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Minnesota Dealer Sues Woman for Deal 'Too Good to Be True'

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You’ve heard the stereotype of shady car dealers, but have you ever encountered a customer pulling a fast one on the dealer?

OK, so while Tammie Townsend of Golden Valley, Minn., says she didn’t intentionally take advantage of Walser Chrysler (a Hopkins, Minn., dealership), the dealer sees it differently and is suing Townsend to recover $7,000.

Here’s the deal: When Townsend went to buy the 2007 Chrysler Pacifica she’d been leasing for two years, she signed on to convert the lease to a sale for $11,639, roughly $6,000 less than the car’s Blue Book value. Walser Chrysler says the price was an “administrative error” and that Townsend was told the correct price several times during discussions. The dealership said it would have reimbursed her if the situation were reversed.

Townsend, a 40-year-old hairstylist, says it’s unfair to charge one price and then turn around and ask for more money. She’s hired a lawyer and received a good deal of public support after the story ran in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.

Because it is a lease-buyback agreement, which typically states the purchase price at the beginning of the loan, it’s staggering that the dealer could have made such an enormous clerical error. On the other hand, maybe the dealer should just be glad it managed to get $11,000 for a Pacifica.

Dealer Sues Woman to Cancel ‘Good Deal’ (Wheels)

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