Wisconsin woman says she was caught in Mad City Mitsubishi scam

MADISON, Wis. (WMTV)-- Better Business Bureau officials are urging car buyers to do company research before purchasing to avoid being scammed.

A Wisconsin Dells woman said Mad City Mitsubishi didn't hold up their end of the deal and when she found out it was too late.

"It just turned out, that nothing was really true,” Rebecca, Wisconsin Dells resident said.

About a week ago, the DMV barred Mad City Mitsubishi from selling and buying vehicles for 45 days after violating rules and practices. The DMV did not list the exact violations.

Last October, Rebecca bought a red jeep after a trade-in at Mad City Mitsubishi.

She said the plan was to pass it on to her daughter when she was legal to drive.

"Get the jeep at a higher payment for a period of time… then it could go down to something a 16-year-old could manage," she said.

Rebecca said Mad City told her they had a loan partnership with Summit Credit Union. She said the car dealership said after paying six months of a higher payment, it would be refinanced by the credit union to get a lower payment.

Rebecca owns her own business. Normally to get a loan she has to show two years of business taxes, but she just started her business so she couldn't. She said the car dealership told her not to worry and she would still be covered.

"They said they worked hand in hand with Summit Credit Union," she said.

But when she got to Summit to discuss the loan, she found out that wasn't true.

"They said that Mad City told a lot of people that, but that's not the case. They still require two years of self-employment taxes to qualify for a loan there," she said.

So Rebecca is stuck with an additional year of high monthly car payments until she can prove two years of self-employment to get the loan.

"Just defeated," she said.

Rebecca said when she looks back on the experience, she saw several red flags.

"When they're flipping through all the paperwork they're like 'here this is the warranty this is what i told you about.' They just whip you through there,” she said.

A BBB search shows Mad City Mitsubishi has an F rating and 1.5 stars.

"Really do your homework, dig deep, and ask questions," Tiffany Schultz, Better Business Bureau Southwest Wisconsin regional director said.

Schultz said company research is an important step, but car buyers should also pay close attention to what's in the contract.

"Once you sign the contract there is no out. Once you sign, you've signed for the vehicle," she said.

And if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

"I’ve learned as I get older reviews are important. Kind of a tough lesson to learn," Rebecca said.

NBC15 called Mad City Mitsubishi several times and left messages for comment, but have not heard back.