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(letter composed this morning to my ex-dealer........ I swear to Buddha I will go to motorcycle school and start my own dealership so's I'll never be disappointed -- or raped -- again!)



November 13, 2008

XXXXXXXXXXX

XXXXXXXXXXX

XXXXXXXXXXX

Dear XXXXXX:

I have been a motorcyclist since 1966, and a serious, almost fanatical, motorcycle tourer since 1989. Over the years, I’ve owned a 50 cc Supercub, a CL160, a CL305, a Magna 700, two Goldwings, an ST1300, and a Nighthawk 750. While I purchased none of my bikes from you, primarily because your prices ran 10-15% higher than everywhere else, I have purchased hundreds, perhaps thousands, of dollars of parts and equipment from you. Helmets, jackets, brakes, oil, filters, tires, OEM parts.... lots of expensive stuff.

Recently, the battery in my 2007 ST1300 ( a new holdover purchased in late August with 0 miles on the odometer) failed on a ride from Ellensburg to Bickleton to Goldendale and back. Stuck on Highway 22 right outside of high crime Mabton, I was too nervous to leave the bike and I sent a friend in with my battery for a replacement. You didn’t have the proper one in stock, but you provided one that would get me off the highway, at the staggering price of $173.

I learned later from the west side dealer that sold me the ST (with a defective battery) that my new bike warranty covered the bike and battery for three years. I also learned that there is a procedure you can use, a failure code, that would secure a new, proper battery for my bike. You didn’t tell me that. You didn’t even inform me that my battery was under warranty. You just sold me the incorrect battery for $173. I think that perhaps you could have seen your way to provide me with a loaner to get me back, and then utilized the proper steps so I could get a warranty replacement. Had you done so, I would have left your shop satisfied and remained your customer until the end of my riding days. You didn’t, and so I won’t. This is my last Honda, and I’ve bought my last item from your shop.

I don’t know what my next new bike will be, perhaps a Harley, perhaps a Victory, but I do know that it won’t be a Honda.

Sincerely,

Mel Goudge, Ellensburg



cc: American Honda



(blankety blank blanked blankful dealers!)
 

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Thats a terrible experience,,, but in this economic climate,, are all dealers the same:baffled: as sales a sale to most, and now that ive got your money ,,,,up yours ,, seems to be there business code:(
 

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:waving:Hey CJ: That is a special battery you have thar! If you look closely you will see that the battery posts are gold filled. Anyone knows that gold conducts electricity the best. Seem to me you is just upset a bit. Wish I had a gold filled battery!!:action::action::action:Kit
 

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Don't punish Honda for a stupid dealer! Stay honda, diff dealer!
 

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Kit Carson wrote:
Seem to me you is just upset a bit. Wish I had a gold filled battery!!:action::action::action:Kit
I wish you had one, too, Kit..... I wish you had this one. Tell you what, buy me the correct battery for my bike, and as soon as I get it, I'll send you this one........

Upset? Me? Not me..... not me! (Now, where in hell did I put my SKS Yugo 59.... and the bisquit tin of 7.62 X 39 Russian cartridges..... hell, people've shot up post offices, schools, and corporate board offices..... why not Honda dealerships? I might even get my name in the paper.....! Not an OEM battery, but somethin'.......)

:X:X:X:X

Honda dealersused to have a pretty good reputation for service andcustomer relations.... what happened?
 

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;) Well other than just messing around to kill time. Mainly what I observe at some of the dealers is there is a large flow of people coming and going all the time. The people do not know this dealer have never been there, and the dealer does not know them, and could care less if he does. Some dealers in outlying towns and have not a great flow of customers are very easy to work with , but those that have a large flow of people buying all kinds of things such as polish, oil, this or that, really do not care as they make little overall profit off bike sales and the most is from nic nacs they sell.

I think many businesses have became impersonal type businesses. As the world has grown and they do not have concerns about people walking through their doors, well, they just become distanced from the customer. A sign of the times, it is not just Honda dealers it is all of them.

I still know one very good dealer. He is pretty cool, will help you in anyway he can, makes a comfortable living and is of the old mindset to just be an ordinary guy . Not many left like him. It is now the age of the young, computers, and marketing. Some dealers I do not suppose have ever even rode a bike, it is just a job, something they do, they in no way comprehend why a dog sticks his head out the car window.

Kit
 

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I agree, don't blame the machine on incompetant people. Try another store, I had a similar experience and I felt like they had be by the short hairs, I found another dealership that does care... Hope you do too!
 

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Well it is raining, and I am stuck inside, cannot go do a whole lot. So home goofing off, and I am a business owner and boy sometimes I get aggravated at customers!

I just had one fellow call me and tell me he needed an electrician, ok I say. I think maybe you should call an electrician, I am a plumber.

Just now a lady calls and says....I am looking for a plumber. Yes maam I told her I am a plumber how can I help you. She says ARE YOU A PLUMBER??. At this point with a little mischief I told her No maam, I am a mortician, how can I be of service to you. :cheeky1::cheeky1::cheeky1::cheeky1:

Customers can be a pain too!!

Kit
 

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Yeah.... I'm a customer, all right.........

A customer who bought a new ST1300 right off the floor, paying $8000 down, making a contract for the asking price (too noble to haggle, me). The bike, purchased just 2 1/2 months ago,and now with just 3,000 miles on it, coughs up it's sparky life on a long ride, leaving me stranded in inhospitable territory. Pardon me, but I don't think a dealer should sell a new bike with a submarginal battery.... that's guddamned dealer #1. The dealer that sent me off with a new bike and a near dead battery. Cool.



Then comes Guddamned dealer #2, when I am desperate and deep behind enemy lines, and sells me a battery at least $75-$100 overpriced, without telling me (or DR Fred my faithful companion) that my bike and OEM battery are under warranty, but only if they send my battery in with the failure code.... when I called, they conveniently can't remember the incident (less than a month ago!) or they try and mush-mouth me into believing that the whole thing is my fault for accepting the wrong battery! Oh, yes..... I'm a customer...... a very po'd customer, who will never forgive the two dealerships or Mother Honda for letting those people be dealerships..... nossir....... my last Honda. BMW, Harley, Aprilia, Victory..... something different next time.

Imay be slow, but I never forget....ever......
 

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Those types of dealers are common enough.

The bigger problem is that all the other brands of bikes have the same type of dealers.

Don't blame the maker, just find the right dealer &/or service tech. They ARE out there.

Not all dealers see the logic in saving a nickel to lose a dollar.
 

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Sad thing is almost every Japanese bike dealer I ever worked for was a no good lying cheating greedy bass turd. The last one I felt so sorry for. He and his brother both had two homes, the ones in town averaging well over 6000squarefeet. Both had really nice boats, both had Crew cabs, both had 2 BMW cars. Yet they were always looking for ways to scheme the customers and employees out of a few bucks. Some of the things they tried. Packaging cheap chains in expensive chain boxes. Marking up tires before sales. Sell cheap hardware as genuine Honda/Yamaha/Harley and all sorts of other assorted rip offs. What really bugged was them taking out dirt bike for the weekends, sometime 10 to 15 of them then bring them back to the showroom floor as new.
If you want a dealer that will love you, remember your name, send you a giftmass card, ask about your family, open the shop at night to help you out, you need a Harley or a BMW.
If you lived in the SanFrancisco bay area I'd add Guzzi and Ducati, but in most other areas they've been whored out to sub human dealers.
 

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Go back to the dealership and try to figure out where he parks his car or truck. Then about once a month start taking rides in the dark of night.

Get some of those roofing nails used to hold the felt paper down, called button caps. Be sure to the the ones with a metal head on them about an inch in diameter.

Guaranteed to land point up.
 

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:)how many miles have you done on a Honda,,trouble free,,in your riding life,, i bet loads, ive done loads over 37yrs,,,all on a Honda,, great machines,,, ive had bad dealers ,,like the one that didnt do my anti dive valve right,, charged me £190, but didnt do there job right,,,,,, the main Honda dealer,, £90 and spot on :clapper:the problem here is the dealer ,that sold you a duff battery,,,, ,, go and change your make of bike cj,, but ill bet your back on a Honda within two yrs of paying BMW charges and riding Suzuki:shock::shock::shock:
 

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Cousin Jack,

Hope you better luck than I had with a similar experience. I finally heard back from American Honda and while they felt bad about my experience, they did nothing to soothe my nerves.... or put any of my money back into my pocket...
 

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This is one of the reasons I am very satisfied with my GL1100. I don't ever need the dealer. I have been fortunate to find a mechanic that specializes in older bikes (especially wings) and helps me find any part I need. I too agree.... don't expect much different treatment from any brand dealer. Some believe in customer service and some don't.
 

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I'm feeling kinda guily on this one. We have a local honda dealer who is great to work with. Works on any honda regardless of how old it is, even does some work on other kinds of bikes. He treats his customers well, regardless if their new or old. This for instance, the PO of my bike took it in and had all the sensors and electronics replaced to the engine temperature guage about a month before I bought it. I noticed after I bought it that it wasn't working so I called him up, he told to bring it in and that he would fix no charge because if they had fixed it should still be working whether I owned at the time or not.

He knows how to keep customers.
 

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gasseous wrote:
Cousin Jack,

Hope you better luck than I had with a similar experience. I finally heard back from American Honda and while they felt bad about my experience, they did nothing to soothe my nerves.... or put any of my money back into my pocket...
Well I am very easy going, love to mess around, but on the serious side , American Honda is not someone I am a Fan of either.

Yea they told me they felt so very bad about my issues and they would document the situation and bring it to the attention of the Board.

I did not say so, but I was thinking. OK.......I will give you something to document, here hows about document this? :D:D It is very frustrating to deal with those people. I am convinced they hold class and train the whole public relations department on how to avoid the customer.

Kit
 

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Send the bill for the battery to Honda and explain that the dealer was clearly trying to scam you. honda hates that. Dealers get their stock based on CSI (customer satisfaction index) and thus in a round about way, you will be impacting the bad dealer.



I no longer use a dealer. I found a really honest shop that works on everything. They took on my product for their shelves simply because I had bought so much for from the for my Valk. Then,, they sold me my wing at one hell og a good price because i greed on it before they owned it. They made $200 just for facilitating the deal and went all out on the safety inspection during which they decide i would need new tire with in a month or so and changed them at no charge to me (apparently).
 

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IIRC, the warranty on the battery for the ST1300 is one year.

I'm unclear on when you bought the 07 ST. If you bought it in August of 07 and it failed recently then you're past the 1 year warranty. If you bought it in August of 08 then the failure should have been covered by the OEM warranty as the warranty begins when you buy the bike, not when it's made, or delivered to the dealer. You might consider talking to the Regional Service Manager and present your case.

And the $173 you were charged is less than the $214 I was quoted. I ended up getting a Yuasa AGM replacement locally for around $150 and installing it myself.

My battery problem, and it may be different from yours, was that it lacked the capacity to start the ST. Once started the bike ran fine, the gizmos' worked fine, and I had no indications of possible failure. This may be due to the large alternator, the somewhat light loads I placed on the electrical system, or that the battery was still capable of providing power to the bike but not spin the starter and provide enough voltage to run the ECU.

As for the failure code, when the battery in my 06 ST1300A started failing I got no failure code on the bike. As the battery continued to degrade, I got no fail code, or did I get one when the battery died. Btw, the battery lasted 22 months and I knew it was on its last legs.

I've yet to find a dealer with a proper battery condition tester. Most service folks do a voltage check and that's not as accurate as load testing the battery. As a result, I monitor how well the battery cranks the engine over and plan on replacing the battery about every 18 months.
 
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