Actual buying process, paperwork, finance, waiting, is always a PITA. I'm used to it, I can deal with it. I think the only time everything went fast and easy was when I literally walked into a Dodge dealer (that I had bought from before) and said right off, "write me up on that little black Neon you've got out front. I'll take it." I needed a small commuter car for a new job. Told 'em to give me your best deal (that was 21 yrs ago), and I'd take it RIGHT NOW. They did, I took it, and it turned out to be a great little car. Never a worry, never a problem. Yes, I had an idea of what the price should be.
My AutoNation sales experience 3 years ago was ok. There were some issues with getting everything for the car. I didn't want to rush, they wanted to rush the process, sell the car RIGHT NOW. The owners manual was missing. A couple things weren't ready. I was back in the dealer 2-3 times just the first 2 weeks getting things done. At one point in the process, I was pissed off about never getting the original window sticker, "What the H*ll did I just buy!). Sales was always there to "make things right". Service has also made things right too, for a few minor issues, and made sure I was always satisfied over the last 3 years.
Today, I had a NEW experience (and I bought my first new car in 1981...). Figured I'd check out Hewlett Chevy/Buick in Georgetown TX (referenced above). I had not been there before. Been in Austin area 5 years. Asked for their EV sales guy. The receptionist assured me that all their sales people were equally versed in all Chevrolet cars (hmm first red flag). Got a guy named Terry. Talked about new Volts and Bolts. Terry was not interested in selling Volts or Bolts. "We don't have any Bolts, maybe 45 days." Then, maybe 60-90 days. "Maybe November. There aren't ANY in Texas." This is a limited market that GM is just allowing limited numbers. We're just satisfying orders. Asked about ordering Volts, ordering Bolts. Yeah we could do that, but no idea when they'd come in. They're like the ELR, limited numbers, may be phased out after satisfying orders.... There was nothing to discuss, he dumped cold water on any question I had. I walked out.
I don't think I've ever had a sales guy not interested in selling his own product. He did admit they had a few 2017 Volts on the lot. Sure, sales guys may lie, mislead, do whatever it takes to convince you to buy, TODAY! But this was different. I'd tell GM to terminate this dealership from selling EVs. It wouldn't be any big loss.
I had checked Hewlett's stock on-line earlier, I knew they had 2-3 Volts on the lot. They also sell Buicks, figured I'd ask about the Buick EV connection. But got now where with that (not that I was expecting more on Buick).
BEFORE I talked with Terry, I had walked into the service area, a separate building. Had a very pleasant discussion with Alicia L, who is recently in Austin, having previously worked at Keyes Chevrolet, Van Nuys, California, and was very familiar with Volts. I didn't see a single Volt in their shop, and there were probably a dozen-15 vehicles there. Looked to be a very busy Saturday morning. Alicia told me they probably see 1-2 Volts per week, and they DO have a dedicated Volt tech (just one). She was very busy with customers and phone calls, but took the time to talk to me in a positive light about satisfying Volt customers and concerns.
I walked around the lot, big TX dealer, lots of trucks of course. Never found the Volts. They must be there somewhere....
So, I don't know. I was pretty disgusted by Sales. It will be a cold day in He... Texas... before I go back to Hewlett.
So next, I drove to AutoNation Chevrolet, Austin. Walked in, gave the same line; Do you have an EV sales guy? (They DID when I bought my 2014, I kind of knew they still did). And the response was an enthusiast, Sure! Lots of us love EVs! I breathed a sigh of relief, and told them how I practically got thrown out of Hewlett. We all had a good laugh, and spent over an hour looking at Bolts, talking to Mark Welch, their very enthusiast EV sales guy (he's sales, that's good). Night and Day, felt like I was home. I did tell them up front I wasn't buying today, wasn't test driving today, but still had a great discussion of availability, features and merits of the Bolt and Volt. Fed Tax Credits, TX EV grants (nothing new yet). They had TWO Bolts that I looked at, (about 8 Volts). As the Only 200+ mile range EV I could afford for the next 18 months, it looked really nice. Not my kind of shape, but could grow on me (it IS the shape/type car my wife buys). And I kept looking at the roof, hmm... nice 4x6' area ... I could get nearly 500W of rated solar panel power up there (no... not really enough to be significant).
Bolt was prominently displayed at the center of the showroom inside. Volts along the outside front row (Vetts too). No problem seeing EVs here. I parked right next to another Bolt, ready for test drives.
Unfortunately, the electronic rear view mirror doesn't work for me. I have progressive lens glasses, which puts distant objects focused clearly in the upper part of my vision. Glasses generally work really well. It does take some "retraining" of your brain, but the Bolt rear view screen close to my eyes just cannot work. Things get really small in the camera view too.
The seats are "ok". Definitely basic, narrow. I don't think they'll be a sales block. But will need to have my wife try them, to see if they're an issue (Bolt might be for her). She has nice power adjustable seats now, adjustable lumbar etc, in her C-MAX-Energy (yes, I'm jealous). As a point of comparison, I stopped later at the Telsa showroom (yes we have one in Austin). Sat in a loaded X. NOW THOSE ARE NICE SEATS. Sure, car is probably 3x the cost. Seats too.
So, interesting morning. I stopped in the Tesla showroom mainly to discuss how service and delivery is handled in TX. Not that I'm about to jump ship to Tesla, but always good to look at what the other side has.
Another interesting point, hadn't realized till now. All the sales guys (that I saw), at Hewlett and AutoNation were... guys. Tesla had 3 women on the floor talking, answering questions. No Sales of course, this is TX!