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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
What kind of Micky Mouse crap is this? I mean really, if my dealer submitted an order to them - four months ago - there isn't any reason why someone - anyone shouldn't be able to tell me approximately when my car will be built.

I'm really getting pissed off that every time I call the dealer or Lotus USA nobody knows anything.

If nothing else, they should at least have the decency to let us know how many people are in front of us.

With all the "gift" cars dealers are mysteriously receiving, it really makes me think that Lotus is giving dealers cars to sell for what they can get out of them - deposit holders be damned.

Lotus if your reading this, I'm just one or two more "I don't know" responses away from a new Porsche.

Get your **** together for christ sakes. :wallbang:
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Johnny B said:
The Elise is worth waiting for. A hand made, rolling art form that handles and responds like no other car.
I don't mind waiting if someone can give me a straight answer.

I wasted the entire season in SCCA racing this year because I was expecting my car in June - as originally promised to me by my dealer. Its almost September and I still can't get a firm date.

And pardon me, but thats bullshit.

If my suppliers worked like this in the business world, I'd have gotten new ones years ago.
 

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Amen Joe...don't let any of these guys give you sh!t about being upset over not getting any straight answers.
 

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Wow, number 13 and yet no solid info. From "Doomed" at #36. :p
 

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Joecooool said:
No, I get the same response when I call Lotus in Atlanta.
who have you talked to, what did you ask, and what did they say?

by the way, LOA is the dealership in Atlanta. LCU is Lotus USA
 

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Discussion Starter #10
atyclb said:
who have you talked to, what did you ask, and what did they say?

by the way, LOA is the dealership in Atlanta. LCU is Lotus USA
I wasn't talking to the dealership.

I've spoken with three people there, the last one was Gary.
 
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IF someone at Matheny promised you a car by a certain date, then they lied or are full of B.S.

My car is on order from Matheny too, and they flat out told me they don't know when my car would come.

They gave me "approximate" due dates...
 

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Joe,

Information can be difficult to get but honestly your dealer is really dropping the ball. LCU was catching hell talking to buyers directly and the dealers insisted on being the middle man. The problem is they don't pick up messages, return calls or frankly have the dedication to the buyers or the brand to follow up. Is it all dealers? No, just most of them.

Also, and this is a fact, THERE ARE NO GIFT CARS!!! Just Dealerships full of crap trying to make their shady actions look better when they sell demos, trade cars or buy them at auction.
 

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Damn right

Amen 100% Joecool. The level of presale "customer care" is dogsh!t. Lotus knows it, the dealers know it, and we know it.

There are enough excuses made here to justify the Iraqi invasion, and we are closer to WMDs than Elise delivery dates.

I share your pain, frustration, and a tad of anger, though I don't share your penchant for Porsche.

As far as I can tell, it goes like this:

Lotus UK just wants to build and sell cars. On that count, they're doing mighty fine, building them and selling them to LCU as fast as they can. Bless their British hearts, and godspeed.

Lotus USA is the first middleman. They don't give a damn about you or me, the buyers. They really don't. Anyone who believes otherwise is invited to call LCU and ask them to call me with an order number, delivery date, or just "hello, here's a guess regarding your car". Their job is to strike 'allocation' deals with the dealerships, transport cars, and represent Lotus in the US, and they seem to be doing a piss-poor job at all three. As far as pre-sales support, they're a non-entity.

Why? Because their relationship is with the Dealerships. They sell to the dealers. They need the dealers, and they will do nothing to piss off the dealers. And by that I mean dealer owners, general managers, etc. (Most of the sales puds are as uninformed as we are and will be working somewhere else in two months anyway.)

For Lotus UK or USA to tell us one bit more than the dealers deign to say -- well, that would be seen as backstabbing. The dealership wants to control the sales transaction and the flow of information. Why? Maximum profit, maximum flexibility. They're torqued to no end that we're tracking the cars, counting deliveries, telling them they can't swap for a preimum, etc. They've got a waitlist a mile long, and a trickle of deliveries.

Meanwhile, they're trying to figure out what to do about this $40k car that's going to use expensive Italian marble floor space.

If you get pissed off and drive home in a 911, they lose exactly zero dollars. If you bail out of your waitlist position, they $profit$ handsomely. If they give a test-drive, they will sell exactly zero more cars. It's no surprise that we, the enthusiasts, rank somewhere around teenage kids with their noses pressed against the glass, eyes wide with excitement over the red Ferrari's.

We really have no alternative but to wait, pay premiums, and say Thank You when they eventually return our calls.
 

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I think feeding information from LCU through the dealers to the customers is basically the right way to do it. Interacting with customers is the dealers job. The problem is that it's not working. I see two issues:

1. LCU doesn't give dealers the information they need.

2. Some (not all) dealers don't pass the little information they have on to the customers.

I get the impression that LCU is overwhelmed with delivering cars in these quantities. As a result, certain things get neglected, and keeping the dealers updated is one of them.

Dealers not telling customers the truth... Well, call me cynical, but they're car dealers. There's a reason why their profession has a bad reputation. Fortunately there are good ones around, but there are also plenty of bad apples. As consumers, all we can do is support the good ones, and hope that evolution takes care of the rest.
 

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tradition

After talking to my salesman after a test drive last week, I don't think Lotus knows when they'e building what. I think they're more like the restoration shop that takes your car and works on it when they work on it and it gets done when it gets done. I think they intend to go about business as they always have and know that real Lotus-philes understand that.
Another insight into 'lists' and 'numbers': My salesman told me up front that the first five cars they ordered were two demos and three cars for inventory in case one of their long term, loyal customers wanted one, so the 'numbers' on the 'list' actually started after #5. That seems fair enough to me. He also told me that if people make themselves a pain in the whatever, they don't want them as customers anyhow.
I also look at things from a little different perspective. I've wanted an Elise since '96 and wasn't at all sure they would ever be available, so after waiting eight years, a few more months is no big deal. Anything worth having is worth waiting for. Or how about, "Waiting is half the fun!" Feel better now? Probably not. How about, "The ultimate state is being on the edge of not knowing." I'm not sure what that means, but it sounded good to me!
 

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I can't speak about Matheny (because I don't know anything about them).. but some dealers can't answer the question because there is no answer the buyer wants to hear.

For example... a certain dealer gets 10 cars per year. LCU tells them to take a certain number of "orders" from customers. All dealers take the first 10 (some mixed in with their own orders and demos). Higher allocation dealers take the next 20 also or a total of 30.

The lower allocation dealer has enough cars for an entire year's production. Customers ask why they have not been asked for order 13 for example. Dealer (or because LCU asked?) takes the next 20 orders also, just like the bigger dealers. But they are not submitted to LCU.

LCU submits various build sheets to Hethel, this includes 10 orders from the smallest allocation, to 30 orders from the largest.

Nothing has changed since that time. A customer will call LCU and ask for information about their car. But there is none. LCU has a legal contract that defines the allocations and their relationship to the dealer and can not tell you what the allocations are. SO they tell you to talk to the dealer.

And maybe even the dealer knows you have no car in build, but it's not a lie to tell you "we have no information" or "Lotus has not told us anything." Right... of course they have not.

AGAIN... not speaking specifically about Joe's order at Matheny. But this is a real scenario.
 

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Lotus USA

Joecool,

I totally agree with you - I am #9 at Overseas Motors. I went there today after not receiving any answers on when my car will arrive.

They said they have sent several emails to Lotus USA and have not received a reply...... Come on Lotus USA answer them... The lack of response is crap..

Publish the dealer allotments....tell me when my car will be delivered....say something......

I am now considering buying a Noble as I dont know if I will get the Elise in September, December or whenever....

I placed my order back in January - have tried to change the color to Laser Blue and been denied - dont even know if the car has been built yet....

This is incredibly frustrating.... We need some customer service!!!!!!
 

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ConeFusion said:
Dealers not telling customers the truth... Well, call me cynical, but they're car dealers. There's a reason why their profession has a bad reputation. Fortunately there are good ones around, but there are also plenty of bad apples. As consumers, all we can do is support the good ones, and hope that evolution takes care of the rest.
Ahh, but there's the rub.

How could I possibly pick an honest dealership with a healthy allocation a year ago?

They all had the same "Probably April" story, they all thought they were getting a bunch, and of course, they are all the most honest and forthright founts of information -- ask them yourself.

Proximity and total luck, that's how we pick dealerships.
 
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