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Calif. car dealers stick clients with test-drive fuel costs

PHOENIX — California’s gas prices are ridiculously high, apparently high enough for car dealerships to start charging customers for test drives.

According to, many Golden State dealerships are telling customers to bring the vehicles back from overnight test drives with the same amount of gas as when the drive began.

Scott Gruwell, general sales manager at Courtesy Chevrolet in Phoenix, said that’s an absurd practice.

“Charging somebody for fuel on test drives is ridiculous. That’s a cost of doing business,” he said.

To top things off, so to speak, the cost at some California dealerships goes up every time someone test drives a vehicle then leaves without purchasing a car.