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Letter handwritten From Brian Skar, Berthold, ND
Last fall I purchased from you a Toyota Rav4. Generally speaking I am happy with the vehicle. However, on Monday, Jan. 2, I had a flat tire. The temperature was -17 degrees. We live quite a distance out in the country, and I do know how to change a tire, so rather than wait for roadside assistance, I went to take the spare tire off the back door. To my dismay, I was unable to find the latch at the bottom of the spare per directions in the manual. A great deal of ice had formed on the top of the spare so I did not see the zipper that was located there.
I ended up calling for roadside assistance which made for a long wait. By the time he arrived, I had chipped away the ice and found the zipper. It was frozen up pretty badly. I had to use a pliers to unzip it. But even then I could not get the cover off. It was frozen on tight. Apparently, in extremely cold weather, the elastic cord does not stretch as it should. We finally decided to use extreme force and finally, with the two of us working at it the cover came off, and he was able to change the tire.
Needless to say, after three hours I was not very happy with the spare tire system on the Rav4. The other problem with the Rav4 in winter is the shelf on the back bumper often time collects ice making it difficult to open and close the back door.
I brought the tire into your service department (Minot Automotive Center) and was very pleased with them. They set me up with a new tire and got me on the road again. Everyone I cam into contact within your service department was kind and professional. They did things right by me. I was particularly impressed with Lindsey Lemay (Service Advisor). She was excellent.
Overall, I am happy with the Rav4 as long as I don't have a flat tire in the winter. I am not an irate customer. I have leased one vehicle and bought another from you in the past two years. I see no reason to take my business elsewhere. This letter is more for your information. The salesman I have been dealing with is Terry K. I am pleased with him as well.
Response from Minot Automotive Center:
Thanks for taking the time to write to us. Toyota has been made aware of the issues with the Rav4 Spare Tire system and has made a change in the 2013 models. There are no spare tires on the back of the vehicles any more.
Thanks for the kind words about our Service Team and your Salesman. We strive to make everyone's experience here the absolute best that it can be. We appreciate your continued business and we hope to continue serving all your vehicle needs in the future. Enjoy your Rav4 and we look forward to hearing from you in the future.
--- Minot Automotive Center Staff.
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