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4 Wheelparts - Bait & Switch

1013 Views 6 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  Chad
I ordered five mounted and balanced sets of 31” X 10.5” BF Goodrich Mud Terrain (M/T) KM tires on 15" AR-23 American Racing wheels. Payment was by credit card over the telephone and all other additional information was taken by the representative to insure the delivery of the merchandise. He even read back my order to me and it was correct. I asked what proof would exist of the actual order that I placed. He said that there were recordings of the conversations of phone orders to deal with these types of situations and that the recording would be on the PC.

The shipment arrived and when I got home and unloaded the tires I realized that I had been given All Terrain T/As instead of Mud Terrain T/As. I immediately contacted the customer service center with my order number and spoke to the representative. He simply told me that the order said All-Terrain T/As and that I was mistaken. I stated that the situation was totally unacceptable and I demanded the mistake be corrected. He then stated that there was a price difference between the M/Ts and the A/Ts that I would have to pay that amounted to $23.00/tire. Assuming an honest mistake had been made, I stated that I was willing to pay the difference to get the tires I wanted (and had ordered). It’s not my desire to cheat anyone out of anything. If there was an honest mistake made (by 4wheelparts), and I had not paid the proper amount, I was willing to make-up the difference. I was however (and still am not) willing to incur any shipping related costs as the shipping of the errant order is absolutely not my responsibility.

He insisted that I was completely in error and that I would be at least partially responsible for shipping costs. I explained that it was 4wheelparts that was in error and that I was not willing to pay for any shipping. Then he accused me of “deciding I didn’t like the A/Ts when I got them home” and further suggested that I was trying to cheat the company. I explained that I had ordered correctly and that his refusal to absorb the shipping costs suggested strongly that the wrong tires had been sent either on purpose (to reduce costs as the M/Ts are a more expensive tire) or simply with a disregard for the accuracy of the order since few people would be willing to absorb the shipping costs to make the exchange. Simply put, the old Bait-and-Switch. I informed him that that type of activity amounts to fraud and I simply would not accept being a victim of it.

A heated argument ensued. At one point I asked to speak to his supervisor, and was told “this is as high as you’re going to go”. I insisted that the recording of my order be produced as evidence of who was actually in the wrong. I further stated that if a recording of my placement of the order incorrectly could be played for me, I would immediately apologize and accept my mistake. He told me that only his supervisor was authorized to listen to the recording. I was put on hold for about 4 minutes after which, he came back on the phone and told me that his supervisor had listened to the recording and that I had ordered All-Terrains, but that he was still willing to absorb some of the shipping costs. I was shocked. I asked why he’d be willing to absorb any shipping costs if I was clearly in the wrong, and told him that if he played the recording for me, as proof of an errant order, or emailed me the sound file, 4wheelparts wouldn’t have to absorb anything.

He then told me that 4wheelparts wouldn’t provide the recording without a court order. Again, I was shocked. I restated that if the recording said what he had just told me it did, I would apologize and the issue would be closed. He reiterated the need for a court order. I told him that since a court order was required, I’d have to contact an attorney. He got very upset and told me that “if I mentioned the word lawyer one more time, he was going to hang up.” I further stated, that his refusal to provide the recording that would definitively put the matter to rest, was a guarantee that either there was no recording, or that it had confirmed that I placed the order correctly. In either case, it was clear that we were no longer dealing with a simple mistake, but obvious dishonesty and falsehoods. I explained that I was absolutely not going to pay for any of the shipping charges, nor was I going to accept the errant merchandise. I told him that if I was forced to contact an attorney regarding the matter, that, given his behavior, it would be with allegations of fraud. Upon hearing more mention of lawyers, he said good-bye and hung up.

And so here I am. I have 5 incorrect tires, on 5 wheels, all of which I was charged for well before I had any chance to refuse delivery. I have no interim confirmations of the order and a 4wheelparts simply insists that I ordered incorrectly.

As far as stopping payment, it was taken before shipment. They are already paid for. I wrote Mr. Adler ( The president of 4wheelparts) a 2 page email 2 days ago and have not heard from him. The matter is closed as far as the representatives are concerned. They will NOT let me hear the recording.

Unfortunately, in this case, if I do not hear from Mr. Adler the pursuit will likely have to go beyond that provided by a private attorney, and will likely involve filing additional complaints/claims.
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Unfortunately, that seems to be the typical M.O. for 4Wheelparts

I say you go after 'em!
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God, I hate 4WFarts. Do some searches, I bad mouthed them over what they did to me in the past on more than one occasion here. Bunch of lying, cheating, moronic assholes if you ask me. I'll never do business with them again, no matter how good the deal.
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are there any avenues you can persue with your credit card company? i know that sometimes if you get cheated they will go to bat for you ... also i had a similar bait and switch deal go on when i orderd the gears for my toyota .. I called all over the country looking for the best prices for a set of gears and install kits .... 4 Wheel parts had the best price by a decent margin and "free shipping" . so i placed my order and the total was supposed to be something like $400 total but when the total was actually like $420 .. i told the guy that the add said free shipping and he said " oh yeah, the shipping IS free but that is the HANDLING fee we have to charge on the larger items .
.. i went ahead and paid it because it was still a fair price and i didnt feel like elevating my blood pressure at the moment .. i probably should have argued a bit and saved myself the $20 .. it sounds like they do this type of thing all the time and get away with it the way , i was happy with the gears and they did show up three days after i placed the order so i cant complain to much about that .....Von Warner
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You can also pursue through the better business bureau. They have a website where you can file your complaint.

I filed a complaint with them against a company that would not return my calls or e-mails regarding an incorrect item they shipped me. A couple of weeks later the company president called to apologize and sort things out.
I have had nothing but problems with this company. When i go into thier stores and walk up to the counter nobody wants to get up and help me. then all they say is "i don't know if that part will work,etc"! They seem to have no knowledge of thier products. I say go after them and make them feel the pain that the rest of us have over the years. redtoy92
Your credit card company should and will persue the illegitimate charge. I have run in this in the past and my credit card company went after the company hardcore.
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