Weekend Post put some of the claims in the book, Eff You Very Much, to the test by requesting a quote from a dealership in Port Elizabeth.
The quote was requested from Kia Motors Port Elizabeth, which forms part of the Seaman’s Motor Group, on May 24 for a 2018 Kia Sportage 2.0 iGNITE which included R337821.74 for the vehicle with a discount of R19 130.43.
Listed under accessories, the dealership quoted R500 for number plates, R2 050 for metallic paint, R3 300 for a safety pack combo (smash-and-grab tint, scotch guard and Auto Amor), R3 300 for a VPS essential kit (a plastic film to protect chips and scratches) and R1 754.39 for glass protection for windscreens.
But the dealership also wanted to charge R3 600 for on-the-road fees.
Initially, Kia Motors sales manager Werner Vogel did not include a breakdown of what the fees included.
When asked the first time what it included, Vogel said: “PDI [pre-delivery inspection], mats etc.”
Pressed for more clarity, he said: “Sorry for that. [The] full breakdown is; PDI, valet, wheel alignment, mats, backing plates, key ring and admin fee.”
Asked if the on-the-road fees could be included in the credit agreement for the finance of the vehicle, Vogel said: “The whole quote as a total can be applied as principal loan agreement.”
John Titmus, one of the authors of the book, said he found similar responses from dealerships when doing research for Eff You Very Much.
Weekend Post went to speak to Vogel at the dealership in Sidwell on Thursday. After explaining that the newspaper wanted to test the veracity of the claims in the book by requesting a quote, Vogel asked if the reporter was still going to buy the vehicle.
“Are you buying the car? Why didn’t you just tell me? You should have been honest,” he said.
“I would have put it the exact same way. I am a busy man. Our business is doing deals. Putting cameras in front of my noise and giving me false information is not on.”
He declined to answer additional questions and walked away.
Dealer Principal Craig Seaman said quotes for prospective customers represented an “offer to purchase” and that customers were entitled to exercise their own choices with respect to the add-on services and products.