Keeping our options open
There was a Thor dealer about an hour from where we lived in Iowa, so we scheduled time to look at their RVs while we were trying to determine which RV we were going to purchase. Prior to our first visit we decided which of the Thor motorcoaches we wanted to see and provided the list to our sales rep ahead of time. This was to help us save time on the lot and let our rep know we were serious. During our first visit, we solely looked at each of the models on our list. We took our time and tried to imagine ourselves doing things like sitting at the kitchen table to work on a laptop for hours, washing my hair in the shower, cooking on the stove. We made plans to return to actually drive one of the vehicles.
Before our return, our sales rep called and advised that the manufacturer’s regional rep for Thor was at the store and would like to meet with us. Our sales rep made this sound like a big deal and since we had developed a new list of questions about the Thor features, we figured who better to answer than the manufacturer’s rep? Fresh from our awesome Winnebago experience, we dropped everything and headed back to the dealership excited for the opportunity to meet with the manufacturer.
After our second question that the manufacturer’s rep was unable to answer, he admitted he was not terribly familiar with the actual models we were interested in and he was more accustomed to negotiating prices. While this was very disappointing to us, we had read several times not to be surprised if you knew more about the RVs than the sales people you worked with. This seems sad, but apparently normal, so we chalked it up to our sales rep overestimating the manufacturer’s reps knowledge.
Not a complete waste of time
For the record, the regional Thor rep offered us an extra $500 off the $280,000 coach. No kidding – that was his big add to our interaction. Mind you, that is after we dropped everything and drove an hour each way to meet with him for 1/2 hour where he could answer none of our questions. That interaction was the nail in the coffin for Thor for us. We didn’t love the product to start with and after that interaction, we definitely weren’t impressed by the company standing behind it.