Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Since so many NICOclub staffers and members own a Miata, here's a spot to discuss the car Nissan wishes it had built!
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OriginalWheelman
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Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby OriginalWheelman » Wed Jun 26, 2013 8:45 am

After our recent experiences with used cars, my wife and I decided buying a new car was a better idea. So I went online and looked around. Unfortunately the only place that had a manual Versa hatch was Dobbs Nissan (now Autonation), and they have a pretty bad reputation. We went anyways. They had the car listed on their website for $12,999. An S model hatch with no options and that was fine with us. So we took a look at it, and decided to work on financing. Now, our credit situation isn't perfect. I have never financed a damned thing in my life. I have no credit score at 32. I always followed my Grandfather's advice of "if you can't afford to pay cash for it, you can't afford it." As or my wife, she has some student loans and that's about it. So nothing bad, but nothing really good either.

As I said, they had it listed for $12,999 on thier website, and the salesman starts to write it up for $14,275. I pointed it out and I got the "That's not the same car" speech, even though it was the ONLY manual Versa this side of Nashville. I was tempted to go to Nashville to get one just to avoid Dobbs. We already own a Versa, a friend of mine has had one since '07 and it has been a great car, so it's not like I needed to test drive one. Well I figure I'd go home and print out the add and come back and argue later, so I told him to run the financing with those numbers to see what we can come up with. This was on Saturday. I was told I'd hear from him early Monday morning. Well Monday afternoon arrives and I still hadn't heard anything. So I call Anthony, the salesman, and he says to me "Sorry i didn't call sooner but I only get paid if I sell a car and I couldn't get you financed so I didn't bother." Wow, real classy. So I drive into the dealership, figuring something must be wrong and I wanted to talk to the finance people myself. Well I get in there and I get stuck with Anthony again. This time he says well we couldn't get you financed with nothing down. I told him I wanted to put down as little as possible when we spoke the first time,but that I could put down up to $5,000. I asked if he had bothered running ti with the down payment and he told me no. So I waited while he did. He then returned with $4,500 down and a 27% interest rate! :confused: :ohno: WTF? It would be better to take the money out on a cash advance on a credit card than finance it that way. He shrugged and told me it was the best they could do. So I walked out.

I was so pissed off from this situation I went home and got on Cars.com. I looked up what other new cars we could get for under $15k. There were a few options but none of them stuck out at me except one. The Mazda2. When the Z when all Christine on me, we had a Mazda6 for a rental car, and I was really impressed with the suspension on it. I mean REALLY impressed. I have a bad back, and I used to think being comfortable over bumps meant body roll in the corners and lackluster handling, but the Mazda6 did both very well. So we drove down and looked at a Mazda2 Touring on the lot at Gwatney Mazda in Germantown. We didn't know what to expect out of the 2 as neither of us had driven one. So we took i out for a drive and both of us fell in love with it. It is comfortable, well equipped, and easy for me to get in and out of. It handles great, has plenty of get up and go. My wife and I both had the same thought, it reminded us of driving our NX2000. My wife has not been excited about a car in years. Every car we have driven she always responds with "I'd rather keep the Civic." and that included a new Civic and a Honda Fit. She was all set to give up the Civic for the Mazda2 the day we drove it.

So we filled out paperwork and set to financing. The price they had offered us was $15,375. That's almost $2,000 off the list price for the Touring. They then worked out financing and told us $2,500 down, and 11% interest. :) I was excited. So we set things in motion and picked her up last night. Our salesman Greg was fantastic. He went out of his way to get things arranged on a time that worked of us, even offering to come in on his day off to deliver the car. He went through the whole car's controls with Pam, and even walked us around the dealership to introduce us to the Service Manager and show us where to bring the car in for repairs and oil changes. So this morning my wife went to work in her first new car. :)

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Plenty of Cargo space.

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1.5L VVT engine.

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We're very happy with it so far. The 0w20 oil seems a bit different but no big deal. It's equiped with power windows, locks and mirrors, keyless entry, steering wheel stereo controls, bluetooth connectivity for the phone, cruise, air, 15" alloys, fog lights, stability and traction control. And lots of other neat little things that would be a pain to list.

TL:DR Nissan dealer was a jerk. Went to Mazda, bought a better equipped Mazda2 for a much better deal. We love it. :biggrin:


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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby Dittoz7 » Wed Jun 26, 2013 9:23 am

Needs more 5-lug and SR20. :gapteeth:

That's a pretty damn happy looking carro.

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nissangirl74
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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby nissangirl74 » Wed Jun 26, 2013 9:50 am

Mazda's customer service is top notch. Welcome to the Mazda club. I'm betting you're gonna love it. Did I just miss it or did you say if it was a manual / automatic?

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby Dattebayo » Wed Jun 26, 2013 10:12 am

I had one of those as a rental down in Baton Rouge last year and loved it. The air conditioning was surprisingly good despite the 100 degree temps and massive humidity. The engine also had enough of a kick to be enjoyable. It was also able to handle two large men in the front seat and their gear without slowing down too much or causing feelings of claustrophobia.
Last edited by Dattebayo on Wed Jun 26, 2013 10:21 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby OriginalWheelman » Wed Jun 26, 2013 10:14 am

What's an automatic? :D

It's a 5spd. I love the looks on salesmen's faces when Pam goes "No I hate automatics." They're always surprised.

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby nissangirl74 » Wed Jun 26, 2013 10:49 am

Good. I imagine an automatic paired with a 1.5 would give new meaning to the term "slushbox". You'll have to ask her to do a review of it and let us know what she likes / doesn't like.

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby Bubba1 » Wed Jun 26, 2013 12:27 pm

Congrats on your new zoom zoom, but I'm just curious. If you knew Dobbs had an awful reputation before going there, and it sounds like they confirmed that with your visit, why didn't you simply visit another Nissan dealer? Was the next closest one too far away? :confused:

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OriginalWheelman
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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby OriginalWheelman » Wed Jun 26, 2013 1:25 pm

There are 3 Nissan dealerships in Memphis, including Dobbs / Autonation. Dobbs was the only one that had a manual hatch. My next option for a manual Hatch was Little Rock or Nashville.

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby Bubba1 » Wed Jun 26, 2013 2:26 pm

OriginalWheelman wrote:There are 3 Nissan dealerships in Memphis, including Dobbs / Autonation. Dobbs was the only one that had a manual hatch. My next option for a manual Hatch was Little Rock or Nashville.

I know this is strictly hindsight, but for future reference, legitimate new car dealers, (regardless of make) will usually order (or trade with another dealer)the car you want without you paying anything extra. I've done it myself with Nissan. The guy at Dobbs/Autonation was clearly lazy, arrogant, and greedy. Not all Nissan dealers are like that.

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby OriginalWheelman » Wed Jun 26, 2013 3:02 pm

Good point, but honestly, we like the Mazda2 a lot more than the Versa. The Versa is "fun to drive for a FWD hatchback" The Mazda is "Fun to drive."

In all honesty, I'm probably getting rid of the '09 Versa soon. The only reason I was looking at a new Versa was to get one before they ruin the hatch by moving it to from the B chassis to the Micra chassis. We don't need two 4 door hatchbacks. Not to mention I've owned the Versa since the 8th, and since the 11th, it's been at the Nissan dealer trying to get the acceleration issue sorted out. I've owned it for 18 days, and 15 of them I haven't even been able to drive it. I might end up going to arbitration on the car if Nissan can't fix it. Even if it does get fixed, I'm so frustrated with the thing at this point that I'm going to pay the loan down a bit till i can save up a little money and then sell it.

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby MinisterofDOOM » Wed Jun 26, 2013 8:20 pm

It's VERY hard to get suspension right on small cars. Much harder to blend handling and comfort. So when you find one that does it right, JUMP ON THAT.

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby AZhitman » Wed Jun 26, 2013 8:54 pm

Well done. That's a handsome car.

We love our '13 Speed3, and I'm really enjoying my MSM. Mazda gets it right.

"Nissan, can you hear me now?"

Oh, and to the toolbag at Dobbs Honda, you're about to be famous. :)

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby Jesda » Thu Jun 27, 2013 2:37 am

Looks like you picked a great car! Only other Mazda 2 owner I know of is Jenn and she seems to love hers. I sat in a green one in person last year and liked the driving position and cargo capacity, though I wondered if a base Mazda 3 would have been a better deal for a bit more money? Tough to say and I guess it depends on available selection. The Mazda 2 is also a bit lighter.


As for your quoted interest rate, I had no idea that was even legal! (I guess it varies by state) I wonder how much of that interest is backend for the dealer?


I had a customer come in with a slightly less than ideal credit score (but bad by no means) and got her into a loan at 15.99%. In the back of my mind I felt like that was WAY too high for her income, length of employment, and lack of bankruptcies or repos so we signed the papers and I sent her off with the car while I kept calling banks (I had 30 days to fax in the paperwork), trying to find her a better deal. I finally did at just under 10%. Her fees (and my fees) were much lower and her payment went from $185/mo to $150.

I had to fill out a weird contract on a %#[email protected] monster-sized typewriter but it was worth it in the end because her total savings over 4 years was a few grand.


My suspicion is that some large dealers don't want to work hard. They sit around with their thumbs up their butts hoping for prime borrowers to come in with blank checks from their banks. Also, because of the volume of foot traffic they get, they don't sign up with as many specialty lenders because they don't feel the need to accommodate a wide variety of customers. The hungrier shops make a greater effort. I guess that's the neat thing about Mazda being an underdog brand. :yesnod

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby float_6969 » Thu Jun 27, 2013 4:59 am

I"m glad to hear this review. I'd love to hear more once you guys have owned the car for a while. My wife REALLY wants a Mazda2.

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby RicerX » Thu Jun 27, 2013 6:41 am

Boy we sure have a lot of NICOnauts that are getting into Mazdas these days.

Congrats on the purchase!

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby PapaSmurf2k3 » Thu Jun 27, 2013 8:35 am

I feel like people should just wear NICO shirts when going into any Dobbs dealership now, just so they know who they are dealing with. What a bunch of tools.

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby AZhitman » Thu Jun 27, 2013 9:57 am

PapaSmurf2k3 wrote:I feel like people should just wear NICO shirts when going into any Dobbs dealership now, just so they know who they are dealing with. What a bunch of tools.
Of note is their arrogant lack of response to our Twitter rant.

Perhaps it's time to fire a shot across the bow, considering they're obviously convinced they're "too big to care."

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby PapaSmurf2k3 » Thu Jun 27, 2013 10:10 am

Stupid is as stupid does.

I HAVE to believe that their business has been doing worse as a result of their crappy performance. They HAVE to be underperforming compared to both other dealerships, as well as their own numbers from before they were bought out by Autonation.

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby OriginalWheelman » Fri Jun 28, 2013 6:01 am

Thanks for all the help and positive comments. Seems like Autonation is going to feel the wrath of Nico. :chuckle: They've had my Versa for almost 2 weeks for a fuel pump. And this was after they told me it was a catalytic converter and that failed to solve my problem. This is getting ridiculous. I've owned that Versa for 20 days and I got to drive it for 3 of them. They told me I would have to wait a week for a part, that it would be in on Tuesday, and the car would be ready that day. I called Wednesday, and the part had come in, but they hadn't started work on it. Apparently it was finished Thursday, but here it is Friday and I don't have it back yet, because they won't release the car to me until the warranty company pays them. I'm going out of town for the weekend and I now have to rent a car, since they wouldn't let me take their loaner out of state. I should have taken it to another Nissan dealer, but when I was broke down a mile away from Autonation I decided to take it there. Besides, that was before I had talked to them about the new Versa. Honestly, this whole situation has me so irritated I may never buy another Nissan built after 1998, if I ever buy another one. I was still considering another S14 project, but I am so sick of all this I may just buy an FC3S and build that instead, or an e30. After 12 years of owning almost nothing but Nissans, 3 S13s, 2 S14s, 2 Z32s, A Pathfinder, a D21, a B12, and Q45, I may never buy another one.

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby PapaSmurf2k3 » Fri Jun 28, 2013 7:53 am

Sounds like the Autonation we all know and love. They quoted me $1700 and 3 days for some work on my Honda. 3 months later I got my car back with a $3400 bill, with f*** up components and some leaks.

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby PapaSmurf2k3 » Fri Jun 28, 2013 7:54 am


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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby Bubba1 » Sun Jun 30, 2013 4:34 am

Based on OP's recent experience, it appears the change in dealer ownership has not changed the bad culture there. I wonder if Nissan's mothership is aware. I can't imagine any manufacturer would want a dealer like that representing their brand.

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby WDRacing » Sun Jun 30, 2013 7:13 am

OriginalWheelman wrote: Honestly, this whole situation has me so irritated I may never buy another Nissan built after 1998, if I ever buy another one.
Firstly, congrats on the new Mazda! I hope you guys really like it.

As far as Nissan goes, I've said exactly the phrase you used many many times. All of the cars I like by Nissan have been made already. If it's newer then 98, I'll buy from another brand.

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby OriginalWheelman » Mon Jul 01, 2013 12:26 pm

So I had to go out of town this weekend. I got a call Friday while I was on the road and I was told my Versa was done and awaiting payment from the warranty company. So i got back into town this morning, and when I got up at 2 I called Dobbs / Autonation and asked if it was done. The person i reached said that my service writer, Spencer Nichols, the ONLY person I have worked with there that actually HELPED me, was no longer working there, and that my car was not ready. :mad: This is ridiculous. I want my car back, fixed or not.

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby WDRacing » Mon Jul 01, 2013 12:41 pm

I'm very surprised someone hasn't burned that f*** place to the ground by now.

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby OriginalWheelman » Mon Jul 01, 2013 4:28 pm

So after a few calls and complaining on Facebook and here my car suddenly became ready. Apparently the car was ready but they couldn't get the paperwork right for the warranty company. They had Spencer come in and he fixed the paperwork. The guy they apparently LAID OFF. Way to get rid of the one respectable person at your dealership, Dobbs. And then, even after Spencer came in and fixed the paperwork, they managed to lose it in the 45 mins it took me to get there, and then couldn't find my car. :facepalm: So yeah, the Versa is back and running properly, 21 days later.

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby PapaSmurf2k3 » Mon Jul 01, 2013 5:35 pm

WOW.

You know how I know karma isn't real? Wildfires in AZ take peoples houses and kill 19 firemen, and Dobbs is still chugging along just fine after screwing tons of people. Hopefully they catch a lightning bolt soon.

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby alms24sebring » Mon Jul 01, 2013 8:13 pm

Hahaha. That sounds like the worst experience ever, but I agree that Mazda might be the better choice.

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby AZhitman » Mon Jul 01, 2013 9:28 pm

Just keep pounding them on FB / G+ / Twitter with links to this thread.

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Re: Goodbye Nissan. Now with Zoom Zoom.

Postby nissangirl74 » Mon Jul 01, 2013 9:30 pm

James, What is the easiest way for him to get in touch with corporate to make a formal complaint. They need to know what's going on at this dealership.


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