Originally Posted by A Y
Of course, but service writers at dealerships see their share of rude customers as well --- it goes both ways. They have a lot of power in their hands, and can save you literally thousands of dollars by putting something under warranty. For example, when my E46's rear subframe cracked, my service writer got it covered by BMW despite knowing that I tracked my car, and he had the area welded and reinforced, instead of being filled with foam like most of the repairs BMW did cover.
It's a long-term relationship, and they can make the unpleasant parts owing a car as easy as possible. It's mostly being polite and respectful to them, but the occasional bottle of wine or box of donuts don't hurt either. I have the same kind of relationship with my independent now, too.
I only do that with my indie shop, since the guys there are real BMW enthusiasts, and because I know I'll always go to them, as opposed to the dealers which I know I'm only going to while the car is under warranty, and who employ people who are only there to earn a paycheck and don't know much about the cars for the most part. I remember one service adviser at the dealership telling me that there was absolutely no way to program the passenger side mirror tilt for when the car was put into reverse and was adamant on this. The next day, I brought in a copy of the instructions to set it up, and he still refused to believe it, because he "worked for BMW for years and knew the cars" and "you can't believe everything on the internet." I just told him to try it to see if it worked, and it did. Of course, at the same dealership, I got an SA that was a club racer, and she was the best SA I've ever had, but she sadly only lasted a year. Again, more proof that it all goes down to the dealership itself, and even the specific adviser.