Here’s what I learnt today. If you’re in rented accomodation and you want to buy a car (no, I’m not buying one but someone I know is) you have to provide photographs, your PAN card number, a copy of your passport and proof that your landlord owns the flat you live in. So it isn’t enough to provide the agreement signed between tenant and landlord, which is a perfectly acceptable proof of one’s residential address, but you’ve got to prove that your landlord owns the place. Why not ask for a letter from the original builder to prove they constructed the building too, while we’re at it?
Interestingly, what they don’t ask for is a copy of a driving licence. Because if you can afford to buy a car, then surely you can also afford a driver. Either that or you run a taxi service. Whatever the situation bringing you to a car showroom, the driving licence is a superfluous detail when buying a car. In any case, it doesn’t really mean anything. The chap who was buying the car has a driving licence and can’t tell the clutch from the accelerator. His driver has one too and, while he does know the function of the different pedals at his feet, to say he drives is like saying me walking in circles on my tippy toes is equivalent to a pirouette.
However, Honda showroom girl had her real moment of glory when she began organising the test drive. The car could be brought to a preferred address, she said, and at whatever time was suitable to the buyer. His driver could whizz around in it. I got a withering glance but no answer when I asked if there was a time or kilometre limit to the test drive. Everything seemed set and the buyer said (pointing to the one he’d chosen), “Ok, so you’ll send this model on Wednesday to my address?”
“No, sir,” replied Honda showroom girl. “I’ll come personally with this model.” She was pointing to a completely different model.
“But that’s a different one.”
“Yes, sir, but it’s the same. It’s Honda only.”
“I understand it’s a Honda but it’s not the one I want to buy.”
“Ultimately, sir, you are buying the Honda part, no? That is the inside and it is the same for all. Outside things are not important.”
It’s like she’s the Dalai Lama of car sales. Aum.