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Dealer Add-ons and Extras - are they worth it?

Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 10,824
Pinstriping, paint sealant, fabric guard... are these items worth the price? Ask your questions here!

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  • bowled_overbowled_over Posts: 14
    I purchased a new Honda CR-V. The dealer tried to push the benefits of sthg called Auto Butler Vehicle Protection Program which includes applying 10 six monthly applications of paint sealant and fabriguard (no leather) over five year period for $800 upfront.

    Based on previous owners experiences, do any of you use such a protection, is it really required and is it really good (value for $800)
  • danf1danf1 Posts: 935
    Auto butler is good protection. The main reason that it works is that it is reapplied every six months. The cost seems quite high to me. I'd offer them about half that amount and you should be able to get it.
  • lhesslhess Posts: 379
    dealer add-on is that they are doing it to make more money. And, before you salespeople jump on that comment, there is nothing wrong with that - profit is what makes the free world turn. Buyers need to weigh the cost of the dealer add-on as opposed to doing something similar themselves. I may pay a dealer for an add-on that I am uncapable of doing myself (like pin-striping) or maybe it's very time-consuming and I don't have the time, but things like spraying scotchguard on the seats, I think I can handle that for the cost of a can of scotch guard and 20 minutes.

    My fear of things like this Auto Butler, they actually apply paint sealant every six months? Who makes sure the car is absolutely clean and they're not just applying a layer of gunk over road grime? My opinion is that once they sell the car and have the money, they really don't care what they are sealing in on your car. I would pass on that add-on and just wax it a couple of times a year myself.
  • danf1danf1 Posts: 935
    Whoever is reapplying the sealant should first wash the car. Auto butler machines are extremely expensive, around $35,000, and the replacement applicators aren't cheap either. So it is in the dealers best interest to make sure the car is clean, as it will prolong the life of the applicators. Auto butler provides a warranty on your paint against acid rain, bird droppings, tree sap etc... If any of the afformentioned affect the finish of your car, Auto butler will remove the damage and if necessary repaint your car for you. If you don't have a garage and don't like to wax your vehicles, it is a good program. The fabrigard is basically the same as Scothguarding yourself, so I would pass on that part in order to lower the price.

    And of course the dealer is making money by selling it to you. If we weren't making a profit, we wouldn't be doing it. That said, it is a much better program than most of your mopn'glow one time miracle waxes that are offered at most dealerships.
  • jhs70jhs70 Posts: 213
    dealer add-on is that they are doing it to make more money.

    BIngo, and they make LOTS of money on this stuff. Only the consumer can tell if they want or need this stuff. A good dealership will present these offers and let the consumer decide for him/herself whether they need/want them. The bad ones force sell them, and we've all been there at one time or another, haven't we? Me, I don't need any of this stuff. I'm convinced I can go without, do it myself, or find it MUCH cheaper elsewhere. But that's just me.
  • lhesslhess Posts: 379
    is when the dealer has decided to go ahead and do an add-on (like pin-striping) and then just tack the price on the car. At that point, it's a matter of paying for it, even if you would have passed on it otherwise, if you want the car. I consider that the same as a dealer "bump sticker" and I walk away from dealerships that use "market adjustment" stickers. I see nothing wrong with add-ons if the dealership is honest about them and gives you the choice of buying them or not buying - don't already have them on the car.

    I just bought an RX 8 and have added some accessories. I've worked a deal with the dealer to get a cost plus 10% plus installation deal on these. I just paid $291 for the rear wing, installed. You can bet they would have added about $500 to the price of the car had that spoiler already been on there when i bought it.
  • cadillacmikecadillacmike Posts: 543
    And don't forget the mop n glo stickers that some dealers put on the cars while they are still on the trailers and still have the protective plastic sheeting on them ;)
  • chiefjschiefjs Posts: 39
    I am buying a CRV from Bock Honda in Massachusetts and the saleman gave me some brochures on some protective packages. He said to look them over let him know if I am interested, but did not give a price.

    One is called Resist AllPlus+ that is a clear protective film with two options. The Leading Edge Kit protects the nose and hood of the vehicle. The Headlight Kit protects the lights.

    They also have a ResistAll stain barrier for the interior and a paint sealer protector.

    Finally, they are offering GuidePoint, a stolen vehicle recovery system that uses satellites rather than the Lojack RF. I believe he said this costs about $1,000, but there are no addtional charges.

    Your comments and opinions will be appreciated. :)
  • danf1danf1 Posts: 935
    The Leading edge kit might be good if you do a lot of highway driving. The headlights I wouldn't consider because they are impact resistant plastic and I wouldn't want any film over them that could possibly discolor and block some light. The stain barrier is basically Scotchguard. Buy a can on your own and save a lot of money. The theft recovery sounds interesting, but expensive.
  • bobstbobst Posts: 1,783
    Chief, if your car is stolen, do you want it back or would you rather get the money from your insurance company and buy a new car?
  • lhesslhess Posts: 379
    why people spend so much money on products to recover a stolen vehicle. If mine ever gets stolen, I hope to never see it again!!!!!!!!!

    Also, as to the protective film on the nose and hood, can't that discolor too?
  • danf1danf1 Posts: 935
    I have no personal experience with the protective film, but have heard good reviews of it. I can't remember where I heard about it, but it has been a while.
  • nortsr1nortsr1 Posts: 1,060
    If you go to the accessories forum and scroll down to front end protective bras and deflectors, there is discussion about same. All favorable...but....expensive.
  • lokkilokki Posts: 1,200
    Always remind me of the car bra conundrum:

    Paint chips will make the nose of my car ugly. Therefore I will protect the nose. How? By putting an ugly bra on it that costs as much as repainting the nose of the car at 30,000 miles would.

    The clear plastics are almost as weird IMHO. Like plastic slip covers on your leather sofa.

    Did you buy the car to use or did you buy it for the next guy? It's not going to be pretty with all that junk on it.

    Paint sealers from the dealer may work, but how many times could you have that car waxed at a car wash for $800?

    I try to avoid all those dealer extras, and I agree with Ihess - go to the parts department and do some pricing before you agree to let the salesman tack anything on your car. The difference in the markup is amazing.
  • lhesslhess Posts: 379
    I don't like the bra thing or the other options that are out there to protect the front of your car. It makes me sick to see the new paint chips every time you wash, but I personally think they look better than a big black cover on the front of the car or the cheap acrylic covers.

    Has anyone had any real luck with touch-up paints? It's available for my rx8 and I've thought about getting it (it's really cheap, less than $8, I think), but wasn't sure if i'd end up making a bigger mess of things. Any real talent involved?
  • bobstbobst Posts: 1,783
    Maybe that is because you follow other cars too closely.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,599
    Your "touch up" job can make the problem worse. The bras trap water and dirt that will abrade your paint. The clear film is expensive but it does work well.

    bobst is right about following other cars too close. I see this everyday and I think about the rock chips those cars must have.
  • lhesslhess Posts: 379
    it's living in coal country. Coal trucks, gravel trucks...when something comes off one of those trucks, a good quarter mile won't save you!!
  • bobstbobst Posts: 1,783
    Here in Virginia, the trucks need to cover their loads to help stop rocks flying off into the road.

    A few years ago, a state legislator had his windshield cracked by a rock falling off a truck, so he got a law passed to make them cover their loads. See, politicians can do some pretty cool things sometime.
  • mirthmirth Posts: 1,212
    ...maybe we should stick some legislators with big health care bills...
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