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So, Andrew Garcia, from Garcia Alfa Racing in Houston Texas finally concludes a deal to purchase Vick AutoSport in the Dallas, Texas-area of Fort Worth!

As our "buddy" Andrew rides off in to the sunset - firmly atop his new cash-cow venture - he leaves behind in his wake a wave of unfinished business, broken promises, defrauded customers, screwed-over former friends and a bewildered and disillusioned (I'm sure) junior friend/partner/employee - Michael Keith...

I want to apologize right now to all of those here who have given business to Andrew based on my recommendation and who got screwed in the process! I really thought that he was a nice guy and an honorable business resource, but I have come to see the error of my judgment! I am sick of covering for this guy and others here deserve to know the truth before perhaps also falling in the same Houston-Heights trap!

Leaving customer names out of it - let's look at a brief (and only partial - I'm sure) synopsis of just some of the Andrew Garcia/Garcia Alfa Racing deals (that I am personally aware of), hanging out there - unfinished. I think that since the BB is a place where we all try to help each-other and look out for one-another, and given that there are others here who may deal with this scum-bag in the future, we all deserve to know some facts first;

Customer # 1;
Gives Andrew a Spider to have his engine rebuilt (after it fails to pass emissions testing). Almost 15K dollars paid later AND OVER TWO YEARS OF BEGGING AND PLEADING to have the car completed and the project is in shambles, Andrew simply walks away and leaves the poor guy to just mend the mess on his own! (I had to fly from Seattle to Dallas to go and help get the car started because Andrew was too incompetent to do it!)

After Andrew somehow bends valves and has the head repaired again, the car is delivered with a RAT'S NEST for wiring in the engine-bay, overall shoddy work, make-shift brackets, oil-leaks and 92 horsepower at the wheels! How bad do you have to botch a high performance 2.0 Alfa rebuild on a 15K budget, with high performance (variable) cam(s), custom headers, ported heads, high compression pistons and a fully-programmable stand-alone EFI engine-management system - only to make 90-odd horses at the wheels!?

At a minimum a clean car could have been delivered to the customer, but Andrew doesn't even have the balls as a man, or the honor as a professional to admit that much! Simply refers to the customer as "difficult" and "unrealistic in his expectations"....

From what I've seen, the customer wasn't that difficult and unrealistic when he was making progress-payments to Andrew - money which Andrew promptly channeled to support his pursuit of his new venture in Dallas - Vick's - as he did with many other customers/vendors' money...

Customer # 2;
Pays Andrew almost half up-front for a custom super-duper transaxle race box purchased via yours truly. Upon request, the customer also pays the balance in full! It's now almost a year later and still no gearbox. Broken promise after broken promise after empty promise - and still - no gearbox!

Customer # 3;
Gives Andrew his beautiful 24 valve 164 for some general repairs - 14 months later and the car is still at GAR with the motor on the floor and in pieces! (Michael Keith - WHO IS A GENTLEMAN I MIGHT ADD - has to step in and bat clean-up for Andrew.) Andrew took progress payments and spent the money to support his pursuit of Vick AutoSport and never delivered!

Now Andrew is up in Dallas every week ad poor Michael basically had to stop taking in new projects in order to finish Andrew's unfinished commitments! I hope that it is all worth it Andrew and I hope that you share some of the Vick's success with Michael!

Customer # 4;
Lends Andrew money to buy a 164 S. Doesn't get paid back. Agrees to purchase a rebuild GTV6 from Andrew (in lieu of the loan) - pays Andrew additional monies to have the car completed - this goes back to 1995 by the way - Andrew Garcia is yet to turn a wrench on the car! Again Michael Keith has to step in and work on the project where possible!

Customer # 5;
Pays Andrew for a super-duper race gearbox. The car does not even make it around the track once ON A WARM-UP LAP, before spitting itself to pieces. Andrew Garcia won't even return phone-calls.

Vendor/Customer # 6;
Andrew asks for supply and subsequent delivery of several specialty, custom-order items - including custom 50mm 12 valve intake runners, GoTech engine management systems, a 6-speed 156 gearbox, 24 valve side-shafts, lower control arms, wiring harnesses etc etc. Andrew receives MOST of the items but fails to meet final payment demands! Andrew won't even answer phone-calls, reply to repeated emails or return countless messages! Andrew proceeds to sell THE SAME 156 gearbox unit to TWO SEPERATE customers, but fails to pay ONE DIME of the proceeds towards the vendor!

Vendor/Customer # 7;
Accepts an order FROM Andrew Garcia to purchase on his behalf 3 x 6-speed 156 gearboxes in South Africa for export and conversion here in the US in to customer 164 cars... Andrew Garcia never pays ONE DOLLAR towards the gearboxes! Tells the man in South Africa to blow it out of his arse! Again, Andrew refuses to communicate with the vendor/Alfa-friend/customer!

Vendor/Customer # 8;
Andrew Garcia accepts 4 x 12 valve pulleys for conversion to 60-2 triggered setup (along with full-payment towards the acquisition of said 60-2 trigger-wheels) for the conversions! Fails to even start the work - the pulleys have been sitting at his shop in Houston for more than 8 months to date, while he spends every week up in Dallas with his new venture!

Customer # 9;
Buys a super-duper race gearbox (again via yours truly), from Andrew. Gearbox has sand in it, leaks and the clutch is slipping. Initially Andrew commits to fix it and then eventually just stops returning phone-calls. Andrews proceeds to charge the end-customer ADDITIONAL money and commits to fix the gearbox - we all know now what these commitments from Andrew are worth - an on-going saga on that one...

It goes on and on - there is another 24 valve 164 sitting over there in pieces for almost 2 years now - Andrew just walked away. Another customer's freshly painted bronze GTV6 stripped to the bone - just sitting there for close to 2 years as well - Andrew is MIA - irate customers calling Garcia Alfa Racing every day and poor Mike Keith has to tend to the mess that Andrew left behind!

It goes on and on! This USED TO BE a guy that we could all trust. Andrew USED to be a reliable resource for Alfa repairs - not any more. For those here about to rush to Andrew's side with reports of PAST stellar service and kind-hearted gestures - keep in mind that I TOO had PAST positive experiences with Andrew, but something happened on the way to heaven (or should I say, on the way to Dallas...?)

Bottom line is that Andrew lost his head. He pulled in major projects, took money up-front and along the way, asked and received continual progress-payments, but once a project was paid for - he stopped communication and just rolled the next fairy-tale project/commensurate deposit in through the door!

The cookie crumbled when these things had to be completed, the progress-payments were spent on over-head and the pursuit of Vick's AutoSport (because Andrew sat on his arse for over a year instead of turning wrenches to make ends meet...)

I have met Robert Vick. He is a VERY nice man and he has built an amazing little business over there (about 80% Fiat and maybe only 20% Alfa...) With this deal however, Robert is stepping down and Andrew hopes to increase Vick's share of the Alfa parts-pie... I sincerely hope that he doesn't think that he is going to be achieving that elusive goal THIS way!

You know what they say about ill-gotten gains!
 

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Richard Jemison
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Garcia`s reputation poor with me as well

I was ask by a friemd in Italy to help his brother with a drivability problem with his Alfa Spider.. His brother was new in our country, with limited english skills, and over a couple of phone calls, found the problem to be nothing but the in tank fuel Pump. I suggested Garcia`s shop as it was the only Alfa shop in Houston I new off at the time. He took the car there, and the next day I had a email & panic call that his "estimate" was well over $1,400.00. I called AGR & talked with someone, but the final realization was they were prepping him for " a sexual event". I told him to get the car out of there. That was my one & only. There won`t be another referal to them from me.
 
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not to malign Vick's, but why would someone resort to those means to acquire Vick's?
 

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Bobcor gets out of the picture and another is ready to fill his shoes.:(
 

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John,
Most of what you are stating is not correct and many much of it is made up. I know of several people who refuse to deal with you and mention the Fraud word when discussing the work you have performed on their cars. Several of these people will not discuss anything directly with you and tell you to talk to their lawyers.

Of the outstanding items from Garcia Alfa Racing, all of those items are being worked on. I have been in contact with involved parties about when the final work on their items will be completed. I have been in contact with CChan, Jess, and Colin with updates and resolutions to any outstanding issues.

I have chosen to not air my issues with JJ on a public forum.


Richard,
Your friends brother bought a car that for practical purposes is on step from a parts car. He over paid for the car and only after he bought the car did he bother to have someone look at the car. The car was really in poor shape and in desperate need of some mechanical attention to bring it to the level he need for use as a daily driver.


To the Alfa Community,

I have been involved with Alfa's since the early 90's. I worked on them back when there were dealers and support. I have helped for free hundreds of people around the US with Alfa problems. My shop in Houston has supported the Texas Alfa community. We have also supported the AROC & national convention for many years. Many vendors, people on this board, the Alfa digest, and others in the Alfa community can vouch for me and the work I do.

I will not lower my self to JJ's level. Those who throw stones should not live in glass houses...

If someone else on this board feels I have wronged them feel free to contact me directly.
 

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Are folks just stupid :confused:

Get what work is supposed to be done, the time frame it is to be done and the cost up front and in writing ... after that there is no excuse. A quality shop will have no problem providing this. If said items do not line up then it's in writing and it's off to court you go.

And what's with installments? Half down and half on delivery, if the shop you want to use doesn't go by those terms don't deal with them ... never pay full for anything until the goods are delivered!

GV
 

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Since I was mentioned by name let me say that I spoke with Andrew last week and expect my gearbox to be shipped in 1-2 weeks.

I always believe in giving someone the benefit of the doubt, and in my case it was not pressing to get the gearbox until now, and I did not start bugging Andrew about it until recently. Personally, I have enjoyed both JJ's and Andrew's helpfulness MANY times, both going out of their way to help.

As for Colin's box I think it is more time-efficient for Colin and I to disassemble and repair locally ourselves instead of shipping back and forth to Houston - we opened the box the other night and it is inconclusive what broke first IMO (Andrew, I'll call you). I'm sure I'll be on the phone with Andrew if we have questions how to properly disassemble and assemble the gear-stack.

Jes
 
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Mech. leins are now considered a violation of the owners rights, the debt does not equal the value of the car, therefore leinholder can not "own" the car. which allows some car owners to get their car repaired for 1/2 price, pick up car with bad check and skip. hence the installment payments, cutting the shops loses to the the last installment when dealing with dishonest customers. The same less than full ownership is now being used to "protect" homeowners from foreclosure, including the deadbeats. Leaving the lender stuck.
 

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Not to butt in but I wouldn't buy anything from them anymore myself. They won't stand behind their products.
JMO
Paul
 

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Let me start by saying that it would be inappropriate for me to comment on what John has posted as it is resultant of a conflict between John & Andrew.

While I do not want to highjack John's thread, I do feel it necessary to respond to Mr. Jemison's comments. I was the primary contact person for the customer to which he is referring, I wrote the estimate in question, & therefore, his comments are aimed squarely at me.

Richard contacted me about this car stating that it developed drivability problems when the fuel level went below 1/2 tank, & he was quite certain that it only needed an in-tank fuel pump. I was pretty sure he was right although I was also considering the possibility that the short rubber hose at the tank pump's outlet was split. However, two things changed all that.

The first is that the customer had a page of items that he wanted me to check on the car along with a used A/C compressor from which he wanted me to remove the clutch, & install it on the A/C compressor that was in the car. I refused to do that, & I did not include much, if any, of what was on his list in my estimate as it was quite extensive, & I knew from my conversation with Richard that this guy was on a bit of a budget.

The second thing that changed the nature of the estimate was the nature of the problem itself. The dead tank pump was merely the symptom & not the problem. There was rust in the gas tank, & the filter sock had split allowing the rust to clog the tank pump. As long as the level in the fuel tank was above that of the tank pump's outlet, the main pump was able to draw fuel from between the tank pump's outlet & the rubber supply hose to which it attaches because this hose was old, hardened, & loose-fitting.

What really needed to happen was that the fuel tank needed to be boiled out & lined, the tank pump replaced, the main pump flushed out, & fuel filter replaced. Additionally, every rubber fuel hose on the car was original, & therefore, I included replacement of all of them in my estimate. In fact, the return hose in the engine compartment had already split; so I had to replace it.

In short, the car needed significantly more work than what was at first thought to be the case. This put me in a catch-22 as I realized that the customer was only expecting to have to replace his tank pump, but OTOH, it was also conveyed to me that this was the customer's daily driver &, in fact, the only car he owned. Knowing this, I would have felt it inappropriate to throw a tank pump in the car, & let him think that everything would be OK.

I chose to give him an estimate for everything, & I tried as best as I could to let him know why he had received such an estimate. I also tried to convey to him that if he preferred, we could simply replace the tank pump, & take no further action, although this would only be a temporary fix. At this point, the language barrier was becoming a very real issue. I could tell that he did not understand much of what I was telling him. He did tell me that, being that the car needed so much work, he wanted me to "test the motor" which I took to mean a compression test. I went ahead with a compression test since I had a warm motor, & I decided to discuss it with Richard the following day before proceeding any further. However, the customer beat me to the punch & called Richard that evening. Richard & I discussed it the following day, & the conclusion was that we would only replace the tank pump. I abided by this, & I was under the impression that everything was OK with me, Richard, & the customer. Clearly, I was mistaken.

Richard, I was not aware that you came away from this with negative feelings, & I appologize for the fact that you feel I did not treat your friend appropriately. However, I vigorously disagree with the implication (& I won't state it as you did) that I was intentionally trying to defraud him.

I'm quite certain that I'm not the best Alfa mechanic in the US, but I do strive to be honest & ethical. The truth is that most cars I encounter have a lot of deferred maintenance. I try to represent each car as accurately as possible, & let the customer decide to what extent he/she wishes to service it.
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
John, Most of what you are stating is not correct and many much of it is made up.
REALLY? Would you like me to start naming the customers...?

I know of several people who refuse to deal with you and mention the Fraud word when discussing the work you have performed on their cars. Several of these people will not discuss anything directly with you and tell you to talk to their lawyers.
Yeah! Who? Name ONE! Chuck Chan? (Who still owes me over 9,000 dollars JUST on the parts and service ALREADY delivered!)

"Several" - my arse - CChan who is an even bigger crook than you! I have NEVER sold anything to anybody that I did not send and I have NEVER ordered anything from anybody that I did not pay for!

The guy would not let me back to work on the car again and then withholds payment to me - IN PART due to the crap that YOU put in his gearbox! Don't come here now and try to turn the tables Andrew - this is not about me - this is about YOU - the man of the hour! Enjoy it.

ANYBODY here who feels that I have not send them a part(s) paid for - speak up. Anything that I got and did not pay for perhaps? You're full of it Andrew - "several" - I should sue you just for that statement!

Of the outstanding items from Garcia Alfa Racing, all of those items are being worked on.
Great - does that mean that Glenwood Motors can be expecting a 4,700 dollar check then soon!? You are a ****ing thief Andrew and a scum-bag. You don't even have the BALLS to communicate with us in more than a month! (Go in to hiding like a naughty child...)

The last time that we spoke was 10/17 - more than a month ago. It was not until THIS thread that you had ANY words for me!

Jes' 3.55 box and my 3.55 box - OVER a year.
The Spider - two-and-a-half years!
The one white LS - 14 months!
The GTV6 - over 2 years!
The other LS, the other GTV6, my 6-speed project abandoned (just as soon as Robert Vick said "yes' - hope he knows who he is dealing with...!)

On and on....

I have been in contact with involved parties about when the final work on their items will be completed.
No ****!? Dawie at Glenwood Motors and I are BOTH still waiting on our phone-calls... Jes' situation was only addressed once he started haunting you directly! G2 has not heard from you yet either!

I have been in contact with CChan, Jess, and Colin with updates and resolutions to any outstanding issues.
Well, I guess that 3 out of 9 ain't bad by your standards...

I will not lower my self to JJ's level.
Good for you! You're not the one who is owed thousands of dollars. You're not the one who placed your reputation on the line with your vendor abroad for an international purchase of some magnitude, only to get screwed...!

Those who throw stones should not live in glass houses...
I have been involved with Alfas since 1985 and almost every other performance/enthusiasts' brand in-between along the way!

In the 7 years of owning Alfas again here in the US and the last 3-4 years that I have been a EXTREMELY active member here on the BB, I have NEVER sold anything to anybody that I did not deliver and I have NEVER ordered anything from anybody that I did not pay for! MY RECORD STANDS, so put a sock in it Andrew!

If someone else on this board feels I have wronged them, feel free to contact me directly.
They have! You won't take their phone calls, return their messages, or answer their emails...!
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Are folks just stupid :confused: Get what work is supposed to be done, the time frame it is to be done and the cost up front and in writing ... after that there is no excuse.
Well, it's not always that clear-cut and dry... As in the case between Andrew and I - there was a great deal of trust at one stage with parts swapping hands back and forth and various deals going every way. It's just that Andrew lost track and when it came the time to reconcile, he was a bit surprised to find out that the scales tipped my way and that he owed ME money, rather than the other way around...

That's when his integrity (or the lack thereof), started to shine through! A man must be a man - pick up the phone and tell me that you'll fix it. Don't hide and avoid me and come up with creative little accounting methods and spread-sheets to try and show that this or that isn't "quite" due yet, or here or there - just LIVE UP to it - you owe the money - say that you'll pay it, or return the goods and offer to make it right in some other way! Don't expect a man in another country to ship goods to you PRIOR to payment, so that you can go and try to sell it - in order to come up with the money to pay the supplier!

That's nonsense! He would be a bad businessman to go for that deal. If he HAD sent you the boxes, we would be out those now TOO! Andrew, you sold the first 156 box TWICE and did not pay us a dime yet! I am reporting the GoTechs, the 50mm intake runners, the 3.55 LSD shipped to me from the East Coast, the first 156 box, the 1,000 dollar deposit that I paid you on my built 3.55 and my complete lightened and balanced 4-puck race clutch-assembly that Jes and I paid you for TWO YEARS AGO, as stolen property to HPD - if not returned to me within 5 days.

I had Dawie at Glenwood Motors in SA buy 5K worth of gearboxes for this arsehole - BASED on his request - and he just walked! I also supplied goods towards my own gearbox (let's call this disgruntled former customer # 10) - how the hell do I get my deposit back now, or the goods that I already supplied on the balance!? It's been over a year!

And Michael (MKeith) - my friend - you are a ****ing gentleman! Andrew should be kissing your feet! Don't even BEGIN to try and cover for him or justify the ****ty position that he has placed you in! If I had the money, I would bank-roll you in your own shop - TOMORROW!
 

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My 2 cents, I have been dealing with JJ for a while, I have two Gotech systems (only one installed), his street headers and an engine on order with him right now as we speak. I live on the opposite corner of the country, but I was in Seattle last year for business and hung out with JJ and his daughter while I was there. I know there has been question about him from someone installing a GoTech system, it is not easy to install one of these systems, it took me and two friends (one an electical engineer) to get it installed and up and running. I had several questions which both JJ and Jes would chime in on, sent me maps and gave advice free. Now that I have that under my belt, I am planning to do my other on the new engine.

I really hate to see all this go on in the Alfa community, I have three Alfas which are my only cars (I have a project that is none Alfa related). It is getting harder to get some of the little parts that keep our cars on the road, I really take my hat off to the big three and the others because they help us more than we know. I have had some slightly bad experiences with all three of the big Alfa places, but nothing out of the normal course of business, so I have no bad feelings for any of them. I just hope that we can get more people to buy the tired old Alfas out there and put them back on the road so we can give the Alfa places more business so they have more buying power to get us the parts we need.

OK, that is it from me....
 

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I understand your frustrations JJ. However, I believe that this thread is not the best way to go about discussing the issues and it will not make anything better. When someone has legitimate business claims, there are appropriate agencies which should be used to seek rectification.

Additionally, expressing your anger here on a public forum like the BB will not only damage Mr. Garcia's reputation, but will likely also cause concern regarding other suppliers and service agencies, including yourself. Ultimately, I believe that it will damage the small and fragile supply and service chain we - as owners of rare and unusual cars - need to keep our Alfas on the road and track.

I do not intend to get in the middle of this issue. I am sure that you have legitimate issues, JJ. But in my opinion, this isn't the best way to deal with them.
 

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JJ, never had a problem with you, so you should know I say this in your interest, i would cease bringing up any $$ or defamatory comments about anyone specifically you're in the middle of business with, on this board .. I'm sure you're upset and want to bring it all out in the open, but in the long run this could really come back to bite you in the arse.
 
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