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Discussion Starter #3
Ok here goes....


I know there will be haters so sorry guys who are still selling cars! Hate the internet, not me.

Lesson One: Bringing together your Weapons

The first thing you should do is realize that cars are a demand-type item. First in line will pay the most. Generally, when a new car comes out, there is a gentleman's agreement among the dealerships. The higher-end marques anyway (ie not Ford). They have pretty much decided to "hold the line" when it comes to negotiating prices. That's why many of you shouldn't be upset with some dealers "not wanting to deal" b/k that is what the General Manager has dictated. Best plan: wait a little while...few months at least after a new car has been introduced. You will see some places faltering on holding the line....that's why i'm not surprised to see that IS300 go for 31k out the door recently (whose car was that?). That seems about right for this stage in the game b/k i remember seeing ES300's in 92' going out the door for about the MSRP. Early on, the most you can expect is getting a few freebies...wheelocks, cargo net...the cheap stuff. But you will still pay MSRP. Why? b/k they can get it from the next guy. They can be polite about it however. Reading about that guy who flat-out said "you don't look like a real-buyer" is unexcusable. Nobody sould be treated that way (at lexus, sure for Ford...espcially if they've made an appointment. If that happens...take off. Back to the lesson.... So you've realized the best time to go...after a few months at least. Now, to narrow down the specific time of the month. Well, that would be a giveaway wouldn't it???
Many of you have always heard that the best time is the "end of the month" right? Well, let me spell it out for you. It isn't the end of the month per se...its the 30th. Period. The 30th. Not the 29th. Not the 31st. Its the 30th. The selling cycle for ALL dealerships ends the 30th of the month. You must remeber that all the dealerships are competeing with each other for incentives and bonuses from the Mother Manufacturer (aka Honda, Toyota, Ford etc). That's why some dealerships can afford to do things with prices that others won't touch. They're making money doing volumve (moving metal as i used to call it) not in the money made per vehicle. So, find the volume dealership in your area and go on the 30th. To be continued.....
 

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I remember hearing about taking advantage of the dealer holdback when buying a car, but I don't remember what that was exactly. It was something like if you buy the car at a certain time before the dealer starts spending the holdback, they get to keep the money. <shrug>
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Regarding holdback, Edmunds.com has a really good definition of terms and terminology. I learned stuff I didn't know....

Yes, the best time is Winter. Specifically oct-november thru january (you wouldn't know it here in california really)
Reason: ppl are doing other things and have money and time problems with the holidays coming. Plus, it's raining. Errr, snowing in some places...

Probably theeeee best time in the whole freaking year is Dec 30th. Although if you need a car, you need a car....
 

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Yup yup, very true.

Last year I bought my Accord on the 30th of December. Got a real good deal, below invoice price, and all the accessories I wanted.

I'm doing the same this year with the IS300, I'm planning to go towards the end of the day when they are trying to get their last sales of the day in.

Also a side note. If you are going to do this, bring some cash with you for a deposit. Just in case they don't have the car that you want in stock, you still can sign the paper work and guarantee your price.
 

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Excellent post!!
Hmmmm... I don't think I'll be able to do it by Dec. 30th, but how about January 30th? If I continue busting my ass the way that I am, I think it's a realistic goal.


Keep the tips coming...

Scott.
 

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Also, start off by telling them that you have researched the prices on the internet, and you know the dealer costs for everything. That way they may limit the BS on pricing, and just get down to a discussion of how much profit you are willing to give the dealership.

They are likely to fight to keep that "holdback". Even if you pre-pay in full for the car before it is ordered they may say that holdback is needed to fund their dealer buyback program (to buy flakey cars back from unsatisfied customers) in those cases where a Lemon law doesn't apply.

Also, my dealer told me that they paid $6million for their Lexus franchise, so they ARE EXPECTING to make a good profit on the sales of their cars. If this were a Toyota IS300 we might have more room to bargain, but Lexus dealership owners paid big bucks to be a "Premiere brand vendor" so they expect to make some real profits.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Part II - Fine tuning your weapons

Where we last left off, i was suggesting waiting till the end of the month as a possible weapon. Well, here's another one (before i lose my T-1 connection for a month). Ok, so you've decided to buy. First thing you do beside deciding to go on the thirtieth of the month is scan the newspapers. I don't mean the sports section. I mean the classifieds. Go thru the section were they list used cars for sale and find the lexus area. Look for local dealers advertising a "set price" for new cars. Now go thru the new car section were they list only big display ads for car dealerships. Same thing - scan and pan looking for advertised pricing. Clip these out and put them aside. Now, granted that most lexus dealerships don't DO alot of advertising (here in LA we mostly get Longo Lexus advertising pre-owned terms) but sometimes you might find something interesting (espcially now that it's the holidays). They want to push deals. This is something you'll want to pull out after discussing the terms of the deal...kinda like find their best price then...BAM...show them the best price you found in the newspaper. This really works with honda/toyota/acura...always lots of advertising deals. You want to find the best price and then go to the place that says "we will beat any price". One caution. You Must be sure the model numbers match up for the car your talking about. For example, when i was doing acuras a "415" meant an intergra with a stick and cloth and a "446" meant an integra with leather and an automatic (i might be wrong on the exact numbers....its been awhile). These numbers are almost always printed at the bottom of the ad

In terms of actually barganing with the dealers, many times people think that the dealership will ALways want the customer to pay cash out-the-door today and not finance. This is incorrect. The dealership actually wants you to finance your car becuase this is another source of revenue for the dealership to make money on. Not really a whole lot, but a good enough percent. I LOVED getting people to finance......always made my day. (well, the one's with good credit anyway - comebacks SUCK). To be continued....
Have a nice holiday!
 

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You know how I bought my car? I put my American Express Gold card on the desk and said, "let's deal". I got my car 2 weeks later. Payed sticker, had them throw in a bunch of accessories(wheel locks, cd changer, mats..That's all I wanted), and they offered to give me more for my trade in because they couldn't sell it for less than sticker(I bought the car when it was hot).
Back in the days, when I was looking to get a new car, I went to a local dealer. The worse thing you get is an a$$hole sales rep who looks you down and doesn't want to give you info. Back in '97 when the Prelude came out, I was looking to get rid of my '87 accord and get a 'lude. All I wanted was a lease estimate. The rep just kept repeating the need for credit info.. I asked for a range, something, ANYTHING to get an idea of how much it would cost, after an hour, I got nothing but aggravation.. Funny thing was that this dealer was a dealership of many different brands, and Mazda was there..He had told me to get a Millenia and made up a story about how I was supposed to get one...Guess what? I got a Millenia S from an auction a week later.. went to that same dealer to have them check it out and make sure everything was good..went to that rep, rubbed it in his face..Idiot. Guess what? After the Millenia, I had gotten my TL, and went right back to him and rubbed some more(they sell Acura there too, but I got it from a diff. dealership). All I have to say, is don't judge a book by it's cover.
Ed

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1999 TL Non/Nav, Satin Silver/Ebony, Comptech Springs,Comptech Exhaust, Inspire tails, Air filter, Guy Smiley as my Co-driver...many many more..
1999 Miata Touring, RB springs, Koni adjustables, RB intake, RB roll bar, BBS RV 16x7 on 225/40/16 Sp9000's, Kickin' sound system, soon to have headers and BSP dual exhaust..Click here to see
 

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Originally posted by meta4:
Just a friendly reminder, the 30th is approaching. Anyone with more suggestions?
Once you have two dealers down to their lowest price. Force them to compete for your business. Will they throw in a couple of free oil changes, etc? There's one dealer in Chicago that every Saturday gives free Car Washes and free Breakfast Buffets to ALL Lexus customers. Pretty nice perk.

Another suggestion, if you want to cut to the chase. Give as many dealers as you can an envelope and tell them you'll be back at the end of the week to open up thier lowest price quote. Have them put it in the envelope and tell them you're going with the lowest price. Period. If they say something like "we don't want to loose your business over a few hundred bucks" Simply say "Then don't" It's worked tremendously for a couple buddies.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I'm happy today. My brother followed my advice and the advice of fellow posters here yesterday (the 30th) and got the Honda Accord he wanted $600 under invoice.
He even got the a "J" vin...an actual japanese-built accord. They've only imported a few recently. He even got 2.9 financing from american honda. Cool huh?


Did anybody else or anybody you know "make out" yesterday?

Happy New Year!
 

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Virtually all the IS owners posting on this forum paid more for their cars than those who can wait (when demand slows to meet supply) because we "had to be first."
The car business has always been about supply and demand. That's why a PT Cruiser costs $2k over sticker in L.A., but not for much longer - some dealers are starting to deal as the supply catches up with the demand. The same pattern happened with the New Beetle.
And in a few months you'll be able to deal for a Lexus IS300, too.
I have a very good friend who owns several auto dealerships. He has always told me car dealers make their money in the back of the store - the service department - not in new car sales. It's no different with Lexus.
And, if a dealer ever starts crying about how much he paid Lexus for his franchise and that's why his profit margins are a little high, get back in your car and drive up the road to the next Lexus dealer...that first dealer is full of it.
 

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hmm...i heard another thing to consider is to buy your car on a rainy day or something. Then the sales-person would be more willing to bargin with you and sell a car if their aren't many ppl around, cuz people don't usually want to go car shopping on days when its bad weather.
 

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I remember when I bought a car for my mom on 1996, I get all the price (invoice, and sticker + option pirces and rebate) and then go to the dealer. I also bring along with a Calculator.

After I test drove the car and asked all kind of questions, then I mentioned that I got some info from the net, and then the salesman ask me where I got the info .. I just told him I got it from the net. Then he said why don't I just show you the invoice. He left and came out with the invoice. When I looked at the invoice, and the price on the invoice were same as the number on my paper excepted that there was a co-advertisiment fee which is about $1XX to $2XX (I forgot the excact number).

The salesman ask me how much do you think is fair, then I told that 3% above what your cost was. After that he left me alone since I told him I need to do some calculations.

What I did was I add all the Dealer invoice cost + the options cost + the Advertising fee + destinations charge - rebate - dealer hold back. And that I consider the real cost for that car. Then I add 3% and gave the number to the salesman.

The salesman came back and told me that the sales manager want to know how I got that number. I explained to him and he refuse to deduct the dealer hold back ... At last I told him how about I paid half of the dealer hold back? And he said .... OK! And that was it .. I was in the dealership for about less than 2 hours and everything was done.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Interlude: My ally, my enemy

i wouldn't necessarily agree that friends and families of workers automatically get good deals. That is shooting yourself in the foot if you blindly believe that without doing your research. For the Mitsubishi Galant, $200 under invoice is a fair deal but not the deal that $600 under invoice is for a Honda Accord. It really depends on what your buying and how you work it....

When i was an Acura Dealer, one philosophy that i encountered was my General Manager's explantion why some dealers, especially non-high-end marques (ie NOT lexus, MB), hire just about anybody off the street. Basically, those dealers will hire anybody off the street, even if that person has NO potential to sell b/k they not only hire the individual, they hire that persons' network of friends, family and old co-workeres.

A hypothetical example....

You have unemployed "Ed" who starts working for Chevy. Being the bumbling idiot he is (and given the nature of the car business) he sells 7 cars the two months he was working there. He was a wash-out. However if you broke those 7 cars sales down into who bought them...well here it is:

3 to his immediate family (uncle Jeb, uncle Bob and his brother John)

2 to good friends

2 to friends of friends

all these people were under the understanding that they would get a deal. Did they....we'll maybe. But what really happened was that the dealership was paying this guy (essentially) minimum wage to steer 7 people who bought 7 cars from their lot. The dealership made money on the financing, made money on the deal and put 7 cars toward their incentive volume from the mother manufacturer. Not only that, the dealership has the potential to have 7 service-relationships with 7 new owners, 7 new patrons who are probably going to go to that dealership for service (per warranty tom-foolery) for AT LEAST 3 years to come to do oil changes, adjustments, tuneups...you name it.

At the same time, there is a limit as to just what the dealership will do for the employee. Talking hi-marque, my deal as an Acura dealer was $100 over invoice on any Acura (except the 3.2 TL at the time). However, that was much WORSE than i could've gotten had i did the newspaper routine. At the time 15.9k dollar integras were growing on trees over in the volume dealer. I don't remember the exact differential but it was like 1700 dollars for the same car. Big lump of cash.

So you see its very-very-very relative and its all about PERCEPTION. You get a good deal if YOU THINK your getting a good deal.
So my advice....be careful and do the research before you let your friend-dealer, friend-dealership worker convince you that he can "get you a good deal".
 
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