Local News

Car Dealer's Mistake Pays Off for Customer

Posted February 26, 1998

— Since when is a 15-year-old Ford Escort worth several times its "book value"? The answer: When the dealership smashes it by accident. Brandon Davis can tell you all about it.

It all started when Davis tried to trade a Ford Escort on a Toyota Corrola at Raleigh's Leith Toyota. The Leith salesman was so confident that he had a deal, he sent Brandon home with the Corrola, while they waited on the financing. But, the financing deal fell through.

So Brandon Davis returned the dealer's Corolla, and he asked for his Escort back. But, that was a Saturday, when the Escort was locked up on another lot.

Brandon never got a phone call from the dealership, but he didn't call either. By this time, he had a company car. Weeks went by, and then one day, Brandon was driving his company vehicle up Capital Boulevard and saw his car flipped upside-down, the windshield partially-shattered, right in front of Leith Toyota. He says that he was a little shocked, to say the least.

Leith Toyota was running a promotion -- no upside-down payments -- and they had mistakenly used Brandon's car as an eyecatcher. Leith General Manager Shawn Witek says that Brandon Davis should bear some of the responsibility.

So when the dealer offered Brandon another car, or $800 for his old car, he turned them down flat.

When WRAL asked about Brandon's car, Leith Toyota paid him more than two times book value for his Escort. Witek says that he's gone out of his way to make it right.

Earlier Friday, Brandon Davis said that he is satisfied with the result. The car is no longer upside-down and the dealer was more than fair in paying him for his trouble.

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