Consumer Reports: 10 Car Shopping Mistakes And How To Avoid Them

Consumer Reports has compiled a list of common car shopping mistakes from their Smart Buyer’s Guide to Buying or Leasing a Car, which, of course, you can find in bookstores.

Here’s a quick summary of the list:

  1. Falling in love with a model.
    Becoming infatuated with a single model can blind you to alternative vehicles that may be better for your needs or make you skimp on thoroughly researching a vehicle’s ratings, reviews, reliability, or safety and pricing information.

  2. Skipping the test drive.
    A lot of vehicles look good on paper–especially in glossy brochure photos–but the test drive is your best chance to see how a vehicle measures up to expectations and how well it “fits” you and your family.

  3. Negotiating down from the sticker price.
    “A salesperson may offer you a deal that’s, say, $500 below the sticker price, and many consumers will conclude, often mistakenly, that they’re getting a good deal. Unless the vehicle is in big demand and short supply, you can often get an even lower price by negotiating up from what the dealer paid for the vehicle.

  4. Focusing only on the monthly payment when negotiating.
    “Salespeople like to focus on a monthly-payment figure while negotiating a deal. Indeed, “How much were you thinking of paying each month?” might be one of the first questions to greet you when you meet a salesperson. Don’t take the bait. It’s the first step down a slippery slope of being manipulated with numbers and overpaying for your vehicle.”

  5. Buying the “deal” instead of the vehicle.
    “…it’s important to remember that any deal is only as good as the car that’s attached to it. Just because you can get a good discount doesn’t mean you should buy the vehicle.”

  6. Waiting until you’re in the dealership to think about financing.
    “…it’s critical to comparison shop for financing terms at different financial institutions and get prequalified for an auto loan before you go to the dealership to buy the vehicle. Check interest rates at banks, credit unions, or online financial sites to see which offers you the best rate.”

  7. Underestimating the value of modern safety features.
    “Today’s vehicles offer an array of advanced safety features. But many buyers don’t know which are most important or what to look for when comparing vehicles. Antilock brake systems (ABS), electronic stability control (ESC), and head-protecting side air bags, for instance, are effective and well worth the money.”

  8. Buying unnecessary extras.
    “Dealerships often try to sell you extras that boost their profit margin but are a waste of you money. They can include rustproofing, fabric protection, paint protectant, or VIN etching, in which the vehicle identification number is etched onto the windows to deter thieves. Don’t accept those unnecessary services and fees. If you see those items on the bill of sale and you haven’t agreed to them, simply cross them out and refuse to pay for them. “

  9. Not researching the value of your current car.
    “Find out what both the used-car retail and wholesale prices are, so that you’ll know what you should be able to get if you trade it in or if you sell it yourself. Typically, you’ll get more money by selling it, as long as you’re willing to put in the additional effort.”

  10. Not having a used car checked by an independent mechanic.
    “Before you buy a used vehicle, have it scrutinized by a repair shop that routinely does diagnostic work. A thorough diagnosis should cost around $100, but confirm the price in advance. ”

10 common car-buying mistakes [Yahoo!] (Thanks, Stephen!)
(Photo: Bonita Sarita )

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  1. Snarkysnake says:

    Consumer Reports probably needs to add one:

    11) Don’t be tempted by a “lifetime warranty” from a manufacturer that is by it’s own admission ,bankrupt.

    That would be the soon to be “absorbed” Chrysler Corp.

    • balthisar says:

      @Snarkysnake: I would recommend against Chrysler for other reasons than you indicate, but I still have to point out:

      When did Chrysler “by it’s [sic] own admission” indicate bankruptcy? That’s a very specific legal situation.

      Also, whoever buys Chrysler will be responsible for warranty concerns, and also be required to provide new parts for the entire vehicle for a minimum of years (federal law).

      Consider Jeep -> AMC -> Renault -> Chrysler -> DMX, and now possibly -> GM. At no point were purchasers left in any type of a lurch.

      Like I said, there are good reasons not to buy a lot of cars, but this isn’t a legitimate concern in the case of Chrysler (nor GM nor Ford for that matter).

      • Snarkysnake says:

        @balthisar:

        Well, I can only go by what their own CEO (Robert Nardelli) said earlier ,that his employer is “operationally bankrupt” (Source – The Truth About Cars ,October 17,2008 , CNN Money Dec. 21,2007) .Sounds pretty dire , I should think.

        Further, with millions of waranteed vehicles on the road,if the company has no money (see point above), it can’t service every warranty holder . They can’t just crap money (or parts) and make everybody happy. This assumes that the bankruptcy judge that would presumably handle the case if there were a filing would not stop the music if overwhelmed with claims. Hard to say.

        As for Jeep, Renault, AMC… None of them ever declared Chapter 11. I know : I bought a Jeep Comanche just hours before Chrysler bought out AMC in ’87 (mainly to get their incompetent hands on the Jeep brand)

        Look ,it’s no secret that Chrysler is a zombie company.Buying an “orphan” brand is a risk that need not be taken.

        • balthisar says:

          @Snarkysnake: Chrysler’s less than stellar quality aside, they don’t service 100% of the covered vehicles. And the point is, they’re being purchased by someone who has that liability as part of the deal.

  2. DeleteThisAccount says:

    I’m seriously thinking of buying an electric scooter after this winter and just leaving the car in the garage unless the trip is over 6 miles.

    • kachunk says:

      @AngrySicilian: bicycles are nice too. And cheap. And they get you in shape.

    • lincolnparadox says:

      @AngrySicilian: That only works if you live far enough south. In Iowa, that wouldn’t work now, in October, let alone in February.

      Still, 7 months out of the year it would be a great deal.

    • Hands says:

      @AngrySicilian: Several months ago I bought a bicycle off craigslist for $160, then took it to the bike shop for a tuneup for another $30. Add $15 for lights and I thought I had something just for fun. Now if I’ve got an errand to run that’s less than 3 miles I’m on the bike. And three miles is a lot less than you think when you’re on wheels.

  3. AMetamorphosis says:

    Thanks for bringing this article to light.
    Very informative and helpful to those looking into new cars right now.

    I must say, the point about arranging financing REALLY helped us last month when we went to the dealship to purchase an SUV.

    Since we were preapproved through our credit union, I was able to effectively tell the dealer we were CASH customers and it gave us a lot of leverage.

    I am cutting & pasting this article to a friend of mine that is in the market currently for a new car.

    • th1nwhiteduke says:

      @AMetamorphosis: Considering financing through the dealer makes them more money, and paying cash does not, I’m not sure what leverage you think you got in this situation?

      • Laffy Daffy says:

        @th1nwhiteduke: Yep, dealers are MUCH more willing to cut the price if they think you will be financing through them. I negotiated price based on dealer financing in 4 instances only to change at the last minute and only one dealer reneged on the price.

      • AMetamorphosis says:

        @th1nwhiteduke:

        When gas was 4 dollars a gallon, SUV’s were not selling @ all. By being approved, they had an easy sale if they met the correct price. ( which they did ) and I didn’t get suckered into paying for their overinflated financing terms.

        Cash is always king when a dealship is full of auto’s and no one’s buying :-)

      • godlyfrog says:

        @th1nwhiteduke: Because a cash customer is a customer who can go anywhere.

        It’s less about the customer having more leverage than it is about the dealership having no leverage. Dealerships make their money by hiding where they make their profit, and it all comes down to the negotiation. Just because they can make less money doesn’t mean they will.

        If you couple this with the idea that you should never enter a dealership to do anything except take a test drive of a vehicle you’ve researched and chosen, and you limit their options even further. If they can’t hide their profit, it’s harder to make you think you got a good deal, and, let’s face it, moving a car and making a decent profit on it is preferable to your competitor getting the profit. There are several sites on the internet that will give you the best expected price you will get for a vehicle while allowing the dealer to make a profit. If you follow that general pricing, most dealerships will take it, no questions asked, and if they do, there are other dealerships who will be happy to give you that same pricing.

    • balthisar says:

      @AMetamorphosis: I did the same thing when I bought my SUV at the bottom-of-the-barrel prices at the end of August. I got the price I wanted, a free (very limited) warranty, an expensive due-bill (I knew what the repair would cost), and the convenience of dealer financing, because I’d already had my own financing arranged.

      Quite simply I told them that if they met the same rate I already had, I’d do them the favor of letting them find the financing (they get a commission). In reality, it was easier for me just to close immediately rather than go get a check.

      Funny, the financing was finally done through a company I’d done business with before (when they were PeopleFirst), but that I rejected this time around due to their high rates. The dealer really did get me a better rate (from this company) than was available online.

      Knowledge and an 800+ credit score is power: this was easily the best vehicle shopping experience I’d ever had.

  4. shorty63136 says:

    I can attest to pretty much all of this since I was in an accident on the 13th that totaled my car. (R.I.P. ‘Bentley’)

    Bought a 2008 Hyundai Santa Fe but negotiated $7,200 below the sticker price. They were desperate and I wasn’t playing games. Some other things to consider:

    1 – That ridiculous “document/processing” fee they tack on there? Don’t pay it. Tell them, “Your lights are going to be on, the cars will be on the lot, and you’ll be at work whether I pay this fee or not. I’m not paying you to do what you’re supposed to do anyway – fill out paperwork to close this deal.”

    2 – Find out what your trade-in (if you have one) is REALLY worth by going to NADA or Kelly Blue Book. While I didn’t have one to trade (*sob*), I did use both of these resources when dealing with the insurance company.

    3 – Don’t let them rush you. Go over EVERY piece of paperwork before you sign it and ask, “Ok – and why am I signing this?” if you don’t know what’s up with it. They may get annoyed but they can either calm down and do their job or they can kick rocks.

    4 – Be prepared to walk away right then and there. This little 5’4″ chick can play hard-ball…so can you. If it is NOT what you want to be dealing with (attitude OR numbers), walk away. Seriously. That car ain’t goin nowhere.

    5 – You can negotiate interest rates. I had a blemish on my credit and they wanted me to pay 17%. I told him that must be good crack he’s smoking. He moved me up one tier to 4.5% because I told him this sale AND the sale of my roommate’s new Sonata hinged on it.

    It’s YOUR money. You need to be happy with the car AND the terms under which you purchase it.

    • shorty63136 says:

      @shorty63136: I’m sorry – 4.25%

      • pockygt says:

        @shorty63136: The doc fee is very real. What you have to look out for is the stuff they shouldn’t be including in it. At the dealer I work at, the doc fees are basically the cost of registration, the cost of plates, other DMV based fees, and a full tank of gas.

        Of course, if you’re not registering the car, and want it empty when you pick it up, you do not have to pay any of that.

        • th1nwhiteduke says:

          @pockygt: What dealership is this, so I know not to ever shop there. Putting the full tank of gas cost in the doc fee? That’s ridiculous.

        • JustThatGuy3 says:

          @pockygt:

          Doc fees are real, but they don’t matter. I only care about total price. As far as I care, charge me a $25k doc fee and $99 for the car. It’s the total # that matters.

          • Sudonum says:

            @JustThatGuy3: Yeah, that’s the way I bought my last 2 cars, one of them just a few months ago. I drove in with my trade (with title), found the car I was looking for, test drove it, let them go over my trade in, and of course they low balled me. I walked out, this was around the 20th of the month. Got a call a couple of days later. I went back down and basically told them it really didn’t matter what they gave me for my car as I was paying cash and the only thing that mattered was how much the check I was writing was going to be. Long story short, I walked out of the dealership 3 more times, finally on July 31 they called me and told me that they would give me the car, out the door, title, taxes, license, fees, gas, detail, etc, for my price. Of course they wanted me down there that afternoon.

          • Hands says:

            @JustThatGuy3: Somewhere along the line I heard this price referred to as the “driveout.” That’s the bottom line, including doc fees, sales taxes and anything else they try to throw in there. That’s the number I negotiate when I buy a car.

        • crouton976 says:

          @pockygt: Well, I can tell you from having worked at a dealership before that it was pretty much customary to throw in the registration, gas, full detail of the vehicle and standard accessories like floor mats in order to close the deal. The dealership’s philosophy was “it’s better to spend a little and make a lot than to try and save a little and lose a lot”. Bottom line, if you won’t do it for me, another dealer will. USE THIS TO YOUR ADVANTAGE…

        • shorty63136 says:

          @pockygt: Doc fee where I was at included NONE of that.

    • blackmage439 says:

      @shorty63136: Your #4 point is absolutely true. Walk-aways are a pox to salespeople. My grandfather told a story once about how he put his foot down while at a Chevy dealership. For a 70 year old man, he knows how to use the internet and how to shop around. He was helping someone shop for a car. He knew the price to pay, and wasn’t going to budge. When the salesman refused the offer, my grandpa took the person’s hand, said “let’s go,” and started to walk out. Panicky salesperson quickly closes the deal, at the price my grandpa asked. (By the way, my grandpa’s asking price was well within the dealer markup still.)

      Fast-forward a few months later, he walks in to the same dealership and meets the same salesperson. “I remember you… You gave me a hard time last time you were here!” was all the salesperson could say. Priceless.

    • jdhuck says:

      @shorty63136: I once asked the salesperson for a phone book so I could call another dealer. I called the dealer down the road and said, “Hi, I am at XYZ Jeep and they won’t meet me at this price. Can you?” I also made sure to call from the dealerships phone. I got what I was looking for as far as price goes.

      Another time I borrowed the neighbors kids(4 ages 4-9) to go car shopping with me. I went before lunch, they were hungry and made a real scene. This worked better than I could have hoped. The sales manager ordered us pizza and offered to watch the kids while I test drove.

  5. TheSpatulaOfLove says:

    I just bought a car last night.

    Couple things I would add: If you roll ANY negative equity, or you’re a high mileage driver, I strongly suggest GAP coverage. I average 50k miles a year, and depreciation tends to be a butt-kicker for me. Once upon a time I wrecked a high mileage car and the insurance man paid book value, leaving me $3500 upside down on a loan.

    Another thing, if you bought the upgraded wheel package and live in a state that fails to properly maintain roads, the wheel protection program is worth its weight in gold. For the past two years, I shelled out $1200 each winter to repair bent rims and blowouts because Michigan struggles to understand that cold-patch is not a longterm road repair strategy.

    A major shortcoming on the article, it glassed over researching the costs of the vehicle using sites like Edmunds.com. It’s good to try multiple services as well to compare what Wholesale vs. Retail costs. Also realize that Certified Pre-Owned adds costs to the retail price of the car (and many times does reflect in KBB, Edmunds, NADA, etc). A dealership needs to put some money into a car they buy for the used car lot in order to meet guidelines set by the manufacturer to achieve CPO status.

    • shorty63136 says:

      @TheSpatulaOfLove: I’m a high mileage driver myself (live in Atlanta but from St. Louis – plus, I just like to drive) so I’m definitely with you on the GAP coverage.

    • SigmundTheSeaMonster says:

      @TheSpatulaOfLove: Another note is to understand when you LEASE an AWD car/SUV, understand that after 30K miles of wear, if you get a blowout or damage to a tire (not a flat that can be plugged) that needs replacement, you have to replace ALL the tires as the new AWD wheel sensors will cause premature failure on the transaxles/drivetrain. You’ll see this on some where it knows the tire pressure is low.
      A mechanic told me that he’s seen failures related to the tread wear being out of balance (more tread on the new tire, versus less on the older three, causing imbalance to the traction control system).
      This is why they try to sell you a $900 tire insurance policy…since most tires are now $120-$200 each in the SUV and performance range…might need to consider putting aside some (not buying the insurance though).

    • Orv says:

      @TheSpatulaOfLove: I don’t know why anyone buys upgraded wheels in Michigan. I used to live there; having nice alloy wheels and low-profile tires makes about as much sense as wearing a tuxedo to a pie-eating contest. Plus those wide, high-performance tires that everyone thinks are cool really suck in the snow.

      • TheSpatulaOfLove says:

        @Orv:

        Well being a car guy, I tend to do the good ol’ wheel swap. High performance in the summer, winter steelies and knobbies in the winter.

        I love your tuxedo analogy though – that made me laugh!

  6. boomerang86 says:

    “Negotiating down from the sticker price.”

    Good luck with that on a model in high demand, like the Honda Civic Hybrid I picked up last night. Still a couple weeks wait to get one around here.

    • Skankingmike says:

      @boomerang86: I think the “Falling in love with a model” part of the list covers this.

      Hybrid costs more and you will not recoup your losses in the time most people keep cars. You’re better off with a good fuel efficient gas only car like a corolla civic or what have you.

  7. bbagdan says:

    I used to sell Mercedes. I can say always ask for some sort of discount– you will get it. We were sometimes bewildered when a customer would pay full price without even asking for a discount, like they didn’t want to be embarassed.

    New-car markups are typically 9% over cost. Subtract about 7% from the full retail price and start negotiating from there. Dealers will sometimes also get a $1000-3000 incentive from the manufacturer for older models, so factor that in.

    I wouldn’t say never do it, but generally buying a used car on a dealer’s lot is for suckers. There’s a little more convenience and security if you are a luxury car buyer, but for something under $10k there’s much better deals to be had in private sales.

    The absolute best time to buy a new car is the last two weeks of december. Managers are desperate to boost yearly sales totals. Look for a car about to drop into the previous model year (i.e. this December look for a 2008 or 2007 model year car). Work two or more dealers simultaneously. On December 30, offer 10% below cost (i.e. about 20% below full sticker). When the manager laughs, smile and walk out, but make sure they have your phone number. Expect a phone call accepting your offer on December 31!

    • kathyl says:

      @bbagdan: Wow, that was very informative! We won’t be buying another car (knock on wood) for quite awhile, but I’m going to commit those tips to memory for the day I do need it. Thanks for posting all that.

    • crouton976 says:

      @bbagdan: Another trick is to wait until the 2nd or 3rd week of January, or if possible, February and by one of the previous years models. An example would be this upcoming January I go and by a 2008 Toyota Tacoma instead of the ’09 model. Most dealers will sell for WAY less just to get the vehicle off of their lot. Most people buying a new car don’t want last year’s model, they want the latest and greatest. But, you end up with a brand spanking new vehicle(at least from an engine/wear and tear standpoint) for THOUSANDS less than you would normally pay.

      The Ford dealership I worked at had a 2002 Focus marked down to $5800 in Feb. of 2003. The ’03 Focus with the exact same features, color, etc. was listed at $13,800. I asked the sales manager about it and he not only explained why the price was so drastically reduced, but tried to sell it to me as well!!

    • MissPeacock says:

      @bbagdan: @crouton976: This is all really great info. I’m about to need a new car and am loving everyone’s tips.

    • RedwoodFlyer says:

      @bbagdan:

      MB still does the European delivery program, right?

      BMW knocks off 7% of you opt for the EDP…but the trick is, don’t bring up the fact that you want to do it until after you agree on a price.

  8. Veeber says:

    They’ve taken VIN etching to the next step. We bought a new car about a year ago and they were offering a service which places security dots on all the major components. It’s some RFID dot that can be scanned so that if the car is stolen they can get our parts back. And why wouldn’t I just get comprehensive insurance?

    • Powerlurker says:

      @Veeber:

      Some insurers actually give you a discount for VIN etching and such. My parents had it done on one of their cars because the insurance savings ended up making it pay for itself. Then again, you can probably do it yourself cheaper than the dealer.

    • Tank says:

      @Veeber: except it’s not RFID – it’s just little metal dots with a serial number on it. they are suspended in a glue that dries clear, and the only way to find the dots is to use a black light. it’s snake oil at best, and just one more profit item for the finance department.

  9. gavni says:

    Some of the claims about safety equipment are not true. In particular, ABS is not worth the money; the NHSTA has done significant studies which showed that ABS resulted in no significant change in mortality, and in fact increased driver mortality (but decreased deaths outside of the car).

    No, I cannot explain why, but the data support this conclusion.

    • blackmage439 says:

      @gavni: Um… What data? Name your source, please. A quick Google search of “nhsta abs unsafe” provided NO links to an NHTSA study proving ABS causes more driver deaths than cars without it. I can certainly guarantee that ABS systems on semi trucks have lead to much fewer causalities; there are few things on the road more destructive than an out of control, jackknifing truck. In fact, the only data I can gleam from that search leads to undereducated drivers.

      The procedure most drivers are taught is to pump the brakes if you’re not stopping. With ABS systems, you have to just mash the brake pedal, the ABS system does the rest.

    • LatherRinseRepeat says:

      @gavni:

      I think you’re interpreting the NHTSA data incorrectly. Or perhaps you’re posting from bizarro land.

    • Orv says:

      @gavni: One point is that while ABS has not been shown to reduce mortality, stability control *has*. And stability control can only be fitted to vehicles that are also equipped with ABS.

      • gavni says:

        @Orv: Yes, stability control does reduce mortality, and of course operates as essentially a superset of ABS. If you have to pay extra for stability control, it’s probably worth it. In any case, the NHTSA (sorry about my earlier typo) is mandating stability control in new cars fairly soon, which is good news for people who don’t want to die in car crashes.

        The interesting metacommentary is how badly people react to being told that ABS doesn’t reduce mortality. Sorry, folks.

        • mythago says:

          @Shadowman615: Knowing what you want is not the same as “falling in love with a car model”. Falling in love makes you stupid: oh, yeah, this car has a terrible safety rating and it’s overpriced but OMG SHINY PAINT JOB!

          Way different than falling in love with a car *because* it meets your needs and it’s the best choice.

  10. akacrash says:

    #12 – If the dealer won’t budge any more on price, you can negotiate extras. I got my GF a roof rack and Ipod stereo input for free after we ended up deadlocked on price.

    If the dealer says “do you want to lose this car over a couple hundred dollars.” Turn it around on him: “Do you want to lose this sale over a couple hundred bucks?’
    Usually their answer is ‘uh, no.’

    :)

    • shorty63136 says:

      @akacrash: Stick it to em!

    • RevRagnarok says:

      @akacrash: I totally agree. I worked 3 dealers against each other on a car that had a waiting list (Honda Pilot back in 2004). As for all the other crap (document fees, etc), I just said, “This is what I want, the options I want, and an on-the-road price. I don’t care about delivery fees, documentation fees, whatever, I have a check here for $NN,NNN and if you want it, this is it.” Done.

  11. SigmundTheSeaMonster says:

    Do NOT leave a deposit!
    Even if leasing, work that deposit into the lease. This is something that I wish I knew about before.

    Oh, and if you test drive and they copy your ID/License, you take that copy back with you when you leave (the stealership). They have no right to keep that information.

    • th1nwhiteduke says:

      @SigmundTheSeaMonster: Do you have a right to test drive their car and then disappear without leaving any trace of your taking their vehicle out for a joyride? How else do they follow up with you or send you a thank you note?

      • Nytmare says:

        @th1nwhiteduke: If by “thank you note” you mean junk mail for the next seven years, then that sounds accurate.

      • godlyfrog says:

        @th1nwhiteduke: They take your driver’s license so they can prequalify you for a loan, then when you get back, they already have a head start on knowing what to offer you. If you don’t believe me, go into a dealership and tell them you’re paying cash; they don’t even bother asking you for your license.

  12. robb9 says:

    I’m a car salesmen. I’d like to confirm a few of these.

    “Falling in love with a model.”

    This is bad for me and the buyer. 9 times out of 10, the dream car is not affordable. If you close off on one car and refuse to look at anything else, you will be very disaapointed when you find out you can’t affords the insurance, monthly payments or over all cost of the vehicle. Allow me to show you alternatives or possibly decontent a vehicle to suit your needs.

    “Skipping the test drive.”

    Never ever do this. I allow and sometimes suggest that you take the vehicle overnight. This will answer many questions you may have on its own. Does it fit in the garage? Will it get the kids to school with all their stuff? If the salesmen does not want you to take it overnight, find another dealer. don’t buy into his “insurance policy” excuse. Please don’t sully the vehicle. It’s not yours until you sign for it.

    “Negotiating down from the sticker price.”

    I can’t help you here. I work for Saturn and all you get are rebates or employee discounts. Please keep in mind that a GM discount cannot be discounted any further unless you are eligible for certain rebates. These are the rules of the program and not the dealers rules.

    “Focusing only on the monthly payment when negotiating.”

    Excellent point. If I sell you an Aura with a maintenance interval based on your driving habits and a payment of $339 per month yet, you can get a comparably equipped Camry for $330 a month with a maintenance interval of 3,000 miles, you need to look at the overall cost of ownership. That Aura may cost you $6,000 a year while the Camry may cost $6,500 a year. Always check insurance, maintenance cost, fuel costs etc.

    “Waiting until you’re in the dealership to think about financing.”

    I disagree with this one. Get a rate, but don’t apply for that loan just yet. If your credit union has a 4.99% rate, I may be able to get you 4.79% and you lost out on saving those few extra dollars by already having a loan in hand. Not to mention, you don’t have to go to the bank, sign extra documents and wait for the check when you can come into the dealership and get it all done in one fell swoop. Again, check your rates first, the dealer has other options for you.

    “Underestimating the value of modern safety features”

    I’m lost on this one, safety is paramount here. We don’t sell them as options, they are standard.

    “Buying unnecessary extras.”

    Your vehicle may have Onstar, skip the theft protection. Fabric protection/interior protection may be good for you. Do you have kids and are leasing? The banks is going to charge you up the wazoo if they have to clean stains out to sell the car after the lease. Our protection guarantees stain removal, if we can’t get it out, we replace the seat upholstery. Skip if you have leather. Read all the fine print, but don’t pay for what you didn’t ask for.

    “Not researching the value of your current car.”

    I agree completely.

    “Not having a used car checked by an independent mechanic.”

    A great idea, especially if the car has no warranty. However, don’t think you can use a small problem to lower the vehicles cost. Be sure to look for stickers that say “AS IS” because someone will buy it at that price regardless.

    • supercereal says:

      @robb9: The first two points go hand in hand, no? I always assumed that dealers pushed overnight test drives so you WOULD fall in love with the vehicle, see how nicely it looks in the driveway, etc.

      Plus I think there’s a much more glaring drawback to focusing on monthly payments: the overall interest. What sounds better: a $79/payment or a $600/month payment? Those that focus on monthly payments overlook the fact that the $79/mo payment is drawn out over, say, 15 years, thus adding thousands in interest. A higher monthly payment generally results in lower overall cost from an interest standpoint.

      • robb9 says:

        @supercereal:

        I push them to avoid the dreaded buyback. The seat is comfortable on the lot, but not after you have sat in it for 2 hours straight running errands. I want you to love the vehicle only after you have made a decision to buy it. I can’t tell you how many times I have done a buyback because the car doesn’t hold the family, or doesn’t fit in the garage. An overnight test drive is just to verify the car suits your needs.

        I agree that payment focus is a bad thing for several reasons… however, cost of ownership is uslaly on my customers minds first. Interest doesn’t play to big a role in my market.

    • negitoro says:

      @robb9: Isn’t the “fabric protection” just Scotchgard?

      • robb9 says:

        @negitoro:

        It is, but a viable finish protection plan does not only guarantee against the car fabric being stained, but will also guarantee a replacement should the fabric stain and not wash out.

        • TheSpatulaOfLove says:

          @robb9:

          Good info, Robb9. Thanks!

          I tried buying a Saturn on this cycle – had my eye on the Outlook, but I just couldn’t get it to the point of affordability for what I wanted in the vehicle. :(

          Saturn still makes it easy to buy a car though – general impressions of all Saturn sales people I’ve dealt with on this cycle have been very good!

          GM: Put a V6 diesel in the Lambdas – PLEASE!!

    • mustardwater says:

      @robb9:

      I’m a car salesman as well and I agree with Robb9.

      We carry the reputation that generations of sleazy car sharks have dealt us. It’s part of our culture now to expect that purchasing a car is going to be a visceral, painful and bitter experience. Luckily, with the availability of free information on the internet, most consumers are well prepared when they drive onto our lot. They know what their car is worth, they know what our car is worth, they know what kind of financing they qualify for, and most of my customers don’t mind that I do this as a profession and earn a few dollars to take home to the family. It’s my job to demonstrate value in the services I provide and to assist people with finding the newest, nicest car that meets their needs for the cheapest price.

      Everybody has horror stories from past dealings with shady car guys–even most of us car guys. Articles like this that educate and inform the consumer, together with more and more of the good guys like Robb9 infiltrating the industry should make anecdotes like the lemon Chevy Malibu increasingly rare.

    • RedwoodFlyer says:

      @robb9:

      Bravo for being honest, upfront, and clearly stating your association with a certain brand so that you’re not an undercover shill like what we had during the funeral home threads!

      For some reason, Saturn reminds me of Carmax..in a good way. Also, I’d like to back you up on the fabric protection thing, as long as it’s under $300. For leather, it makes no sense because most modern car leather is a thin piece of carcass skin topped with gobs of vinyl or some other synthetic crap…and it’s rather hard to stain it (same reason most airlines are switching to uncooked pork rinds for seating surfaces). Also, getting leather patched is usually around $75, so not too bad.

      When it comes to cloth, however…even with Scotchguard, it’s easy for kids to stain (or adults). It’s also much harder to do a perfect patch job if a stain can’t be removed, so they could end up having to reupholster the whole thing…a royal pain considering colors change from dyelot to dye lot..and textures change yearly.

      Oh, and screw paint protection….

      A certain Bavarian dealership (Fields of Orlando) refused to do an overnight test drive so we walked out. Ended up buying the car from Fields of Daytona, which, amusingly enough, doesn’t have that limitation in their “insurance umbrella policy.”

  13. Moosehawk says:

    I can vouch for number 10. My friend didn’t follow this and a Malibu that only had about 13k miles on it and was only 2 years old ended up being a lemon. Before 30k miles, it had over $5000 worth of problems with it.

    She brought it back to the same dealer and all they offered her was a decent trade-in value for a Cobalt. Ew.

  14. GuinevereRucker says:

    I’m confused about the reason anyone would buy a new car from a dealership.

    I guess I view cars as simply a means of transportation and not as my identity, but some people do I guess. But still, buying a new car from a dealership just wastes thousands of dollars.

    Personally I think I will always buy used. You can still have a very nice car and not have to deal with the hassle of dealerships, leases, loans, warranties, fees, salesmen, etc.

    My wife and I paid cash for both our cars, have no loans, and she has a nice turbo GLX model Beetle which looks a lot more expensive than what we paid for it.

    • kelrod says:

      @GuinevereRucker: I’m with you. New cars depreciate way too quickly for my tastes. I bought a car from a dealership in 2000 with 10,000 miles on it (still new in my opinion) for a bit over $10K. Six years later I managed to sell it for $3K. Never again. Our two current vehicles were bought used. I got a heck of a deal on both of them (well below book value), and they both run like champs. You do have to be a bit careful about checking used vehicles throughly before buying, but I think it beats buying new any day.

    • mustardwater says:

      @GuinevereRucker: Somebody has got to purchase new vehicles in order for us to have used vehicles. Purchasing new isn’t a bad idea if you’re willing to wait for the rebates and incentives.

  15. The_Red_Monkey says:

    Falling in love with a model.

    I don’t know about you other folks but a car is not just to get from A to B for me. I like to drive and I like having a fun car so falling in love with a model is what its about. I bought my R/T Magnum that way and I am buying a Challenger because of it. I love those cars. Sure a Nissan Versa would be fine but what kind of fun would it be? I only get to live once so I am going to enjoy the hell out of it.

    I did focus on the payment. They tried to play four square with me but if you do your payment right then they are forced to price the car for you. At the time the KBB on my Magnum was 23k and I left for 17k. It was when gas was peaking and no one wanted a V8 muscle car except my crazy arse. Now that gas it back to under 3 bucks I am stoked.

    • Canino says:

      @The_Red_Monkey: I have to agree with you about “falling in love with a model”. The last several cars I’ve had, I researched and found the model I wanted, then went out and found the best deal on that model. I wanted a Maxima, not a “Maxima or something similar”. If one dealer can’t make a decent deal there are always other dealers.

      In fact, I would change this to “falling in love with a dealer” or “falling in love with a salesman”.

      • crouton976 says:

        @Canino: For the most part, I agree, at least in the sense of don’t buy a car that doesn’t fit your needs. My wife and I are restoring a Craftsman style home that we bought in June, and I have to haul a lot of material to and from the house. It wouldn’t make sense for me to be driving a mini cooper. I need a truck.

        Now, If I’m going to buy a truck, I’m going to get one that has an established reputation for reliability and hold it’s value, meaning I’m going to get a Toyota over a Ford.

        Fortunately for me, the Tacoma IS my favorite truck… =)

    • Shadowman615 says:

      @The_Red_Monkey: Agreed. It seems that many of those people who think of cars as nothing more than transportation tend to look down on those of us who are more enthusiastic about car models. There’s nothing wrong with knowing exactly what you want.

  16. strife1012 says:

    You need to add to this

    “Do not Finance from the Car Dealership!”

    I just bought a car on Friday, my Credit Union Gave me 4.6% Interest. All banks would only go as low as 6%, plus you can get the “Cash Deal”, they didn’t care cause I came back with a Cashiers Check.

    In and out with a Car financed in 2 hours. Insurance only went up $24 a month with Full Coverage for 2 Cars.

    • howie_in_az says:

      @strife1012: I believe Honda and Toyota both offer 0% financing. BMW offers 0.9% financing through BMW Financial Services. I very highly doubt your local bank will give you a 0% or 0.9% loan.

  17. Jevia says:

    Car dealerships can sometimes be better on financing. When I bought a certified used vehicle a couple months ago, the best my bank could give me was 6.75%, but Ford gave me 5.5% for the same term. If nothing else, it does pay to check.

    Also recommend buying at the end of the month, when the dealership is anxious to make its monthly quota. That helped me negotiate a lower price.

    Finally, if you do want to buy any extra warranties or GAP coverage, etc., initially say no. They’ll come back with a lower price.

    • robb9 says:

      @Jevia:

      I have to highly advise against waiting until the end of the month. 2 reasons…

      1. You are not going to get the car you want. That blue car you wanted won’t be in inventory and you have to settle for red because you waited.

      What about a dealer trade?

      Sure… Sign all this paper for a car I don’t have on my lot. I hope you are praying the car you have already purchased makes it to the dealer without a scratch.

      2. Some bonus cash ends at the middle of the month. I cannot carry that deal over for you. You might miss out on thousands of dollars.

  18. kittenfoo says:

    People are buying cars these days?

  19. LatherRinseRepeat says:

    Another one to add..

    Beware of the 4-square sheet. It’s just a lame way to trick you into buying a car based on monthly payments.

    When I bought my last car, the sales manager pulled out the 4-square sheet and started scribbling numbers. I kindly took that piece of paper, turned it over to the blank side, and wrote..

    - out the door price
    – my cash down payment
    – the remainder to finance
    – the finance term length, and the APR

    I brought my own financing, but wanted to see if the dealer could do better. They actually did offer slightly better financing so I decided to go with them.

    • RedwoodFlyer says:

      @LatherRinseRepeat:

      I would have filled the squares with the letters K C U F in backwards order, and then taped a switch or something from the brochure that had the word “OFF” on it if they tried to patronize me with the rhombus.

  20. RandaPanda says:

    I just purchased a used 2000 Nissan Altima GXE. Granted, I had to go to one of those buy here pay here places due to some credit issues that have yet to be resolved (Thank you, capital one), but needed a car to be able to pick up the step kids from Wichita. Blue Book value for the car was around 7 grand. Buy Here Pay Here places typically mark the price up (sometimes as much as double the Blue Book value!), but I was able to negotiate the price down from what they were asking at 9 Grand to 7500. Still high, but not bad, and it’s in excellent condition. Not had a single problem with it, and it had about 80k miles. Not bad considering it’s a 2000. I thought I did a rather decent job of looking into the car, doing some homework, and negotiating the price of the vehicle, as well as my monthly payments.

    • NikkiSweet says:

      @RandaPanda0283: I thought I was going to have a similar issue, but I managed to get a 4.75% rate through GMAC on a brand new Pontiac G5, and we’re leasing a brand new Pontiac G6 as well. I made the mistake of going to DriveTime (ripoff!) to check first, because I thought my credit was horrible, and they offered me 23.5% APR on a 4 year old Ford Focus that literally broke down the day after I test drove it.

  21. Daveinva says:

    I bought a Mazda back in 2001 under the S-Plan (dealer pricing) acquired through a club membership. Buying a car was actually a wonderful experience– I knew exactly what price I’d be paying, and it was a heck of a lot lower than sticker.

    My only negotiation was over the loan, and everyone involved was happier for it.

    Alas, that kind of model only works when you have a quality product and there are no competing incentives. “No haggle pricing” on an overpriced Saturn econobox isn’t my idea of a bargain.

  22. AD8BC says:

    Pay cash.

    Do your test drive five days before the last day of the month.

    Don’t buy the car the first time you test drive it. Go home. Sleep on it. Go to the bank. Get a cashiers check for your minimum offer, and some hundred dollar bills up to your maximum offer. Come back in two days, and make your offer.

    If they don’t want to play, then tell them that you will keep the cashiers check until the end of the month (3 more days) and then you will have it redeposited. They’ll call you.

  23. pecan 3.14159265 says:

    Run away if you don’t like the salesperson. Really, just leave if he/she just gives you a slimy feeling. You’ll never get a good deal from them if you can’t trust that they want to go halfway with you. We went to a dealership and the guy pounced on us, and kept pushing us to buy a car right then and there even though it was 10 am and we made it clear we were NOT going to buy right then. We left and the manager tried to talk us into staying. Desperation needs no customers.

  24. kpetree10 says:

    It amazes me when I talk to people about buying a luxury car (Lexus, Mercedes, Jaguar, etc), they ask me if they will be able to negotiate like with any other car. I am trying to get my parents to buy Lexuses but they think they won’t get a good deal because the dealer will not come down off the sticker price.

    These dealers will negotiate just like any other dealer would. The problem is that some of the people who buy these cars have so much money they don’t bother to negotiate.

    I have to totally agree with number 4, I was dealing on an ’03 Lexus ES300 certified and I kept telling them I couldn’t afford the payments but instead of lowering the sticker price they just stretched out the length of the payments, resulting in a higher interest rate.

    • pecan 3.14159265 says:

      @kpetree10: One thing about good salespeople is that they understand loyalty. My parents are longtime Mercedes drivers, and all of their Mercedes cars came from one dealership, and the salesperson they work with knows what to expect when they come in, and the mechanics know them by name. And they got great deals on all of their cars, far, far below sticker price and very near dealer invoice. It helps to build a relationship. They have had many Nissans as well, and one salesperson. All great deals, and again, the mechanics know them by name.

  25. pixiegirl1 says:

    I bought my first car 6 years ago and it was a total nightmare. I did a lot of online research and knew what I wanted I test drove a few and loved the one I picked out. The salesman that “helped” us got our info and went to his “manager” to see what he could do I was planing on financing with the dealer. After sitting in his office for like 10 minutes my dad & I walked out. The salesman and his manager literally chased us to our car to get us back. We told him that they wasted our time and that they obviously didn’t want our business we’ll take our money elsewhere ect. We decided to go in to see what kind of numbers they were going to give us. The salesman lied to us and said I could get 4.0% when we got the paper work it had 4.5% not a big diffrence but since we actually looked at the paperwork we were able to catch it. At that point we were in the financing office we left and walked out. I was bummed because it was the car I really wanted but in the end walking out really worked in our favor. A week later one of the managers we delt with called us and offered the car at $500 below invoice & at 4.0% financing. So I bought it pricewise I couldn’t match it.

    It really irked me that they think that if they let you sit for a long time that you’ll take whatever they offer you when they come back. The fact that they lied to us about the financing figures irked me too, i’m sure they do that all the time and get away with it too but some people actually look at the numbers infront of them.

  26. smurph0404 says:

    I would try to avoid dealerships entirely. They need to make thousands of dollars off the transaction, while when buying from a private person they are often happy to not loose too much. You have to be careful though. Always get a history report for the VIN, and take it to a mechanic to get checked out. Also make sure that it is an actual person selling their car, not a car salesman selling cars out of his driveway for extra income as many will do that. I just bought a car this way from an engineer who had been transferred to Japan and had to get rid of it quick. I saved some money and he got more than he would have at a dealership.

  27. YOXIM says:

    Here’s a great resource to check out. I learned a lot from reading this site, and it really helped out when we bought my dad’s new car earlier this year.

    [beatthecarsalesman.com]

  28. lowlight69 says:

    I just bought a new car on Sunday (10/26) I bought a Honda CR-V. couple of things that i did to get a great deal.

    research: know what the dealer invoice is, know what the destination fee is, know what MSRP is, know everything you can.

    my wife and i did a quick google search and found a nice excel sheet that let us play with the numbers for several hours before stepping foot in a dealership. (it lets you adjust price, interest rate, loan duration, trade in, extra payments, etc. great tool).

    once we knew what we could afford, total price, monthly payment, etc. then we decided what we needed. our list was simple: 4 doors, 4 cylinders, Honda. (i only buy Hondas) then we search the models that fit our budget and needs.

    from there a test drive, with kid and car seat. we drove a couple of models and then picked the one we want.

    from my research i knew that Honda sales were down 32% overall, and their foot traffic through the show room was down 50%. I wanted a 2008, since i knew they had those on the lot, and they had 2009s right next to them with more on the way. The dealers needed to get rid of their inventory. I was very flexible with color as well, my limitation there was i DIDN’T want the light blue.

    we calculated the cost of gas to drive to other dealerships not in our area, how much it would cost to get there, then bring back our new car and old car.

    with this we started calling dealerships in Seattle, Portland, Spokane. said we wanted to buy within 24 hours.

    knowing what invoice and destination were, we offered them invoice + destination only. a dealership in Spokane accepted. we then called one more local dealer, said this was our offer, if they could beat it we would be there in less than 24 hours. they did.

    we got a brand new 2008 CR-V with 8 miles on it for invoice + $300. bare in mind that Honda’s destination fee is $600. We also told them we did not want ANY accessories, they are always trying to sale you door protectors, and locking lug nuts for $100 a piece. We said having no accessories was a deal breaker for us. i did this knowing it would cost the dealership more in labor to have it all removed then it would to just let it go. sure enough they just gave us all the accessories that were on the car.

    so Sunday afternoon we drove home a new car for several thousand less than MSRP.

    side note: we went to one high pressure dealer in Bellevue, they tried all kinds of crap on us, so we just got up and left. i shock the sales manager’s hand and apologized for wasting his time. (this was Saturday) Sunday they called us at home asking if we were still in the market. :) got to tell them that we bought a car at a competing dealer for a price much better than they were offering. :) they weren’t very happy but, i wanted a good deal, and they didn’t want to give me one.

    play hard ball, the dealers already are so you better get with the game. walk out, it won’t hurt you, and it takes the power away from the dealer. :)

  29. ZalmanCamel says:

    Former car salesman here.

    Treat the sales rep with respect. If you can not deal with them in a civil manner, ask for another rep or go to another dealership. Do not lie or go back on your word.

    Remember, they sell cars every day. The rest of us do it once every few years. Understand that they will make some money. Do not make it about trying to make them “lose.” My happiest customers were the ones who overpaid, my most dissatisfied customers were the one who walked out with the best deals.

    Do not buy when you go for your first test drive. And be up front that you will not buy right then no matter what the numbers. When you show up ready to buy the next day(s), they will know you are serious.

    Be prepared to take a day doing the deal. Part of the technique is to wear you down. If they understand you are willing to wait it out longer than them, you have an edge.

    Know what you are willing to pay and accept on your trade before you walk in the door.

    Financing: get pre-approved but give the dealership a shot. I paid cash for my last two cars, but listened to what the f&y had to offer (I would have taken 0% and kept the money in the bank).

    Remember, you can leave whenever you wish, you do not have to buy the car. If they do not give you your keys back from your trade in, call the police…that will get their attention.

    Finally, try to have some fun with it!

    • Haltingpoint says:

      @ZalmanCamel: I advise others take your comment with HEAVY grains of salt…

      Let’s see…

      “Do not make it about trying to make them “lose.” My happiest customers were the ones who overpaid, my most dissatisfied customers were the one who walked out with the best deals.”

      Making it about me getting the best deal does not make it about them “losing” and to be honest, I could care less about them. What I care about is getting a good deal on my car. You have no way to vouch for the “happiness” of your customers. I personally would be a LOT happier if I got the best deal and would be infuriated if I overpaid (i’d rather not have the car than overpay though so it wouldn’t be an issue).

      “Be prepared to take a day doing the deal. Part of the technique is to wear you down. If they understand you are willing to wait it out longer than them, you have an edge.”

      Wrong again. Them making you wait is an attempt to make you plan their game by their rules. If you call them out on it early on and walk out/attempt to walk out citing them playing games, they will cut that shit out ASAP and if they persist, you do not want to do business with them.

      Its funny, many people buy a car every year by faxing in a request for a quote on a specific car to multiple dealers with a note that they will buy from the best offer. Something tells me these people don’t spend an entire day doing this and they get pretty good deals…

      I agree with your other points but the two I pointed out appear to be biased based on your previous employment history.

  30. mwshook says:

    When I bought my car, every salesperson started with “how much do you want to pay per month.” I would reply, “I don’t want to discuss monthly payments. I want to discuss the cost of the vehicle.” I was shocked, how this changed the tenor of the discussions (in my favor).

    I followed all the rules, looked up the info on the best deals, reliability, cost of ownership, etc.

    Now I’m the owner of a Hyundai Sonata. The absolute most boring car I’ve ever driven. Being responsible sucks.

  31. arl84 says:

    Wait… people really skip the test drive? Who does that? and why? Is there a legitimate reason for that besides just negligence?

    Oh, and @pockygt: the doc fees are complete BS. Any business worth their salt should be factoring these types of costs into their bottom line price – It would be like going to Mcdonald’s, ordering a double cheeseburger and seeing something like “sandwich assembly fee” on the receipt. They’re charging extra, and making it obvious, for something that they’re getting paid to do in the first place. Adding a “cost of doing business” fee like this implies greed and shady practices. At least to me it does.

  32. Corporate-Shill says:

    ” Typically, you’ll get more money by selling it, as long as you’re willing to put in the additional effort. “

    Yes, no, maybe. Sometimes it is just not worth the effort (time versus $ benefit), especially for the typical midsized family boring sedan.

  33. Anonymous says:

    I just bought a Toyota Sienna. The ONLY way to shop and avoid annoying dealers (I have purchased 4 new cars in the last 8 years and have had my share) – is:

    1) Start at Edmunds or KBB and get a starting price.
    2) Force all the dealer to work with you over email – saves you hours of negotiating, plus you can easly pit the dealer against each other.
    3) Once you get a price on the car, select the options you want (extended warranty, financing/rebates, etc.) and then get a total price.
    4) Get the Stock number (usually from the dealer’s website).

    The final offer (out the door price) we got was $1,000 less then any of the cometitors, and no one was willing to touch it.

    When you walk in the door with this info in hand, there is not much they can do to screw with you (other than declining any additional values).

    The only negotaiting I had to do was for my trade in, since you can’t expect a price without them looking it over, although I did force the dealer to give me a price range that they would offer.

    Also, we were in and out of the dealrship in 1.5 hours.

  34. Marshfield says:

    Get a quote on gap coverage from your insurance agent. We found it to be much less than what the dealer sells, and you can pay it month by month vs. all in a lump sum.

  35. Ein2015 says:

    Any hints for buying motorcycles? That should be my next vehicle purchase…

    • econobiker says:

      @Ein2015: Some of the items apply: cash is king or have financing already lined up. Go for ’08 models, end of month, dead of winter -a plus if snow is on the ground and you have a truck or towed trailer to take the cycle home with. While it is a little more difficult to play the fewer dealers against each other, sometimes your region may have multiple dealers for a brand in it so it pays to check. Figure on a little more travel if this is so.

      I cannot stress enough to especially check insurance costs prior to buying as sometimes different models may have different costs- a 750cc cruiser may cost less to insure than a 600cc sportbike. Your residence’s location will affect the price of insurance along with whether you have a garage or not if you need theft insurance. Your age and whether you have had prior rider training could also affect your rates.

      Most gas miserly ’08 cycles are already gone -some even with a significant markup. As gas prices are going down (for the upcoming election maybe???) this might be a time to score a cheap-on-gas ’09 model without the outrageous dealer markup. (I don’t know if Harley is still on the upswing in sales though I doubt it so any of their entry level Sportsters might be the easiest to try and cut a deal on.)

      Basically the “free” upgrade stuff you can get for a motorcycle is personal safety equipment (helmet, jacket, etc) or accessories like saddle bags or a windshield.

  36. PlayerX says:

    Not to mention buying a car off the lot; you don’t have to! If they don’t happen to have exactly the car you want, then ask if you can have one made for you. If the dealer doesn’t want to do that, just say you’ll take your tens of thousands of dollars elsewhere!

  37. legolasfan411 says:

    Ok, I have 2 things to say on this topic. First is about my purchase of a new car last year. I was interested in the Jeep Patriot and the Saturn Aura. To make the story short and not include too much detail, but I ended up going with the Jeep because of more room and better fuel economy. I ended up financing it, but I put a huge down payment on it, mainly because the interest rate was 10% because I had to have a cosigner due to my age. In the long run I really love the car, minus some problems that I’ve had with it, it has been very good, but to the main point.

    When I purchased it my uncle came with me and had printed out some models that dealers had in stock, we went to the closest 2 dealers, and before hand he wrote some numbers on other sheets of paper, usually $1000 or so less than the price they were asking on the car. The first dealer didn’t have the model in black, and of course didn’t want to offer close to $1000 off, so we showed them the other papers and said we went to these dealers and this is what they were offering. Immediately the salesperson went to his supervisor and they were willing to lower the price right away, because it wasn’t in the right color we went to the other dealer. They also didn’t have the car, but they would be able to get a black one from out of state, and still give us $1200 off which ever of the 3 similar models they could get. In the long run, just by using a small white lie, we managed to save a lot on the car, especially since it was a new car that year and had no rebates.

    Now, in response to the salesmen posting here. I don’t believe half of what your saying, not that your liars, but you work on commission, so of course you are going to try and get the consumer to buy stuff they don’t want or need. It works the same in retail, I have to sell warranties all the time at my job, I dontenjoy it, but if I don’t ill get fired. Some people need the warranty, some people don’t, but I helped my friend buy a car last year and we went to over 5 dealerships, all who had the worst salespeople ever, extremely arrogant and disrespectful. Car salesmen are indeed the worst people to deal with,not all of them, but most of them.