Team BHP member has shared an update which claims that a Skoda dealer in Mumbai was caught red handed over-charging a customer by a huge margin. It all started on 16th August, when Skoda Laura of Navin’s friend refused to start.
At that time, the car was driven by son of the owner. The engine suddenly started revving and then slowing down. He stopped the car on the side of the road, and tried to restart the car. The car refused to start. He then got the car towed home that nigh as it would not start.
Next day, on 17th August, Navin’s friend and her son contacted Skoda India dealer – Autobahn Enterprises Pvt. Ltd. and told them about the problem. The dealer got the car towed to the dealership. After inspection by mechanic, the dealer gave quote of Rs 1.68 lakh – Rs 1.43 lakh for parts and Rs 25,000 for labour.
Navin’s friend got a feeling that the Skoda dealer was not being honest with her. It is now that she called Nitin from Bharat Auto Associates. She then decided to get the car towed from Skoda India dealer to a non-Skoda authorized car service center – Bharat Auto.
To release the said Skoda from their premises, the dealer charged Navin’s friend Rs 3,000. She paid, as she wanted her car out from the dealership. It was then towed to Bharat Auto in Worli. Here the estimate was given for Rs 1,062.
Navin said – “The car reached Bharat Auto’s workshop on 21st afternoon at 4 pm and the diagnosis was that only the rubber belt needed changing (the first item in Autobahn Skoda’s initial invoice circled in orange below). The total cost of this (including labour) was about Rs. 1,000 (as against Autobhan Skoda’s estimate of Rs. 1,68,000) – invoice of Bharat Auto’s charges is enclosed. It took a total of 2 hours to diagnose and fix this car. My friend’s car was ready by 6 pm on August 21st.”
Navin says that her friend, the owner of Skoda Laura is shaken up with what just happened. They have been using the car regularly since 22nd Aug, and it has no issues whatsoever. She now asks the following questions –
1 – Had it been a less alert customer, would he / she have been “forced” to pay Autobahn Skoda Rs. 1.68 lakhs or more?
2 – When a small independent garage can diagnose that only one item of Rs. 396 (as per Autobahn’s own quote and something that Bharat Auto charged Rs. 550 for) needs changing, why did Autobahn include charges for several other items including a “Compressor” for Rs. 62,982 and a “Bearing Speed Sensor Kit” for Rs. 17,076 in their quote?
3 – What was Autobahn Skoda’s intention?