Harrowing experience of buying a Citroen C5 Aircross demo car

I am still waiting for any response from dealer, customer support or Citroen Management.

BHPian Abhinav_11286 recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

Bought a Citroen C5 Aircross in April 2022. Need Help urgently.

Hi folks.

This is my first post and I thank the forum for giving me an opportunity to connect.

I need urgent help and advise in a matter which is detailed below:

Background:

This is regarding my recent purchase of a Citroen C5 Aircross Shine from the Gurugram dealership on 10th Apr’22. This was a demo car with about 22,000 km on the ODO. The deal was locked on 31st March and entire amount was paid by 9th April. The delivery was taken on 10th April and the trouble started right after. Following issues were reported to the dealership the day after delivery:

Insurance: I was assured Platinum Insurance (Quoted Premium – 1,43,381) but given ICICI insurance (Premium – 1,13,745) i.e. difference of 29,636. Numerous calls and emails later, the amount was refunded by dealership but it took them about a month to refund the amount not belonging to them. During this period, various dumb explanations were given, like difference amount was their commission, we promised only comprehensive Insurance etc.

Registration: An amount of Rs. 1,98,595/- has been paid to the dealership at the time of delivery for car registration at Chandigarh. The temp. RC was to be provided in 1-2 days and a temp. RC was provided by the dealership which had already expired on 6 Aug 2021 Temp./Permanent RC or any valid document in my name is still awaited even after more than 1 month of delivery. I have grounded the vehicle since I was stopped by Traffic Police in Delhi on this account. Citroen has delivered me a showpiece which is occupying my garage and is not worth a penny if it can’t hit the road.

Car condition: Vehicle was delivered in an extremely poor shape on the inside. This despite repeated assurances by the dealership that they will take care of it prior to delivery. The poor conditions of the vehicle can be seen in the pics attached. At time of delivery, I was told to take the car to service center for cleaning but the service center asked for money to do the same.

Maintenance package: I was categorically told by the sales advisor the that extended warranty and maintenance package are not technically possible to be offered for a demo car which Citroen is open to selling it to me. Despite my repeated requests, I was not offered the package. I could have got that amount included in the loan amount but couldn’t do so because of the misinformation. This is again cheating with the customer and I hope you are able to do something about it.

After failing to get even a response/resolution on any of the issues after waiting for about 10 days, the matter was reported to Citroen India Customer support on 22.04.2022.

Again no response was given by Customer support so I reported the matter to Citroen India Brand Head on 7th May along with all details and documents.

The customer support is a joke. They claim to operational till 7pm but phone lines are dead much before that. Try calling between 6 to 7 pm (1800-267-1000) .

Present situation:

I am still waiting for any response from dealer, customer support or Citroen Management. Clearly, they are not interested in customer’s concerns.

It is been a harrowing experience during the last 5 weeks. I believe they still treat India as a third world country and don’t have any regards for the customers in India.

Please suggest the way forward (legal and otherwise).

Here’s what GTO had to say on the matter:

  • You need to take your car to a detailer for interior & exterior sprucing.
  • Demos are really not my cup of tea. 22000 km on a demo car is equivalent to 50000 – 60000 km on a carefully maintained, single-hand driven car. Hope you got a really good deal though.

Here’s what BHPian romeomidhun had to say on the matter:

I will never buy an “unknown devil” car, that too a demo car from an “unknown brand” (in the sense their after sales and service quality, and reach are considered) even if they give it for free, if it is not for just show-off. That too, when you have some manufacturers producing some known devils like hot cakes in your own city!

Here’s what BHPian BANDHAV had to say on the matter:

More than the dealer OP is at fault, going ahead with delivery despite so many red flags.

Instead of using the forum now to get the required visibility and leverage, he should have used it to educate himself.

Sorry if this doesn’t go well with some members, but lately the forum has become a tool to create pressure on other party and it surely works due to the stature of the forum but this power should not be misused.

Here’s what BHPian Axe77 had to say on the matter:

Very sorry to hear of your ordeal Abhinav. I don’t have any immediate advice vis a vis Citroen and their dealer but this is certainly really poor form from both the dealer as well as brand Citroen. I really hope they pull up their socks and resolve some of these issues for you.

In the meantime, I suggest take charge of every aspect that you can change and enjoy the vehicle as best possible. That includes a good detailing job as well as perhaps getting involved on ground (if needed by bringing in your own RTO agent) on all paperwork / RC related formalities. While it is far from ideal, best not to depend on the dealership based on their attitude so far.

Here’s what BHPian ubermensch had to say on the matter:

Unless this was promised to you at any point during the course of your transaction, I can’t really point fingers at the dealership. Most dealerships are pretty sound legally and discard their vehicles on an “as is where is” basis so the onus of literally anything does not fall on them. Should’ve checked every inch of the car, knowing it as been ridden by a ton of people and has more than mediocre wear and tear for its mileage.

Always remember: They’re in the profession of selling, and unless you’re in the profession of buying: they’ll more often than not, outsmart you.

I hope you get the redressal, the first course of action (legal or otherwise) would be to do some field work and get the car registered yourself. Get an agent and they’ll get it done. Looks like the burden of interior detailing has fallen on you, time to try a good garage maybe?

Check out BHPian comments for more insights and information.

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