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Online Services Experiences (Carsdirect.com, Carwoo.com, etc.)

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  • amen, on the haggling, for me it was about the time

    i bought a camry through carsdirect two weeks ago and i was in and out of the dealership in 30 MINUTES - i couldn't believe it

    considering the last toyota i bought i spent over 4 hours in the dealership before i drove off the lot - i was so frustrated with killing an entire day that i swore i'd never do it again -

    in comparison this was a dream
  • ctcarguyctcarguy Posts: 2
    i'm in the market for a camry and was confused about the "advertising fee" that i saw on the sticker at the dealer; i pulled this off the carsdirect web site:

    Invoice is popularly known as the published amount that the dealer paid the manufacturer for the vehicle. This may or may not bear close relation to the dealer’s actual cost, but can be useful as a benchmark. This figure is available on many other web sites; however, only CarsDirect.com adds an estimate of local and regional fees from the manufacturer to the dealers to this price, which makes it very close to the actual sticker invoice amount for cars at your local dealer. No other source has this level of detail. Most other sources of Invoice are not accurate at a regional and local level.

    An estimate of these manufacturer-to-dealers fees (such as an advertising fee) is provided for each car and is added to the Invoice to make this figure as accurate as possible. We make this estimate for most cars in most regions. There are some regions and vehicles for which we do not have estimates of these fees.

    For this model, we have added $275.00 to the Invoice to represent these fees.

    -----
    Now the $275 was what I saw on the sticker at my local dealer. However, I didn't see this on the edmunds or Kelley Blue Book sites - -what gives here?
  • The carsdirect site adds the local advertising fee to the invoice. This won't affect what you pay at all - unless you are getting quotes based on the invoice price - ie. $600 over invoice. I've found that their invoice numbers are really accurate and matched the numbers I saw at a couple of dealerships I went to.
  • ctcarguyctcarguy Posts: 2
    Thanks for the note on the invoice. I ended up getting a Corolla through Carsdirect and think that it went great.
  • nwngnwng Posts: 664
    I paid about $1k less than the carsdirect price on an 05ody.

    On the other hand, they had the invoice price on my other car when i bought from them two years ago.
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 10,918
    To help with writing an online shopping article in a national magazine, a reporter would like to speak with anyone who bought a new or used car or truck off the internet. The reporter is especially interested in hearing from folks who got great deals. Please respond to jfallon@edmunds.com by Thursday, March 24, 2005.

    MODERATOR
    Need help navigating? kirstie_h@edmunds.com - or send a private message by clicking on my name.
    Share your vehicle reviews

  • carbuyer25carbuyer25 Posts: 20
    Does anyone know how often CarsDirect changes their prices?
  • tygartygar Posts: 3
    I'm deciding whether or not to use CarsDirect to buy a new Sienna CE. I'm getting a slightly lower price (by $300) from CarsDirect than the Edmunds TMV price; based on earlier posts, it seems like the TMV price is usually a little lower. Am I correct in assuming, based on the numbers, that CarsDirect might be a viable buying option in my case, especially since I'm not a skilled haggler?

    Does anyone tried the Dealer Price Quote from Edmunds? I was hoping to receive quotes via e-mail, but instead I just got the usual dealer-speak, in e-mails and phone messages. I don't know if the experience is different for people in different areas (I'm in northern New Jersey).

    Thanks!
  • 307web307web Posts: 1,033
    If Carsdirect has the car you want at the price you want and you don't want to deal with haggling, then just use them.
    Did you talk to them to see if they actually had the car you wanted with the options you wanted?
    Just because you can configure the car online at carsdirect.com with certain options and colors, doesn't mean a car exactly like that is readily available.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,695
    Based on what I've read on their site, they will take your commitment to buy and send it to a bunch of dealers in their network, asking for a vehicle equipped the way you specified at the specified price. Then those dealers will respond. So the only way to find out if the car is available is to actually make the commitment to buy the car first.

    tygar - if you use carsdirect, please be sure to come back and post how it worked out for you. I've often thought of using them, but I usually just take the quote to a local dealer and show it to them as a bargaining tool (that is, after they balk at my verbal offer - pulling out other quotes is usually a last resort for me).

    '13 Stang GT; '15 Fit; '98 Volvo S70; '14 Town&Country

  • audia8qaudia8q Posts: 3,138
    what does your post have to do with cardirect.com???

    I also would like to hear the other side of this story....something isnt adding up. I'm not saying you car isnt defective but something is missing here.
  • lisa19lisa19 Posts: 1
    I spent 3 days working with Carsdirect.com and had more problems than I can possibly list. The rep was unprofessional and kept losing our paperwork (licenses and insurance info), he did not return phone calls or give us exact information regarding the vehicle we had chosen. We finally asked to work with a supervisor and it seemed like we were finally getting quality service. After taking our deposit, she told us that we would have to pick up our vehicle 50 miles from our house. I asked why and was told that eventhough there are 10 dealerships within 10 miles of us, Carsdirect.com only worked with the one 50 miles away. We live in a large city so this was surprising. We were prepared to go and pick up the car when she called back to let us know the car had been sold and we were out of luck. This process wasted 3 days and we ended up going to the dealer up the street and getting the same vehicle within 2 hours and at the same price. I wouldn't recommend that anyone use carsdirect.com unless they have a lot of time to waste.
  • nortsr1nortsr1 Posts: 1,060
    Why didn't you go to your "local" dealer first?????
  • Hello everyone, I've been reading through this thread and have found it quite interesting. Right now I'm searching for a 2005 Toyota Camry LE V6 or V4 with an automatic transmission. The best pricing I have gotten so far is about
    $19,873 on a V6 which is after a $1000 rebate offer 17,777 for the V4. I am very new to the online internet car researching area and I was wondering if anyone could help me do better then this?

    Your help would be greatly appreciated :)
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,695
    What kind of help are you looking for? Where did you get your pricing? From dealers or from carsdirect? Have you tried the Camry prices paid discussion?

    By the way, its not a "V4." Just an inline 4-cylinder.

    '13 Stang GT; '15 Fit; '98 Volvo S70; '14 Town&Country

  • ezshift5ezshift5 West coastPosts: 855
    ..proved to be a standup choice for a new car......

    ...called the 20th...coupe in my garage the 24th......

    ..they beat hell out of the local folk, coming in close to 1.3k under invoice.....

    ..dealer jammed me unmercifully for EW...online availability just kills that option...........

    ...I started to feel low when the salesgal said "We're not making very much on this deal................" After the EW session, I felt even lower (knowing I could get the same product online for about 1/2 what the Honda dealer wanted).

    Internet = great tool.....now if I can just figure out the clutch...................

    all the best, ez

    :P
  • Well, I just dealt with carsdirect.com, and I did not have to give any "committment", other than my job and credit info. Now, I am working with them on a lease deal, and while their purchase prices are good, I suspect they are trying to make some "extra" money on the monthly lease price they are quoting me. When I enter their inputs (purchase price, money factor, residual, etc.) into a Quicken lease calcuator (which has proved accurate in the past) I have, it turns out that the monthly lease payment should actually be about $70 per month lower (according to Quicken). So, while I think carsdirect.com is good for negotiating a purchase, I think I can do better negotiating a lease on my own. Also, you can use carsdirect.com as a starting point in your own purchase neogotiations with a dealer. E.g., I got $yyy price from carsdirect.com, I'd buy right now if you can do better, etc.
  • 70z70z Posts: 1
    Greetings Forum!,
    Today we purchased a 2006 Toyota Sienna CE, w/factory mats and speed-control options. The purchase-price quoted by CarsDirect, seemed too good to be true, and I was waiting for the "catch" all the way to signing-paperwork. This is my first experience with web-enabled vehicle purchase. The car is parked in our driveway - and I'm _still_ waiting for the catch.

    Verbose details follow. I hope this level of detail is in the spirit of this forum and thread. Apologies if not.

    MY EXPERIENCE with CarsDirect (your results may vary)...

    (Dec 25, 06) Contacted cars-direct via web, and heard-back from a Cars-Direct contact-person ("CD") soon after.
    (Dec 28, 06) Procrastinated for a couple of days until CD called again when I was home. He gave me a number (which I didn't fully appreciate) - I told him I wasn't ready to commit because I'd done little/no homework. He seemed a bit annoyed (in a restrained way) and said, since I wasn't ready, he'd cancel this purchase - but that I was welcome to contact them again when I was ready. After hanging-up, I thought screw-it, his number looked pretty good (based on available "Invoice") and I needed to go through with this _before_ wife's car broke again. So I emailed him that I was ready to commit. Received instructions (by phone & email) how to log-in and accept web-based "agreement". NOTE: BEFORE agreeing, I attempted to get a quick "reality-check" from "carquotein60seconds.com" - no joy: was informed that a local-dealer would be contacted on my behalf, then presented with an impossibly low "quote". A local dealer did reply, see THE DEALER (below.)

    The CarsDirect agreement-page was vague regarding how long they had to locate the car and how long I was obligated by the "agreement", but it did say they "expected" to locate a vehicle by Dec 30th.
    (Dec 29) CD called to say where the vehicle was and the purchase procedure.
    (Dec 30) Drove with spouse to the dealer and contacted a specific sales-person ("SP") who was to handle purchase. He brought us to our car to check-out/test-drive. Then back to his desk to provide personal info. for paperwork. We weren't financing, but they wanted enough income-info. to trust a personal check for a few days (until money is moved into the account.) Then on to the the Finance Person ("FP".)

    THE FINANCE PERSON: I wish I'd taken delivery at home. (didn't realize that option was available/cheap.) FP was really good, she had a cogent argument for every reason I had for not spending money on extra stuff, and in the end I agreed to two Security options, including "Lojack". I managed to stay firm on not opting for the 70K/7yr extended warranty - though THAT probably WAS a deal. Anyway, beside the security stuff, the numbers presented by FP were exactly what CD initially quoted.

    After signing, SP gave us an obligatory tour to describe why it would make sense to have our vehicle serviced THERE (and I may, but it's a drive...) Then we drove home (in Two cars.)

    CD seemed very professional (knowledgable, responsive, etc.) We called about four times during the process, he only picked-up once, but phoned-back otherwise.

    THE DEALER we purchased from was about 36 miles from our house, though several others were much closer. As it happens, we received a quote from the fleet-manager (handling web-sales) of the nearest dealer - @ $800 more than CarsDirect.

    I haven't read enough posts to know whether my experience is typical. Based on info from the dealer and [later] Google, it looks like a Mr. Penske runs CarsDirect AND a ton of dealerships. I was lucky to live "close" to one of those dealers. Based on _my_ experience, I would encourage anybody purchasing a vehicle to do a bit of homework, then contact CarsDirect.

    Cheers.
  • I'm currently in the midst of an extremely bad experience with carsdirect.com. The rep is completely unprofessional, doesn't return phone calls, gives misleading information, and after not delivering the car on time offers only a handful of double talk and excuses. I even contacted the manager who also did not return e-mail or phone calls. They're an internet company whose only customer contact is via phone and e-mail and they can't seem to reasonably handle either task. Upon giving my deposit, it was stated that the car should arrive in six weeks and after waiting that six weeks, I'm now told it will be another five weeks. What's going to happen after that five weeks? In addition, the rep would not tell me when the car is now expected, but two separate customer service people read the rep's notes dated 1/5/06 (just one day prior to the conversation), and told me it would be another five weeks. Why wouldn't he give me the information when he put those notes in his system one day prior? Someone is not being straight. I've wasted too much time already, and it seems that I either need to waste more time or pull out of the deal and fight for my deposit back. I also locked a loan rate and the lock will run out soon so this may actually cost me money as interest rates are going up. I was hopeful that I would avoid the typical car buying pitfalls by going with carsdirect, but my experience thus far has been absolutely horrible.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,695
    can you share what car this is?
    Just curious what kind of vehicle is taking so long.

    Also, did you try working with any dealers prior to going through carsdirect? If so, was carsdirect quoting you a significantly better price than the dealers?

    '13 Stang GT; '15 Fit; '98 Volvo S70; '14 Town&Country

  • cutehumorcutehumor Posts: 137
    only one dealer responded. he quoted me a car with different packages that I asked for with a higher price. :( so I did price quote through edmunds instead. Out of the four dealers, three responded, two gave me prices, one just said "I got your car, come on down to test drive" had no price quote.
  • rroyce10rroyce10 Posts: 9,359
    .... What type of model and make ........?

    Terry.
  • cutehumorcutehumor Posts: 137
    2006 Pontiac Vibe base with optional 4 speed auto, preferred package in abyss, moonstone, or neptune in Nashville area.
  • Ok, so for several years I have used CarsDirect.com to window shop. Two days ago I went ahead and got my financing arranged and decided to car shop. I went through CD to find an Accord V6 sedan with navigation. Within 5 minutes of submitting my information online I received a phone call from the CD rep. He was very friendly and not overly pushy but of course he wanted to sell me the extras like GAP insurance, and even wanted to try to do my financing. After working with him for about 20 minutes he was able to find the car I wanted at a dealership 15 miles from my house. I went to the dealership that afternoon and first met with their fleet/internet sales guy, then the finance guy to sign the paperwork and say no to a bunch of extras. After about 25 minutes at the dealership I drove home in my new car. The only gripe I have is with the dealership not CD. The dealership spent no time showing me the basics of the navi or the car. My CD experience was great and I am happy with the price they got me. The car was 26812, 29583 with the tax, tag and other fees.
  • morey000morey000 Posts: 357
    Is the 'target price' listed on their web site the actual price that you'll be paying? Or is it some overly low price to get you to start the buying process through CD, which then gets inflated once they hear back from dealers.

    Or- is that the price of the car, and they call it 'target price' as the vehicle they find might have slightly different options for which they need to compensate for (which is reasonable)

    I'd rather take the CD price to my dealer and let them know that if they can match it, I'll buy it directly through them, rather than going through a middle man.
  • chaupchaup Posts: 4
    I belong to both clubs. Would like to try their car purchasing progam for the 1st time. Any recommendation or advice?
  • nortsr1nortsr1 Posts: 1,060
    I believe it does not include any added dealer fees, but to check it out, give Cars Direct a call and ask to be certain.
  • Has anyone has an experience leasing through CarsDirect? I'm looking to lease a 2007 Dodge Charger SXT AWD and want to know what to expect. :confuse:
  • cmafitcmafit Posts: 1
    Were you able to lease through CarsDirect? I didn't think this service was provided. If you are still looking to lease a car, let me know.
  • jag17jag17 Posts: 1
    I'm a newbie and often use Internet when shopping for a car. Have had some mixed if not negative experiences with CarsDirect in the past and would like readers to know my perspective, especially as various readers ask about this service. I bought a Honda through CD a few years ago and the purchase experience was quite smooth, fair price, and we managed to avoid the hassle of the dealership. However, CD did not initialy respond to our requests for working with one of their brokers until I called their corporate office directly and asked them why they did not want my business; then I got some attention about buying a car through them. Afterward, I had to endure repeated sales pitches for GAP insurance and other services that one does not need.

    A few years later I tried to purchase a luxury model through CD. They pledged to help me get the price listed for the car but subsequently tried to jack me out of an extra $5k through one of their dealers. Turns out for luxury name brands and rare cars in a regional market CD cannot deliver the goods like they promise--but they pretend to promise it anyway. Basically, high volume vehicles such as Camrys and Accords are easier to purchase but not Infiniti, Lexus, Acura, etc.

    Now I am trying to buy another vehicle and it's CD price is listed as a "Target Price." Read their gobbledygook on what this means--basically they can't gurantee the price quote. However, it also means they will not provide a broker to work with you. They do route you to a dealer they consider a partner and who will meet the price quote, but invariably when you reach out to these folks they fall back on their old sales tricks ("that car is not available," "we need to factor dealer costs, internet costs," "my manager said I can't do that price after all," blahblahblah). Basically, a "target price" quoted by CD is an amount you can more reliably obtain through Edmunds, Kelley Blue Book, or by researching the vehicle's invoice price. CarsDirect only provides you with the price to lure you into their dealership arrangements.

    In summary, if you're looking for a family sedan or another common model, carsdirect can get it for you at price quoted, but it will be a sloppy process and you may slip through the cracks, then they will still try to sell you a bunch of stuff you don't need. Try to purchase a less popular seller, or conversely, a luxury or high demand vehicle of the moment, and you will only create aggravation for yourself. Me personally, I dont see much value in dealing with carsdirect anymore.

    Also note, a few years ago CD had to settle a class action suit alleging they were secretly listening to customer conversations without notifying the customer. So if you have to use this service, be paranoid.
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