Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Mid Hudson Valley, NY (USA)
Toyota Platinum Buying Experience - Things to know up front!
I’m remiss in not doing this write up sooner, but a lot has transpired in the 10 weeks since we bought the van. I really owe Doug a formal thank you, not only for the sale of a warranty at a great price, but also for a wealth of information written and oral that helped me to deal with some of the issues I was having with the selling dealer. I told him up front that I might not walk away from the warranty I bought at the selling dealer, and yet he still hung in there with me. That's the mark of a decent guy.
In the end, I did cancel the Toyota Care 7yr/100k that I signed at the dealership, and bought an 8yr/125k plan from Doug. The price was right, the service exemplary, and I had his policy in hand weeks before I received the one penned with the vehicle purchase. How does he do it??
All this was a bit complicated, as we were buying used (a CPO 3 year old Sienna LE with 20k miles). There are actually slightly different plans available on used vs new vehicles. The Certified Platinum (used) plan is slightly more inclusive, but must be purchased with the vehicle. The new plan can be purchased afterwards as long as the vehicle is within certain time/mileage requirements.
I actually did quite well dealing with the strong-arm guy in the smoky back room, negotiating a 7yr/100k, zero ded Certified Platinum plan for $1100. That’s not substantially above what Doug charges. It only took an hour of yelling and threats of bodily harm to get that price (just kidding…. I play a mean hand of poker, and it really wasn’t that bad). But after driving home and talking, we came to the conclusion that extending the coverage further made more sense for our projected use case. The dealership wasn’t willing to negotiate further on the upgrade, so we went back to the idea of shopping for a 'new' Platinum plan.
The real ‘fun’ began when I attempted to cancel out the first agreement. Talk about a live-and-learn experience! As of today, some 2.5 months after this all began, I still don’t have everything resolved.
Part one was Toyota Financial Services. Even though I put down substantial cash on the deal, I fell victim to the fine print clause that all refunds for cancelled items go to the lender! Yep, the $1100 was going against the loan, and not my credit card.
Part two was when TFS ‘lost’ my refund, sending it to the dealership instead of crediting my account. I finally got that resolved with proper posting date and interest credit two days ago, but it took two months, 8 calls and a third level supervisor, and threats of going to the Attorney General to get anyone to pay attention.
Part three is still ongoing – refund of sales tax. That is collected and paid to the state by the dealership, and not TFS. It happens that in NY the tax is refundable, but not so in many states, I’ve come to learn. TFS initially told me that I would never get it back. It seems that an insurance contract is not treated like most other goods and services. Tax paid could be money forfeited. So, be sure you really want the plan before buying it. I’ve been told it would be processed. The check is in the mail….. Yeah, right….
Net – Talk to Doug up front and save yourself a lot of trouble.
Current: '15 Sienna Limited Premium (FWD), '14 Subaru Outback, '13 Honda CRV AWD.
Past: '08 Sienna LE (FWD), '02 Subaru Outback, '02 Honda Odyssey EX