Dealer mistake after contract was signed

I just leased a BMW 330i demo car and the dealer failed to mark the residual down for the miles. It would add about $20 a month to the payments, but I told him he should eat the cost to make it right as it was his mistake. Honestly, his being completely rude about it has hardened my position on the matter. What are my options?

If you can’t come to an agreement and they need to rewrite the contract, your options are the following:

(1) Ask the dealer to eat the cost and tell them you’ll only resign if the numbers remain the same.

(2) Accept the revised payment terms

(3) If 1 and 2 aren’t viable, tell them you’re going to be returning the car to them

I would expect if you tell them you’re returning the car, magically things will work themselves out - but sometimes they don’t.

Good luck.


That’s about what I expected, thanks. I told them if they don’t keep the payment the same, I would return the car. Why they’d like the car back now used and ineligible for manufacturer incentives I have no idea, but that seemed to be their position.

If they got you to sign an error in their favor of $20 a month and you asked them to rewrite the contract, they would tell you to get lost. Mistakes happen, but they’re the professionals…no reason you need to eat the cost of their mistake.


That is 100% their problem one way or another - the decision to negotiate and eat ~$720 over 36 months (or less if 24 months) or deal with an unwound car.

The only way this doesn’t work out for you is if you aren’t going to be able to replicate it and need a car. That is probably what they are trying to bank on.

Did you know the residual calculation was incorrect when you signed?

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I did not. I assumed the residual was the quoted price which matched what I researched it to be for new cars, but now see that it is true that it should have been marked down for mileage. This was a good deal, but the lack of professionalism has me completely willing to turn it in and start from scratch.

Why not post the original terms of your deal here (unless you did elsewhere?) and let us take a look?

It truly isn’t your fault and you are well within your rights to walkaway, but if it is still a good deal at $20 more, I would tell you not to cut off your nose to spite your face - maybe get them to split it with you if they won’t eat the whole cost.

EDIT: I see it was $1k DAS and $320/month. If you can break down the contract for us - MSRP, Sale Price, Fees, Taxes, Term etc.

MSRP was $50800 and MF was 0.00166. This looks like a pretty good deal, even after them adding in the extra $720

It turned out being $1,911 total drive off costs which was the acquisition fee and $600 doc fee plus first months payment with 292 a month including taxes.
$10,943 discount plus the $4,000 in rebates
$35,897 and the final after fees of 38,586

I still think it is a good deal, but I also agree that if you signed something in their favor and you realized it later, you would have little recourse. Maybe call BMW corporate hotline? I am sure that will get the nonsense to stop and get them off your back.

What are taxes where you live?

So your payment would go up to $312/month? Still seems like a good deal - and in fact you might be able to improve if you ask them to re-write it at 24 months given how much discount you have even with the corrected residual.

I wouldn’t walk away so quickly - just be flexible.

The thing is the lease will not get funded from BMW financial in its current form so if they want they can take the car back. You can tell them to make an appointment and come pick up the car. If they are seriously proceeding to pick it up then you can always chicken out and sign a new contract agreeing to $20 more.

I have a couple of thoughts.

  1. I don’t think making them take back a demo will bother them all that much. The miles won’t matter as much as a new car, and if the contract never went through, it was never titled and can still be sold exactly the same way.
  2. $600 doc fee?? Worst case, I’d ask them to take $400 out of that and I’ll pay $300 out of pocket to fix the issue.

Even if the car returned would be above 5,000 miles?

I think if you got it just below 5000 miles and you are above that right now you don’t have to bother they won’t take it back. They will loose $2000-3000 on that.

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Never say never. For all you know, they have a buyer lined up already that will pay more than the OP paid. Don’t forget, not everyone is as savvy at leasing, and some even pay retail.

The likelihood the dealer would take it back is low, but no guarantee they wouldn’t. Cars and deals get unwound all the time.

I don’t know how BMW Financial works, but I could see them funding the lease as-is and just deducting the difference in residuals to the dealer’s payout. That way, they’re whole. Internetcommenter would be better oft with a re-written lease, as the payoff will be lower.

The $600 doc fee is really high. That’s pure profit for them right there. Push comes to shove they can eat it from that.

Can you explain what you mean about a rewritten lease and the payout being lower? I don’t completely follow.

If they rewrite the lease for the miles, the residual will be reduced. A lower residual is to your advantage. If they eat the $20/mo, the selling price will probably be reduced to absorb the lower payment. Or maybe they’ll lower the MF in the lease if it’s marked up.

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