Ferrari Service Extraordinaire - Ferrari Life
 
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post #1 of 7 Old 06-29-2009, 09:36 AM Thread Starter
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Ferrari Service Extraordinaire

When was the last time you picked up your Ferrari from being serviced and felt you got the better end of the deal? My recent experience at Evans Automotive in Columbus, Ohio was so positive that I felt I just had to spread to word about this business specializing in high end Italian cars.

I purchased my Ferrari 348ts serie speciale in June 2008 from Kessler Auto Group in Ft. Lauderdale, FL. Let’s just say the car didn’t arrive as advertised or presented over the phone by the dealer. Yes, it looked good in the pictures, but there were some serious issues with the electrical system, and what I would call “excellent vs. good” as far as the stated overall condition of the drive train and interior. Chalk this one up to lack of experience in the used Ferrari world on my part, but I will never recommend them to anyone looking to buy sight unseen.

Once I took possession, I quickly realized that the 348 was going to need some adjustments, just to be safe to drive. I Googled “Ferrari Service” and got a hit for a local repair shop doing a great job on a 1995 F355. Bad move on my part to equate this one positive reference to a valid service shop for all Ferraris. Not only was their work sketchy, but their customer service was horrendous. Second lesson learned – don’t trust the web as a sole source and be willing to venture away from a local shop to get good service.
The car was running, but not as I thought a performance car should/would. The key here was I did not have a point of reference to compare against, now I do. I started making calls to Ferrari shops in a 100 mile radius from my home. All calls led back to Evans Automotive in Columbus, OH, 105 miles to the northeast. I called them and spoke to several people, including the owner, George Evans.

I gave George an overview of what was happening with the car, and he told me I should bring it in, for an oil change at the minimum, and they would give it a once over, at the same time. We made plans for the upcoming Monday at 9am when they opened. I was there at 8:30am, due to wanting to miss the worse of rush hour traffic in Cincinnati and Columbus. The first employee arriving at 8:35am, brought me inside and offered me coffee and doughnuts – my kinda people.

The rest of the staff arrived at 9am and they put my car up in one of the 53 bays. My 348 was in good company – there were Lambo’s, Maserati’s, Jags, Lotus’, you name it, they were everywhere. Tim, who owns a 1992 348TS, was point man on my car. After 30 minutes or so, he called me out to the bay for a visual go around, pointing out trouble areas, good areas, and parts in between. I couldn’t have been in better hands. Since the car didn’t come with a service history (from Kessler in Florida) I decided to have the 30,000 engine out, timing belt service completed, and the clutch rebuilt, along with some other adjustments. There are some other tweaks I plan to do, but will wait until next spring - we are in a recession you know.

While the work was being done, George Evans sent me updates via email. But the best part was the detailed digital pictures he attached, showing the progress of the work, and the condition of the inner components as they were addressed. Not only was this above and beyond what I expected, but now I have a very detailed visual history and the ability to do before and after comparisons.

They finished the car a week ahead of the agreed upon schedule, had it ready for my pickup based upon my availability to be in Columbus. Plus they followed up their work with a phone call and email the day after I returned home to make sure everything was o.k. Tim took it upon himself to send me a list (and links to) upcoming rallys and car events in the area. He says there are never enough 348’s participating.

Evans did not know I was going to write this recommendation, nor did they ask for one. I just feel compelled to let others know about a good thing if I see it.

Their address:
Evans Automotive
3440 Morse Road
Columbus, OH 43231
(614) 471-7535
www.evansauto.com
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post #2 of 7 Old 06-29-2009, 01:13 PM
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Very, very nice story, Ruppels. Too often, we hear the other ends. Glad to know there are honest and capable shops out there. Looks like you are in good hands now. I had my share of learning curves, some rather unpleasant, ...but then, it is history. Would be nice to hear your driving impressions and comments now that the car is in excellent shape ? Thanx for sharing your experiences with all of us. w/ smiles Jimmy
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post #3 of 7 Old 06-29-2009, 02:32 PM
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Great to hear that there are credible shops every where.

On suggestion, though.

Encourage the Evans group to provide bagles. Donuts are not healthy!!!
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post #4 of 7 Old 06-29-2009, 10:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Jimmy Chen Shiba DDS View Post
Very, very nice story, Ruppels. Too often, we hear the other ends. Glad to know there are honest and capable shops out there. Looks like you are in good hands now. I had my share of learning curves, some rather unpleasant, ...but then, it is history. Would be nice to hear your driving impressions and comments now that the car is in excellent shape ? Thanx for sharing your experiences with all of us. w/ smiles Jimmy
+1, look forward to the driving impressions. We have all gone through the learning curve on workshops. Part of the charm of owning a Ferrari.
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post #5 of 7 Old 07-02-2009, 11:01 PM
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Glad to hear you found a mechanic who still loves what they do and do it well, good story thanks for sharing.

Night life........ain't a good life........but it's my life -- Willy Nelson
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post #6 of 7 Old 07-05-2009, 01:05 PM
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Sounds good so how does it perform? Good to hear there are good shops as so many are mediocre or worse. Just got my plane back from its annual and you want to hear about a rip off!
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post #7 of 7 Old 07-06-2009, 04:31 AM Thread Starter
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Well, with all these replies, I guess I owe you guys (and the rest of the forum) a reply.

In one word – AWESOME. Tiring, over used, contrite, yes, but how else can one explain it?

I have the 348 on a limited mileage insurance plan, which I think is going to go by the wayside in ’09. I’ve put as many mile on the car in the last 2 weeks as I did in the last 6 months. I can’t wait to find a reason to take it out. A forecast of rain makes me grumpy. (I keep the targa top off during the summer and a tube of SFP 15 in the glove box – follicle challenged these days.

On a more “technical” level. It’s running like a Ferrari should. Strong off the line, smooth idle at around 1,000 rpms, shifting has drastically improved with the clutch rebuild, I even think the car goes faster with the repainted cam covers!

Of course, now I look around the interior and think, hmmm….how would new carpets look? Maybe a shiny new gearshift knob. Nightlife did that carbon fibre thingy . . . how’d that look in here?

I’ve been bitten, and no one has called a doctor yet to see if there’s an antidote.
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