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Stories from the Sales Frontlines

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  • prosaprosa Posts: 280
    For example was working with a father and daughter on a 2004 Lexus RX330 we had used for sale. Now the father had bought a lexus from us about 6 months previously which is why he brought his daughter in. Referals are always nice and things were going fine. We put a number on her trade a little A6 wagon with a ton of miles. Nice shape but just way too many miles. I think we put about $5,500. We were asking 37,xxx for the RX330. The father comes around and offers us 20,000 plus the trade OTD. I was offended we don't have that kind of mark up in any of our used cars no one does. I try to ask as polietly as possibly where they heck did that number come from.

    I really must be missing something here. What you've described is nothing more than the normal give-and-take on pricing that's part of the buying process. You started out by asking an unrealistically high price for the RX330. The customer countered with a low offer. Ideally, this should lead to negotiations and a final price somewhere in the middle. If you actually expected anyone to roll over and pay the asking price without trying to negotiate, well, that seems very unrealistic to me.
  • british_roverbritish_rover Posts: 8,476
    It would have been normal if he had offered a realistic price for the RX330 but he did not. We were not asking a unrealisic high price for the RX330. Here is edmunds TMV price for the same car LEXU RX330.

    We were with in a thousand or so of that. A realisic offer would have been say $30,000 and the trade plus tax and tags. He was offering $20,000 plus the trade OTD. Just doing the math on our program right now means we would have to sell him the car for $23,982.70 in order to hit his number. But hey that is only $9,000 under wholesale yeah we can sell cars for that. :confuse:

    If he had ofered 30,000 plus trade we would have taken it. It would have been a short deal cause we owned the lexus for close to that but we would have taken it.
  • asafonovasafonov Posts: 373
    It would have been normal if he had offered a realistic price for the RX330 but he did not. We were not asking a unrealisic high price for the RX330. Here is edmunds TMV price for the same car LEXU RX330.

    Thanks for providing the link to Edmunds FMV (FWIW), though one still needs to guess the miles, options and condition (the zip code did go through though.) So a clean condition, no options, 25k miles 04 AWD RX330 has a dealer TMV of under 29.5k - under 32k if certified. Was your 04 certified, BTW?

    Makes sense, because the MSRP on the new 06 is just under 38k... and you were asking close to new MSRP for the 04 because it had 5-7k worth of which options ;) ?

    (It has been proclaimed many times that books/guides are just that, guides, and the market determines the price, but your brought up Edmunds TMV first.)
  • british_roverbritish_rover Posts: 8,476
    Hmhh the actual options and mileage stuff did not come out on that link let me see if they do on this one.

    http://www.edmunds.com/used/2004/lexus/rx330/100243307/options.html?tmvaction=vd- - presult

    And of course they don't.

    Car had 9,500 miles and every option on that list but nav, adaptive cruise, DVD entertainment, back up camera, telematics and self leveling suspension. It was black to with gray leather.

    All of that comes together at $35,840 for a dealer retail and $38,080 for a certfied lexus. We had it priced in between. Also keep in mind this was 6 months ago 2004's, even Lexus products that depreciate very little, have depreciated some since then.

    What you still aren't getting is that the guy was offerent thousands and thousands of dollars below any possible wholesale price you can come up with. He wouldn't move from that price since that is about what he paid for his 2003 RX300 with more miles even though that is an totally different vehicle.
  • asafonovasafonov Posts: 373
    British_Rover,

    no, the detailed TMV (the one that includes options, miles, condition and color did not come up in that link. The page you sent does show the dealer retail of 29.6k.

    So back to my questions: what were the options? Was the Lexus certified? How many miles?

    BTW, I have no problem with you (or anybody else including myself) asking whatever you want, or whatever you think the market would bring, for your merchandise. It's when somebody brings up the pricing guides, there should be some explanation between the suggested and actual asking price if there is indeed a discrepancy.

    Did not mean to come off pushy/sarcastic in my post (well, maybe a bit sarcastic but in a friendly way.)
  • asafonovasafonov Posts: 373
    Ok, that's different then. As you wrote, with all the options and low miles, it did have the higher TMV. Never mind...
  • british_roverbritish_rover Posts: 8,476
    Exactly if you are gonna give me a stupid low ball offer at least make it in the same zipcode. This guys offer was not even on the same continent. Also be willing to move from that offer. Staying firm on a completly unrealistic offer just makes you look foolish.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,638
    There is a saying "Buyers are liars and sellers are cryers"

    Honestly, I get lied to by customers all of the time and I bite all of the time too. I want to believe them.

    " I can buy a new Accord SE for 18,200"

    " Wow...really? I can't sell you one for that!"

    " Ah....well....what WOULD you sell one to me for?"

    " Not for 18,200...you should just go buy it!"

    " Aren't you going to give me a number?"

    " It would be a lot more than 18,200...just let me know if, when you get there, something changes"

    " Ah....well...O.K..."

    I try to be nice to these people and they usually come back.

    " Ah...they made a mistake, they thought I wanted a Civic"
  • thebillthebill Posts: 194
    lol.....I had a customer on Saturday try to tell me that his friend in TX bought a 06 civic lx auto for 16 OTD. I told him great, go down there and buy it for that. Or you could pay our number and take it home now. He left but came back the next day and paid MUCH more than that. Go figure.
  • joel0622joel0622 Posts: 3,302
    Hell every one in this business know buyers are liars. They lie to you each and every day.

    Here are a small list of them that they tell every day.

    1. I will be back

    2. Gotta talk to the wife

    3. I am just looking

    4. I am not trading anything

    5. Yes my credit is good

    6. The other dealer said they would sell it for $xxx less
  • bdr127bdr127 Posts: 950
    Buyers are liars.

    As someone else mentioned, everyone isn't necessarily an all-out slimy pathological liar.... but people will often stretch the truth, embellish, etc.

    How about the very simple lie: "I'm just looking."

    If you went to a car dealer's lot, you probably wouldn't subject yourself to being "harrassed" by a salesperson just for poops and giggles. There is probably some level of interest in the cars and some thought of buying something.

    We ALL do it, too... and not just at car dealers. At ANY store... clothing store, electronics store, etc. An employee approaches us and asks us if they can help us or if we're looking for anything. Most of the time, it's just a knee-jerk reaction: "I'm just looking"... even if we really DO need help.
  • mikefm58mikefm58 Posts: 2,882
    Lie: I'm just looking.

    Truth: I'm interested in this vehicle, but I'm not quite ready for the purchase today. Right now, I really am just looking, so please leave me alone.
  • joel0622joel0622 Posts: 3,302
    If it is the customer then it is stretching the truth, embellishing, etc.

    But if a Sales Person tells you something then they are liar's cheats and thieves
  • mikefm58mikefm58 Posts: 2,882
    LOL, see post #88. The phrase "Buyers are Liars" is a euphimism (sp?).
  • snakeweaselsnakeweasel a Certified Edmunds Poster.Posts: 11,706
    Here are a small list of them that they tell every day.

    2. Gotta talk to the wife


    Trust me if I buy a car without talking to the wife I will be meeting my maker before that car gets out of my driveway.

    3. I am just looking

    the vast majority of the time I walk into a dealership I just want to see whats out there.

    The sign said "No shoes, no shirt, no service", it didn't say anything about no pants.

  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,638
    Yeah, some people always have "a friend" who bought the same car for much less. I've asked these people to bring in a P.O. and I'll match it.

    I have yet to see one.
  • bdr127bdr127 Posts: 950
    2. Gotta talk to the wife

    Trust me if I buy a car without talking to the wife I will be meeting my maker before that car gets out of my driveway.


    True, most people would be killed if they bought a car without their spouse.... but let's face it, it's a pretty common knee-jerk cop-out, too. ;)

    3. I am just looking

    the vast majority of the time I walk into a dealership I just want to see whats out there.


    Then you're probably the exception, rather than the rule. Car guys like myself (and perhaps you, too?) sometimes just like to look at cars. But most people dread walking onto a dealer lot.... why would they subject themselves to that if they didn't have any interest or intent? They might be very early in their car search, but they probably need more info than just physically seeing a car and perhaps a test drive....
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,638
    That isn't a lie. Most buyers start out "just looking".

    They see something they like, feel comfortable with the salesperson and the price and end up driving it home.

    Just don't lie about your "hidden trade" a good salesperson can smell one of these every time.
  • sandman46sandman46 Posts: 1,798
    I agree, as I have to start looking sometime. And the wife has to approve any car, as she sometimes has to drive mine. If she's uncomfortable with my choice, I can't in good conscience buy it.
    I'm always upfront with my trade also. No point being cagy about it. What's the point?

    The Sandman :)
  • bobstbobst Posts: 1,783
    "I'm always upfront with my trade also. No point being cagy about it. What's the point?"

    Maybe the point is that some people just love to play games and try to deceive other people. It gives them pleasure.

    When they were passing out that trait, however, I was in the other line.
  • sandman46sandman46 Posts: 1,798
    I don't like to play games. When I sit down to talk $, I'm ready to buy right now. You hit my target price & my trade in price...we're done and I write a check. Only once did I take a car home the same day...hate it. Had to go back for the stripes & guards. I'd rather take delivery the next day when all the "stuff" is done and the car is real "purty".
    We don't buy to often, but when I'm ready...I'm ready. Lookin' towards 2008 for my next ride, possibly '09. But the only car which peaks my interest is the Civic EX with auto. Never done a Honda and am ready to.

    The Sandman :)
  • snakeweaselsnakeweasel a Certified Edmunds Poster.Posts: 11,706
    Then you're probably the exception, rather than the rule. Car guys like myself (and perhaps you, too?) sometimes just like to look at cars.

    Yep thats me, I am in at least one dealership a month just looking around. I am up front in letting them know I am just looking and not ready to buy any time soon. Yet most times the salesman still hangs around me like a vulture flying over the dying cow. :(

    The sign said "No shoes, no shirt, no service", it didn't say anything about no pants.

  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 10,850
    I also mean it when I say, "just looking;" however, I've never bought a car when I intended to. Not every "just looking" has turned into a "buying" day for me, but every "buying" day has truly (in my mind at least) started out as a "just looking" day.

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  • snakeweaselsnakeweasel a Certified Edmunds Poster.Posts: 11,706
    I have never gone from I am just looking to buying a car in the same day. Usually my purchases are planned out in advanced and usually when I know my current car is on its last legs.

    The sign said "No shoes, no shirt, no service", it didn't say anything about no pants.

  • bobstbobst Posts: 1,783
    Snake, I bet a good sales person can tell from your manner and body language that you are really just looking and have no intention of buying a car that day.
  • snakeweaselsnakeweasel a Certified Edmunds Poster.Posts: 11,706
    True, but a good salesperson will at least ask to make sure. Mannerism and body language can be misleading.

    The sign said "No shoes, no shirt, no service", it didn't say anything about no pants.

  • mikefm58mikefm58 Posts: 2,882
    " Snake, I bet a good sales person can tell from your manner and body language that you are really just looking and have no intention of buying a car that day. "

    What kind of mannerisms or body language do they look for? At one particular Toyota dealership I have not been able to go to their lot when I am "just looking" and not get followed around. I try to be nice and tell them I'm "just looking" but they don't understand it.
  • bobstbobst Posts: 1,783
    "What kind of mannerisms or body language do they look for?"

    Well, since I am not a salesman and I am not good at 'reading people', I have no idea what they look for in our mannerisms.

    However, sales people are always nice to me. When I say I am just looking, they give me their card, say a few words, and leave me alone. Whatever mannerisms I have, they must say "just looking" loud and clear.

    Maybe I look too happy and relaxed to be a serious buyer, so they leave me alone.
  • bdr127bdr127 Posts: 950
    I have never gone from I am just looking to buying a car in the same day. Usually my purchases are planned out in advanced and usually when I know my current car is on its last legs.

    I'd imagine most people on these forums are pretty similar... people that do their homework and purchase a car after well thought out considerations. We're probably not a very representative sample of the population.

    There are exceptions, of course, as shown in the "Chronic Car Buyers Anonymous" forum (or whatever it's called).... but I think most people that would come to a site like this are already doing their homework.
  • snakeweaselsnakeweasel a Certified Edmunds Poster.Posts: 11,706
    One time I went to a Honda dealer told the guy I was just looking and didn't want to waste his time. This guy was really pushy, trying to get me to take a test drive and tried to get my name and contact information. When I pressed that I was just looking and am currently not interested in buying at this time (the truth mind you) this guy storms off yelling "Oh I can tell you have had bad experiences with car salesmen before". I couldn't resist and yelled back "not until now".

    The sign said "No shoes, no shirt, no service", it didn't say anything about no pants.

This discussion has been closed.