked for the service manager, but that did not resolve the matter and they blamed the "oil change" industry's misuse of a wrench. Since no work was done, we decided a second opinion and price check was in order.

My son-in-law is mechanically inclined so he removed the plug with a vice wrench and it came off without any resistance and the threads were not stripped even though the nut head was somewhat rounded. I still have that plug to remind me that our local Dodge dealer's incompetent mechanic and the dealership management probably used a "bait and switch" scheme since they didn't do the other work that had no relationship to the oil pan plug. I replaced the plug for $6.

The Denny Hecker Automotive Group of Minnesota and the performance of his local management team and employees deserves to go out of business. The plug problem was easily solvable and to say the threads were stripped suggests that it was removed (though I would not preclude the "oil change industry" from rounding off the nut head.

I am not in favor of a bridge loan at $25 to $175 billion for the Big 3 auto industry; they can file for bankruptcy and reorganization. It may be a myth that people will not buy from the Big 3 while in bankruptcy, but I am not sure. Fewer dealerships no closer than a 100 miles apart may be one reply to survive followed with local Big 3 Automotive Centers to honor warrantees, service and repair of their vehicles.

The ripple job loss effect will be difficult, but cheaper now than to bail them out and then fold in a few years adding another $175 billion + to our social services entitlements.

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