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Recommendation for someone "willing" to do a PPI in BayArea for F355

Discussion in 'California & Nevada (Northern)' started by kimoSabe, Aug 8, 2005.

  1. kimoSabe

    kimoSabe Karting

    Dec 7, 2003
    191
    No CA
    Full Name:
    Ray C.
    Hi All,

    Just spoke with Brian Crall in San Ramon. Seems that he doesn't do PPIs anymore due to possible lawsuits. He did not elaborate but I'm assuming buyers have issues with their F-cars after the puchase and blaming the mechanics that did the inpection. Also FoSF doesn't do them anymore either. Any recomendation would be appreciated. Anywhere from Sacramento to Pleasanton area. Thanks
     
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  3. kimoSabe

    kimoSabe Karting

    Dec 7, 2003
    191
    No CA
    Full Name:
    Ray C.
    Just want to claify, Brian Crall is not in a lawsuit over a PPI.
     
  4. cal355

    cal355 Formula Junior

    Jun 16, 2004
    383
    San Francisco
    Full Name:
    Cal
    yiou can try Prancing Horse of California
    1390 Rollins Rd.
    Burlingame,Ca 94010
    (650)558-8585
    Dayal Dindral
     
  5. riverflyer

    riverflyer F1 Rookie

    Nov 26, 2003
    3,560
    Mendocino, Ca
    Full Name:
    John

    No diving boards, no track coverage,no ppi's and no skiing out of bounds. Damn lawyers.
     
  6. Rifledriver

    Rifledriver Two Time F1 World Champ

    Apr 29, 2004
    27,086
    Austin TX
    Full Name:
    Brian Crall
    Lawyers have little to do with it. They are just doing what almost every other business man would do when presented with a chance to make a buck. It is the unrealistic expectations of buyers. Buyers that are increasingly not long term "car guys".

    Everyone want's a guarantee and everyone expects everyone else to be perfect. If your baby is born imperfect it must be the OBGYN's fault.

    In the 4 or so hours spent doing a PPI too many people expect me to be able to fortell the future and assure them a 30 year old exotic car will have zero issues beyond what I have outlined. B.S. You don't get that assurance when you have spent a healthy 7 figures on a ground up restoration. There are however many people including quite a few on this board that have expressed an opinion (some of the legal variety) that is exactly what they are buying with a PPI.

    Most of the good guys I know have stopped doing it and for good reason.
    Too many good reputations getting screwed up and lawsuits being filed because of people that are disappointed that their world is imperfect.
     
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  8. sjvalin

    sjvalin Formula Junior

    Aug 31, 2004
    713
    Nevada County, CA
    Full Name:
    Steve Valin
    Brian,

    I can definitely understand your point of view. On the other hand, you and your colleagues posses a skill that most of us don't. This skill is still quite useful in looking a car over. Perhaps the buyers need to be better educated about what a PPI does and doesn't do? That, and a signed waiver releasing you of any responsibility for future mishaps? You are a valuable resource and I hate to see it go away...

    -steve

     
  9. Rifledriver

    Rifledriver Two Time F1 World Champ

    Apr 29, 2004
    27,086
    Austin TX
    Full Name:
    Brian Crall

    As in any modern business much of the business decisions revolve around avoidence of liability. This is one of those decisions.

    In the process of doing a PPI for a new client full explanation of the limitations of the process is part of the program, doesn't change the fact that people are still mad about problems that come up later and a release of liability does not protect me from the damage that individual can easily do to my reputation.

    I had one client several years ago that had to have a Mondial Cab. He marched one piece of junk after another past me and every one got the thumbs down. Finally his impatience got the best of him and he bought one of the cars I told him not to. About a year later he had the car at a dealer that will remain nameless. They discovered he was "Qualified" for a new car so they threw his under the bus in an effort to convince him to buy new. The car was so bad they hardly needed to fabricate things wrong with it but they did. He came back to me threatening legal action for not telling him of problems on a car I told him not to buy. If he had pursued it I would have won, no problem. But at what cost? How much of that legal bill plus my costs for loss of productivity should I put on your next bill?

    As long as Ferrari's are more and more being purchased by other than hard core "car people" and those people and our society in general feels someone else should bear the brunt of our decisions, businesses, all of them, are going to increasingly offer fewer services that would expose us to such sheer stupidity. And as I said before much of the attitude I am describing is expressed on this forum by people who you would think would know better. I find it a frightening indicator of our society. I do not regret my decision.
     
  10. Ferrari Fanatic

    Ferrari Fanatic Formula 3

    Apr 2, 2003
    1,259
    SoCal
    Call Prestige Autohaus in Walnut Creek. They used to Own Ferrari Of Sacramento. "Omar " (the Owner), and "Ben" (his son) are the most meticulous Technicians that I have ever seen work on exotic cars for a living. I brought my car to another local Independent and the word was that I needed "a lot" of diagnostic work. So I brought it to Prestige and they completed the task in one day, no extras, no what if's, no speculation, no unknowns. Saved a ton of $$$ and the car runs great. Talk to Mikey (Omar's Wife) and you will be amazed as to how many people she knows and has worked with at FNA.

    Their phone number is (925)937-5400

    Let me know how it works out, I bet your paycheck that you will be impressed.
     
  11. kimoSabe

    kimoSabe Karting

    Dec 7, 2003
    191
    No CA
    Full Name:
    Ray C.
    Let me know how it works out, I bet your paycheck that you will be impressed.[/QUOTE]


    It's a deal. I'll give them a call tomorrow. But you might not be too impressed with my check. LOL

    Brian,

    I've been a member here and the FCA for a few years while never owning a Ferrari in my life. Your reputation has been of the highest standard here and othe venues. Finding the right car also mean knowing and finding the right mechanic. I understand and respect your decision concerning PPIs. (Talked the owner into driving to your shop from Sac area). Hopefully, we'll be able to build a relationship after I get a Ferrari. It may just take longer now, but I'm very patient.
     
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  13. GCalo

    GCalo F1 Veteran

    Sep 15, 2004
    7,007
    Northern California
    Full Name:
    Greg Calo
    Rifledriver brings up very valid points about declining to do PPI's.

    There is another element not mentioned which is self-responsibility.

    Unfortunately today most people want to blame someone other than themselves for their own failures. It is impossible to forsee every possibility or probability in any situation especially with some many moving parts in cars!

    Doing one's own diligence is a very critical part of the purchase experience, and that should be as important as getting professional opinions!

    I never heard of PPI's before rekindling a Ferrari interest, and I have bought a whole lot of cars that I have never had inspected.

    What makes Ferraris so special that they require PPI's?

    I am learning that many Ferrari buyers really can't afford nor should be purchasing these cars, and then when all goes to hell in the proverbial hand basket, they want to blame some one for not forseeing the future!

    In today's immature "on demand" society, personal responsibility should become essential.

    Those of us with a background in law know that (1) clients can be fantastic liars, and (2) clients want to blame someone else for thier own short comings!

    Forget the PPI's, use good judgment, and buy only what you can afford.
     
  14. Ferrari Fanatic

    Ferrari Fanatic Formula 3

    Apr 2, 2003
    1,259
    SoCal
    Since when is a PPI construed as an end all?? In real estate they always go after the Seller, and the buyer always wins if it was not disclosed. The Appraiser or the Home Inspector nearly always walk away unscathed.

    When you buy a car it is Caveat Emptor (buyer beware). How then is the mechanic that did the PPI on the hook and the fall guy??

    It seems to me that there would be liability only if the mechanic made a gross error. In other words would a "qualified mechanic" have noticed the defect (ie, leaking fluid, slipping clutch, etc) that he missed?

    Dealers are doing PPIs all day everyday. If it is assumed that it is a crystal ball for the car's future, dealers would face lawsuits on a daily basis.

    I am not a lawyer, but it appears to me that there would have to be a gross error to assume any liabilty.

    If it is a great concern, couldn't/shouldn't the shop draft a 3 sentence paragraph releasing their liability???
     
  15. Rifledriver

    Rifledriver Two Time F1 World Champ

    Apr 29, 2004
    27,086
    Austin TX
    Full Name:
    Brian Crall


    That was then, this is now.

    Ferrari San Francisco is being sued as is the service manager. Several others around the country are as well, quite a few of the well known independants around the country have gotten in trouble recently. I have been threatened with legal action as well. Last year when I was Co-Technical Chair for the National FCA meet track event we signed up shops all around the country to perform tech inspections. Do you have any idea how much trouble it was getting the quality shops to do it? A huge number of them wanted no part of the liability.

    On Fchat recently Norwoods in Texas was dragged through the mud, all for what? So we can push a car with an appointment for good profitable work off the rack and put up a last minute (sales deals always are, thats just how it works) in its place and charge just enough to cover our costs in the name of providing a service? To get sued or threats of it?

    Since when does a disclaimer prevent a suit? It helps you win maybe but it is no assurance it won't happen.

    And then if you do PPI's no good ever comes of it. When you say it's a bad car the owner is pissed and to him your name is Mudd and he trashes your name. The buyer, you think he's gratefull? 90% of the time he hates you too because he had his heart set on the car and you just cancelled Christmas. And he sees the fee he paid as wasted money. I know it defies logic but it's true, I have lived it for too many decades. Fixing cars is easy, all a PPI ever did is turn it into a bad week.
     
  16. Ferrari Fanatic

    Ferrari Fanatic Formula 3

    Apr 2, 2003
    1,259
    SoCal
    I understand. And sometimes the truth hurts. I respect your position. However, if for instance a set of headers are cracked and leaking, and the cats are breaking up and are rattling, then guess what, they are. If the mechanic says "oh yeah you will probably need a valve job too, and then you might as well do the 30 K service", then I think there is much greater exposure.

    Clearly, it is a snapshot of the condition of the car today. It is not a moving picture, complete with a crystal ball.

    It does not really matter if it is a Honda or an exotic. The PPI usually reads the same: Brake pads have X % of life left, noted leaking at the passanger side valve cover, car idles rough, etc, etc.

    Through the years "PPIs" were synonomous with "Safety Inspections". If someone is willing to pay for a Safety Inspection and they request a compression test or a leak down, then logic tells me the mechanic is still reporting numbers.

    I believe the break down occours when the mechanic makes suggesstions for necassary repairs. If they see "A", then through deductive reasoning (or assumption) then the car must need "B", which costs "C".

    Hey, if there is coolant leaking "where the return hose meets the radiator on drivers side" then that is the end of the story.

    However, if the mechanic says that the car needs a new radiator ,and it turns out it was a loose hose clamp, then someone is up $**** creek without a paddle.

    Hey, it is a perception (ie, buyer, seller, mecahnic). Basic communication does not solve all problems but it is a start. I am a firm beleiver in setting the right expectation from the beginning.

    Just my .002
     
  17. kimoSabe

    kimoSabe Karting

    Dec 7, 2003
    191
    No CA
    Full Name:
    Ray C.

    So forget about a PPI for a Ferrari??? I'm far from rich but I'm sure 99.9% of the "rich" guys out there would not by an exotic without a PPI. At the same time, a good driving Ferrari can have major problems too. I can see wear interior and exterior issues but that's about it. So I'm not sure your point is even valid. Or is it, If you can afford the car, you can afford not only the maintinence but any other problems???
     
  18. riverflyer

    riverflyer F1 Rookie

    Nov 26, 2003
    3,560
    Mendocino, Ca
    Full Name:
    John
    Brian, I was being somewhat factetious.
    The real blame, imo, for our continuing lack of personal freedoms and the consequent fear all business owners face constantly, has more to do with the level of greed in our culture. Its easy to find some scumbag lawyer who will sue whoever, for whatever, and encourage the client further. Good lawyers will not be involved, nor will good people. Its really a shame and unfortunately, is mostly an american issue, as you will not find europe or the rest of the world so litiguous.

    Kimosabe, short of finding an expert to do a ppi, you might just find a good mechanic who will take a look, do a compression test, etc. It is very helpful to be able to put the car up on a lift and really get a good look underneath, take the wheels off, examine susp. and brakes. I had a respected eastern shop do a ppi on my 360 and when Brian did the belts etc he found a lot of things that did not turn up in the ppi anyway, so, as Greg advised, go through your own best due diligence and leave some cash for the unexpected that will surely come up. Good luck, John
     
  19. GCalo

    GCalo F1 Veteran

    Sep 15, 2004
    7,007
    Northern California
    Full Name:
    Greg Calo
    "So I'm not sure your point is even valid. Or is it, If you can afford the car, you can afford not only the maintinence but any other problems???"

    Kimosabe,

    What I am saying is that good judgment should always rule for any purchase, and if one is unfamiliar with the territory seek professional advice and realize that there are limits to that advice.

    Probabilities are always a contingency. No one can forsee everything that can go wrong. And it's for sure that no one can securely indemnify the probabilities.

    Riverflyer and Rifledriver made very credible points.

    Let me assure you that in litigation a buyer assumes a certain risk, assuming fraud is not an issure, and no court will fully absolve a buyer of his ignorance.

    I think it's best, prior to a purchase, to do one's homework, to be prepared, and by all means be very realistic.
     

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