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Need help/advice on a Dealer's Body Shop issue....

snobrdrdan

former GTI owner
Bear with me on this story/ramble....

So we picked up our new '20 Chevy Traverse on 10/21/19, for kid hauling duty (wife's car).

~3 weeks later, on 11/13/19, a young girl ran a red light & hit it while the wife was on her way to work (she was fine).

It went to the local Chevy dealer's body shop ~3 weeks later (they were waiting on parts for a while) and it was repaired. Completed date was 12/27/19, but there were a few little things they missed.

So it went back to them at end of January '20 and they were supposed to fix those little things, but they didn't & we picked up the car 2/24/20. He said to bring it back in a few weeks.
Well, then COVID happened and then the dealership was shut down for 3 months.

During that time, I was finally able to wash the car (it's my wifes) and found some damage from when they removed the lower rocker panels. (pics below)

So once the dealer opened, I went up there June 5th & I went to the General Manager of the dealer (the body shop manager wasn't gonna care) and showed him. He said he'd "run interference" instead of me talking to the body shop manager.

So I hadn't heard anything and went up there the other day (July 15th) and I went to the body shop manager, who had handled our repair from the beginning.
I asked if he had spoke with the GM about the damage and he said he hadn't heard back about anything about it. Then I asked if I could show him.
We walk out to the car and the first thing he said was "we didn't touch or remove those."
I open the passenger door and he denies they touched them right away. He goes to the driver's side, where it's clearly worse (dented/plastic messed up) and denies it again.
He states that the trim comes off "easily with your hands, with no force whatsoever."
I ask him, "did you remove them then?"
He says, "Did we?"
I try explaining that they are one way push clips and they don't "easily" remove.
He begs to differ and tries showing me the clips and now he says "there's a tool that slides in there and easily removes them" (I thought they could be removed by hand though, he said?)
So then I'm back to the....okay, so the tool left the marks then & he denies it still.
During this time, he is sweating profusely and clearly flustered. He kept trying to end the conversation with "I'm done, have a good day" and trying to walk away with me as his answer. He kept saying I was "trying to talk over him" while I was trying to discredit all his wrong statements instead of him trying to derail the conversation.
He even asked where I bought the car from...eluding that the damage may have been there already on a factory fresh NEW car....umm, no buddy.
Anyways....he ask me for the repair order & I don't have it on me. He goes inside and prints it off.
He says the repairs were done in December and it's now July and I just noticed this damage. He clearly forgot that they've been closed for 3 months & there's nothing I could've done anyways.
So he looks over the repair order & THEN he finally mumbles....yeah, the trim was removed & then throws the repair order at me.
Okay...so you guys removed it & you did the damage. He denies it still and says he'll take a picture and send it to the GM but they probably won't do anything.
THEN he accuses me of trying to get "non accident related damage" fixed. He's failing to see the point that THEY caused that damage during removal.
i.e.....if they remove glass from a car & they accidentally break it, are they just not going to replace that glass? Common sense
He's getting mad/flustered again and saying that I was being "too picky" and that it's back to "factory condition" now and that I combed the car over when we took it and now it's my fault that I missed the rocker panel damage at the time.

MIND YOU: it was like 10 degrees & the middle of winter when the wife picked the car up. The damage was all in the front. I would've never have guessed to look at the lower rocker panel, which is unrelated, but for some reason had to be removed.
PLUS, it's my wife's car....I hardly drive it.

So after that he slammed the (my) car door a few times out of anger & then the hood, said he was done with the conversation and walked off into the office to avoid me.

That all said....now what do I do?
You can clearly see that the plastic trim is marred up from the/a trim tool during removal, as well as the lower rocker metal being scratched deep in the clip locations & the dents on the driver's side too.

Okay...I'm pretty anal about my stuff, not gonna lie. This is/was a brand new car though & I feel like this is totally unacceptable and should fall on them.
Any advice???


Pics...original damage:






Driver's side rocker panel:






Rear driver's door:


Rear passenger door:


Passenger door:




 

boostnonu

Go Kart Newbie
Location
SOCAL
for someone that has worked in the dealerships for 14 years that’s pretty bad. Have you contacted your insurance. You waiting on GM, they probably never contacted them. Due to this is ALL on the body shop. Write a letter to the owner of the dealer with pics. Who ever that did the work has no pride in his own work.
 

Phur

Autocross Champion
Location
IN
Car(s)
2013 VW GTI Autobahn
That’s terrible. You definitely should not let it go. I’m not sure what your course of action should be though. Please keep us in the loop. I’m sending you positive energy. 👍
 

snobrdrdan

former GTI owner
So an update....I went up there and talked to the General Manager today and he said he had talked to the Body Shop manager on Wednesday or Thursday and gave him the go ahead to repair it and that he was supposed to get with me to schedule it.
The GM said "repair the dents" though....but I told him I really wanted the plastic replaced, if anything. Although both should/need to be done.
So we'll see what happens

I'm not thrilled that I have to deal with the Body Shop manager again though. I think I'll have my wife deal with him this time, as he was completely different/had no attitude whatsoever when she was around before.
 

averyislost

Go Kart Champion
Location
Charlotte, NC
Car(s)
2020 GTI S
From the pictures, that 100% looks to be damage from a tool wedged in there trying to get the plastic off. That is ridiculous. I hope you're able to get it back to like-new condition like it should be.

From my own experience, I had a Ford bodyshop connected to the dealership fix my old Fiesta ST after a minor fender bender (literally just a bent driver side fender). Well, when I got it back it had runs in the paint on the new fender, "trash" in the paint in a few places where they blended the paint, the hood did not align with the front bumper, driver headlight, OR the fender, they scuffed up my driver side Recaro seat, AND the driver side mirror would vibrate constantly after that.

Took several trips back to get most of that ironed out, but eventually I had to live with the mirror shaking and the scuffed seat. It seems like bodyshops cater to the 90% of people that just don't care, but for the 10% of people who actually CARE about their car, it's a whole 'nother scenario.
 

mkv_martinez

Go Kart Champion
Location
USA
I can't believe how much damage they left on the car. It's so hard to catch stuff like that when picking up the car sometimes - if the paint matches and body gaps look good those smaller details are hard to catch in the moment without spending like 30 minutes going over things before leaving.

I stay so far away from dealerships and anything to do with them - the few time's I've gotten my oil changed there I checked the oil level before turning the car on to make sure they even put any in. Its so hard to get them to admit to and then fix their own mistakes; they can almost never be trusted. Just look at how he tried the spin the "oh its been months and you are just now coming back now" as if COVID didn't bring most of the world to a halt. If I was in the market for a new car I might buy a Tesla just to spite dealerships (Telsa is Direct to consumer).

I can't even imagine how they damaged the body of the car that much trying to remove the plastic trim. It looks like they stopped just short of swinging a hammer at it to get it off.
 

brat_burner

Autocross Champion
Location
Murrrrica
Car(s)
2013 GTI
Wowwwww, yea no way I would let that slide. What a clown this manager must be. I've taken rocker panels off some GM cars and they SLIDE off. Then you take the clips out and put them back in the part. You only press the panel in during the installation process, not removal. Maybe there's a chance a hack job new guy didn't know this.... I'd demand more than just getting it fixed, worried they'll just slap body filler on it.
 

1ashchuckton

Autocross Champion
Location
Ohio
First mistake using the dealer's body shop. My take is they are some of the worst out there. If you need a shop in the future do some research & use the best out there. Been there done that.

My take is yes I'd want that fixed. That's an awful job, but I would worry about the fact that they quite possibly screw it up even worse. I'd want the plastic parts replaced. If they fix those dents they will grind bondo & repaint. Maybe you'll see rust there in the future if they do. Good luck with this.
 

Blakcard

Autocross Newbie
Location
Toronto, ON
Insurance company. Contact them. Let them get the dealer to replace all damaged parts with brand new parts.
 

DiscusInferno

Go Kart Newbie
Location
Kalifornia
Insurance company. Contact them. Let them get the dealer to replace all damaged parts with brand new parts.

Insurance companies tend to offer their "lifetime" warranty on collision repairs performed by their preferred providers. If the dealership was one of their preferred providers, then yes, the insurance company should handle it.

If the OP decided not to utilize one of the insurance company's preferred providers, then he's on his own.

There are some questions though:
1) Is the dealership a GM-certified collision repair center?
if no, then 2) did the dealership outsource the repairs to a GM certified repair center? If the outsourced collision place is not a GM certified collision repair center... probably best to call up GM customer service and open a case file and get corporate involved.
 

snobrdrdan

former GTI owner
First mistake using the dealer's body shop. My take is they are some of the worst out there. If you need a shop in the future do some research & use the best out there. Been there done that.

My take is yes I'd want that fixed. That's an awful job, but I would worry about the fact that they quite possibly screw it up even worse. I'd want the plastic parts replaced. If they fix those dents they will grind bondo & repaint. Maybe you'll see rust there in the future if they do. Good luck with this.
Yeah...maybe I didn't investigate it too much & that's my fault. They were the closest and the guy said he'd give us a loaner vehicle while they did the repairs (since I didn't have rental car coverage on the policy).
The lady at the desk said everyone that worked there, had been there for a while (like the painter, 20+ years) minus the body shop manager who'd been there a few months when I brought it to them.

The paint work isn't terrible, which is shocking. Perfect match & blend.
Upon install of some of the parts though they scratched the fresh paint too, in a couple spots, which I don't understand how that happens (like when they installed the fog light bezels into the bumper)....along with that damage when they removed the trim.

So yeah...just some hack work by whoever did the trim removal & install.


I'm not gonna lie....if they repair it, I'm wondering how much effort they will (or more importantly, won't) put into it since it's costing them money to do it/not getting paid.
 
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snobrdrdan

former GTI owner
Insurance company. Contact them. Let them get the dealer to replace all damaged parts with brand new parts.
I'll reach out to them, but I have a feeling this is all gonna fall on the shop (since they did the damage) & insurance won't get involved or step up.
But it doesn't hurt to ask I guess
 

snobrdrdan

former GTI owner
Insurance companies tend to offer their "lifetime" warranty on collision repairs performed by their preferred providers. If the dealership was one of their preferred providers, then yes, the insurance company should handle it.

If the OP decided not to utilize one of the insurance company's preferred providers, then he's on his own.

There are some questions though:
1) Is the dealership a GM-certified collision repair center?
if no, then 2) did the dealership outsource the repairs to a GM certified repair center? If the outsourced collision place is not a GM certified collision repair center... probably best to call up GM customer service and open a case file and get corporate involved.
In Michigan, I could've taken it to any shop I want.
This one wasn't a preferred shop though. They wanted me to take it to their Progressive body shop, and I wasn't too confident in that idea at all.

They did the repairs there on site though.
I would assume it's a GM repair center. Certified though? No clue.

This dealer has/offers "Lifetime Warranty Repairs" though, lol

If I could open a case, should I though since the GM said they're going to fix/handle it?
 

snobrdrdan

former GTI owner
This is a lease car btw. Should I care 100%? Probably not, BUT we're still paying a decent amount of money for it & we still have 27 months to go on it.
And it's the general principle that the vehicle shouldn't have been returned in this condition.
I shouldn't have to look at the hack work every time I get in the car, since it's on the driver's door sill, only to be reminded of it.
 

brat_burner

Autocross Champion
Location
Murrrrica
Car(s)
2013 GTI
This is a lease car btw. Should I care 100%? Probably not, BUT we're still paying a decent amount of money for it & we still have 27 months to go on it.
And it's the general principle that the vehicle shouldn't have been returned in this condition.
I shouldn't have to look at the hack work every time I get in the car, since it's on the driver's door sill, only to be reminded of it.

I would check your lease terms. Typically they dismiss any damage smaller than a credit card. But I wouldn’t be shocked if they tried to make you liable at lease turn in.
 
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