Tuesday, May 17, 2011

A male gynecologist is like...

an auto mechanic who has never owned a car. ~ Ms. Snow

“It’ll cost you 27,000 ringgit.”

No way!

“But off the record, no receipts, I can do it for 15,000 ringgit. It’ll be as good as the original – in fact, I’ll use original parts for you.”

That’s a saving of 12,000 ringgit I thought. My interest was piqued.

“In the meantime, my advice is don’t drive fast, and certainly don’t take your car out of town. You never know when your gearbox will give in. In fact, you’re putting your life in danger everytime you drive the car.”

That’s the conversation we had at the counter of a service centre belonging to an authorised network of a reputable foreign car manufacturer.

“I’ve already changed for two other customers, who had the same model as you and the same problem. They’re very happy. Why don’t you go back and think about it. But you better be quick – I hope to hear from you within 2 days,” says the service assistant, sending us off with look of deep concern for our safety.

My room-mate’s car was acting up. It jerked and took some time to engage when she changed gears on the automatic transmission. So when we dropped it off for its regular service, we asked the friendly service assistant to make sure he had a look at that problem and ‘sort it out’.

We just didn’t realize that it would cost so much!


We followed up that visit with some research on the internet and true enough, from around the globe buyers of this particular model had complained about its gearbox.

As dusty as it may be, I put on my lawyer’s cap and decided to write a letter of demand to the outlet that sold my precious the car. It demanded an explanation for what we deemed to be a latent defect in the product sold, and at the same time it recorded our utter disappointment in them not responding to our calls for an explanation.

Nearly a month later, a reply came, asking us to have the car checked at an authorised service centre. Funny I thought, an authorised centre is where we went to in the first place.

Anyway, just for fun, we looked for another one which was a bit further away. We told them the background and asked that they do a check on the gearbox. A thorough 160 ringgit check later and we were told that the gearbox was absolutely fine, we just needed to change the gear fluid which was dirty. 120 ringgit it would cost.

I was not angry. I had a feeling that this would be the likely outcome.

I’m just pissed.

Normally, I wouldn’t let something like this go. Unfortunately, the guy who very kindly offered us the 12K discount also has all our personal details, and god knows what more he’s capable of.

Therefore, all I can say is, don’t get cheated!

Don’t commit money, especially huge sums and at the behest of people who say you must do something as soon as possible. Always find out more about matters you’re not sure of, and a good starting point is the internet. Talk to those who may know more. In fact, I told a colleague this story and before I finished he told me it was most probably a fluid problem!

Learn to ask the right questions.

And learn to recognise a conman... :-)