I’ve only ever bought one car from a dealership. They played me like an AM radio. I was a novice and they knew it.
At one point, we’d been kept waiting for 15 minutes while the salesman supposedly convinced his manager to allow us to buy the car for such an amazingly low price. I got impatient and walked outside, onto the lot. Through a window I could see into the manager’s office. Our salesman and a couple more who looked just like him, jewelry and white Oxfords and ties, were sitting around drinking coffee and telling jokes and obviously not poring over our deal. Our salesman saw me, gulped, grab his paperwork and ran out to catch me. He thought I was leaving, and if I had it to do over, I would have kept moving toward my car. Every step would have been worth $250.
I’m not used to playing games when I don’t know the rules. Next time I buy a new car, I’ll be prepared, for I’ve just read the “cheats” guide to the car-sales industry.
Edmunds.com hired a journalist to get a job at a dealership and write about the dirty tricks employed therein. You’ve inferred many of these, but seeing them in print will likely still surprise you.
Well worth your lunch hour: Confessions of a Car Salesman