Dash cam captures auto mechanic making 200 mile “test drive”

A mechanic at a Colorado car dealership was fired after taking a customer's car on a 200-mile "test drive." (NBC News photo)

LOS ANGELES, Calif. – Have you ever wondered what happens to your car after you drop it off for repairs, then leave? Some people might worry about the fixes being done properly. Or maybe being overcharged.  But, what about someone taking your car joyriding, running errands, even running a red light, all without your knowledge?

It’s bad enough getting caught running a red light, but the owner of one car says she’s not even behind the wheel.

The driver? A dealership employee.

Veronica Peif, the owner of a Kia Soul said, “I expected them to treat it better than anybody else in the world would treat my car!”

After Veronica took her KIA Soul in for a radio repair she says she was stunned to discover what her dash cam had captured:  The employee stopping at his house, at the bank – DcDonald’s – and Sam’s Club.  A total of 200 miles on a “test drive.”

“To me, a test drive is going and driving a car, not going and doing personal errand runs,” Said Peif.

The Colorado dealership has apologized to Peif, offering to pay for the mileage, any repairs, even to buy the car back, pointing out – this has never happened before.

The employee who did the driving was fired.

Auto experts point out – test drives *have to happen, sometimes.

“It’s not uncommon to drive a consumer’s vehicle,” said Brian Coles of the Bureau of Automotive Protection.  The abnormal part of this is giving the appearance it’s being used for personal reasons.”

So before you bring *your car in for a fix, experts recommend you research your repair facility like you would your doctor.  Make a list of specific questions for the mechanic, and check its record with your local consumer protection groups.
But to Peif – the damage is done.  And, her radio?  IT’s still not fixed.

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