Never mind “love”. Back in the good old days, VW parts prices at West Side often beat NAPA and they stocked everything. Then the Luther (dysfunctional) family of dealerships bought them and suddenly one measly glow plug at their parts counter cost darn near  as much as all four from independent sources. Of late, Mankato VW handled my 5th and latest VW’s 10k service OK, though it’s hard to botch a glorified oil and filter change. Not so sure of Naples VW’s 20k service,  I don’t have a great deal of confidence in a shop where the service writers damn near outnumber the techs and the actual shop is pretty much outa customer’s sight. Graham VW did the 30k OK, and you can purview most of the shop if you wish.

Now the idea of all these free or cheap services is to get the owner in the habit of taking the car to the dealer for service instead of the indy shop up the street or DIY.  This of course totally backfires when after a near half dozen $19.95 oil+filter changes+tire rotations the local Ford truck dealer wants $400 for a 60k service, which is the aforementioned $19.95 service plus a transfer case fluid change and a few other minor manipulations…I haven’t been back to said Ford dealer’s shop since.

So I have a “short timer”2013  TDI looking at the 40k service in a few months, which includes the rather pricey transmission fluid+filter change. Noting one of the indy VW parts suppliers is running a sale on the tools and materials for around $140 and I’ve got an unused $500 VW credit card, I price the local VW shop…$800?! Heck, even buying a service plan through VW I can get that and the simpler 50k service for a bit over $700, ‘cept my TDI is a 2013 and they only sell that plan for the identical 2014 and newer cars.

Now I have a vested interest in seeing this closest to me dealer, Graham VW in Sioux Falls, survive. And having had Saab and Suzuki cars USA up and die on them, all they got left to sell is wounded VW and Audi…When you’ve recently laid out several million $$$ for a new building and more pricey urban land, with that kind of overhead you want to keep loyal customers, not drive them away with price gouging.

So Graham VW, I don’t want to see you go under and your workers unemployed… But I can’t afford to subsidize you via excessive $800 maintenance charges! Off to idparts.com to order the tools and materials for the40k DSG transmission service…

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