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Talking To An Auto-Bot

| Working | September 16, 2016

(My girlfriend is shopping for a new car. We get to the Car Brand dealership. When we go in, all the salespersons are in a circle, chatting, in the middle of the showroom. The car my girlfriend wants to see is the Car Brand Model, and there’s one right behind the group. We approach and a salesman breaks off the group and comes toward us.)

Salesman: “Hello, may I help you?”

Me: “We’d like to see the [Car Brand Model].” *pointing to the car behind him*

Salesman: “Perfect. Come with me to my office. We’ll fill up the customer information form.”

Me: “Err… Is it possible to have a look at the car first?”

Salesman: “We’ll do that later. We should fill the customer information form so I can help you choose the right car.”

Me: “How about a pamphlet?”

Salesman: “I’ll get you that in my office.”

(To me, he’s already starting on the left foot. We get to his office. He starts off with the standard questions of name and address, etc.)

Salesman: “So you’re looking at the [Car Brand Model]. What attracted you to this car? Is it price, design, performance, economy?”

Me: “I can’t answer that; you prevented us from approaching the car.”

Salesman: *blank look*

(My girlfriend and I are looking at each other, already thinking of leaving.)

Me: “Look. We want a car that is fuel efficient and not too expensive…”

Salesman: “So, economy and price.” *while checking those choices, then continues down his darn form*

Salesman: “Okay. How much are you current car payments?”

Me: *firm* “No.”

Salesman: “Ah, it’s all paid off, then.”

Me: “No. I’m not giving you this information.”

Salesman: “Well, if you want me to direct you to the best car for your payment, you have to tell me.”

Me: *starting to be annoyed* “Look. We’d like to have a price for the [Car Brand Model] and get our trade-in evaluated…”

Salesman: *cutting me off, turning his computer screen toward us* “Well, if it’s a price you want, you just have to go to the [Car Brand] website.”

Me: *in disbelief* “We already went there. I want to know the value of the trade-in, and we’d like to SEE and TRY the car.” *tone getting louder*

Salesman: “Ah… well, I’ll go see if my manager can arrange for a test drive. We’ll check the trade-in while you test drive it.”

(He leaves.)

Girlfriend: *to me* “He has to go ask permission to his manager for a test drive? Want to leave already?”

Me: “Let’s have a look at the car first.”

(We sit in the car and look around. For a variety of reasons, we don’t like it. Being polite and not wanting to appear to have stormed out, we wait for the salesman. It takes him a good ten minutes to come back.)

Salesman: “I just talk to my manager and it’s okay for a test drive.”

Me: “Forget it. We saw it and it’s not for us.”

(We left. I changed my car recently. Needless to say I didn’t even set foot at that dealership.)

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