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Stories from the Sales Frontlines

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  • abacomikeabacomike South FloridaPosts: 3,119
    SHOPPING FOR A CAR USED TO BE A FUN UNDERTAKING...

    When I was a young man (18+ years old) I remember shopping for a new car was an exciting adventure. My first new car was a dark green RAMBLER AMERICAN 2 door sedan. I went to the dealership with my Dad and we drove a few cars. We decided on the Rambler American (AMC) because it was cheap ($1825) and my Dad liked it because it had a whopping 90 hp UNIVERSAL engine (flat top 6 - same engine they put in Checker Cabs (this was 1964). It had automatic and a heater (heaters were optional believe it or not) and that was it. I remember Dad trying to drop the price - but no way - the sticker price was the price - period. What they used to do was throw a set of mats in it and bumper guards to make the deal. Negotiating the price was not an option .

    For graduation from college, Dad said I should look for a new car - he sent me out to his friend's Olds/Chevy dealer way out on Long Island. I picked out a Chevrolet Impala SS with a 409 cu in engine. But before the car could be ordered, GM went out on strike. I had to wait go 4 months until the car was built. Those cars were so hot (in demand) that they rarely discounted them. Dad was able to buy it for $1000 off list - considered a great deal at the time.

    But looking at a new car and then ordering what you wanted was the standard practice. Dealerships did not stock hundreds of new cars back then - it only took 3 weeks to special order one and take delivery. I think that was the most enjoyable part - anxiously awaiting the car to be delivered.

    Nowadays, dealers stock hundreds of new cars - and deal on those in inventory much better than one that must be ordered or dealer traded. We tend to "settle more" for a different color, more options than we wanted, or fewer options than we wanted. Ordering a car is almost unheard of when back in the 1950-1970, cars were usually ordered to get exactly what you wanted. Anticipation - waiting for your new car to be built and shipped - is almost gone. There's always a car in transit, at the port, at another dealer or on the lot that you can "settle for"! Things have sure changed, haven't they?

    2014 Mercedes Benz CLS 550 - best car ever! 2nd best car ever, my 1967 Corvette Stingray Coupe with 435 hp.

  • abacomikeabacomike South FloridaPosts: 3,119
    @driver100...If you increase incentives, and you sell lots of low price (lower profit) cars, then you may actually lose out on the more important and meaningful contest....actual profit.

    That should be the case, driver, however MB came out with the new S Class Sedan in September - they were selling every one they could produce at full MSRP - and still are. Dealers have no availability of that car and most customers are on waiting lists for their car to be built. Additionally, the new CLA is also bringing in close to MSRP money.

    When you average things out, Daimler Benz is probably ahead of 2012 on terms of profit. I belong to the MB Club of America and receive a monthly newsletter as well as a beautiful magazine every 2 months. According to those reports, profits are up.

    2014 Mercedes Benz CLS 550 - best car ever! 2nd best car ever, my 1967 Corvette Stingray Coupe with 435 hp.

  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 7,099

    @abacomike

    It is a shame too. Buying a car used to be such a romantic thing. Pick out the exact car, exterior color with interior color combination, engine, transmission, options. Have your money saved up and ready to go, then the anticipation of its arrival. To me, the coolest thing was the availability of multiple V8 engines.

    2001 Honda Prelude Type SH/ 2011 BMW 328xi / 2011 Honda Pilot EX-L w/ Navigation

  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 3,206

    @nyccarguy said: . . . Have your money saved up and ready to go, then the anticipation of its arrival. To me, the coolest thing was the availability of multiple V8 engines.

    That was then, and this is now. The EPA has created a system that minimizes the number of drive trains, since each and every one of them has to be tested to a fare-thee-well, at huge expense.

    Goes a long way towards explaining why manual transmission and diesel options that are all over the place in Europe and the rest of the world, but can't be bought for any amount of money in North America.

    Oh boy.

  • jmonroejmonroe Pittsburgh areaPosts: 5,540

    @sterlingdog said: HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL OF YOU! I have had quite a time reaching this new site. I wish to extend many thanks to Kirstie, Karen, and Imidazol97 for their assistance during the last few days. There was a glitch with my recent new email address, but all should be well now. I'll post more a little later. I want to see if this post works first.

    Richard

    Happy New year to you too.

    It’s nice to see that you are back with dues fully paid up so that you can post again. Your poster buddy (‘houdini’) was concerned about you making bail. Since you can post from the slammer as long as your dues are paid, we still don’t know your whereabouts and if you actually made bail, so let us know the ‘rest of the story’. :s

    jmonroe

    '09 Genesis V8 and '12 Legacy Limited 6 cyl

  • snakeweaselsnakeweasel a Certified Edmunds Poster.Posts: 11,560

    @Kirstie@Edmunds said: snakeweasel - just noticed your new signature line. Love it.

    Glad you like it, but it will get old fast so I have to think up something new. ;)

    There are three types of people in this world. Those who are good at math and those who are not.

  • snakeweaselsnakeweasel a Certified Edmunds Poster.Posts: 11,560

    @oldfarmer50 said: The little Toyota ad that was obscuring posts is gone now. I was getting worried that my IPad was funky. Pop ups were taking over. There was even a small Hyundai ad sideways on the right margin on top of the VW ad.

    Sounds like you had some type of adware, they can be in a form of a cookie or could very well be a program that gets installed on your computer. They are pretty easy to get rid of and you can find instructions on the internet. Usually just by clearing out your cookies. Make sure your browser settings doesn't allow third party cookies.

    There are three types of people in this world. Those who are good at math and those who are not.

  • abacomikeabacomike South FloridaPosts: 3,119
    @cdnpinhead...

    That was then, and this is now.

    I agree - on most new cars, you get a choice of 1 V8 engine (if available on a V8) a couple of inline or V6 power plants, and lately, a 4 cylinder option.

    When I got my Chevy SS Impala, you could opt for the standard 283 cu on V8, or the 327, 409, and then the 496. Buick used to offer their standard V8 along with a 455 option.

    Not any more - engine choices are very limited now for most cars.

    2014 Mercedes Benz CLS 550 - best car ever! 2nd best car ever, my 1967 Corvette Stingray Coupe with 435 hp.

  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 17,699

    @jmonroe said: [Richard], It’s nice to see that you are back with dues fully paid up so that you can post again.

    I keep encouraging Richard and everyone to buy the lifetime membership to Edmunds, so that they won't have to worry about their annual membership lapsing and getting it paid up before posting again. :grin

    This message has been approved.

  • sterlingdogsterlingdog North CarolinaPosts: 6,749

    @imidazol97 said: They won't give me a lifetime membership because I use the tech warranty too often. In fact, they are going up on my dues for 2014!

    Richard

  • sterlingdogsterlingdog North CarolinaPosts: 6,749

    See how I am? I couldn't get imidazol's quote to go at the top of my previous post! I am so in needof help. :'(

  • sandman_6472sandman_6472 Coral Springs, FLPosts: 2,576

    @abacomike said: WHEN LAND IS EXPENSIVE AND LIMITED IN AVAILABILITY!
    We have a dealership conglamorate in the western suburbs of Broward County that owns several dealerships within a 2 mile radius - Rick Case Honda, Volkswagen, Hyuandi, Kia, Volvo, and a few others. Since real estate has become so expensive, he has been building his dealerships vertically on lower acreage parcels. His average dealership has 8 floors of new cars - a different model on each floor. He also doubles the new car warranty and provides his customers with discounted gasoline - usually 20 cents per gallon lower than the average for the area.
    His approach has been very unique and he and his wife own dealerships throughout the State and in Georgia, as well. His company (Rick Cae) has received a multitude of awards from various associations.
    I've visited a few of his dealerships - they are kept impeccably spotless; he won't let a salesman on his floor without first going through 4 weeks of company paid training. After training, they become apprentices and are mentored. People I know have purchased cars from his dealerships and are completely satisfied with the treatment they received and their outstanding service.
    It is obvious that his unique approach to selling cars and maintaining a well trained sales force is paying off for him. And the fact that his inventories are housed in 8 story buildings keeps his new cars fresh and out of harms way.
    His closest dealership is about 15 miles away so many potential customers would be unable to take advantage of his services like cheap gas. But his location is in Weston and Pembroke Pines - the fastest growing area in Broward County.
    Very impressive organization and his modis operendi is extremely effective. Was at his VW and Hyundai store a couple of weeks ago and was not impressed one bit actually. I even met the owner and did enjoy having the vehicles sheltered from the elements. Other than that, I was not impressed one bit and so glad I bought right across the street. I think I did much better price wise though I must admit, there were plenty of people there the day I went. But to be fair, the day I bought my Tuscon, my Hyundai store was quite busy also with customers all over the place. The economy is getting better!

    The Sandman :) B)

    2014 Hyundai Tuscon SE/2005 Mazda 3s/2008 Hyundai Accent GLS/2009 Nissan Versa SL hatch

  • abacomikeabacomike South FloridaPosts: 3,119
    @sterlingdog....
    See how I am? I couldn't get imidazol's quote to go at the top of my previous post! I am so in needof help.

    Richard - aren't we all in need of help here?

    If you want to respond to a post, at the bottom of each post you will see a (") quotation mark. Click on the quotation mark and then post your response. See how that works for you.

    2014 Mercedes Benz CLS 550 - best car ever! 2nd best car ever, my 1967 Corvette Stingray Coupe with 435 hp.

  • stickguystickguy Posts: 13,580

    one thing about using the quotes (yes, this is for Sandy...). When you hit quote and it gets put into your new post, the quote follows the ">" sign. When you want to type your own comments, make sure to go to the bottom of the quote, and start typing on a line without the > at the beginning. otherwise you just add to what is in the quote box.

    2013 Acura RDX (wife's), 2007 Volvo S40 (when daughter lets me see it), 2000 Acura TL (formerly son's, now mine again), and new Jetta SE (son's first new car on his own dime!)

  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 17,699

    @sterlingdog said: See how I am? I couldn't get imidazol's quote to go at the top of my previous post! I am so in need of help. :'(

    After you've posted, roll your cursor over the post on the forum. You'll see a little gear in the upper right corner. Put your mouse on that and you'll see a little window drop down that says you can edit for 4 hours. Use the cursor to pick the 4-hours, and then you can edit your post.

    The > symbol still makes words show up in a quote color box. Leave a blank line between a quote and your new words or else your words get included in the quote color box.

    This message has been approved.

  • stickguystickguy Posts: 13,580

    "For graduation from college, Dad said I should look for a new car"

    funny, my dad said I should look for a job...

    2013 Acura RDX (wife's), 2007 Volvo S40 (when daughter lets me see it), 2000 Acura TL (formerly son's, now mine again), and new Jetta SE (son's first new car on his own dime!)

  • abacomikeabacomike South FloridaPosts: 3,119
    @sandman...
    Other than that, I was not impressed one bit and so glad I bought right across the street.

    Each to his/her own, sandman. As I mentioned in my post, I know lots of people who have bought from Rick Case's dealerships and each one of them were extremely happy.

    He just opened his new VW DEALERSHIP in December and, from the article in today's Sun Sentinnel, he sold more VW's that first month in business than any other VW dealership on the country. I guess close to 400 buyers last month thought much better of his dealership than did you.

    But that's life I guess - one man's food is another man'a poison.

    Two of my neighbors bought their Hyundai cars at Rick Case after some very bad experiences at the dealership you bought yours from.

    What goes around comes around, to be sure.

    2014 Mercedes Benz CLS 550 - best car ever! 2nd best car ever, my 1967 Corvette Stingray Coupe with 435 hp.

  • sandman_6472sandman_6472 Coral Springs, FLPosts: 2,576

    Whatever, I don't put much stock in heresay to be honest with ya...and the number could've been 4000 for all I care! I went and saw for myself and again, I wasn't impressed...the folks you know were...bully for them!
    I bought where I felt the most comfortable and since we had bought there before, decided to give them my business. We had also gone to a Rick Case dealership years ago but got a better deal up in north Broward. And one last thing...opinions are like rectums...everyone has one!!!

    The Sandman :) B)

    2014 Hyundai Tuscon SE/2005 Mazda 3s/2008 Hyundai Accent GLS/2009 Nissan Versa SL hatch

  • abacomikeabacomike South FloridaPosts: 3,119
    @sandman
    Whatever, I don't put much stock in heresay to be honest with ya...and the number could've been 4000 for all I care!

    Sandy, the business section of the Sun Sentinnel IS NOT HERESAY - FACTS ARE FACTS, SALES STATISTICS ARE SALES STATISTICS.

    Please do not put me down or call me a LIAR. I don't lie!!!!

    GET IT!

    2014 Mercedes Benz CLS 550 - best car ever! 2nd best car ever, my 1967 Corvette Stingray Coupe with 435 hp.

  • mako1amako1a VirginiaPosts: 1,595

    I just saw the new Edmunds commercial on TV. It's a guy with a car for his head that talks thru his grill saying about price guarantees.

    Also, the cold snap finally got here to Virginia. Yesterday was 47 and now it's -4. On top of that we lost power for 4 hours. Fortunately we have a whole house automatic generator. A few surrounding counties have been without power for close to 6 hours. Not good with temps below zero.

    2013 Mustang GT, 2006 Silverado 2500 LT HD, 2001 GMC Yukon Denali

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