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‘19 Giulia Ti Sport Q4
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Discussion Starter #1
I know some would complain about getting the apparently random Service Engine warning, stumbling, and misfire code I’m having more than anything, but for me, worse than that is having to drive 50 minutes for a lousy dealer service experience. It’s every time I go to that place, Golling Jeep/Chrysler/Dodge/Fiat/Alfa, out in some far corner of a Detroit suburb that I don’t even know which it is, that makes me think, “what am I doing, and why am I here?”

My local dealer closed suddenly on me last year, right in the middle of a new car buy, actually, and I wound up having to drive 3hrs down to Ohio to get the car which my dealership was supposed to be getting for me. In any case, besides being literally in the middle of the transaction, I was getting bad info about what the situation was going to be, with my sales guy telling me that they’d carry on servicing Alfa, which turned out, somewhat obviously, looking in retrospect, to be untrue. Anyway, I was more focused on getting the lease deal done on this perfectly spec’d Giulia than I was contemplating the implications of possibly having to drive an hour to a dealership I’d never been to for service.

Point being here, I’m fairly sick of this sh*t. The time commitment to driving out there, dealing with the huge, busy, service department, getting stuck in Dodge Journey or Jeep Compass loaners, and suffering the generally ingracious staff who plainly seem to have more important things to do than acknowledging people who come in for service.

Call me snobbish, but I want a more sophisticated experience, and next go-round for a car, I’m going to be shopping the dealership as much as the car, which is something I’ve never done before, I guess because when the dealer is in town, only 10 or 15 minutes away, it’s easier to suffer their mediocrity and get on with life. Stewing on it for 50 minutes, wasting time in a piece of shit car I don’t want to be driving, exacerbates the crap experience and compels me to wonder if the Giulia is even worth it. I don’t even have the excitement of anticipating the upcoming Giulia model changes, because there are none, and at this point, on my 2nd Giulia, I’m starting to feel that been-there-done-that feeling, too.

Dropping the car off today, I actually paid extra to get a loaner with a little more flair; “we have Chargers and 300s,” the loaner guy told me, after I asked if I could get an Alfa rather than the shitty Journey he had queued-up. As he took me out to the car, which he didn’t bother brushing the snow off the hood or roof, thereby allowing it to fly up on the windscreen and slide down the back window obscuring my view for a 1/4 of the drive home, he said of what appeared to be a base model Charger that “it’s a really nice car, with a V6,” oblivious to the fact an Alfa driver would be thoroughly unimpressed. Him giving me an apology would have been more appropriate. What a moron.

Anyway, like I said, I’m fairly sick of this sh*t. I don’t need the Rolls-Royce experience, but I do want better. And closer to home.

Sorry for the rant.
 

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2020 Alfa Romeo Giulia Sport Ti AWD
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I totally understand, and agree with you. Perhaps difficult to believe, but Golling's Alfa/FIAT sales operation in tony Birmingham is even worse.
A friend who is car shopping went there to check out a Stelvio and left shaking his head. His next stop was a Jeep dealer (not Golling) to look
at a Grand Cherokee. He was treated much better there.

At the risk of sounding like I'm suggesting an even longer drive, I have to ask whether you considered going to Genesis in Macomb Township.
I believe their service facility is dedicated to the Italian brands.

It blows my mind and speaks to the entire sales/marketing/service organization that an Alfa showroom and service facility cannot be maintained
in a well-to-do and educated city such as Ann Arbor. I've heard that Dallas is another underserved metropolitan area. Why, FCA? Why? Aren't
markets of that size and demographics opportunities to be seized? Well, do it!
 

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I hate to hear that. I’ve been lucky to be near Alfa Romeo of Greensboro (NC). They have been really great.
 

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On the other side of the coin, Faulkner Alfa Maserati in Mechanicsburg, PA has been A#1 top notch with both the Sales and Service aspect of my New Giulia experience.
 
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‘19 Giulia Ti Sport Q4
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Discussion Starter #5
I totally understand, and agree with you. Perhaps difficult to believe, but Golling's Alfa/FIAT sales operation in tony Birmingham is even worse.
A friend who is car shopping went there to check out a Stelvio and left shaking his head. His next stop was a Jeep dealer (not Golling) to look
at a Grand Cherokee. He was treated much better there.

At the risk of sounding like I'm suggesting an even longer drive, I have to ask whether you considered going to Genesis in Macomb Township.
I believe their service facility is dedicated to the Italian brands.

It blows my mind and speaks to the entire sales/marketing/service organization that an Alfa showroom and service facility cannot be maintained
in a well-to-do and educated city such as Ann Arbor. I've heard that Dallas is another underserved metropolitan area. Why, FCA? Why? Aren't
markets of that size and demographics opportunities to be seized? Well, do it!
I guess, but man, that drive out to Genesis is even longer and more shitty, requiring me to hit I75. Yeah...no, I don’t think that’s going to resolve my basic resentment at not having a local dealer anymore.

It does seem that there are lots of Alfas here in A2, so I dunno what happened there with Suburban Group dropping Alfa here. To be sure, their service department was no dream either, but at least the times I went, it wasn’t a circus chock full of people like Golling is, and they’d give me Alfa loaners, so it was a totally acceptable trade-off.

I know it’s a trite sentiment that the FCA dealer network is killing Alfa, but I’ve not felt it personally as acutely as I do now, and yeah, it’s going to push to me other brands even though I don’t necessarily want to leave Alfa.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Oh, and @Chipshot there was a Silverstone Giulia in the service bay today, and I thought of you! I didn’t think it was yours because it had the dark 5 holes and black interior, but it did look sharp with the water beading up on it, and reaffirmed for me that Silverstone is the best color for showing off Giulia’s lines.
 

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I doubt I'll ever get a black interior, @chaadster. It's reason enough for me to pass on a car. That said, I don't repeat exterior colors. Will blue with a red interior look weird?

I suspect Golling is the second largest servicer of Alfas in the Detroit area. They're getting the volume (and all that luscious warranty work) so see no reason to up their game.
 

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It is sad. We have 2 Alfa dealerships in the relatively small Raleigh market and they are both excellent.
 
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2018 Giulia Quattroformaggio, 2020 Stelvio TI Sport
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I know it’s a trite sentiment that the FCA dealer network is killing Alfa, but I’ve not felt it personally as acutely as I do now, and yeah, it’s going to push to me other brands even though I don’t necessarily want to leave Alfa.
I said this like a year ago and 100% agree. On my side of the country my local dealer has stepped it up from when I ranted about the shitty service, so much so that I'm actually pretty happy with it these days. But I maintain that this is the exception, not the norm. The norm seems to be a service experience well below what the competition provides, and that's a problem for the brand that I love and want to stick around.
 

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I agree that the dealership can make a huge difference. I feel very fortunate that we've got great dealerships around here and that when my QV goes in for an oil change, I'm driving their Maserati for the day. That said, I doubt I'd have the same experience if it were a Dodge dealer. When I was out in California, I looked forward to bringing my Mercedes in for service, as it was a great experience. I don't need my ass kissed 24/7, but let's face it, everyone loves to feel a little special and it's $0.00 to be nice, polite, and professional to a customer. At Mercedes of Pleasanton, I felt like my service manager was a personal friend who was always looking out for me. I never had a car pickup that didn't include "I had the guys go ahead and do [blah] and I'm just waiving the charges on that". Maserati/Alfa isn't to that level out here, but I don't mind bringing them my business. They've also helped my wife out by putting her "at the front of the line" when her Levante battery died. If I had a crappy dealer, I'd have a hard time owning their car, regardless of how reliable it was. I hope it ends up working out for you Chaadster as you're a great contributor on the forum here.
 

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At Stateline just into SC south of Charlotte, they had a Maserati for my recent loaner. Quick and excellent, and friendly to boot.

Worst new car experience wife and I had two years ago was in KC, wanted to just look at Dodge cars, pulled into the lot, a young man met us as we got out, and asked for our keys, and when I asked why he needed our keys, he said he would drive our Acura around for a quick inspection, and make us an offer, and we could leave in an hour in a brand new Jeep product. I kept my keys, and then the older salesman came up to us, and when I said we were there to see which Jeeps fit and might suit us, he turned and walked away. I felt sorry for the first lad, just doing what I am sure he was told to do.

Long ago, I wanted to buy a TR7, and was taken into the office of the sales manager, who leaned back and put his feet up on his desk, wearing white alligator shoes. I left, and thought "this is just like in the movies." NV
 

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I know it’s a trite sentiment that the FCA dealer network is killing Alfa, but I’ve not felt it personally as acutely as I do now, and yeah, it’s going to push to me other brands even though I don’t necessarily want to leave Alfa.
Where do you think most FCA employees who drive Alfas have theirs serviced?
 

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Worst new car experience wife and I had two years ago was in KC, wanted to just look at Dodge cars, pulled into the lot, a young man met us as we got out, and asked for our keys, and when I asked why he needed our keys, he said he would drive our Acura around for a quick inspection, and make us an offer, and we could leave in an hour in a brand new Jeep product. I kept my keys, and then the older salesman came up to us, and when I said we were there to see which Jeeps fit and might suit us, he turned and walked away. I felt sorry for the first lad, just doing what I am sure he was told to do.
Whips out phone. "Hello, police? I think someone is trying to steal my car."

I ordered my 1989 SAAB 9000 from a great salesman. By the time it was delivered, however, he had moved away. The young and inexperienced salesman who handled the delivery kept referring to the car as my "new toy", I told him if he did it again I would walk. And when he did, I did. Right to the Sales Managers office. He completed the delivery.
 

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How often does this come up? Its a bit chicken and the egg - less sales means less dealers and vice versa. I live in Australia's largest city of over 5 million and we are down to two branches of the one dealer. For my Giulia its shuttle bus stops 100 meters from my work, but for my other older Alfa I take a whole day off work once or twice a year and go to the other side of town (to get someone who "knows" the car and all its quirks). I don't need loaners or to be crawled to but I do like politeness and for things to be fixed first time. My Giulia dealer has a young female receptionist who makes you feel that you are lucky that she is speaking to you. An English Car magazine when summing up the Giulia states something like "At last we have an Alfa we can recommend, now dealers don't stuff it up". There are dealers on this forum - is FCA working on this? Are there any directives from head office?
 

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right or wrong the sad reality is that Alfa is not a car you can own without some car repair knowledge and willingness to do it yourself sometimes. A code clearing device is a must. Especially for modded cars. After I modded it I knew I was 100% on my own and that’s understandable. Once you find that one solid Alfa mechanic you gotta get his phone number and start tipping him heavy.
 

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right or wrong the sad reality is that Alfa is not a car you can own without some car repair knowledge and willingness to do it yourself sometimes. A code clearing device is a must. Especially for modded cars. After I modded it I knew I was 100% on my own and that’s understandable. Once you find that one solid Alfa mechanic you gotta get his phone number and start tipping him heavy.
Where I live people of Asian background make up a large part of the prestige car market, and they will usually run a mile from any brand that doesn't have both reliability and good support.
 

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It's not too different in UK either as most people complain of decent showrooms but poor sales staff and service departments. I am lucky being south of London in Kent, I have 3 Alfa dealers (who also sell Abarths and Jeeps in segregated parts of the showroom) within 20 miles radius. The one where I bought the car and do the servicing for the last 4 years has been good. They have a good tech I know and has been there for the last 4 years so he knows my OCD with my car. The service desk also have 2 people I now know personally and they are usually prompt and communicative via email and phone even though I bought my recent Quad from another dealer 150 miles away who was also excellent. My 500 mile and 5 month old Quadrifoglio was serviced , PDI, fully valeted a and looked as pristine as a brand new car when I collected it. He even refunded me the one way car rental charge to get myself there. I am in the minority though. If the dealer was any more than 1 hour away, I too would be put off. Luckily I can diagnose most things myself which also helps alleviate any headaches.

Most of my family and friends drive run of the mill German cars or other boring boxes, except one chap but he is a specialist car dealer.
 

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Agreed. The worst part about owning the Giulia has been the dealer. Bad during the sale, even worse during service. For a premium brand, the experience has been anything but. I did find one service coordinator who has made quite a difference. She presses for good and quick service, and does what she can to deliver, but the dealership is ultimately driving the ship. Still, without her help, the service department tends to operate amateurishly.

And monitoring the forum(s), the issue is widespread. As we see above, and elsewhere, there are customers who are getting great service throughout. It's nice seeing that. I wish Alfa would do more to make this the norm.
 

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@chaadster Can’t blame you for ranting. I had my heart set of getting a Giulia(my first Alfa); i expected there’d be issues, but at the time there were three dealers in my city, so i felt somewhat reassured that if there were any issues they could be taken care of relatively painlessly.
If there was only one dealer in my city, i suspect i would not have gotten a Giulia.
With electrical glitches and battery issues, theres no way id be able to diagnose and fix these issues on my own. Fortunately the dealer where i goto for service has been great.
 
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