car issues

Customer Says Popular Online Car Dealer Is Falling Short of Company Promise

He contacted NBC 6 Responds for help — here's what the company had to say

NBC Universal, Inc.

Carvana is a popular online car dealer that promises customers peace of mind when it comes to their new rides.

But some people are complaining Carvana is not living up to this promise.

“I saw some ads on television and said, maybe I will try Carvana,” Michael Brennan said.

Brennan said he was hoping for the easy car-buying experience advertised by the online used car dealer Carvana.

“It took me less than 15 minutes to do everything,” Brennan said.

He said purchasing a 2017 Nissan Altima was easy, but when the car arrived, he told NBC 6 Responds he noticed issues.

“Then after a few weeks, I was driving it and having problems. There was a scraping noise,” Brennan said.

After taking the car to the repair shop, he learned the car’s suspension was rusted.

“Underneath the car, the suspension was rusted, the exhaust was rusted, and I was like, wow, I am shocked,” Brennan said.

He learned the brake system needed to be replaced.

“If they are inspecting their cars, all of this should have been caught,” Brennan said.

Brennan is not the only customer complaining about their car buying experience with Carvana. According to Florida’s Attorney General’s Office, they have received 98 complaints about the company since 2019.  

These complaints were handed over to Florida’s Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles.

In July, the agency filed two administrative complaints against the online car dealer, alleging Carvana failed to transfer titles to consumers within the 30 days required by state law.

The documents state some customers waited more than 250 days to get a title.

When NBC 6 Responds asked Carvana about these complaints, a spokesperson said, “While we will never be satisfied until we achieve 100% customer satisfaction, we are proud to have achieved a 4.7 out of five-star customer rating and have sold tens of thousands of cars in Florida.”

“We are in good standing with the FLHSMV and compliant with title and registration deadline completions," the statement continued. "These are old cases and the underlying customer situations have long since been resolved. We look forward to continuing to collaborate with the FLHSMV to provide the best customer experience available in Florida.”

When it comes to Brennan’s concerns, he was able to return the 2017 Nissan and bought a 2018 Nissan Altima from the company instead.

But he said Carvana left him on the hook for $796.80 he paid out of pocket.

“I would like the money back that I lost. The money I put into the 2017 (Nissan), the money I invested in that, the brake repair, the car rental,” Brennan said.

After NBC 6 Responds reached out to the car dealer, a Carvana spokesperson confirmed they would reimburse Brennan for the money he was owed.

“We care deeply about the experiences of every one of our customers, and we worked closely with Mr. Brennan to resolve this issue as we are committed to ensuring that in the rare cases where we don’t initially live up to our brand promise, we work to make it right," the representative said in a statement. "In a complex industry, Carvana aims for simplicity and transparency, and while we remain firmly committed to continuous improvement, the vast majority of our millions of customers nationwide enjoy exceptional experiences with us.”

But even with a newer car, Brennan said things aren't smooth sailing yet.

He said he has already had to have a wheel alignment, battery replacement, and airbag repair — repairs that should be covered under his Carvana warranty.

“I was luckily able to get the car fixed, but I still have issues I am trying to solve,” Brennan said.

The company said the expenses Brennan has incurred dealing with his latest Carvana vehicle are under review by their warranty company.

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