Actor Dennis Singletary starred in a national commercial touting Honda's "Really Big Thing" sales promotion program. In fact, Singletary was so swayed by the offer of cheap financing, he went to a Honda dealer to take advantage of it. But when a dealer denied him participation in the very program he promoted he got kinda pissed.
The details of The Really Big Thing are simple: $0 down, $0 first payment, $190 a month for a Honda Civic lease. With gas prices being what they are, Singletary decided he'd participate and drove to his local Honda dealership who told him that, though he had the 709 credit score that qualified him for the deal, they didn't have a Civic in stock.
Undeterred, Singletary went to Power Honda in Valencia, California to get the same deal. They had the Civic he wanted, but when his credit score came up 663 they told him he'd have to pay $272 a month for the same car. Here's what he did next, according to a letter he sent to Honda and obtained by TMZ:
I then called Miller Honda right in front of him to ask for my credit just to double check and Julie was nice enough to tell me. I asked him to run my credit with me watching and he refused at first until I started to get angry.
He then proceeded to say he was re-running it but he was only reprinting the original copy he gave me. I know this because the original had the wrong zipcode. I asked him to re-run it and give me a print out with the right zipcode and he again just printed out the original. I then drove down to Miller to get a copy of my credit report and spoke to the managers. They explained to me that Honda is required to take the 2 credit score. They said Chance was taking the 3 credit score to try and get me to pay higher lease payment
This sort of thing happens all the time and few people are willing to go through the hassle to protect themselves.
Honda didn't respond to his claims and wouldn't let him speak to a manager despite starring in the ad for the same campaign he wasn't allowed to participate in.
How is it that I am dealing with such blatant dishonesty and unethical behavior from one of your dealerships, when my face was all over the TV promoting the very deal I wasn't able to get? If this the way I am being treated how is everyone else being treated?
Eventually, Singletary was able to get a Civic from a different Honda dealer happy to recognize the deal. It's a good reminder that, unless you're buying Spykers, there's probably another dealership around the corner willing to take your money and treat you better. No matter who you are.