So in January of 2012 (18 months ago) I bought a brand new 2012 Honda Civic from Conicelli Honda in Conshohocken PA. My brother bought one about 6 months later (one year ago). Over the first year or so of ownership I noticed a few things wrong with it, but they didn't seem major. Notably, it got terrible mileage for a Civic and the transmission was a bit weird.
I took the car into the dealership a number of times, each time they "took a quick look" and declared the car perfectly fine. It eventually got to the point where the car would get no more than 21mpg under normal conditions, even though I made sure to fill the tires, empty the trunk, and get the oil changed regularly. The car is rated at 32mpg in the city, so this is roughly 2/3 of what they claim it will get, and doesn't take into account the fact that I also take it on the highway to get to my girlfriend's house. By my estimation, if the car was working the way they said it should, I should be getting anywhere from 30 to 38mpg.
I finally brought it back to the dealership and demanded that they do something to fix the mileage problem. They gave me a loaner car for the day and took my car in.
At the end of the day I came back for my verdict: The maintenance manager said there's nothing wrong with the car and he got 38mpg. He declared I was "driving it wrong" and didn't understand how to read the on-board computer. Here's the on-board computer in case you guys need to see what's so difficult about it:
So as you can see this is super confusing. I went into the trip computer (what you're seeing there) to show them that the mileage was historically terrible, and the trip computer was reading all zeroes. I asked where the data was and they said they wiped the on-board computer "to clear this issue up." Which means they destroyed the evidence that the vehicle was having problems.
I wrote a letter to Honda Corporate about this, laying out the facts of the case and including multiple pictures like the above along with my Google Latitude tracker for the days in question showing a normal traffic pattern through highways and suburbs.
After 2 weeks, someone from Honda calls me from a blocked number and leaves a voicemail. I return his call four times over the next week, the fourth call informing me that he's on vacation for a week.
3.5 weeks after sending my letter, I finally get in touch with this guy. I wrote down a snippet of our conversation (which I have recorded) that I thought you guys may enjoy:
I hung up the phone, got in the car, and drove to a Mazda dealership. Honda has lost a lifetime customer.
This weekend I went to visit my family and my brother arrived covered in sweat. His A/C doesn't work, and the dealership told him he wasn't "letting it warm up enough." He drove 4 hours in a 90 degree rainstorm in June without air conditioning.
The dealership I bought the car from keeps sending me spam emails offering me overpriced oil changes, unnecessary insurance, etc. I've unsubscribed a dozen times. It seems that I'll never be free of their incompetence, so I've made it a bit of a personal goal to cost them business by telling my story.