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Dealer Wrecks Customer's 2012 ZL1 Camaro

Discussion in 'Chevy Camaro Forum' started by KyleZ71, Jan 10, 2014.

  1. KyleZ71

    KyleZ71 New Member

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    I don't know if any of you heard about this, but yesterday this story came across my facebook feed. I've pasted the article as I believe it's worth the read.

    When Debbie and John Hooper took their Camaro ZL1 to a Georgetown car dealer, they were expecting a minor paint job.
    What they got is a nightmare.
    “Instead of a newly painted car, we ended up looking at it in a lot of pieces,” Debbie Hooper said.
    Hooper said she understood her car was ready for pick-up Dec. 13, but she and her husband were busy and planned to get their car after the weekend.
    On Dec. 16, she said, the dealership called to tell them an employee had taken the Camaro out for spin Dec. 15 and crashed it on Zoar Road near Georgetown.
    “He went out for a joyride and crashed the car,” Hooper said.
    Delaware State Police charged Eric Peterson, 42, of Georgetown with careless driving and failure to have insurance identification in possession. First State Chevrolet owner Bob Hansen said Peterson no longer works at the dealership.
    “I've never had anything like this happen before,” he said.
    Now, Hooper said she's worried that the 2012 Camaro ZL1 that she and her husband paid $60,000 for – and had only 10,000 miles on – will be totaled by insurance adjusters, and the couple will not receive the full value of what they paid for the vehicle.
    “It was an extremely fast car and more expensive than most Camaros because of limited production,” Hooper said.
    Hansen said the car was locked inside the car dealership, and Peterson took it out without permission.
    Hooper said she heard the employee told management he needed to get into the shop to get a phone charger, but Hooper said she does not believe there was ever any phone charger.
    “I think when you drop the car to have work done to it, the dealer has a responsibility to take care of it,” she said.
    Hansen said he did not know anything about a phone charger, but his main concern is taking care of the Hoopers.
    “Our No. 1 concern is with our customers, the Hoopers,” he said.
    Delaware State Police Cpl. John Day said police continue to investigate the accident. He did not have further details on events leading up to the accident. Criminal charges have not been filed, he said.
    Following the accident, Hooper said, she was told the employee told police that he had permission to drive the Camaro. She said the officer gave the employee a citation for reckless driving and no proof of insurance.
    “When the guy couldn't produce registration or insurance, the cop didn't question it,” she said.
    Now, the Long Neck couple feel they are out a car, $60,000 and are at the mercy of the insurance adjusters who recently determined the car was totaled.
    She said the adjuster and his boss both looked at the vehicle and said they are not going to repair it.
    “It has been deemed a total loss,” she said. “We're the innocent party, and we're really being hung out to dry.”

    t600-zZL1-121613c.jpg
    t600-ZL1 121613b.jpg
    t600-ZL1 121613a.jpg



    As of now the owner of First State Chevrolet has tried to please the owner with two different used, low mileage ZL1's, but the owner (like me) only wants a brand new one as he sold his 2011 Camaro 2SS and his 1969 Camaro SS to purchase his baby.
    What do you all think?
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 20, 2014
    #1
  2. Enkeiavalanche

    Enkeiavalanche Moderator

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    Well if he offered a good Low milage used one take it and maybe some Gas $$$ to go with it.
    #2
  3. KyleZ71

    KyleZ71 New Member

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    My thinking was if I sell my 2011 Camaro 2SS and my priced 1969 Camaro SS to purchase a brand new 2012 Camaro ZL1, and then have one of your employees take it for a joy ride, without my permission, and then total it; I would want a brand new ZL1 myself. A used one to me just wouldn't make up for it, as it wasn't mine, and it also seems like the cheep way of going about it. I would be trying to make the customer 100% happy for our own mistake.
    #3
  4. reggiecab2000

    reggiecab2000 Member

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    there is no question that the dealer should be replacing this with a BRAND NEW one
    #4
  5. Camaro69car

    Camaro69car New Member

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    Poor car... can I have the engine though???
    #5
  6. Crawdaddy

    Crawdaddy Moderator

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    Playing Devil's Advocate, the car wasn't new. Additionally, if it's a limited edition vehicle, chances are, no more new of that limited edition are available, so I can't replace what doesn't exist anymore. If your heart is set on the ZL1, then either take one with some miles on it already or something else of equal value, or a cash payout. No matter how you slice it, you can't give what doesn't exist.
    #6
  7. Camaro69car

    Camaro69car New Member

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    Still new ones for sale where I live.
    #7
  8. 99'HEARTBEAT

    99'HEARTBEAT Moderator

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    This is unbelievable,.....IMO its the Employee who should be the one on the Hook for this, and the Reason, the car was locked inside the car dealership and this Employee took this car out without Permission, and all that's happened to this Guy is he was Fired, and was giving a Citation, Big Deal......at this Point, this "Employee" is Walking Away Scott Free......and the Owner of this Dealership is in a Tight Spot, as everyone will be watching to see what they do......I don't know as to weather this Couple should receive New Camaro, or one of the Used Ones, as the Dealer has offered, but like the wife said, “We're the innocent party"
    #8
  9. McClintoc

    McClintoc Super Moderator

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    The only course of action here is for the dealership to give the customer a BRAND NEW one and then the dealership can go after the ex-employee for the loss.
    #9
  10. 66 chevyman

    66 chevyman New Member

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    If someone who works for the dealer crashes a customers car HE or the DEALER should be FORCED to buy them a brand new car.
    #10
  11. zippstripp

    zippstripp New Member

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    How did the employee get the car out of there without being questioned? Heads would roll imo.
    #11
  12. 99'HEARTBEAT

    99'HEARTBEAT Moderator

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    Here's a little more Information, I came across, on this Wrecked 2012 Camaro ZL1

    If you're attached to your car, you probably have the same feeling as most of us do when we leave our keys to someone else outside our circle – think dealer, parking attendant etc. And all for good reason as there's an abundance of stories about company employees taking cars for joyrides, sometimes with disastrous results. You can add John Hooper to the list of owners who came to experience this first hand when he left his 2012 Camaro ZL1 with around 10,000 miles to Georgetown, Delaware, dealer "1st State Chevrolet" (otherwise known as 'First State Chevrolet') in the middle of December 2013. On Monday, December 16, he received a dreaded phone call from the dealer informing him that one of the company's employees had crashed the car after taking it for a joyride on Sunday.

    While it's pretty obvious that Hooper should be reinstated, he has run into problems with the dealer and the insurance companies and has yet to replace his ride, three weeks after the accident.

    The Chevrolet Dealer posted this on their website:

    "Recently 1st State Chevrolet had an employee enter the dealership on Sunday December 15th and take a customer’s Camaro without authorization and subsequently totaled the customer’s car in an accident. Our business is closed on Sundays and was locked as is usual procedure. The employee acted on his own in this unfortunate event. This is an awful situation for both the customer and the dealership to deal with. We have been in contact with the customer and apologized for this situation at length. Both parties’ insurance companies are working to handle this claim in a satisfactory manner. Hopefully this situation will be settled in the very near future.

    -Robert L. Hansen
    President 1st State Chevrolet"

    The issue at hand is that Hooper and 1st State Chevrolet can't come to an agreement for the replacement. You'd think that the dealer would want to keep the client happy and compensate him for his loss and time as well, while also avoiding any negative publicity by offering a new ride, but they want to give him a used model of equal worth, and that's where they disagree.

    As reported by the Cape Gazette that followed the story, the dealership offered Hooper two used Camaro ZL1s, but he declined both on the ground that they were not comparable to what he lost.

    The first one was said to have had two previous owners, while Hooper's wife Debbie found out that the car also been in an accident, while the second one was the same year model but had 3,000 miles more.
    While the issue drags on, Debbie Hooper said that the couple will continue to make payments on the car. They also met up with an attorney who told them that they are not "entitled to pain and suffering, lawyer or court costs".
    “It's going to end up costing us more money if we go forward with the attorney,” she said.

    For the time being, they're driving a loaner car from 1st State Chevrolet with a cracked windshield since the ZL1 went into the shop for the paint problem.

    “We're losing sleep over this, time off from work, and this still isn't resolved,” John Hooper said. “This is so ethically and morally wrong it isn't funny.”


    As For The Employee,
    responsible for this whole mess, Delaware State Police charged Eric Peterson, 42, of Georgetown with careless driving and failure to have insurance identification in possession. The man was also fired from the dealership. Police told Debbie Hooper that she could not file theft or any other criminal charges against Peterson as the car was in the dealer's possession when the crash occurred.

    Link to Rest of the Article,
    http://www.carscoops.com/2014/01/chevy-dealer-employee-crashes-camaro.html

    #12
  13. KyleZ71

    KyleZ71 New Member

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    I feel so bad for the family. Since the dealership are privately own Chevrolet isn't liable to do anything either. The ownership of the dealership is really low. If I were the owner of a dealership and something like that had occurred I would do anything that I could to apologize. That dealer seems like his only concern is how to save money.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Late last night I sent the story into the today show. I feel with more coverage (if they even mention it, the dealer will do the rigt thing)
    #13
  14. Pikey

    Pikey Moderator

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    I found a camaro forum where the family has been posting. I think that is where I saw that the dealer offered them a camaro with 1,000 miles more. I found a list of the cars they offered the guy and he refused them over added options like tinted windows and a sunroof. Which I guess is his right. I recently found that GM and Berger Chevrolet (Grand Rapids, Michigan) have stepped in and are paving [not paying] the way for a new 2013 ZL1 to be sent to First State Chevrolet for the guy to purchase. What I don't get is why the guy would have the car shipped to the dealer that wrecked his car and gave him such a hard time. I don't care that it is the only dealer in the area. I would drive to another town. On the other forum the guy said that he has bought 6 cars from the dealer over the last 3 years. 2 of them at the same time and this is how they treated him! I don't think that he should have gotten a free car. He still owed on the wrecked car. So, I think that he should have been given a replacement for the remaining balance on his wrecked car (whether it was a new car or a used car) and maybe free lifetime maintenance at the dealer. The dealer did try to make the guy happy.

    If I took my truck to a dealer for service and they totaled I would expect a replacement truck of the same value and condition. If they found me an 2008 to replace my 2005 but it had less miles and less options I may take it.
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2014
    #14
  15. jsmith4816

    jsmith4816 New Member

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    I would have been happy with a used one and lots of other gratuities i.e. a huge gas card and extended, extended warranty lol
    #15
  16. Conlan Rose

    Conlan Rose Super Moderator

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    I feel the dealer is working really hard to compensate the family, but the family seems to want something that may not be possible to get.
    #16
  17. 99'HEARTBEAT

    99'HEARTBEAT Moderator

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    Does anyone know/heard, what's Happening to the Employee who has Created this Mess??....
    #17
  18. summitwhite11

    summitwhite11 New Member

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    You should take the deal, I wonder why the dealer didnt file theft charges on the employee, cause it makes them 100% responsible?. hey they are offering a good used car for another good used car, its a fair trade with some boot like others have said. I think they are working with you on this, but its your battle to fight as you see it.
    #18
  19. McClintoc

    McClintoc Super Moderator

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    I saw this posted on a computer & tech form I am on. It is definitely make the internet rounds.
    #19
  20. ChevyFan

    ChevyFan Administrator Staff Member

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    Wow, he went out for a joyride and ended up getting canned.

    LEGALLY, they are only required to pay to get them into an identical vehicle. However, when you consider that this is a limited production vehicle, that does change the game a little bit and you have to simply go by the estimated appraised value at the time of the loss. My guess is that they have a lot of emotion tied up into this, but when the law comes into play you have to push that emotion to the side and just get down to $$$.

    NOW, If it were me running that dealership then I would have instantly given them a new vehicle from the lot or have them order it and pull any favors I had coming to me from GM to get it delivered ASAP. The negative press they're receiving might cost them far more business (like FAR more money) than if they just made the people happy. I have no idea what a 2012 Camaro ZL1 with 10,000 miles on it will go for, but my guess is that it's less than the $60,000 that they paid for it. I think they were just hoping to hold onto it and use it as an investment where the value would once again increase over time.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Just to follow up on my own point again, I guess the owners of the Camaro are saying that this was a limited production vehicle, so getting an exact vehicle with the correct options package might be difficult to do. Again, they need to figure out a $ amount or get an identical vehicle.
    #20

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