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Ford Flex Prices Paid and Buying Experience

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Comments

  • madlockmadlock Posts: 39
    I take possession tomorrow of my new, Sterling Grey Limited with AWD and Light Stone interior.

    Finding this bugger was a long, arduous process. It seems that virtually every dealer that received one with the minimum feature compliment I wanted immediately made it an owner demo. With as many as 16K miles on, I was shocked at how little all but one were willing to offer in consideration for the mileage already on the odometer. I thought I had closed on one with 11K when the dealer agreed to cede $3,500 from invoice and include a 4/48 PremiumCare warranty, but it was sold out from under me between Saturday afternoon and Monday noon.

    They then offered to locate one for invoice +$500. Instead, I gave myself an evening of uber-searching through dealer inventories until I found one within 150 miles. Miracle of miracles, it wasn't even a demo. It has a couple extra options, but the included towing package (a rarity with this combination) meant saving about $500 from having to have it installed later. At the end of the day, I probably spent about $1,500 more than my ideal, but you have to just take a leap at some point.

    The sticker price was $45,190 and included:

    Two-tone roof
    Vista roof
    Navigation
    Towing Package
    40/40 2nd Row
    2nd Row Console
    Floor Mats
    PowerCode Remote

    (Extras that I wouldn't have ideally ordered)

    Refrigerator
    Family Overhead DVD

    Dealer Invoice: $41,984 (less $3,000 agreed to before I discovered X-Plan eligibility)
    Final Price: $38,984

    X-Plan Pricing: $41,891 (less $3,250 Cash Back and X-Plan incentive)
    Final Price: $38,641

    I obviously went for the X-Plan pricing (and the dealer was good enough to honor it despite having already signed a purchase order based on an "at invoice" purchase)

    I also added a 7/100,00 PremiumCare warranty with $0 deductible which the dealer offered at a VERY reasonable price after I showed that other dealers were advertising tremendous prices about $600 below their first offer.
  • kirkmomkirkmom Posts: 2
    What a great price! We're shopping for a Flex now too (in CA) - comparing the Acadia/Traverse/Outlook vs. Flex. Like the styling of the Flex - but roominess of the other.

    QUESTION: What's "X-Plan pricing"?
    Sounds like you really did your homework and got a great deal.

    ALSO: What's the cost of the 7/100,00 Premium Care?

    Thanks!
  • madlockmadlock Posts: 39
    Though I'm obviously biased and my buying decision speaks for itself, I'd be careful when comparing the cargo volume of the vehicles based upon published dimensional capacities alone. I found that much of the additional volume the GM interiors manage is the result of a higher relative roof line and a "bowing" of the sides which doesn't necessarily yield any more usable space. While GM publishes an astonishing 30 cu ft more cargo space, I had a hard time engineering circumstances that would have provided me with any more than a marginal increase in practical hauling.

    Furthermore, if it's passenger space you're interested in, while the Lambdas' 3rd rows have eked out a third place from its additional 7-8" of shoulder room and are marginally more "conventional" from a passenger perspective, you're going to have to search far and wide to find cabin space or seat comfort that matches what first and second row Flex passengers enjoy. They're luxurious chiropractic marvels of engineering. Also, be sure to compare the environmental and entertainment controls the two provide for the second row. Flex passengers get their own little climate-controlled home theaters.

    If you want a great "ceiling" price list for ESP, you should visit www.fordwarrantys.com. Because you can buy an ESP from ANY dealer without regard for where you bought your vehicle, there's absolutely no advantage to buying it from your vehicle-sale dealer unless you want to finance the warranty too; and it gives you the leverage of being foolish for paying any more than you can buy it for elsewhere while putting business on the table that's there for the taking.

    The warranty price varies by state, so you should plug-in your own variables to the link I provided. However, you should also negotiate them to include first-day rental which entitles you to a rental vehicle upon dropping-off your covered vehicle for service regardless of the type of service or length. You never have to worry about getting to and from the dealer or having to miss work. It's only a few dollars, but its benefit can be invaluable. It also frees you from the threat of being "inconvenienced" into letting any nagging or tough to recreate issues slide, as you always have the option of just dropping-off your vehicle and the rental is on them/Ford. Ballpark maximums for a 7/100 CA warranty is $1,500 with $100 deductible and $1,950 with no deductible.

    X-Plan pricing is a fixed-price scheme offered to certain Ford affiliates and business partners. It's a "friends and family" program once-removed. If you don't qualify through your employer or other professional organization (buying club, credit union, etc.), just go and buy yourself a share of Ford stock as all shareholders qualify. There's a protocol that includes obtaining an X-Plan code and PIN, but Ford will provide them to you; and there's more available by Googling "X-Plan" than I could ever hope to know or share. From my comparisons, Flex X-Plan prices are, for all intents and purposes, $100 below dealer invoice and may provide further rebates and incentives that don't come out of the dealer's pocket so they remain on the table available for further bargaining if you time your visit to fall at the end of the month/quarter.

    Best of luck.
  • fippsfipps Posts: 2
    I'm looking to purchase a Flex Limited (w/ Vista Roof, 40/40 autofold and two-tone roof).

    Here's what the best that I've been offered so far:

    MSRP: $38,165
    Dealer Invoice: $35,832
    X-Plan Price: $35,764
    Incentives ($3,000, plus $1,000 Ford Motor Credit): $4,000
    No Dealer fees (per X-Plan).


    I've had a difficult time getting any dealer to offer me anything below the X-Plan price. Would it be better to not mention X-Plan to see if they offer something better? Any insight anyone could share would be appreciated.

    Thank you!
  • madlockmadlock Posts: 39
    Well, with X-Plan pricing, you at least know the maximum you should consider paying. You may also qualify for an additional $250.00 in rebates if Ford offers them in your area under the X-Plan.

    On that particular vehicle, there's about $1,200 in holdback to the dealer, so you've got that much negotiating room until you hit the theoretical best conceivable deal. However, those usually only occur when you find the combination of a motivated dealer at the end of a sales period and they're willing to let the vehicle go for the sake of "moving a unit".

    You may also consider purchasing an ESP from them, using the guide at www.fordwarrantys.com as a guide to your maximum there too. There are incentives for dealers that make selling warranties worthwhile for them, and your interest in purchasing one may compel a dealer to reduce the sale price further if they otherwise might not. In this day and age, it should take a hard soul to not allow a dealer any profit whatsoever, so you have to decide for yourself what a reasonable profit might be, keeping in mind that both Ford and its dealers are going to be subject to competing with manufacturer's who didn't have the forbearance to make the kind of tough choices and investments Ford did, who also (thanks to our government) don't have to trouble themselves with paying them back either. This may be a time when driving the dealer as close to the wall as possible may have unintended consequences down the road. And no, one purchase won't make the difference; but, like choosing to vote, if nobody chooses to exercise his right first as an individual, there's never a chance of positively influencing the outcome.

    You may be able to compel them to cede another $500 off of their otherwise-best deal with a commitment to a "then and there" purchase, checkbook in hand which caters to both parties' needs and interests. You can also go the "other way" of feigning interest in waiting for a 2010 model, or custom ordering one from a dealer who will give you the same terms on a 2010 configured exactly as you want, including the features that aren't available on the 2009. Some people are reporting deals closer to the "dealer net"; but without special circumstances, I suspect they might be for particular vehicles the dealership might suspect to be harder to move. At the end of the day, you're going to have to weigh how much of that difference is worth your continued time and effort and, of course, getting the specific vehicle you want.

    Best of luck!
  • fippsfipps Posts: 2
    Thanks, Madlock.

    About your point regarding the 2010 models. Do you have any idea what the price on those will be? Also, what are some of the options coming out on the 2010 model that '09 models don't have?

    Thanks!
  • madlockmadlock Posts: 39
    You're welcome.

    Nothing in particular, but I think it might be reasonable to expect any price changes would be in the customer's favor.

    As for features, there will be an option for the 3.5L Eco Boost engine, and advance photos seem to indicate the 2010 may be equipped for the sensors that make possible Parking Assist, BLIS, and/or Adaptive Cruise. Those are features that will be available in the MKT, so it's not entirely unreasonable to suspect they'll be part of the 2010. BLIS would likely be included with the Limited and maybe the SEL, but the other's would probably be options similarly priced to the 2010 Taurus and MKT. At least that's my know-nothing best guess. It could sure use a telescopic steering column, but I have no idea if that's in the works or not.

    It would be nice if the hardware and smarts for those electronic features could be up-fitted to the 2009. I sure plan to find out eventually.
  • madlockmadlock Posts: 39
    Here are some quick notes that may be useful to those shopping for a new Flex.

    To determine the vehicle's "dealer invoice" price, multiply the base price by 92.5% and any options by 85%. Add $700 (or $775 depending upon the date of manufacture) in Destination Charges and $700 for the dealer's regional marketing and advertising fee, and you've nailed "invoice" within a few dollars for any vehicle on the lot without having to resort to the web and any of the many available vehicle cost calculators.

    Dealer "holdback" (or the amount the dealer receives from Ford after selling the vehicle" is 3.5% of MSRP. If you purchased a $40,000 vehicle "at invoice", an additional $1,400 of "haggling room" exists to the point beyond which the dealer would be selling the vehicle at a loss.

    While it's not unheard, buying a vehicle at "dealer net", is the holy grail haggling and highly unlikely unless you happen to find a dealer that's cash tight with excess aging inventory or it happens to be near the end of an incentivized sales period "moving a unit" may mean more to the dealer than cash profit.

    Ford offers several fixed-price "plans" for eligible customers. "X-Plan" is a discounted price for eligible employees of Ford business affiliates (or Ford shareholders) that is 93% of (or a 7% discount from) MSRP. For all but a very few vehicle combinations, the X-Plan price is approximately $100 below "invoice"; and because it's so easily qualified for, it should be the maximum any buyer should consider paying as the dealer simply plugs in the X-Plan price and that's that.

    A and Z-Plan pricing is for Ford employees, families, and retirees and constitutes an 11% discount from (or 89% of) the sticker price. (So start chatting up that attractive parts clerk) While relatively few people qualify for either of these, it's also the price that's offered during "employee pricing" promotions. It pretty-much equates to buying the vehicle at the "dealer net", plus .5%, a tremendous deal by anyone's standards if you can get it.

    Rebates and incentives are also tremendously important, especially when they're as large as Ford has been offering for the Flex. Most people are eligible for at least $3,000 in customer cash OR 0% APR financing, but some states (Michigan) are offering as much as $4,500 AND 0% financing through Ford (to qualified buyers). The key is knowing which rebates and incentives apply to the location where the vehicle will first be registered.

    In addition to "customer cash back" rebates, Ford also offers certain "affinity" rebates to members of particular organizations like military service members, recent graduates, and left-handed cocker spaniel breeders. Ford also offers "Conquer" rebates for those trading vehicles of a certain make and/or vintage.

    Finally, each "Plan" type can have its own additional incentives. For example, X-Plan buyers in PA are eligible for an additional $250 in cash back. These too vary from state to state, and it's essential to know which, if any, are being offered where the vehicle will be registered to ensure you know the best possible price you qualify to obtain.

    ESP warranties can also be easily negotiated. Because dealer's don't have to keep them in inventory or outlay money to stock them, warranties can be a tremendous profit center for dealers. Also, because you can buy a Ford ESP warranty from any dealer, regardless of where you purchased your vehicle, they're much easier to negotiate, even though they don't have a traditional window sticker to look at to know what the "maximum" should be.

    Fortunately, some dealers have taken to offering ESP warranties for sale on the internet, and they're even publishing their prices. Unlike the "we'll beat any other offer" game where no dealer will be willing to actually put their deal in writing, you can walk right in to the F&I office and lay out the price you can pay to buy the warranty elsewhere and give him a chance to beat it. Even the strictest dealers would be foolish to let the opportunity pass, as they know they've got the option of making a few extra dollars or not. Incredibly, some won't; but that's just as fine, unless you want to finance the cost of your warranty too. You can just go to another dealer who is willing to make the few dollars the other dealer doesn't want.

    A great place to obtain warranty prices is www.fordwarrantys.com. Of course, you could just decide to buy from them, as they've been good enough to go out on the limb of committing themselves to offering a very fair and reasonable price. Even if your vehicle dealer won't beat the warranty price, you can negotiate VERY worthwhile extras like a first-day rental option if they'll only match the competitor's offer. Because you can buy a warranty from any dealer, and redeem any unused portion of the ESP at any point, there's really no disadvantage to locking in the best deal when you know you've found it, or holding-off until you're sure you have.

    Of course, there are a thousand other useful and helpful hints and tips to buying a car, but these are what I've discovered in my long search for a Flex; and they managed to serve me pretty well. I hope they prove just as useful to someone else; and, of course, your mileage may vary. :)

    Happy Flexing.
  • idmdidmd Posts: 23
    Currently looking at an AWD '09 Flex Limited in Silver w/o two tone roof. Options include: 1) Vista Moonroof; 2) Family Entertainment DVD; 3) 6-passenger; 4) Nav; and 5) Remote start.

    I'm going through USAA and they give me quote of $37,500.00 with the $3000 incentive program. MSRP on the car is $43,345.00 and invoice is $40,443.00. Sales tax in CT is 6% or ~ $2400.00 and there are also the other assortment of fees.

    This is a cash transaction and I'm thinking of saying if we can do it for $40K or less (with all fees and taxes included) we have a deal.

    What does everyone think about that deal - good or do you think I could leverage the cash transaction part for a bit more off the price?
  • madlockmadlock Posts: 39
    If you intend to purchase the vehicle through USAA or any other fixed-price buying plan, negotiating is pretty-much irrelevant, as that's the purpose of the plans to begin with. Regardless of what the taxes and fees happen to be, the USAA price seems to be invoice plus $50.

    The "cash" portion of the transaction means nothing. If anything, it would serve to make the proposition less attractive to the dealer given that they profit from the financing they offer too. And without knowing what the "assortment of other fees" happen to be, it's impossible to know what kind of deal you're proposing.
  • idmdidmd Posts: 23
    Thanks for the reply. The other assorted fees are tag, title, etc and add up to maybe a few hundred. The biggy being the tax @ ~$2400. To me the 40K seems fair. It is essentially the USAA quote +$2500 to cover tax, tag, etc. If they said it was going to be $40100.00 that's not a deal breaker. I just want to be in the ball park.

    Also, I'd imagine in today's economic climate the concept of getting all your money upfront may play a bigger part than in the past especially as 2010 are getting to ready to roll out and these car companies need cash now to stay afloat. They may make more on dealer financing but they still have to wait for that money to come in.
  • mchappellmchappell Posts: 52
    Agree with the previous poster - paying cash is not going to motivate them to make a better deal. When you finance, the bank will pay the dealer in relatively short order, say 30 days. Plus, they get a commission/portion of the APR. You say the 'car companies need cash' - you're not dealing with the car company, you're dealing with the dealer. They/their bank have already paid the 'car company' for the car you're purchasing.

    I always line up my own financing before purchase, but I always give the dealer a chance to meet/beat the rate, as I know that financing is a profit center for them.

    Mark
  • dano72dano72 Posts: 5
    I just purchased my 09 Flex Lmtd AWD last week. My financing experience reflects the comments of madlock. The size of my cash down payment (over 30%)had almost no effect on the dealership. In fact when I told them I was planning on financing thru my credit union they practically threw what I would call a 'hissy fit'. In fact I nearly walked away from the deal. In the end cooler heads prevailed and the deal was saved. I'm not writing this to scare you away from Ford or the Flex. I did a lot of research before I purchased this vehicle and I think this is a great product. However I am writing this so you and others can use my experience to your benefit. I would leave the financing discussions until the very end of your deal making if possible. They may ask how you intend to finance but you should provide a more generalized statement, in my opinion.

    In the end my Flex had an MSRP of $41K, less $4500 in rebates and approx. $2K redux due to Xplan pricing. I ended up with an OTD price of $36K for a Limited AWD, Panoramic, Two tone roof, rubber mats, and DVD.

    So far I am loving this car. Good luck ...dano
  • kirkmomkirkmom Posts: 2
    Hey Dano and whomever else wants to reply...

    Quick questions (as you've bought what we want almost to a "T")
    1. Why did you finance through your credit union if Ford offers 0% financing?
    2. How did you get the x-plan pricing? Are you a share holder or Ford employee (or friend/family member is?) I'm trying to get my hands on a PIN # so we qualify for that. Don't know if just buying a share of stock will qualify me - and if so - how long do I have to wait to get my PIN # from Ford if that's protocol? (And is one share enough to qualify me? And if so - why doesn't everyone go out and buy one before buying a Ford?) Sorry - went off on a tangent of questions...

    Thanks!
  • dano72dano72 Posts: 5
    Hello Kirkmom,

    I decided to take the cash rebates of $4500 instead of taking the 0%, it's an either or decision. I ended up financing thru the dealer and not thru my credit union after we renogtiated my trade-in.

    I was eligible for x-plan pricing thru my employer. I was able to get a PIN and I took that to the dealer. However, they still requested my W-2 to prove employment.

    Unfortunately, I am not sure if owning shares of Ford stock makes you eligible. I think I did read that either here or in another forum. However I don't recall the details. Hopefully someone else chimes in for you and provides some info on getting X plan.

    Good luck and I hope you get a great deal on the Flex! Dano
  • madlockmadlock Posts: 39
    Yes, buying a single share of Ford stock qualifies you for X-Plan pricing. While most dealers will just as quickly negotiate down to that point (invariably invoice less ~100), but you cannot qualify for any further incentives which are often paired with X-Plan purchases without a PIN.

    Ford has a shareholder relations number you can call especially for issuing X-Plan PINs. The contact number is widely available via Google.

    WRT financing, one might as well finance where the best rate is offered, but even with recent "loosening", the credit market isn't what it once was; and walking into a dealer "locked and loaded" wise counsel for anyone. As most sales regions allow either/or in terms of cash or 0%, there's certainly no incentive to put-off arranging for financing in advance, especially if someone is going to be financing a substantial portion of an expensive vehicle.

    Though we could have paid cash for the car, there were several reasons why we chose to not do so. Firstly, with such low interest rates and generally low availability of credit in the marketplace, to not use it when offered may lead to a future scenario when it's wanted and not available. Even at the additional cost, guaranteed access to funding and capital preservation certainly makes financing worthwhile, even at nominal interest rates,

    Second, as Ford Advantage was the only reason why we chose to buy a vehicle at this time contrary to the general economic environment, partaking requires financing. We simply structured the loan term to create payments equal to the maximum coverage. Given the uncertainty of the times, I have absolutely no qualms about both securing funds and insuring against loss on a fee-for-service basis as I would have during a "normal" economic climate.

    The matter of dealer attitude toward financing shouldn't be any mystery. With the exception of establishing that a buyer is capable of and qualified to purchase the vehicle in question, there is absolutely no positive connotation to the amount of "cash down" a buyer is prepared to place as there was once upon a time when individual dealers and banks worked more closely together and their customers' creditworthiness actually impacted that dealer's access to future financing, and the dealer played a meaningful part in assessing creditworthiness beyond just submitting computerized applications as they do today.

    Nowadays, finaning has become such a "blind" process with all of the credit-making decisions made between the lending institutions and the credit reporting agencies, it is has become no more integral to they buying process than a "yes" or "no" to people who haven't arranged for it in advance. What has changed most, however, is that financing has become like every other part of the car buying process, a potential profit center; and many dealers place great pressure upon their sales associates to generate profits from every area including the vehicle, warranty, and financing. Such is the reason why denying the dealer an opportunity to lend is denying them the chance at additional profit.

    And so much more the reason why each aspect of the transaction should be negotiated independently, without the presumption of any other. It should begin with determining the purchase price of the vehicle itself, and only then should any discussion of any extended warranty or service plan. Once that total is established, the discussion can then turn to trade-in value, and the buyer can be confident that each part of the transaction is determined fairly, and without any one being permitted to obscure another. Then, and only then, should financing be discussed, if necessary. And it doesn't always make sense to let the dealer make a "pitch", unless he can guarantee you a better rate in advance as it could create another inquiry upon your credit report which can have a negative impact upon your credit score.

    In these days of no secrets, when customers are armed with every conceivable fact and figure, the era of high-margin sales are largely over. Dealers are having to depend upon much narrower margins from broader sources, which is why matters like warranties and financing can be so important to some dealers. From a banking perspective, a third-party financed deal is no different to the dealer than a cash transaction. Of course, no dealer should behave negatively if a customer doesn't require financing; unless he expects you to finance solely for his benefit. And if that's the case, the dealer should be just as eager to pay your interest too. :)
  • I chose the Ford Flex mainly because the dealer was the most reasonable, freindly, and not at all bullish or pushy. I was close to getting a Honda Pilot and Toyota Highlander, but since they were either pushy, bullish, or simply unrealistic, I walked back to Ford.

    I bought the 09 Flex AWD with DVD, Convienience and LIghting Package, Tow Package, two-tone roof, roof rails. We paid $31700 after $4500 in rebates (took financing over 0% because the APR was low due to excellent credit and they offered more rebates). I guess the dealer will make up some profit in the APR because there didn't seem to be much left in the Flex.

    I have to say Ford was great in every respect. From the very beginning they gave us very fair numbers and did negotiate to a price we wanted. This sold us more than the Flex (and the Flex is just a fun car anyway). Never once did they push us around, and the Finance guy was also reasonable.

    Reading these posts helped me emmensely. Go in armed with information (print outs even better) and you will have a positive experience. I studied this site for every positive angle for me and it helped greatly. I am not saying this dealer would have taken advantage of me, but the game certainly changed when they knew I did all my homework.

    Now if this Flex holds up and Ford does well with service I might just switch completely back (was a Toyota guy). Too bad they aren't not made in the USA as that would be the icing on the cake, but Canada is close enough.
  • madlockmadlock Posts: 39
    Congratulations, and I'm glad to know you found so much if the information provided to be useful.

    I presume, by your options, that you chose an SEL. Which DVD system did your Flex include? Was it the Overhead or Headrest system? Presuming it was the Overhead system and depending on which manufacturing run it happened to be part of, it looks like you managed to get them to cede a few hundred below invoice, a deal that's a winner in anyone's book as it left enough on the table for the dealership to earn a living too.

    Enjoy!
  • skatskat Posts: 1
    "2009 Ford Flex SEL w/ AWD. Silver with two tone white top, convienience package, lighting package, tow package, Sync, Roof rails, Rear DVD system. $36200 minus $4500 in rebates.$31700. Not bad! "

    --Where are you getting a $4500 rebate? We have only found $1500 + $1500 + $500, totaling $3500. On the SEL with no DVD, the best price we are getting is $29,800 before TTL.
  • madlockmadlock Posts: 39
    The total incentive amounts vary from state to state.
  • JTOJTO Posts: 28
    I've been out of the country for awhile (since Jan), but I've been watching the prices, and rebates on the Flex. By July I should be home, and will pick up where I left off at the dealers. Where's the best place to find out current rebates and incentives? Edmunds seems pretty good, but are there other areas I should look? Being this close to the new model year I'm guess Ford will start adding decent rebates on the 2009's. Other then the Ecoboost there seems little new to the 2010's.

    BTW.. I've checked for used, and have found little other then 'demo' models. The prices aren't any better then new. Are the Flex's selling that well?
  • madlockmadlock Posts: 39
    Yes, the proverbial "horse's mouth", the Ford website.
  • Hello all, I am looking for a 2009 FWD SEL FORD FLEX with vista roof and white two-tone roof. I live nearby Atlanta, GA and there are very few vehicles meeting my criteria.
    I do get several offers from different dealerships, and I know they are all talking about the same vehicle.
    It is a 2009 FWD Ford Flex SEL model with vista roof and white two-tone roof, redfire color for the bottom. It also has the other optional equipments:
    such as
    2ND ROW 40/40 SEATS-AUTOFOLD
    WHITE TWO-TONE ROOF

    The drive out price that they provide is 29635.40 , which is averagely about 3000 dollars lower than the prices that other dealership provide. This price is definitely very attractive for me and I want to go down there and have a try, but will there be any hidden risk here that I don't see? Can anyone tell me what I should pay attention to?
    Thank you very much for any inputs.
    Have a great weekend! :lemon: :)
  • madlockmadlock Posts: 39
    What is the sticker price of the vehicle in question? What incentives are you eligible to receive or do you qualify for?

    It's impossible to know what is being proposed without this information.
  • jaxwittjaxwitt Posts: 2
    We were given a quote last night on a '09 FLEX SEL. After reading what the MSRP is vs the Dealer Invoice Price, I want to find out if what I want to actually go back to the dealer with is reasonable.

    $38,880 MSRP
    +499.00 Appearance Protection (added by dealer)
    +99.00 Nitro (added by dealer)
    +249.00 Theft Protection (added by dealer)
    -2,596.02 X Plan
    -2,000.00 Rebates
    $35.030.98 SELLING PRICE
    - $2,500.00 trade-in value (which is nothing near what research says it to be)
    $32,530.98 ADJUSTED PRICE
    $35,543.35 BALANCE Due with tax, tag, tire/battery fee, and Dealer Svc. Fee

    I'm wanting the starting price to be $36,500 instead of $38,880. And maybe add a little more to the trade-in. Is that totally out of line? The salesman said "Ford" wouldn't allow them to negotiate the price any differently since we were given the X Plan and rebates. Is that true?

    Any advice is much appreciate!
  • madlockmadlock Posts: 39
    X-Plan isn't a "dollar off" amount; it's a fixed price calculated for each vehicle. Like dealer invoice, It is a sum-total amount. And yes, if a vehicle is sold under the auspices of X-Plan, the dealer cannot discount further. X-Plan is a flat-price buying scheme and therefore non-negotiable by definition.

    If, what you mean is that vehicle's X-Plan price is $36,283.98, you're already below your desired starting point for negotiation and, I'd wager, dealer invoice. However, with respect to your math (which nets-out at $35,130.98 BTW), it's rather impossible to know given everything else you've rolled-in to further obscure the actual figures (and also doing a fair share of the salesperson's work for him/her), As for trade-in value, tax, title, other compulsory fees, and rebates, they have no business as part of your negotiations as they have absolutely nothing to do with the purchase price.

    Your trade-in is something you're going to have to simply weigh on your own whether the dealer is offering you enough to make it worth your while to accept their offer rather than selling it outright, keeping in mind that any trade allowance will also likely reduce the total sales tax you eventually pay. Taxes and other legislated fees are universally applicable costs that everyone pays and cannot be negotiated. (Though if this "Dealer Service Fee" you mention is any more than a nominal amount or a term the dealer uses instead of "additional profit", you should add your own line-item deduction for "Consumer Time and Attention" for precisely twice that amount.

    The rebate does NOT reduce the vehicle's purchase price. It is monies rebated to you after the purchase, toward your downpayment. In addition to the myriad obvious reasons why rebates are not appropriate elements in the negotiated purchase price, unless you live in a small handful of states where things are done differently, you will pay sales tax on any rebates you receive.

    With respect to the dealer-installed items, they are part of the vehicle; and unless the dealer can and is willing to remove them from the vehicle, you are going to have to pay something for them which should be determined as an additional amount separate and distinct from the negotiated cost of the vehicle itself. Unless they are OEM Ford accessories, as some remote start and security systems can be, they are also likely to be most profitable items for the dealer. I have no idea whatever the hell "Appearance Protection" could be and why it would cost $499.00 when the warranty covers the paint and body against corrosion and your insurance protects you against damage, but it sure smacks of Jerry Lundergaard hawking "Tru-Coat". Even so, they're part of the purchase that you're going to have to contend with accordingly if you want to buy that particular vehicle.

    While X-Plan is a fixed-price, nothing prevents the dealer from selling it conventionally as a freely-negotiated sale for any amount they choose. They may say they "can't", which means they "don't want to", as any further reduction will simply come from the dealer's post-sale profit margin. The dealer is also free to pay you any amount it chooses for your trade-in. However he chooses to do his bookkeeping beyond that point is of no nevermind to you, provided the dealer doesn't use it as an opportunity to hide other expenses or use it as a pretense for resisting further concessions which, as I've described, is precisely why nothing could put you at a greater disadvantage than negotiating a "final price" without first resolving each of its constituent elements.
  • jaxwittjaxwitt Posts: 2
    WOW - lots of good information.
    The numbers I previously input came directly from the dealers "work sheet" and was incorrectly typed $499.00 instead of $399.00 for the Appearance Protection so the math did appear screwy. We were told Appearance Protection was a polymer wax/sealant on the outside and industrial Scotchguard on the inside seats and carpet - but the seats are leather (go figure!).

    Regarding your Rebate information - still a bit unclear. The dealer listed the rebates we qualified for prior to the quoted "Selling Price" (as indicated in our first posting). Are you saying the rebates should not be included at that point? And if not, when do they get included. And then the rebates change depending on finance options...very confusing...

    Again - appreciate your assistance MADLOCK!
  • madlockmadlock Posts: 39
    Dealer "worksheets" are formatted as they are for very specific reasons, one of which is the manner by which they deliberately present the information in ways that make determining their constituent elements more difficult. Work from your own worksheet that doesn't; the dealer can write-up the purchase any way it likes after-the-fact.

    I would ask the dealer how many customers whose vehicle did not include the dealer-applied "Protection Package" independently chose to have it applied after-the-fact. While ScotchGard is a great idea, it's also about $7 a can and ideally should be reapplied periodically and after major cleanings to ensure its efficacy. You may want to invest in a couple of cans to set on the dealer's desk to go with your "no thank you".

    You should also ask what super-secret formula they use to protect the exterior by specific name, calling them to account for either why it doesn't seem to be among those used by the most reputable of detailers and refinishers, or why, when applied by a detailer, typically costs 50% less. You may not be able to eliminate the entire expense, but you can certainly try to compel them to reduce the amount they charge to a "reasonable" one (though how choosing to detail a new vehicle would be "reasonable" is a mystery and another question to which I'm sure they'd offer an amusing, if not plausible, answer).
  • Hey there - Just purchased today. MSRP 41,715. Sales price with 0% for 60 - 38K (no rebates b/c here in GA you can't have 0% for 60 with rebate cash). 250 dealer doc fee which I knew about before negotiating. Very nice experience with the folks I dealt with - very happy. Love the car! Very pleased with the whole experience!
  • duece248duece248 Posts: 4
    Picked one up at Royal Oak Ford, Royal Oak MI. There were they found and extra $2250 of incentives without my asking. Thank you Royal Oak Ford. Awesome, no pressure shopping. If you live in the Royal Oak area see John Agnello, he was very knowledgeable and courteous. Here's the breakdown:

    $34,900 MSRP for a 2009 Ford Flex SEL, Cinnamon metallic w/ white roof, medium light stone leather, SYNC, 2nd row captains/console w/ push button seat flip, roof rails, rubber mats.
    -$1950 X-Plan discount
    -$3500 Cash back
    -$1500 First 3 payments incentive
    -$1500 GM owner cash incentive
    -$750 Potential buyer certificate
    Total - $25,700 +tax/title/fees

    This is a sweet ride but it feels even sweeter when you get a great deal!
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