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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm really getting tired of these Dodge dealerships being so damn up-tight about their cars being test driven! I've owned 5 SRT's, 3 of them being SRT-8's and apparently that isn't enough for them to let me drive a 392!

I went into the local Dodge dealership because I was having my rear brake rotor replaced (was getting gouged after only 6 weeks of owning the car and with no hard driving)

I go to the showroom and ask the salesperson if I can drive the 392 that is outside so I can see what the differences are and whether or not it would be worth it to trade up from my 6.1L.

Well hell, I may as well have asked him if I could kill his first born or something! He said "oh no, no, no... Nobody drives the 392, we had a very stern e-mail from the owner"

So I asked to speak with the owner, told him what I wanted to do and asked if he could authorize a quick test drive.

His answer was this (in a snarky, sarcastic tone): "ha! I'll let you drive it when you buy it from me! Do you know how many people have asked to drive that thing and I've said no? Why do you think I would let you???"

What the HELL!!?

I went through the same bull-crap with my 6.1L at a different dealership (that only let me drive it after my deposit was paid and a credit app was in the process) and like the 6.1L before, the closest I got to the 392 was them unlocking it and letting me sit inside (and turn the engine on) but I wasn't allowed to drive it!

What a joke!

I love my Challenger as much as the next guy, but come on.... These aren't porsches or ferraris, they cost the same as a nicely equipped pickup truck or mini-van..

I suppose it is for the best since it would be a shame to ruin the 6.1L by previewing the 392, but it just left a bad taste in my mouth. (especially hearing how easy it is in the U.S. for you guys to just walk in and drive whatever the heck you want)
 

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That's crazy. The dealer I bought my R/T from called me up the minute the IE 392's showed up on the lot and asked if I like to test drive one. Of course I said no, because if I got into one and drove it around, I'd be trading up and screwing myself up with new higher car payments. No, not today.
 

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Are you really serious about trading up? Maybe they knew you were there getting your 6.1 serviced, and they didnt want to waste their time or put miles on the 392. On another note, I havnt been paying too much attention since Im not in the market for a 392, but I thought there wasnt too many out there? Maybe that is another reason that dealership wants to keep that one off the road with very little miles on it.
 

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I'm surprised places that operate this way can even stay in business.. honestly..
 

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Seriously would not deal there. I had no problem driving my SRT8 in Fergus ON. In fact the dealer told me no one else would drive it while I was considering the purchase and waited two to hear back from me after they delivered a quote.
 

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You have to consider that you are putting miles on someone else's new car. Would you want to go in to buy a new 392 and have a couple of hundred miles on it. And probably most of those miles having the crap driven out of it? I doubt it. Yeah, they could have not been as snarky about it, and maybe the GM or sales manager should be put in position to authorize test drives to selected persons, but I can't blame them for trying to keep the miles off the car.
 

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I'd definitely take my business somewhere else and never look back.

There are plenty of other dealerships out there who would be willing to let you test drive one before you buy it.
 

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When I started looking at Challengers, the first dealership I went to was very reluctant to let me drive the 2010 SRT8, even though there was only a $5,000 sticker difference between it and the R/T I drove there first. I left without driving their SRT8 went to another dealer who had no problem with letting me test drive their SRT8.

I can understand a dealer's reluctance to have someone test drive a Viper, but we're talking about a $45,000 Dodge, not a $450,000 Ferrari.
 

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My wife and I just bought a new Chrysler 200 from the same guy I bought my Challenger from a year ago. While we were waiting for the paperwork to be completed, he just about begged me to drive a 392. Like many of you, I said "no" because I figured I'd want to buy it and I don't want a $800 car payment...at least not right now :browsmiley:

The guy I deal with did tell me that they've been instructed to be "cautious" as to who they let test drive the 392, they want to avoid having people come in who are looking to kill an hour and want to drive it with zero intention of buying it. However, I can't imagine getting the kind of response you got. I'd do whatever I could to find another dealer.
 

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I was forced to test drive the 392. Having previously owned an '09 SRT8 I didn't feel the need to drive it ahead of time, especially since it was sitting in the showroom. My saleswoman was cool with that but the sales manager wasn't. We actually debated back and forth for a bit before I took it out for a spin. He said he didn't feel right about letting me purchase a car I hadn't driven.

In hindsight, it was probably some type of negotiation technique on his part.
 

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This is a tough one. At ski shops you have to pay a nice price to demo the skis and they are less than $1,000. You usually get it back if you buy. So, what would you guys say to a $100 demo ride? There was a guy here that complained about someone driving his car, but then said he took one out and drove 100 miles per hour in it. You can't have it both ways. My Challenger had 20 miles on it when I test drove it. We did a dealer swap on our Mustang 2 months later and when we delivered it, it had 76 miles on it. That was tested for sure, but now that it is a year later and had 7,600 miles on it, can you tell that is should have 7,524 miles? At least it didn't have 326 miles on it they flatbed their trades.
 

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the local dealer was cool and let me take a Detonator Yellow SRT8 for a spin with my buddy and the sales guy. he never asked for my ID either now that i think about it. that test drive is what sealed the deal for me ordering my B5 from Bob Frederick. i want to take the 392 out this weekend if i get a chance
 

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When I bought my 2010 SRT8 I just wanted to sit in it to see how different it was from the r/t I was originally looking at...the owner of the dealership Jim Manning was quick to ask me if I wanted to drive it...didn't even ask to copy my i.d...the car had 10 miles on it and I was 28 at the time...I was impressed with the level of customer service...so much so that I bought it the next day...even though the dealership is a bit of a drive for me it's totally worth it...my local dealership is crawling with D-bags....Fresno Chrysler Dodge.
 

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I went in looking for an R/T at the first dealer I talked to and the sales guy made sure to get me behind the wheel of an SRT first. It's called "good salesmanship". I still bought an R/T (from somebody else no less, no fault of this guy), but at least I knew what my options were.

Any dealer that doesn't want you to try their product needs a lobotomy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
I've only ever had two salesmen that were cool about test drives with SRT-8's. Both of them let me take a 6.1L SRT-8 for a spin about a year before I was ready to buy one.

Both of them even said "ok, i'm gonna tell you where to go to find a back road where you can really open 'er up"

We would find a back street and come to a stop and he'd be like "ok, hammer it! See what this thing can do!" I'd hit it like @ the drag strip and they'd be LAUGHING with big stupid grins on their faces!

One of them even said "Holy CRAP! I've never even had the chance to ride in one of these yet!"

That moment is what put the 6.1L on my "to-buy" list. That moment is what REALLY sells Dodge vehicles, the experience!

When I went to buy my SuperBee the first thing the guy said was "you'll have to take my word for it that it's fast, I can't let you drive it"

I LOL'd, walked out and came back 2 days later with a SuperBee I bought somewhere ELSE (then complained to the owner of the dealership who was LIVID at their inept sales-person)

With the 392, I told the sales-guy right up front that:

1. I was not going to buy the 392 AT THAT MOMENT
2. If I DID buy a 392, it wouldn't be the IE edition that they had because I didn't care for the white leather.
3. The whole point of me driving it was to see if there was enough difference between the 6.1L and the 6.4L to warrant me wanting to trade up.

BUT - had I drove the car and LOVED it, I told him I would be taking a look at the ol' finances and would most likely be back very soon to talk paperwork... but they had to sell me on the car FIRST because without that motivation, i'll keep pluggin' along in my 6.1L

I then kindly reminded him that I have owned 9 CHRYSLER vehicle's, 5 of them SRT products, 3 of THOSE being SRT-8's.

...they couldn't seem to care less. They expect that someone will walk in, throw money at them and drive away with the car without ever having sat in it.

I know they got their "stern e-mail" but if there was ever an exception to that rule, I should have been it!

I realize that sometimes they can treat me a little poorly because i'm fairly young and sometimes they don't think I can afford some of the cars I want to look at, but in this case I EVEN HAD MY DAD WITH ME at the dealership! (not that he should matter but he was driving a $62,000 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland so they should have known my family means BUSINESS!)
 

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Hey Ironside, sorry to hear about the crappy attitude they gave you. It's funny because I got about halfway through your first post, and suddenly thought, "I bet this happened in Canada." Then, when I read your line about "hearing how easy it is in the U.S. for you guys" I knew it! It wouldn't have been in the Vancouver area perhaps, would it? lol Deja vu!
 

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So I asked to speak with the owner, told him what I wanted to do and asked if he could authorize a quick test drive.

His answer was this (in a snarky, sarcastic tone): "ha! I'll let you drive it when you buy it from me! Do you know how many people have asked to drive that thing and I've said no? Why do you think I would let you???"
I would have had to ask him how long it had bee sitting there and then said, "Maybe that's the reason it's still sitting there instead of in someone's garage. I hope you enjoy paying the taxes on it because it's going to be here for a long time."

And then I'd never go back to that dealership (unless it's the only choice you have for warranty work).
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Hey Ironside, sorry to hear about the crappy attitude they gave you. It's funny because I got about halfway through your first post, and suddenly thought, "I bet this happened in Canada." Then, when I read your line about "hearing how easy it is in the U.S. for you guys" I knew it! It wouldn't have been in the Vancouver area perhaps, would it? lol Deja vu!
Yup, definitely in Canada.

I live in Windsor Ontario though... I guess poor customer service stretches all across Canada.

Luckily there are two other dealerships in the city I could go to (but only 1 had a 392 and it was automatic) problem is, their customer service isn't much better.

I've purchased my last 5 or so cars from out of town for this reason!
 
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