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Although a bit embellished, it takes the reader behind the scene, like never before told. The read covers a time period from 1956, thru 2005, as it reveals how all consumer laws were violated. This is not a text, but a true account of how dealers rape their customers! You've never read anything like it before.
The most shocking book ever written on the retail car business.
It will literally blow the reader away!
by, Louis Newcomb
Everything you read here is true and maybe a bit too mild. These guys would laugh when they screwed people and thought it was a game.
An old trick I thought of when I read the balloon thing: when someone came in with their kid (s) and the staff found out their credit sucked, they would give the kids a black balloon. This way, when they went to another dealership, the staff there would get a heads up: "here comes somebody we can really, really screw!"
Seriously, I could sell CARS.. What I could not sell was the dealership and the process. I had more people wringing their hands about how badly they wanted the car I had shown them, but walk when I pulled out the Four Square, or the sales manager would start high balling them on the price and low balling the trade.
Despite that, I was getting better until they hired 10 new salespeople and threw them on point. This was a dealership with an entire sales staff of 15. One week where almost every sale fell apart based on bad credit scores, where I'd managed to get the buyer to COMMIT but it turned out they couldn't pass finance, and I was let go.
I talked to salespeople who talked like the previous commenter who says he didn't worry about profit, he just made sure people got the right car. That's a sign of someone who has bought their own sales pitch. A salesperson might be good enough to convince people without a lot of effort, and thus be able to focus his efforts differently than a green pea. However, the moment he stops bringing in the profit is the moment he'll have a lot of free time on his hands.
Neither this nor the original Confessions article really touches on the REAL reason dealers and salespeople apply so much pressure. The author states that he consoled himself that if he didn't overcharge someone, that someone else would. The real problem is how competitive it is between dealers. If you are honest, you will not eat.
The guy down the road CAN and WILL do everything in his power to take your customer, including lying, cheating and stealing. Dealers that open up and are REALLY no-haggle/no-hassle rather than just paying lip service, tend to close up rather quickly. If you tell someone their trade is worth $4000, and the guy down the street tells them $6000, then he has the sale. Period. Regardless of the fact that his F&I office turns around and bumps his monthly payment $60 a month to make up for it.
The only way it will ever get fixed is for people to become properly educated and only do business with those who provide and stick by an honest price for an honest product. That time hasn't come yet, from my experience. There are still plenty of folks who wander onto the lot with no clue to put the cheats out of business yet.
First off, one of the commenters mentioned buyers with bad credit and called the car people vultures. Although some people have just fallen into hard times, most of the bad credit people I've encountered are lowlifes who've never paid much of anything in their lives. In that situation, you get the interest rate you've earned. You should also realize that part of the "inflated" pricing is the upfront interest or fee the lender requires because they know there's a strong possibility they'll have to repo the car. Those people also require alot more work on the part of the finance manager as well as after sales work by the salesman.
Most salespeople are just trying to make a buck. Selling 8-10 cars is average and although payplans vary from dealership to dealership, that might get you $2500-$3000 per month. A real vulture could sit at home and get that from Barack & Co., as opposed to sitting at the lot waiting for an inexperienced snot nosed kid to come in with a stack of papers telling the dealership what they should sell their car for.
Are there questionable practices used? Sometimes. That's a good reason to find a salesman like "bickatbyers" who you like, trust and can go to if you have a problem. Often times people will buy with a "carbuying" service then show up at a dealership with a car needing service, but not much more. Need a loaner? Sure, if you bought your car here. Oh, you bought from USAA? Maybe they'll provide a loaner...right?
One last thought: If you're dumb enough to get a key in the mail and go to the dealership expecting to win a car, then end up with a $500 monthly payment on an ovewrpriced used POS, well think of yourself as Forrest Gump...stupid is as stupid does.
So, he chose an "old school" dealer to work for and wants to advise everyone about today's dealers. And he worked there for a short time.... a few weeks.... a few months? Excuse me if I have to smile.
Mr. Jacobs, it's been a while since your short stint as well. Your playing off (preying off?) a stereotype that is out of date. (You mentioned that, thank you)
Yes, there are some dealers who still organize their sales in the manner you mentioned. But you fail to acknowledge the transparency and great customer service that has resulted from the Internet. It's these great changes that brought me from the sales floor to the Internet side of this business 13 years ago. I wanted to see them happen, and I have seen them happen.
Salespeople and the franchise laws are not going to go away. Nobody is interested in buying cars online without touching, feeling, smelling, and driving a very expensive machine.
As you said, "a good salesman is valuable" and so is a good dealership. Yes it's a for profit business. So is every other business. As someone who actually writes about integrity and customer service within this business myself, I think your line of thought is self motivated and sensationalism. It's certainly in your interests on this blog to perpetuated outdated stereotypes.
Gotta go, but a guick note first: The original article is True, Current, Timely, and consumers can Still Learn from it. I did.
Too bad my naive, innocent, ignorant, widowed, 75-yr-old mother didn't get a chance to read it first. Too bad I'm out of pocket too much of the time (like now). But bickatbyers, below, as so many car salesmen are, is full of baloney. Consumers, watch your wallets (and purses).
But of course I still had to do the song and dance with the finance guy...even though I paid cash. I was offered extended warranties, pre-paid oil changes, gap insurance, pre-paid car washes, and a hundred other overpriced items I had no intention of buying. And finally I get to the actual invoice and that $15,800 had magically turned into $16,200. The extra $400 was documentation fee and some other BS dealer fees. I told the finance guy you have 3 minutes to remove that $400 or I am walking out the door. He said, well you see state law requires that we charge these fees. I said you have 2 minutes and 30 seconds and the clock is ticking. And magically the sleazebag remembered that it's actually not a state law at all and just pure $400 profit. He removed the $400. But I will bet 95 out of 100 customers just hand over that $400 without blinking an eye.
Car salesmen commenting on this story keep asking, what other industry do customers expect to pay invoice? Well my reply to them is in what other industry does a $400 "documentation fee" stealthily is added to the final price of a transaction? None. I don't go to the grocery store, but $100 of food and then at checkout pay a $12 documentation fee. Nor does the cashier try to upsell me $500 worth of useless junk. I don't go to the doctor's office and then when leaving, a nurse doesn't keep me in the waiting room for an hour trying to sell me on getting some surgery I don't need.
Car sales are still by and large performed by sleazy people with no morals. I'm all for everyone in business making a profit. But making a profit is not synonymous with scamming customers.