Mahindra First Choice — Theft of components during service and bad service
I bought a second hand Honda City 2004 model from Mahindra First Choice, Goregaon West Branch in 2009. When the vehicle was first shown to me it had minor points for paint touch ups, head lamp fogs and some grease/ oil marks on the door panel (inside) rectification. I had pointed out these to the Manager (Mr Shetty) there. He assured me of rectifying all that with a great air of confidence that I would love the vehicle when it is all done. The price quoted was 4.25 lac+. Given the personal assurances by the Manager and credibility of Mahindra brand, I decided to buy the vehicle.
On the date of delivery, I was called in the morning at 10:00 only to be kept waiting till 4:30 pm. The vehicle was delivered and looked awesome with polish etc. I went through the check points and found things in order, still Mahindra credibility at the back of my mind, not doubting, I took the delivery.
Day 1: I found the rubber beading on front door ruptured. It was crudely stuck with glue!
Day 2: I discovered that the grease marks on door panel were faint but very much there and looked bad.
Day 5: The fogs in head lamps reappeared. They were not replaced as assured by the Manager. Also, the driver door panel paint was out, it was not painted but hidden in polish!
Day 7: I experienced starting problem. Had to crank the engine thrice to start. This happened on a traffic signal and Mumbaikars know it well how embarassing it becomes.
With all the above, I took the vehicle back to the dealer only experience the typical "post sale" obnoxious attitude that they has nothing to do with all that as they don't guarantee anything else other than transmission/ engine. As a favor, they took out the head lamps and defogged it. Regarding starting they suggested to run the vehicle so that battery is adequately charged. A week after delivery battery to be charged!!
Then came the first free 3 months service, I also requested for pant touch up near door panel and cleaning of grease marks. The vehicle serviced, shining, I took the delivery. After service:
Day 1: The fragrance in my car had disappeared and was replaced by odour. I found the driver side floor mat wet, close to dripping! Mahindra brand credibility fainting, but still I thought that water would have seeped in while servicing. Dried the mats...already had a fair share of embarrassment in my family.
Day 5: Discovered that the paint on the door panel was done by a crude paint brush!! The one like my kids do. Looked worse.
Day 10: It was raining and I took out the car for a drive nearby. Past 10 mins, I realised that the brake and clutch pedal were splashing on a water pool!! My shoes were half way into water. The vehicle leaked!!
Day 11: rushed back to the service centre only get the jolt again that these are not covered in service. I was shaken and out of my mind, threat mixed with request, asked the service engineer (Mr Santosh) to check if it can be repaired. He called me next day.
My Job didn't permit me to go back for another 10 days. Those 10 days, every day the my car used to get pooled in water and in the night by 10 when used to return from office, I had to drain it. The ordeal and I knew that I have been tricked.
The first opportunity, I took leave for car repair. It was repaired as per the engineer, by 7 pm. He didn't charge anything. Still hopeful, I took delivery and back home I realised that the roof strips were missing!! When I called back, the engineer completely disowned any responsibility after the vehicle is delivered. I knew I was tricked again.
Month 9: My AC stopped working. Again took it back to the workshop for a bill of Rs.3000. I caught them red-handed replacing an old coil/clutch for the AC compressor. But the service engineer adamant...he said he cannot repair it otherwise, and that if I pay less then he would remove the replaced part!!! I succumbed and paid (negotiated for little less)...knowing fully well that I paid full for an old component!!
Month 10: Starting problem persisting, I got the battery checked, found its close to be dead. Had to be replaced.
For me the Mahindra credibility has shattered now and that the First Choice is nothing better than a typical road side garage. Want to write more but getting late for office.
Will my complaint be taken up. Does it happen in India!! I have my doubts.
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