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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
On June 27, 2015, I "placed" an order for a Momentum Plus with several package options and the B&W sound system at the dealership. I put placed in quotes in that the salesperson took my selections and deposit. I didn't get an order confirmation, just a print out of my choices (made from what looked like the public Volvo website), and a copy of my deposit check.

I still haven't gotten confirmation, nor an order receipt/number. I called the salesperson, who said it takes a few days for the order to be received by Volvo.

Is this normal? I've never pre-ordered a car before.


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Yup. From what I can tell, the dealers have been doing their own thing to collect order specifics, but then it goes to some sort of regional person who enters the order. You won't proactively hear anything from Volvo corporate--in effect, you are "reserving" a car with your color and options choices that belongs to the dealer's inventory until it shows up at the dealer and you complete the purchase. The fairly limited US configuration options means that nothing getting ordered this way is too weird to bizarre in case you don't end up wanting it.

After a few weeks, you'd be able to call your dealer and confirm that it has been ordered, get your "Last Date of Change" (LDOC) and an estimated delivery date. Just keep in mind that quite a few of us who preordered were initially given an LDOC and delivery date that got pulled in without being notified, so if you think you might want to change anything, you will have to probably be all over your dealer about these dates.


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On June 27, 2015, I "placed" an order for a Momentum Plus with several package options and the B&W sound system at the dealership. I put placed in quotes in that the salesperson took my selections and deposit. I didn't get an order confirmation, just a print out of my choices (made from what looked like the public Volvo website), and a copy of my deposit check.

I still haven't gotten confirmation, nor an order receipt/number. I called the salesperson, who said it takes a few days for the order to be received by Volvo.

Is this normal? I've never pre-ordered a car before.


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Yes, it takes some time. Give it until the middle or end of next week.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Wilster1, Thank you very much for the detailed information. Now, I think I understand what was meant by dealership allocation. It seems that the dealership is the one placing an order with Volvo, and my "request" is just one of the configurations the dealership will reserve.

My options were not weird (in my opinion): Osmium grey, with Momentum Plus with charcoal interior, convenience package and the B&W sound system.

Hence, the ease of cancellation and return of deposit.


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I never got any info from the dealer. Even after my wife called twice to complain and they said we would get updates and info, we have never heard from them. The ETA she did wrangle out of them is in a couple days and I still have not heard from them - no clue if I actually get my XC90 soon or not. For spending over 60k, this was the worst buying experience I've ever had. Can't wait to get this amazing car, but likely my first and last Volvo. Hopefully Tesla's are ready when it's time for my next car.
 

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We had the same experience with our dealer. My wife was more concerned about this issue more than I was. We asked our dealer to provide some sort of confirmation, and none can be given (other than a screenshot of their ordering system). My guess is that Volvo does not have any system that is designed to give customers any real time information about their order. I don't blame the dealers for this. I tend to not let the small stuff bother me. We did eventually get a VIN number that we can now use a 3rd party website to track the ship that its on. But Volvo does not provide that info. Again, this really isn't something that I would consider a big problem or prevent me from buying a Volvo.

Just curious, does BMW, MB, or Audi provide a portal that provides real time information of customers orders?
 

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My impression (again, sort of based on what I have gleaned from reading all I can find about the XC90 and these forums for the last few months) is that pre-ordering a brand new model of a car that isn't already shipping, and having the volume of pre-orders they have gotten, is uncharted territory for Volvo. They weren't anticipating the demand, and yet they knew that in a few months, they WOULD be shipping and things would return to a more normal process. So they have been okay to live with a rather... rustic... unofficial pre-order process.

I work in customer loyalty marketing, so I can see all kinds of ways this could have been handled better -- in a way that would build/cement customer loyalty. I wouldn't say it has been a horrible process at all -- it's been fine -- but it could be done differently.

The main things you need if you have recently placed an order, or are about to place an order, is the "Last Date of Change" and then the VIN of the vehicle the dealer ordered for you as soon as it can be had. They won't automatically give you this information, and in fact, it's probably not in the dealers' best interest for you to have it, because they probably don't want to deal with changes to your order or with you having the VIN and knowing when it arrives at port so that you can call and keep asking about when it will get to them, because it would also seem they have very little knowledge about or control of the vehicle, either, until it leaves the port.
 

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It would not bother me so much if not for a few things:

* First, when I bought my first 20k car, the experience was nothing luxurious, but 100 times better. It seemed like they wanted me to buy the car.
* When I preordered, I made an appointment and showed up on time and the place was empty for 15 min - finally some people showed up and acted like they were surprised to see us. The ordering process itself was anything but smooth, even though I had exactly what I wanted all printed out from the online configurator.
* We were told at the start we would be contacted and updated through the process - ETA, to setup Volvo oncall ahead of time, etc - it never happened. When my wife called, we were told, sorry, we will contact you in the future twice - it never happened.

I don't expect or want much, but when I spend this kind of money, I do expect the place to at least pretend they want my business.
 

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Yeah I'm not mad at volvos internal ordering process, though I don't see why they can't make it more transparent and user friendly. But some dealers are just the worst, for me it comes down to how they handle and present info. Frankly, a lot of them should say 'ok thanks, I am never going to call you or return emails but you'll get the car some day" which would be honest. Some are great though. The dealer that I wound up purchasing from did a lot of back and forth with her regional rep, and them with the factory or hq or whatever. It would take several days to get an answer for pretty much anything but she let me know what was going on, who was contacting who, for what information. She was also very straightforward about what features she understood, what she was still learning, that whole thing. A lot of salesman live up to the stereotypes but there are good ones out there.
 

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Ok from the salesmen ordering process in the USA. I can't comment on the rest of the world.

When the XC90 could be first ordered we didn't know the date until about 2 weeks had passed. The dealer would have a date that is approximate( I know I would only have to look at the future allocation list.. when it was correctly updated).
Starting this month... and not set yet*(I have an order that is waiting) Volvo is going to an allocation style. So your said dealership personal will be able to say around X date the car will come in. That is of course if they have any open allocations available. They will be given cars based upon some algorithm.
 

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Yeah, I totally agree. You'd expect something automated at least, so that the dealer didn't have to do anything or wasn't able to mess anything up by not communicating. The fact that the dealers all seem to expect it to happen from Volvo corporate, to me implies that it does normally work that way when you are ordering an existing model. Maybe because this has so far been considered pre-ordering, it doesn't seem to work like anyone at the dealer expects it to? That's what my interpretation is.
 

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This is not to defend the Volvo, but rather to provide a slightly different perspective to your valid concerns.
My understanding is that US Volvo dealers do not have a pre-order system per se. The operations are set to sell from the inventory, and the dealers are using their internal inventory ordering system to cover the current gap. The XC90 is a proverbial victim of its success. No one really expected thousands of pre-orders, many sight unseen.
UK is a different story. Most cars there are pre-ordered through the specially designed system with the client facing interface.

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I'm not really upset with Volvo itself. The dealerships (which are stupidly protected in the US) seem to be the issue. I only went to the one I went to because the other that is within range did not even answer my requests about setting up a preorder.
 

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I'm not upset, either, just think corporate could have set up a better process for the dealers. It was fine. It will all be okay.


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The main things you need if you have recently placed an order, or are about to place an order, is the "Last Date of Change" and then the VIN of the vehicle the dealer ordered for you as soon as it can be had. They won't automatically give you this information, and in fact, it's probably not in the dealers' best interest for you to have it, because they probably don't want to deal with changes to your order or with you having the VIN and knowing when it arrives at port so that you can call and keep asking about when it will get to them, because it would also seem they have very little knowledge about or control of the vehicle, either, until it leaves the port.
With all due respect, I find this comment quite presumptuous. Why wouldn't a retailer want you to know this info, if you requested it? Unless you were going to call every other day, asking for status, I do not see what the problem could be.

Finally, and this is for everyone who is pre-ordering an XC90: try to finalize the options and packages you want at the time you are submitting your order. Other than color, if you go back and make any major changes, chances are your car will lose its place in the global production queue and your ETA will move further "out", most likely resulting in a delay.

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Thanks, Grecian. To restate specifically, then, changes to powertrain, trim, tires/wheels, packages, options and factory installed accessories will (likely) extend and delay a pre-order's original ETA. Exterior paint color will not if done before the last change date.

Will a change interior color and will the addition or deletion of a port installed accessory (e.g., tow hitch) have any impact on the original ETA? I assume yes for interior color, and no for port installed accessories. Please verify or correct both of my assumptions.

My sales rep said that I have plenty of time to make changes (e.g., MM/DD or DD/MM). Except for the possibility of deleting the current North American tow hitch which will be installed at the designated [US] port, I do not plan to make any other changes.

These kinds of threads make this forum extremely useful for me (and hopefully everyone). :thumbup:
 

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I didn't mean any disrespect, Grecian, so I apologize for that. But I was specifically talking about the scenario you describe... There are a whole lot of things that seemingly happen between when your vehicle gets on a boat and when you can actually pick it up at the dealer. My experiences buying cars, other brands, too, is that until the vehicle arrives at your dealer, there's very little that they have control over, and giving the customer more info doesn't necessarily help.

I totally agree that the expectation should be you know what you want when you order and don't change. It afterwards. When there's a long lead time between order and manufacture as there has been, it might seem otherwise.


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