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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old Dec 17th, 2006, 6:02 pm Thread Starter
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Low budget operation - looks like they are in a former auto dealership. Nonetheless their parts department is knowledgeable (though they have a very small inventory and need to order everything in) and they discount all parts prices 10%.

They do not know how to call you when your parts arrive however. Never occurs to them.

"What follows is based on actual occurrences. Although much has been changed for rhetorical purposes, it must be regarded in its essence as fact. However, it should in no way be associated with that great body of factual information relating to orthodox Zen Buddhist practice. It's not very factual on motorcycles, either."

Robert Persig - Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old Dec 17th, 2006, 6:17 pm
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These are the guys that told me they wouldn't update the bike to the newest software unless their computer OK's it.
Service manager was a little confrontational about it as well.

Just the facts. Sorry guys. Clean up your act if you don't like it. We are the customers, you have to earn our business.

Unfortunately the only BMW dealer in Chicago since Laurel BMW closed in Westmont.
Nevertheless, I'm doing all services except valve checks and engine work.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old Dec 18th, 2006, 5:43 am
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In Chicago??

I guess I shouldn't be surprised. I was chatting with my dealer in Baton Rouge LA, the only dealer for 300 miles and he indicated that they make very little on the bikes (10%) and that most of their money comes from service then parts. They have sell about 40 bikes per year and their service calendar is backlogged 305 weeks.

Did you know there are only about 90 certified motoradd techs in the states? Most dealerships use knowledgeable wrenches that AREN'T certified to work on your bike. I'm not sure my guy is certified or not. The kid in the back that actually does the work can't be but the guy up front seems to know a good bit.

The dealership phenom is interesting. I guess they have to be "approved" to sell BMW apparell too. I was whining a bit about their low stock of clothing and the guy told me they have to meet many requirements to reach the next level of BMW retail.

Some shops are nicer than others but you'd think in Chicago they'd have a world class outfit. It's ironic to think I was considering opening one in my town in Louisiana. It's the wealthiest parish and has grown substantially since Katrina. I'm not sure I could make it worth it. Then there's the concern that I'll grow to hate the sport.....yet....oh well!

Good thread and thanks for the report on the Chi dealership.

Best,

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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old Dec 18th, 2006, 3:10 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beemer01
Low budget operation - looks like they are in a former auto dealership. Nonetheless their parts department is knowledgeable (though they have a very small inventory and need to order everything in) and they discount all parts prices 10%.

They do not know how to call you when your parts arrive however. Never occurs to them.
I don't know about them being a rinky-dink operation. I believe their parent company is Chicago Harley-Davidson.
As far as their showroom goes, I don't need a Taj Mahal to do business with them.

I have made purchases from their mail-order dept. and only had one backorder. And I believe that because their 20% off on all parts policy most of the members of this site has done business with ChicagoBMW.

I will give you the fact that you have to contact them about an overdue order. No big deal to me.

Bruce C
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old Dec 18th, 2006, 4:19 pm
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Have they changed their policy? They used to discount parts 20%.

It's not the speed that kills, it's the rate at which the speed diminishes...
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old Dec 21st, 2006, 7:29 am
 
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I've always had great experiences ordering parts from them. They would also tell me if they had the part or it had to be ordered. Also, I thought the discount was 20%?
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old Dec 27th, 2006, 4:45 pm
 
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My most recent order (Final Drive Crown Bearing) for my K12LT was 20% discount. Same for other orders.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old Dec 29th, 2006, 9:47 pm Thread Starter
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I stand corrected -

It was a 20% discount.

Looks like the economics of running a BMW dealership are similar to running a car dealership.. you actually make your money on service, parts and used vehicles, not the new ones.

However compared with Gina's BMW Motorcycles in Iowa City - or for that matter any of the seeming dozens of local Harley dealerships, Chicago BMW does not compare favorably in appearance.... and would NEVER qualify for an BMW Automobile franchise in this location.

Just the facts.

However the guys who work here are nice, and quite helpful. The service manager has gone out of his way to provide me - a DIY newbie - advice.

"What follows is based on actual occurrences. Although much has been changed for rhetorical purposes, it must be regarded in its essence as fact. However, it should in no way be associated with that great body of factual information relating to orthodox Zen Buddhist practice. It's not very factual on motorcycles, either."

Robert Persig - Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


1985 K100RS (Sold)
2000 323i (Sold)
2003 1150GS (Sold)
2009 528Xi
2004 K1200GT
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