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Vandoit = $10,000 non-disclosure agreement

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This review of Vandoit is based on my personal experience. Looking for negative reviews? You won't find them because Vandoit requires customers to sign a non-disclosure agreement. The minimum fine is $10,000.00 and you are liable for both legal and monetary expenses. To my knowledge, Vandoit and I have no binding contract nor have I received any consideration from Vandoit. Also, I am protected by the First Amendment and the Consumer Review Fairness Act.

The salesman, Miles, asked about hobbies such as biking, surfing, motorcycles, etc. My response was hiking and using my Total Gym. Miles was giddy and said the Total Gym was a perfect fit and could be used inside the van. He even offered ... "flex those muscles". At this point, Miles successfully hooked me and I was sold with those comments.

Unfortunately, I had never driven a van. I reside in a small town in the middle of nowhere Texas and the local dealership had no Transits due to shortages. Also, there are places near that sell travel trailers but the closest motor-home dealer is at least 100 miles away. Eventually, I was able to find a Transit and this van was not for me.

I had difficulty driving the big vehicle. It drove like a boat and was difficult to maintain my lane. To be sure I test drove it on two separate days. Moreover, after seeing the van realized it's impossible to effectively use the Total Gym inside the midroof T350 as promised. Given these new facts I decided it best to cancel the deal rather than drive ten hours and create an awkward situation.

Miles scheduled a call to discuss my concerns. To my surprise the friendly customer service disappeared. I was unaware a gentleman was listening to the phone call. Out of the blue, he chimed in for a tag team event to ambush me. Their goal was to change my mind and sell the van. To Vandoit, customer service is the Vandoit-way or the highway.

They require an extremely large deposit of 10 percent the purchase price. In my case this was almost $8K. My understanding, the deposit is to fund the build. Again, my van was already built and sitting in their facility. I never agreed to purchase a van that was a specific/unique build. Miles said he was breaking the rules.

Vandoit insisted upon keeping the majority of my deposit. However, I can find no paperwork supporting this position. I was deceived by Vandoit and told them to keep the entire deposit to, hopefully, prove a point. To encourage conscientious and ethical behavior. Vandoit has been unsympathetic and uncaring to my plight. They did not think twice about keeping my entire deposit.

Vandoit is associated with Woody's Automotive Group in Chillicothe MO. Like Woody's, Vandoit is nothing more than a used car lot since they sell used vans and take trade-in's. In fact, check out the negative reviews at their official used car lot. There are multiple one star reviews expressing similar issues. Below is a snippet of a negative review for Woody's from Marty Wells one year ago:

"BUYER BEWARE!
I wanted to take a moment to let EVERYONE know about the lying and dishonesty that the folks at Woody's bring to the table when you are wanting to purchase a vehicle....."

The lack of negative reviews at Vandoit shows the power of a $10,000.00 threat in the NDA. I wouldn't trust anything you're told. Based on my experience Vandoit will break the rules or say anything to make a sale because they are a used car lot in disguise. Also, the poor reviews at Woodys prove my experience is common practice. They kept my hard earned money even though the van was misrepresented. Vandoit tried to use the large deposit as leverage. Rest assured, I am not rich and it's difficult to part with almost $8K. This was my retirement savings over a 30 year period and it will never be recovered. More importantly, neither do I enjoy being deceived. Thank you.
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By "Total Gym", you must be referring to that brand combination incline bench? If so... 1) Why do you need it in the van? Do you travel a lot for work? 2) Why wouldn't it fit? I see no reason it won't fit inside a medium roof. They also sell high-roof variants. Actually, I think that's a far more common build. Maybe they would let you change your order?

As for driving... If you drove an empty cargo van, it won't drive as well as one that's built out. Because of the stiff suspension and fully-inflated tires, and empty cargo just has worse manners.

The NDA thing seems a little weird... I don't think that would even be legal in most states.
 

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2022 T350HD #11000 Avalanche Gray
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As for driving... If you drove an empty cargo van, it won't drive as well as one that's built out. Because of the still suspension and fully-inflated tires, and empty cargo just has worse manners.

The NDA thing seems a little weird... I don't think that would even be legal in most states.
we purchased an HD350 extended and drove it home 1500 miles. In Wyoming we had 50-70 mph winds with warning signs everywhere and I could not believe how well the van tracked. I love driving mine. We took it to the store today and have no issues parking or getting around.

I agree that NDA is very crazy and for me it would be a deal breaker.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
By "Total Gym", you must be referring to that brand combination incline bench? If so... 1) Why do you need it in the van? Do you travel a lot for work? 2) Why wouldn't it fit? I see no reason it won't fit inside a medium roof. They also sell high-roof variants. Actually, I think that's a far more common build. Maybe they would let you change your order?

As for driving... If you drove an empty cargo van, it won't drive as well as one that's built out. Because of the stiff suspension and fully-inflated tires, and empty cargo just has worse manners.

The NDA thing seems a little weird... I don't think that would even be legal in most states.
Yes...referring to the Chuck Norris machine. I wanted the van for lengthy travel and love the TG. Thought I could use the TG inside if needed during inclement weather, etc. After seeing the Transit it would not work for me. Did not want a high roof due to high winds and worse on gas. However, I have no experience with vans besides the local test drive wiht a used passenger midroof t350. Yes...Vandoit has the NDA with a $10K fine if violated such as leaving a bad review. Also, their customers must sign agreements to be company ambassadors, show the van and keep exterior unchanged including their badges. Very lopsided legal documents with the company in the drivers seat for a van you just purchased for $100k on average.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
we purchased an HD350 extended and drove it home 1500 miles. In Wyoming we had 50-70 mph winds with warning signs everywhere and I could not believe how well the van tracked. I love driving mine. We took it to the store today and have no issues parking or getting around.

I agree that NDA is very crazy and for me it would be a deal breaker.
we purchased an HD350 extended and drove it home 1500 miles. In Wyoming we had 50-70 mph winds with warning signs everywhere and I could not believe how well the van tracked. I love driving mine. We took it to the store today and have no issues parking or getting around.

I agree that NDA is very crazy and for me it would be a deal breaker.
Yes...Vandoit has the NDA with a $10K fine if violated such as leaving a bad review. Also, their customers must sign agreements to be company ambassadors, show the van and keep exterior unchanged including their badges. Very lopsided legal documents with the company in the drivers seat for a van you just purchased for $100k on average.
I have no experience with vans and did not anticipate the difference between cars. I suppose people are different in what is comfortable to drive. Thanks for the response!
 

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Hmmm. I think maybe they had you sign the NDA on accident.

Those are typical for "Brand Ambassadors", and these "influencers" typically trade promotional services (YouTube videos, Instagram and TikTok channels etc.) for a steep discount or sometimes a fully-comped lease of a vehicle. Because of these comps, the NDA would be legal. If you had to pay a deposit, I very much doubt they intended to utilize you as a brand ambassador, and if you aren't receiving anything in return, the NDA probably isn't legal.

As for the deposit... If a non-refundable deposit was required to start the build... I'm not sure I fault them for not refunding it... I think the onus would be on the customer to ensure their equipment/furnishing/whatever will fit inside the vehicle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Hmmm. I think maybe they had you sign the NDA on accident.

Those are typical for "Brand Ambassadors", and these "influencers" typically trade promotional services (YouTube videos, Instagram and TikTok channels etc.) for a steep discount or sometimes a fully-comped lease of a vehicle. Because of these comps, the NDA would be legal. If you had to pay a deposit, I very much doubt they intended to utilize you as a brand ambassador, and if you aren't receiving anything in return, the NDA probably isn't legal.

As for the deposit... If a non-refundable deposit was required to start the build... I'm not sure I fault them for not refunding it... I think the onus would be on the customer to ensure their equipment/furnishing/whatever will fit inside the vehicle.
This was on the floor already built. It took them two months for some reason to close the deal and by then I had the opportunity to test drive the T350. They wanted to keep $5k and give me the rest for sitting on their van for two months. That's when I found the misrepresentation and had difficulty driving. It appears all customers are brand ambassadors and get $100 per referral or something like that.
 

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Yes- do talk to an attorney in MO; usually they don't charge for the first call anyway. If the van had not gone into production at the time of cancellation then in California then not returning the deposit would likely be considered a forfeiture- which the courts generally hate when consumers are involved. That said, I too would fight like **** as many times unscrupulous businesses do things that wouldn't hold up in court because experience tells them hardly anyone bothers to take it there.

If you paid any part of the deposit with a credit card dispute the charge.
 

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I know someone who bought a new Promaster with 130 miles on it at Woodys, then discovered that he was the second owner when he brought it in for a major issue. The first owner had the same issue and they gave him another van and simply resold this one without fixing the issue. I have heard multiple horror stories of the Woodys Auto Group. He ended up going through the Lemon Law to get his money back, but had to sign an NDA and agree to never speak of it, write of it, and to never portray Woody's or Fiat Chrysler in a negative light. His girlfriend didn't sign the NDA so she doesn't hold back.
 

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@dare ... given today's volatile market I'd buy it and flip it. It will at least give you the chance to drive one. Overall people are happy with how they drive, so maybe the one you drove was worn out, or needed an alignment, had a bad tire, etc..

Were you buying a new or used van from VanDoIt?
 

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Yes- do talk to an attorney in MO; usually they don't charge for the first call anyway. If the van had not gone into production at the time of cancellation then in California then not returning the deposit would likely be considered a forfeiture- which the courts generally hate when consumers are involved. That said, I too would fight like **** as many times unscrupulous businesses do things that wouldn't hold up in court because experience tells them hardly anyone bothers to take it there.

If you paid any part of the deposit with a credit card dispute the charge.
Challenge being that $8K isn't enough for there to be money for the attorney to bother (on taking the case for a percentage of the win). They could write a letter for $500-1000 but not engage in negotiation for part of the potential return. The actual attorney cost would exceed the potential return. 🤷‍♀️

While $8K is a considerable amount of money, it's in that space where pursuing it is barely worth it.

Of course... if one has time to waste, perhaps the money could all go to the attorney - costing the opponent the same amount /minus/ the $8K. 🤔

Personally... my peace of mind would probably leave me with the walk away option strongest.
 

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NDA? General rule, Unless you are represented by an attorney in a Settlement Matter, don't sign one. It will not be in your best interest.

Selling a product with an DNA screams of bad intentions by the seller. What else could they be protecting?

Regarding your deposit, you might try calling your State's Attorney General office to see if they offer Consumer Protection assistance. Sometimes they can provide guidance about the laws that apply in your case.

I certainly wouldn't walk away from a $8k deposit unless it was clearly stated in a written agreement that it was non refundable. If you don't have a written agreement, how are deposits treated in your state?
 

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And saving attorney’s fees by using Small Claims Court is an option - not sure if the settlement from that can go as high as $8k - but you might be able to get $6k back.
 

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The NDA is a big issue for me. Vanlifetech has one also and it is why they were knocked out of the running for my build. Looks like a well thought out system, but I would want to talk about the pros/cons and how it is put together. I've pieced together a lot of their pieces thanks to a variety of photos that have been posted online (even on their own website). Nothing high end in any of the parts.
 
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