Navi Mumbai: Dealer takes full payment, but fails to deliver bikes

Updated: Aug 15, 2016, 13:04 IST | Gaurav Sarkar |

For the last three months, SNK dealership at Palm Beach has failed to deliver bikes to 11 customers despite taking full payment in advance — each bike costing anywhere between Rs 7 lakh to Rs 18 lakh

A year after it’s launch, Mumbai’s first ever Kawasaki showroom is taking its customers for a ride. For the last three months, the SNK dealership at Palm Beach has failed to deliver bikes to 11 customers despite taking full payment in advance — each bike costing anywhere between Rs 7 lakh to Rs 18 lakh. After waiting for months, some customers demanded refunds, only to receive cheques that bounced.

Neil Shah did not receive his bike or a refund even after three months
Neil Shah did not receive his bike or a refund even after three months

Kawasaki India confirmed to mid-day that when they found out about the pile-up of pending orders in May, they expressly told the dealership to not take any new bookings until all bikes had been delivered. Despite this, the showroom continued to take more orders. Each time, the showroom promised to deliver the bikes within 25 days, but failed to do so even after 90 days.

Neil Shah booked his Kawasaki Z800 on May 9 from SNK dealers. When the bike wasn’t delivered within 25 days, he started calling the showroom, but no one answered the phone. He also tried calling the proprietor of the dealership, Satyen Karandikar. “He kept saying the bike would arrive in 1-2 days, but it never did,” said Shah.

On June 7, the bikes became even more expensive as the RTO tax was increased to 13%, but Satyen promised he would bear the extra cost. “But after a few days, he changed his stance, and was asking me to pay 6.5% of it.”

Refund woes
Borivli resident Navin Bharti had ordered his bike and made the full payment on May 19. “I sold my old Kawasaki Ninja and took out an additional loan as well, so that I could buy the new Z800. Till date, neither have I received delivery of the bike nor has my money been refunded. SNK keeps saying that it will be delivered within 1-2 days. They don’t even pick up calls at the showroom anymore,” he said.

When Navin went to pick up the refund cheque promised to him by the dealer, he found the cheque had no signature.

Mandheer Singh, another customer, said, “The refund cheque given to me by SNK bounced when I deposited it on July 4.” Singh, an Oshiwara resident, had paid for the bike as far back as April 28.

More bookings
What’s more, even after defaulting on so many orders since April, SNK Palm Beach was still taking bookings in June. “I made the full payment for my Kawasaki Ninja 1000 (Rs 15.5 lakh) on June 21,” said 35-year-old Pranit Lunavat, a resident of Lonavla. “The main problem is that Kawasaki India has not put out any word to not place bookings with this dealer. How are people supposed to know that there is an issue with the dealership?” he added.

However, it turns out that Kawasaki India asked the SNK dealership to stop taking orders towards the end of May. “We haven’t received any money from SNK for the delivery of motorcycles. We had sent out a notice to SNK a couple of months back, towards the end of May, asking them not to take any new orders. From what I know, SNK has not taken any orders since June,” said Tarun Khanna, head of services and marketing at Indian Kawasaki Motors (IKM).

Pranit alleged that his order was accepted after the deadline set by Kawasaki, but the showroom changed the date on the receipt.

He claimed that it was only last week that he took a closer look at his payment receipt and realised it had been backdated to April 10, even though he had made the money transfer in June.

According to Pranit, Satyen was using the money from the new bookings to clear the old debts.

“He has refunded the money of 4 people who had booked bikes from him, as they were putting pressure on him. How is this fair business?”

Kawasaki India says
A statement published on the company’s website on August 10 reads: ‘IKM takes customer satisfaction very seriously and is doing everything in its power to solve this issue as soon as possible. We are now communicating with customers to understand their issues and in turn, instruct SNK Palm Beach to satisfy and resolve these issues at the earliest. Please accept our sincere apologies for these delays and thank you for being patient and supportive.’

The Other Side
Satyen Karandikar, proprietor of the Kawasaki dealership, said, “It is my dealership’s fault. We could not fulfil the commitment given to our buyers, as the registration process for the dealership took longer than expected because of government formalities. In business, there are ups and down, but we are almost on the verge of solving this problem.”

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