Nope, it's all true. Never heard the one about rusty japmobiles though.
I had a FIAT Croma on hire recently. Usual FIAT electrics, lucky lotto as to what worked and what didn't when I switched it on. No change since the '70s there. Are you a FIAT salesman by any chance?
I also recently spent a few years in the Czech Republic. At the start I was flown over for three days to find a house. During those days (and remember, this is a place where every antique Soviet Bloc vehicle ever made was to be found at the time), I saw two cars broken down at the side of the road. A Citroen AX and a Peugeot 206.
Last, but not least. A couple of years ago a mate and I were driving down the A1 in his Nissan Primera. It broke down. When the recovery service arrived, we were told that there was nothing they could do but tow it, as they had no Nissan parts or manuals because they never break down. When we queried this, due to the rather obvious broken-down Nissan next to us, they helpfully pointed out that serving that stretch of the A1 for the AA*, RAC*, Green Flag, Europ Assistance, etc. this was the second Nissan they'd seen in five years(!) When we asked what kept them in business, the reply was "Anything French. Or Italian.".........
*Yes, both use third party contractors when they have nothing available themselves.