A total of 400 million yen? The President in the middle of the unprecedented car delivery trouble | FRIDAY DIGITAL

A total of 400 million yen? The President in the middle of the unprecedented car delivery trouble

More than 100 people have been affected by "no delivery" and "no refund" problems at car dealerships in Nagano City.

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The above is a line from President O informing the victim that he is going to be hospitalized, and the bottom is a line from him indicating his intention to reopen the store once the renewal is completed at the end of February (both provided by the victim).

<A new car delivery problem on an unprecedented scale is occurring at Dunamis Racing, a car dealership in Nagano City, Nagano Prefecture. There have been a number of cases where customers who reserved new cars at the store paid the full amount, but the cars were not delivered until after the scheduled delivery date, citing “the spread of the new Covid-19 infection and a shortage of semiconductors.

The total number of people involved is estimated to be over 100, and the total amount is estimated to be 400 million yen. What in the world is going on? When we followed the actions of O, the president of the company’s dealership, we found out some surprising facts. >What is going on?

In the past 30 years, we alone have purchased 8 cars through President O. We have also introduced about 15 of them to our acquaintances and friends. So far, they have been delivered without any problems.

The cars my sons have bought are an Alphard and a Harrier. They each borrowed money from a financial institution with a low interest rate and planned to pay it back in 10 years. It was their first time to buy a new car. They told me that they would give me a lower price if I paid the full amount up front before the delivery of the car, and the discount was 600,000 yen for the Alphard and 400,000 yen for the Harrier. The discounts were 600,000 yen for the Alphard and 400,000 yen for the Harrier, which would have been impossible at a Toyota dealership.

So I decided to pay the money in advance, but the car was not delivered and they kept delaying the delivery over and over again. When we urged them to deliver the car, they said they would give us various services free of charge, so we kept on holding out.

It has been more than a year since Mr. A, a resident of Nagano City, made a payment to “Dunamis Racing” for the cars of his two sons, but the cars have yet to be delivered. Such damage has spread not only in Nagano Prefecture, but also to people living in Niigata, Shizuoka, and Osaka.

The company in question, Dunamis Racing, was founded in 1995 by President O, who was a salesman at a Nissan dealership and retired from Nissan Motor. The company offered a variety of services related to cars, from sales of new and used cars to vehicle inspections, maintenance, and car insurance. In the beginning, the store became famous as a tuning store and was full of energy with five mechanics. However, about 10 years ago, the mechanics retired one after another, and the shop became a business that mainly sold new cars for cash.

About a year ago, in December 2020, President O suffered a mild stroke, and it seemed that the business was in even worse shape. The employees who had been contracted with the company were not being paid their salaries.

Mr. A, whom I introduced at the beginning of this article, had been a friend of President O since his days at Nissan. There are many people who have been victimized because of this relationship (hereafter, people who paid money to Dunamis Racing but complained that they had not received the car, and people who cancelled the order but did not receive a refund are referred to as “victims”).

The most common car models purchased by the victims were Toyota Alphard, followed by Toyota Harrier and Suzuki Spacia. The most common amount per person is around 4 million yen.

What is the scale of the damage? In my interviews alone, I found out that there were nearly 40 victims, and according to a police official, the number is sure to reach triple digits. If we convert that amount, it amounts to 400 million yen by simple calculation.

Missing President O was active in business until mid-January.

According to several victims who had been in contact with President O, the number of problems such as “no delivery” and “no refund” had been increasing since December 2020, when President O suffered a mild stroke.

President O’s stroke did not seem to be serious, and he returned to work after a month of rehabilitation. The left half of his body was still paralyzed and he was forced to walk with a cane, but the right half of his body was fine and he was able to drive a car.

About three months later, in March 2021, the number of victims who had not received their cars or refunds had already swelled to several dozen, but President O postponed the delivery of the cars, citing a “shortage of Covid-19 and semiconductors.

At the same time, however, the company received daily messages on LINE from buyers waiting for delivery and customers who had established connections with the company through vehicle inspections and maintenance, saying, “Please introduce me to someone who will buy a new car! I’ll give you a discount! I’ll give you a discount! It is thought that he started to focus on sales on line because of his physical disability.

The situation suddenly changed on December 28 last year, when President O stopped sending messages. When people waiting for the delivery of their cars tried to contact him on LINE, they could not even get a “read” message. At that time, people began to suspect that President O had “disappeared”. One of the victims said.

One of the victims said, “I used to receive messages on LINE every day asking me to introduce someone to buy a new car, but they just stopped. I was really fed up with his persistence, but at the end of the year and the beginning of the new year, I couldn’t even read the messages.

As the year drew to a close, the anxious people visited the store in Nagano City, only to find that there were only a few cars left, presumably substitutes, and the showroom was empty. It was only natural for me to feel uneasy. The rumor that Dunamis Racing was the victim spread rapidly, and people began to report the damage on social networking sites one after another.

President O in 2015. At that time, the car was being delivered smoothly (photo: courtesy of the victim).

“I’m going to be hospitalized… (please) buy a new car at the dealership.

What will happen to the money I paid? What will happen to the money I paid? While the victims were in such a state of anxiety, President O, who was thought to be missing, was taking surprising actions. He was sending replies on line to those who had requested estimates without knowing about the damage.

He had cancelled the cell phones he had been using to communicate with the victims and was unable to contact his existing customers, but it turned out that he had continued his sales activities, providing estimates and answering questions on line to customers who were unaware of the victims’ existence.

According to the stories of those who had requested estimates and had been able to communicate with President O, after January 15, President O suddenly sent a message saying, “I’m going to be hospitalized.

<I’m going to be in the hospital for a while, so I’m going to have to take a day laborer this time. Sorry.

I’m going to be hospitalized for a while. >I’m going to be in a hospital for a while.

If the message on the line is correct, he will be admitted to the hospital on January 16.

Even if they were hospitalized, they should have been able to communicate with each other on line, and the act of letting go of the message, asking them to go to a dealer other than themselves for consultation, is itself questionable. If they are avoiding replying to customers with inadequate explanations, it could be considered as “running away”.

In addition, when a new customer pointed out that the car was missing from the showroom, he sent a line saying that he was temporarily moving the car because he was renovating the store.

The police response was

The victims, who cancelled their contracts due to the length of time it took to deliver their cars but were not able to get their money back, have been consulting with the police and lawyers. Since early January, when the problem came to light, the number of such cases has increased sharply. The police station in charge of this case is the Nagano Minami Police Station. However, the number of victims coming to the station for consultation seems to be too large. A victim who visited the station said, “I was told that dozens of people visit the station every day at most.

He added, “Since the matter is so serious, we are proceeding with the investigation carefully. (We have to draw a line between whether he signed the contract with the victim with the intention of deceiving her or whether he did not intend to deceive her and ended up deceiving her due to financial difficulties.

The police are currently compiling a list of victims, and it will take some time before they can start a full-scale investigation.

The 2nd Investigation Division of the Nagano Prefectural Police told FRIDAY Digital, “There is no doubt that we have received consultations from several people, but we are definitely confirming the contents of each consultation in turn and conducting the necessary investigations. However, I can’t give you any more specific information about the status of the investigation because the case is still under investigation.

I also tried to call President O’s new cell phone and “Dunamis Racing” in Nagano City, but they were unreachable. If he continues to remain silent, I have to say that he is being too insincere to his customers. The company, as well as the president, needs to take action as soon as possible. The “victims” have been sending in new information one after another, and it looks like it will take some time to resolve the issue.

The Dunamis Racing store as photographed in early January. There were no cars on display, just a few old domestic cars in the parking lot that looked like loaner cars (provided by the victim).
It has been in this state since the beginning of the year. The only thing left was a catalog of new cars (provided by the victim).
The exterior of the store has become a shell of its former self. When I tried to contact the store by phone, I received a message saying, “We are unable to take calls due to customer’s circumstances.
I hope that the day will come soon when President O will be sincere to the victims (provided by the victim).
  • Interviewed and written by Kumiko Kato

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