man talks about car dealer scam tiktok

lumen-digital/Shutterstock @pbsquamer/TikTok (Licensed)

‘The old bait and switch scam’: Man says he was scammed while attempting to buy a car at a Chevy dealership

'Our dealership tacked on 5K surcharge. My husband said “I don’t pay over sticker” and left. They called us the next day with a better deal.'


Braden Bjella


Posted on Oct 1, 2022   Updated on Oct 6, 2022, 11:49 am CDT

A user on TikTok has gone viral after sharing his negative experience at a local Chevrolet dealership. 

In a video with over 8.8 million views, car-focused TikTok user @Pbsquamer recounted his experience at the Woodbridge, Virginia-based dealership, Lindsay Chevrolet.

According to the creator, he initially went to the dealership after seeing a car he was interested in listed for $23,000, which he called a “great price” for the car in question.

After he confirmed the price and test drove the car, he settled down to sign the paperwork — only to discover the dealership had added a $2,500 fee, which they dubbed the “blazer cost.”

“It’s a package that we have to add on,” @Pbsquamer recalls the salesperson saying. “Basically, what it is is that it comes with two years’ free maintenance and some floor mats for the car.”

The TikToker politely declined, at which point he discovered the fee was not optional.

“So the car is $25,500, not 23?” he recounts asking. 

“No, the car’s still $23,000,” the salesperson allegedly responded.

“Then I don’t want the package, and I’ll pay for it at 23,” @Pbsquamer claims he answered. His offer was rejected.

Once the TikToker threatened to leave, the dealership offered to negotiate, knocking off half of the fee. The buyer still refused, at which point the dealership informed him again that the package covered two years of maintenance and floor mats. @Pbsquamer retorted that maintenance for a car of such a young age would be minimal and floor mats are cheap to purchase.

The salesperson then said he was leaving to speak to his boss. After 20 minutes, @Pbsquamer was informed that the boss was not actually going to return. At this point, he left.

“The old bait and switch scam,” he sums up the experience in the caption.

@pbsquamer The old bait and switch scam #fyp #chevy #dealer #scam #hiddenfee ♬ original sound – Pbsquamer

In the comments section, users shared their own stories of dealership rip-offs.

“Our dealership tacked on 5K surcharge. My husband said ‘I don’t pay over sticker’ and left,” claimed one commenter. “They called us the next day with a better deal.”

“Had this for my daughters brand new Hyundai- extra $$ for ‘free car washes’!” exclaimed another. “I didn’t want to pay for those and left – they lost the sale.”


“I tried to buy a car and they added a $2000 ‘Covid’ package for disinfection spray,” recalled another TikToker. “We left promptly after he said he would make his mom pay the same.”

This practice appears so widespread in the industry that the FTC is currently proposing rules to reign in the practice. The proposed “16 CFR Part 463: Motor Vehicle Dealers Trade Regulation Rule (NPRM)” would ban fees similar to the one seen in the video alongside many other fees. The National Automobile Dealers Association (“NADA”) has come out in opposition to this proposed rule.

Other commenters shared that it was silly to lose a customer over $2,500.

As one user wrote, “So they lose a $23,000 sale over $2500?? I think that’s pretty bad business.”

Update: 11:50am CT, Oct. 6: In an Instagram direct message exchange with Daily Dot, Pbsquamer said interactions like these are unfortunately common.

“I would say fairly often,” he said of the frequency in which he encounters these alleged scams. “I car shop frequently out of curiosity because I really like cars. I would say probably a third of the time dealers try to sneak an extra cost in there.”

As for this dealership, he claimed he has heard nothing from them since posting his video.
“The dealership hasn’t reached out about the video,” he stated. “I would assume there is no way they haven’t seen it but I am not sure.”

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*First Published: Oct 1, 2022, 10:02 am CDT