Thursday, May 30, 2013

Don't tell anyone, I've been operating undercover ...

Car service today, which means a trip up to Cheltenham to the garage.

One immediate difference between Lexus and Carcraft is the level of customer service. Lexus actively charm you into wanting you to buy from them. It starts from the front desk and goes right on through into the cars. Carcraft are a completely different thing - they assume desperation on the part of the buyer and use it to rope you into things you don't really need or aren't ideal.

An example :

I bought a servicing package from Carcraft because it would save me money over 3 years. Yeah, it saved me money but I did get exactly what I paid for. Cheap servicing which wasn't in line with manufacturer instructions. The Lexus servicing cost is in line with what you'd expect for a dealership, it cost me £250 today for a 20,000 mile service. Ok, that might be a little more than average (I dunno, not checked :-) ) but you are definitely paying for quality.

Another massive customer service difference between Carcraft and Lexus was in the courtesy car. When my Focus was in for a repair that took an extended amount of time, I repeatedly asked for a courtesy car and was refused each time. That's despite them having a warehouse full of cars for sale. Yeah, I could have a test drive in any of them but borrow one as a courtesy car ? Nope - that wouldn't directly lead to a sale.

Lexus today - I hadn't asked for a courtesy car (Plan A was to sit in the showroom and attack a book for a few hours) but I got one anyway :-).

Here comes the undercover thing ...

It's tough to be undercover and discreet when you're driving an advert on wheels. Lol. I'm not complaining actually, I think they're great cars and more people should have them. My CT was a loan car/demonstrator for the 6 months before I got it too. Buying ex-demo isn't necessarily a bad thing, although you should look out for idiot marks, like fingerprints on a screen that doesn't support touch.

So I'm off advertising Lexus around Cheltenham.

Quick aside - I'm currently starving and waiting for dinner to burn while watching the pilot episode of Rizzoli and Isles. Yeah, I'm gonna keep watching this one, it makes me chuckle.

I was a bit disappointed actually in Cheltenham. I didn't find any quality record shops, although there was a couple of bookshops to lose myself in for a bit. Nothing on the scale of all those towns in Cornwall that we may be frequenting later in the year.

However - it did bring back memories. I had a 3 month placement there with work, which was great. I felt like I was getting a heap of stuff done, plus there was a darned attractive lady working there who laughed at my jokes. (Even believing Smoke Theory). I spotted :

The apartment block where a great mate from uni used to live (aka Widget)
The kebab shop (where they recognised me - what is it with that ?)
And some of the shops I used to haunt after work (they were walkable from my digs)

I've improved today too :-) I wouldn't have passed myself fit to play tonight (match cancelled due to lack of players) But maybe in a couple of days. That is if the rest of me agrees. Pain level = high right now. That's partly because of the cold - and if my skin improves, then I can fight the cold better :-).

That's it for today - there's a picture of that garish advert on wheels (it's actually worse than mine was) on my Facebook account, I'm not going to repost it here because it has a registration plate and I don't want to put the next private owner of it in an uncomfortable position.

Last thought - I definitely missed the toys when I had the loan car - no satnav/computer and the radio wasn't configured to listen to my phone's bluetooth.

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