I believe the easiest (certainly for me and all the typing!), I'm going to copy and paste a letter I wrote to Mile High Honda's owner so you can see exactly what happened. As a short synopsis, I bought an '06 CR-V in June '07, found within hours that it had suffered interior damages from a prior accident by the former owner and was not reported, tried to "undo" the deal, ended up with an '08 and was charged way over invoice because they said the '06 had depreciated greatly in the 3 month period I had it. I also lost my trade-in value on my original auto (a BEAUTIFUL '02 very low mileage Camaro Z-28 T-Top, black and gorgeous!) As I said, it will be easier for all of us if you read the letter I sent to Mr. Ablin, owner of Mile High Honda. Here goes...
23 June 2008
MILE HIGH HONDA
Greetings Mr. Yuri,
It's sad to say, but I'd rather be buried in a deep hole with live and angry red fire ants than to purchase another vehicle from Mile High Honda. Read on and I'll tell you why.
In June of last year, I bought an '06 Honda CR-V EX for $21,558 including Dealer Prep and sales tax. The salesman was Antonio Aguilar. It was a difficult day for me because I was plagued with an all day killer-type migraine headache and spending at least 6 hours in your store didn't help matters nor did it put me "on alert" which I should have been. But due to the friendliness of Antonio and his general sales manager, Lee VanSickle and their assurances that I was buying from "the best" and all of the repeated statements about this being a CERTIFIED used Honda, I felt I could trust these sales people. In fact, every single time, I questioned something about the auto, Antonio's reply was IT'S HONDA CERTIFIED! He made it sound as though God himself was certifying this car.
During the transaction, I asked Antonio 4 times for the CARFAX and all four times, Antonio swiftly changed the subject and I was never given the background of the car. More importantly, the car HAD BEEN CRASHED and the exterior damage of the crash was obvious (to anyone without a blinding headache). No one could ever convince me that during the certification process, the damage wasn't spotted, noted and then IGNORED. Antonio probably received a bonus for being able to get rid of this lemon to an unsuspecting, trusting buyer. There were many other details of the car, both interior and exterior that proves this car was NOT inspected for certification.
Upon returning home after the purchase, my son looked at the car and immediately said "Mom, why did you buy a CRASHED car?" It was THAT obvious. I was stunned. It was already past your hours of operation or I would have driven the Honda back immediately and demanded my beautiful Chevy Camaro T-Top back. Instead, I had to wait 2 or 3 days because both my salesman and his manager had their days off following this sale. I allowed my son to drive the car to
Lee informed me that it was impossible to cancel the sale and put everyone back where they were before the sale….my trade-in Camaro was still on your lot for sale at that time. But…….he said he would immediately find me a replacement CR-V. We discussed details of what I'd accept even though at that point, I didn't want to accept anything from Mile High other than seeing your place of business in my REAR VIEW MIRROR. For the next 3 months, on a daily basis, I either talked to Lee, Antonio or Steve in person or on the phone. Lee kept assuring me that he had a piece of paper with my name and phone number ON TOP of the pile of papers on his desk and he was constantly looking for a replacement CR-V.
For the most part, I was polite and patient but at one point, I demanded that a professional inspection be made of the damages done to my car before I had became the owner. Your service department sent it to Prestige Imports and I spoke with Eric Gonzalez during this period. Prestige came back with an estimate of $3,000 to fix the damages. I asked Lee to have them fixed at Mile High's expense. He refused. By this time, more and more problems were showing up such as the car being reluctant to start which is why you will see in this letter in a moment why I dealt with you for the second time on another car.
The ONLY car that Mile High came up with to replace the '06 DAMAGED CR-V was an '05 CR-V which they priced at an ADDITIONAL FIVE THOUSAND DOLLARS. One year older, more mileage and $5 K more! Fool me once and it's my fault, fool me twice and I shouldn't be allowed outside the home making decisions. The call about the '05 was made to me by Steve and there was absolutely no way he would budge on the price and he stated he didn't think they were going to be able to find me another '06 CR-V because of high demand. Steve was the only Mile High employee who was rude to me throughout this whole deal and on several occasions. When he stated that he wouldn't be able to find me a replacement for the '06, his tone of voice and his words strongly implied…."get lost, lady because we are NOT going to help you……we have your money and that's all we care about". I don't even know Steve's title with Mile High. Lee kept telling me that Steve was the manager; thus Lee couldn't make any decisions, and yet Lee's business card says "General Sales manager". It doesn't give a customer a good feeling when the 'buck is passed' and they are moved to someone else especially when that someone else is rude.
Let me back up briefly to the original sale. My salesman, Antonio, was adamant (or well trained?) and kept assuring me - these are HIS words, not mine - that I don't have to worry about a HONDA CERTIFIED car because no car can be classified as such unless it is in tip-top shape. After several times of telling both Antonio and Lee that I had been denied a CARFAX, Lee told me "I'll get it for you but it's no big deal because that car has never had any wrecks, damage to the frame or damage to the structure beneath the frame. What are you guys? As blind as I was when I signed the dotted line? Do YOU ALL suffer from migraines too? I realize that when some people cause damage to their vehicles, they go to a private garage for repairs and the damages aren't reported to CARFAX and as such, aren't reported as salvaged vehicles. But you have CERTIFIED TECHNICIANS whose job is to CERTIFY Honda used vehicle as being safe and 'up to par'.
According to the
In September, I brought the '06 CR-V into the service department to begin the repair of items that were CERTIFIED but shouldn't have been. This didn't include the frame (and beneath) damages because you had already stated you would do nothing about them. While waiting for the service work, I went outside for a cigarette. There were no less than 8 salesmen standing around waiting for a prospective customer. I told them en-masse what I had gone through with the used division of Mile High Honda and stated that I wanted nothing to do with the company again. They all apologized for Mile High's actions and one of them, Al McGinnis pulled me aside and promised to make things right for me. He would sell me a new '08 CR-V; get the price down by not adding Dealer Prep and in general doing me right. GOD, I FELL FOR IT AGAIN. Only because I was at the point where I refused to drive that wrecked '06 back home.
Al sold me an '08 and I hate to say it but I HATE THAT CAR. The car runs perfectly and I get many compliments on its looks but every time a friend says he or she likes my car, I reply with "great! Do YOU want it? I HATE IT". My hate comes from the way in which I was treated by your company. My hate AND my anger which is at the point of boiling. I've wanted and tried to write this letter to you for the past 6 months, but every attempt I make leaves me frustrated, angry all over again and I am 'playing dynamite with my health'. I'm on disability and I usually spend the huge majority of my time home in bed or on the sofa. And I've allowed you to make a fool of me, jeopardize my health and put me into a car which has a hundred dollar higher payment than my last one though I told Al I HAD TO keep my payment the same - work with me please. As I stated earlier, I NEVER wanted to purchase another vehicle from Mile High but I also didn't want to take the 'crashed '06' home with me even one more time.
Here's a real kicker - my invoice price on the '08 was much higher than the sticker price. WHY? Because the car I BOUGHT FROM YOU A MERE THREE MONTHS AGO had depreciated in value. To hell with the fact that YOU sold it to me, to hell with the fact that you took my Camaro Z-28 in trade which meant I lost that trade-in portion and he also charged me ALL of the dealer prep fees which he had, minutes before, said he wouldn't. When I questioned him about this, his reply was "well, I HAVE TO". Right now, I owe approximately $4,000 MORE than the sticker price on a brand new '08 with absolutely no use or mileage. Yep, that's taking care of me alright. And the '09's will soon be available which will put me even more into the negative. Hey, thanks for taking care of me after the stunt pulled on me with the damaged '06 from your used car department.
There is a lot more to say, more figures to throw you way, but I'm going to conclude this letter with a short synopsis - for both of our sakes. By the way, when I use the pronoun "YOU" throughout this letter, I refer to YOU as the owner of Mile High Honda and to your employees all inclusive.
******You sold me a CERTIFIED USED 1 yr old vehicle. The certification form was a joke and the items included on it were not inspected for certification or they WERE and you chose to misrepresent them.
You sold me a CERTIFIED car without a CARFAX despite my attempts to obtain it and made light of the situation.
You sold me a car with OBVIOUS frame damage which meant prior damage due to a wreck and that most certainly should have been disclosed.
You jerked me around for 3 months saying you were trying to find me a replacement vehicle. I wonder why I find the fact that you couldn't find another like-vehicle to be another misrepresentation on your part.
You refused to repair the damages that were reported by Prestige Imports even though the $3000 it would have cost you likely represents a figure well below the profit you made by selling me the '06 and by selling my trade-in Camaro.
You "helped" me by selling me an '08 WELL ABOVE MARKET VALUE, totally cheating me out of my original trade in and telling me that the '06 value had depreciated a ton in 3 months which required you to sell it at a higher price.
You are guilty of misrepresentation which by law is FRAUD and GROSS NEGLIGENCE.
You employed GIMMICKS and other stall tactics perpetrating DISHONESTY and DECEPTION.
You are guilty of MORAL TURPITUDE and DEPRAVITY.
You employed MISCONDUCT insofar as professional standards and practices which means….
Business duties which a person owes to his fellow human beings or society in general and characterizes an act of vileness and depravity contrary to that which is accepted and customary to the rules, rights and duties between retailer and customer.
Your conduct was done KNOWINGLY, contrary to JUSTICE, HONESTY and GOOD MORALS.
Your KNOWLEDGE of the problems with Vehicle #1 were intentionally hidden and misrepresented which resulted in RECKLESS CONDUCT.
In summary, Mr. Ablin, what will Mile High Honda propose as recourse to this sale(s)?
I received a letter of response a few days later denying all of the FACTS and was told nothing would be done to UNDO this unfortunate situation. Unfortunate FOR ME but certainly not for Mile High Honda. So, my fellow Americans, I NEED TO LOCATE THE OWNER OF THE '06 HONDA CR-V. I hope you can help by forwarding the link to this website to everyone you know. I DOUBT that the current owner purchased the CR-V from Mile High. Once they realized all of their current and probable future problems with this vehicle, they more than likely sold it at AUCTION. That means ANY DEALERSHIP (or personal party) could have purchased it. All I can basically do at this point is tell you BUYER BEWARE and give you the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) and hope we have success in finding the current owner. The first question that will pop into your mind is "why didn't she hire an attorney?". Quite simply, I have neither the funds, the health or the energy to enter into litigation but I'm open to suggestions.
The VIN of the '06 Silver Honda CR-V EX is SHSRD78826U409831. THE CURRENT OWNER DESERVES TO KNOW THE INFORMATION THAT WAS WITHHELD FROM ME.
THANKS FOR READING ALL OF THIS (if you did!!) and feel free to respond.