Author Dave Consiglio
Having lived for years with an affordable car, my wife and I splurged and bought a Mercedes (low end).
We had it in our possession for about 3 months when we received a letter by La Poste – Mercedes wanted to get our car back for testing of fine particle emissions. In exchange, the brand would deliver to our home another Mercedes of equal or greater value. They would take our Mercedes and carry out the tests in a laboratory. The car loan was free with the refueling done. Our car would be made perfectly cleaned (inside and outside) and with the refueling also done. They assured us that they would not do more than 800 kilometers with our car during the tests.
Oh, and also they would pay us 450 €.
I thought it was a hoax. I called the number on the letter I received. An agent from Mercedes assured me that it was real and was often asked if it was a hoax.
We accepted the conditions of Mercedes.
Shortly after, a man came to our house in a car like this:
I drove to work for a week as one of the Vanderbilt’s (Vanderbilt’s are a wealthy American family, as Les Bettencourt would say in France). My students have noticed it. My colleagues have noticed. People thought I had won the lottery.
At the end of the week, I recovered my car (well, it’s a little less spectacular) with only 240 kilometers more on the clock. The refueling was done, and it was as clean as the day I bought it.
And I had now received a check for 450 €.
Receiving € 450 to drive a luxury car, having my car washed, getting a free tank of gas … All this for having authorized the company to add 240 kilometers to the meter of my car (a distance that I would have done in all the cases this week)? Yes that’s fine.