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2013 and earlier-Mercedes Benz C-Class Prices Paid and Buying Experience

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  • I am considering buying Lexus ES 330, BMW 325xi and MB C320. ES 330 looks like Camry, 325xi although nice handling but too small. That left MB C320 (2005), which is a little more pricey. I am looking at this model (4matic for safety reason) along with the sun roof package, MSRP $42180 and invoice $39278. What's a fair price for this brand new vehicle? By the way I live in NY (metro) and your feedback is greatly apprciated.
  • The good news is that the dealer located a 3rd car, with fewer miles, and a sunroof, all at no additional cost to me. Needless to say I am satisfied. Thanks to all for your advice.
  • I live in Canada, therefore I cannot comment on the pricing, however, I was wondering whether you had considered the C240? I drove my 2001 C240 for four years, and was happy with its performance. It is available in 4matic. The price is somewhat lower than the C320. In fairness, however, I have never driven the C320. Let us know how it turns out.
  • Hello all !

    I need your savy purchasing tips.

    I am currently in the process of negotiating a purchase for a 05 c240 4matic.

    The car lists at retail for 36780.00, the Mercedes dealer is willing to let it go for 35,000.00 which is 743.00 over the invoice.

    What kind of deal should I be looking at......

    PLEASE advise.

    Thanks,

    Christian
  • p3001p3001 Posts: 5
    i just got a C230 coupe 6-speed in black w/ the moonroof, entertainment, and lighting package for about $630 over invoice (custom order). i picked it up in kansas city at aristocrat motors. it was a pretty good experience, not much haggling, just laid it all out for the rep and he played ball. i think this is a good deal, i was aiming for $500 over invoice, but $630 isn't bad. what do you guys think?
  • postoakpostoak Posts: 537
    Was that invoice + advertising fee + $630 or invoice + $630?
  • Hi ckim1754.....$35000 is a good price. Don't forget, most Mercedes dealers get charged $300 to $500 over invoice from MB to cover group advertising (called IRG participation). His real invoice is probably $34257 to $34467. He probably is as low as he wants to go. MB dealers typically don't sell cars for "$100 over invoice" from my experience.
  • p3001p3001 Posts: 5
    it was invoice of $27,xxx (can't remember the exact figure) + $630. the total price, excluding "processing" fee (what is this? can i have it waived?) of $295, was $28,330 (or something like that).
  • postoakpostoak Posts: 537
    So you paid invoice + $295 + $630? The $295 sounds like too much, but may not be, depending on your state. However, since you didn't explicitly pay an advertising fee (IRG participation as jwilliams2 pointed out), that sounds okay to me. As to whether this is a good deal or not, I haven't a clue as I'm just starting to monitor this board to get an idea of what IS a good deal. Still, I've read a number of posts on various sites that spoke of the dealer only giving $500 off MSRP, and that leads me to believe you did okay.
  • p3001p3001 Posts: 5
    yeah, i'm not sure whether this "administrative" fee is really an advertising fee hiding in the bushes. i do intend to get it waived though, the sales rep seemed like he might be able to do it. at other dealerships (non MB) i've been to they had big signs that said the "administrative" fee would not be waived for anyone. since i didn't see this at this place it would lead me to believe they might. as far as the price edmunds said people in my area are paying about $200 below MSRP and for them to knock off over $1300 seems good to me. the trick for me was to ask them to throw in the most expensive package for free, this got me to around what i wanted to pay for the car without having to say "i'll give you X over invoice". also it was halfway through the day on the last day of the month (quarter) so i think it helped.
  • postoakpostoak Posts: 537
    I've explored these administrative fees on other boards here. $50-$175 seems normal depending on the state. The advertising fee is usually much larger, more like $500, so I don't think they are sneaking it in on you that way. Perhaps your dealership doesn't get charged this fee. If they are in a smaller market they may not pay one.

    I like your strategy. I've been thinking about doing the same thing. I DO NOT WANT and am unwilling to pay for a sunroof. On the Gulf Coast, with our heat, humidity, and air pollution it is useless (to me at least). So I expect to special order unless they will "throw one in for free".
  • jc2121jc2121 Posts: 5
    Does anyone know the actual holdback and type of bonuses that Mercedes dealerships get?

    I am trying to figure out what type of profit margins they are dealing with. My local dealer is one of the largest in the country so they probably qualify for the highes bonuses.

    Thanks
  • jc2121jc2121 Posts: 5
    If they can't find one without a sunroof, isn't there a special order surcharge? If so, it makes more sense to just get the sunroof package which also includes power rear window sunshade, autodimming rearview mirror, autodimming driver's side mirror and rain-sensing windshield wipers.
    Also, I think most dealers try to get a higher markup on a special order.

    What do you mean by "throw one in for free?" If they deduct the sunroof cost from the MSRP, do you consider it free? I am kind of curious of how you can tell or what you interpret as it being free.
  • jc2121jc2121 Posts: 5
    Did you take possession on the last day of the month or afterwards?

    I have always been told that the deal has to be completed and not a just a contract.
  • postoakpostoak Posts: 537
    I have read a number of posts on this board (I'm working my way through all 7000) that state that the holdback is 3% of MSRP.

    There is, or was, a $1000 special paint color fee but I've been told (by my salesman) that there is no special order fee. If someone knows differently please let me know.

    Everything you list as being part of the sunroof package is either worthless to me or a negative -- just things to go wrong. (Read some of the earlier posts about the rain-sensing wipers staying on when the windshield was dry.) Sure, on resale you get about 40% of your money back for this package so if you WANT it, it is something of a bargain but I'd rather keep 100% of that money and take the 40% hit on resale.

    That's a good question about throwing it in for free. I guess I expect to meet with some resistance to special ordering. Most salesmen want to sell you something off the lot even though it doesn't meet the customer's needs. I'm saying that I would let them do that if, after working out a price on a special order, configured just the way I want it, they would then offer that same price for a car on the lot that had more options. Does that make sense?
  • Yes, the dealer holdback is stated at 3% on edmunds and other sites, but that that means it is only about $1000 on a C-class. The "bonuses" mus be much higher since I saw one post where a lady claims she was quoted $4700 under invoice. unless it was a demo, it doesn't seem possible. I was hoping someone may have some first hand knowledge about the bonus system.

    http://www.edmunds.com/advice/incentives/holdback/index.html

    On the 2004 models there was a special order charge

    SOC Special Order Surcharge info $1,150

    On the 2004/2004 there is an extra charge for metallic paint.

     063 Metallic Paint $670

      I am not sure why you are holding off buying a car since right now is the best time to buy a 2005 and a 2004 if you can find any left.

      If they have a price increase again, any savings from waiing for incentives will be offset especially on the c230's plus the depreciation factor of a full year vs 4 months from now.
  • postoakpostoak Posts: 537
    If you look at posts back in May-July you will see some people got $7,000 of MSRP. This was because of $4,000 manufacturer's incentives. When I saw that I decided to deal on a 2004 but could only get $4700 of MSRP -- not good enough for me because I'm not ready for a new car yet. (For $7,000 I would have gone ahead, though.) I will check again with the dealership to see if there is a surcharge for a special order. My fall-back position is to do an ED at invoice in June.
  • I just purchased my first Mercedes a couple weeks ago (end of Sept). The dealership experience (at MB of Knoxville, TN) was one of the best I have ever experienced. They really took care of me there. MSRP on my car was $33,570.00 (sunroof pkg. and CD changer with black paint and ash interior). I got a couple thousand off and some help on a 2002 Mercury Mountaineer I was driving. The people at the dealership really sold the deal for me, though. Real straight-forward, no B.S., no pressure, showed genuine desire to make me a MB owner for life. Great experience and I didn't leave there thinking I got screwed on some part of the deal.

    If anyone is in the southeast area, the sales manager told me that my local dealer is in the Jacksonville, FL region. Nearly 50% of the Mercedes sold in this region are sold in Florida. Since the back-to-back-to-back hurricanes, Florida M-B sales are WAY off (practically non-existent at end of Sept). All other dealers in this region were being begged to step up and sell more cars than ever. It gave my dealer more room than normal to negotiate and it may help one of you (who live in the same area) to know about that.

    Oh yeah..., and the CAR is spectacular!!!
  • ggu2ggu2 Posts: 8
    I got a quote in Dallas area on a new '04 C240 wagon with only 6-cd and sunroof options, it's about $500 over invoice - about $32888 before TTL etc.

    Is this a good deal?

    Thanks.
  • postoakpostoak Posts: 537
    Well, it's a couple thousand less than you would have to pay for a 2005 model, but I believe the dealer got a $3,000 incentive from MB on this car so, in that light, that $500 over invoice is $3500 over the dealer's true invoice and remember invoice is 3 percent or so over the dealer's true cost.
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