Are You Sure You Have Emergency Auto Assistance Coverage?


You are proud as punch over your venture into “green” living with the purchase of your brand new hybrid. You have insurance and you have warranties and you thought you had coverage for emergency auto assistance. The story reprinted below was taken off a hybrid message board and the moral of it is; double check that part of your coverage provided for emergency roadside assistance. Like this gentleman, you might be quite disappointed to find that you do not.

“OK, I bought the Hybrid knowing that I could count it to be a reliable vehice for my wife, a “relatively new” driver, and that Toyota would back the car, in terms of service if we did have issues. Boy, was I dissappointed.

Having owned the car for 4 days, we took it to NYC with 65 miles on the odometer, from Providence RI. We stayed in a Hotel on 45th St in Manhatttan. I showed the Garage worker hw to t operate the Hybrid car – turn it on, and how to turn it off, and he took the car to the garage.

Two days later we called to have the car delivered to the hotel door man, and hot the bad news. It was “dead”, I went to the garage and indeed, it was. The interior light…

I called the National Toyota 800 Service number in the Hybrid service manual. The “hybrid woman” was very nice but knew nothing (admittedely), and had no helpful hints other than to “call the dealer”.

Now I must add: the car was wedged inside the underground floor of this Manhattan Parking Garage, and had been literally wedged between 2 pillars,
by a skilled NYC garage attendant, and there was NO WAY that any tow truck driver would have touched this car – it needed a 12 point maneuver to get it out of the parking spot iit was in, so it was not easily towable.

OK, the car is 5-6 days old; Toyota says call the dealer (IE: you’reon your own). So I called the Manhattan Dealer on 47th st – 4-6 blocks from where I was located, They put their service manager on, whose only question was, DID YOU BUY THE CAR FROM US ? – I was perturbed of course, then asked for his “hybrid” person.
The NYC hybrid expert had no suggestions excecpt to get it towed. They refused to send a guy over because ” “the union would kill us”. according to the service manager. God Bless the Unions I thought,

I was very unhappy. Subaru has an on call road service. My Bmw does, I buy a $30 k new technology Toyota and I am stranded 200 miles from home.

…why doesn’t Toyota have a) a knowledeable person on their hotline, and b) a roadside service assistance policy for owners of new cars like this one ? The dealer’s service policy at Manhattan Toyota are not to my liking – shame on them – I was 4-6 blocks away and really stuck with an un towable car. They left me out in the cold !!

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