Choosing a Dealer - What to Look For

tidestertidester Member Posts: 10,059
What do you look for in selecting a dealership? Are there telltale signs to distinguish between great dealerships and those to avoid?

tidester, host
SUVs and Smart Shopper
«1

Comments

  • jipsterjipster Louisville, KentuckyMember Posts: 6,064
    I usually try to avoid the dealeships with the 3 story inflated gorilla. The ones with ballons all over the place doesn't sit well with me either. Screamer ads... don't like them, though they all pretty much do them. I have no scientific data to back this up, just a gut feeling.

    I'll usually pick a dealership by referral. A dealership that has been in the community for a long time, and has built a reputation would be a safer bet.
    2020 Honda Accord EX-L, 2011 Hyundai Veracruz, 2010 Mercury Milan Premiere, 2007 Kia Optima
  • oldfarmer50oldfarmer50 Member Posts: 17,830
    I like to see lots of salesmen standing out in front like sharks smoking ciggys. This tells me that I will receive quick service. The salesman must have slicked back hair as I don't want it blowing about during the test drive. Plaid pants are a plus too. This way I can find him out in the lot when I have questions. Oh yea, and I must hear him using terms like "bump" and "laydown" so that I know he is well versed in the car biz.

    Seriously, I would select a dealer where they answer my questions honestly with a minimum of BS. If they will lay off the tricks I will offer a decent price and we can be done quickly.

    In reading these forums I have come to see how in many of my previous purchases I was taken advantage of. I hope to not repeat that experience in the future.

    2019 Kia Soul+, 2015 Mustang GT, 2004 Chevy Van, 2000 Chrysler Sebring convertible

  • jlawrence01jlawrence01 Member Posts: 1,828
    Here are the things that I like to see in a dealership:

    1) A variety of vehicles and models. At a minimum, two or three of each model in a place that is readily accessible for viewing.

    2) Friendly staff who will get you information and service. Nothing turns me off more than having to find help when I walk into a dealership (as happened this evening).

    3) Professional staff who know their vehicles. I mean a Ford salesman should be able to know the basics of every Ford model on the lot ... or at least where to find it.

    4) The vehicles on the lot should be consistent with the type of store that you operate. If you are a new dealership that sells certified vehicles, I don't want to see a bunch of cars on the lot that have had major damages.

    5) Professional salespeople - dressed properly, using clean language, PRINTED business cards, etc.
  • joel0622joel0622 Member Posts: 3,299
    Great points Jlawrence. I printed them off and shared them at the sales meeting this morning. Here is the one that always gets a rise out of sales people and it is hard to find the line.

    2) Friendly staff who will get you information and service. Nothing turns me off more than having to find help when I walk into a dealership (as happened this evening).

    If a salesperson greets a customer to quickly then they say they are pounced on, if it is to slow then they say that they were ignored. Some people say just let me look I will come find you if I need you, some people say they just want to look then come inside and tell a manager no one will help them. We greet people within 2 minutes of arrival and say "Welcome to XXX XXXXXX XXXX, how may I help you today" if they say they just want to look they are given a card and cut lose told to keep the card in there hand visible so others will no they have already been greeted. We then check in every 5 minutes or so to see if they have any questions.

    Like I said its a fine line.

    Once again thanks for the bullet points, hopefully they will help the sales people here give better customer service
  • jlawrence01jlawrence01 Member Posts: 1,828
    Joel,

    During the last MAJOR snow storm in Chicago, I stopped by the local Pontiac dealership. I was just driving through at 8 pm to see their used car stock as I believed the place was closed. One of the salesmen nearly jumped on the hood of my vehicle to talk to me. That is a bit too addressive for me (although I did stop in later and test drive a car).

    On the other hand, yesterday, I got out of my car, walked the lot, walked into the showroom and had to wait six minutes. What was really discouraging was that I got a greenpea who did not know all that much about the product.

    My favorite: "the Fusions and the Five Hundreds all come with AWD which is essental for the snow in Chicago." Umm, are your sure about that.

    The handwritten business cards are kind of bush league.

    The local Toyota dealership does a good volume of vehicles and is in the process of moving to bigger quarters. However, despite having a good few years, the place looks absolutely shabby. If you buy IKEA style furniture, plan to replace it a couple of times a decade.

    Don't get me wrong, there are a lot of good dealerships out there. And when a buyer is in a "tie situation", that is where the offerings are equally attractive, the dealership that does a better job gets the business.
  • audia8qaudia8q Member Posts: 3,138
    nice post..

    but it won't stop most consumers from buying from the green pea who knows nothing at the sleazy dealer who was $50 cheaper.
  • joel0622joel0622 Member Posts: 3,299
    And when a buyer is in a "tie situation", that is where the offerings are equally attractive, the dealership that does a better job gets the business.

    I know I am pulling this thread off track and maybe the Mod's want to move it to another, but.

    How much is "Good Service" worth in $$ to a consumer. If you have had a good experience with Service and the Sales associates were well informed, polite, and proffesional will you pay that store an extra $100, $200, $500? Or is it soley on the best deal regardless of how you were treated? I.E Which do you choose?

    Dealer A
    2007 Fordorrolatundra sl Crossover $23500 OTD

    Internet department was quick with the quote and answered all questions. Came in for appt, sales person had car ready for test drive, was polite, friendly, and knowledgeable. No pressure

    Dealer B

    No reply from internet. When you got there had to find some one to help you. Salesmen asked if you were gonna buy today when you asked to drive it. Once you got a price 2 hours later it was $22500 OTD. But in the Business office they sprang another $200 in fees on you.

    Where do you buy?
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H EdmundsAdministrator Posts: 11,114
    Well, I got a follow-up call from my salesperson (at the same dealership) nearly a year after I purchased the car. She wanted to know how I was liking it and if I was happy with it/her.

    She was honest and said she was also making sure her contacts were updated, and reiterated the offer of a $100 referral "bonus" for me. For me, it was a win-win. I was impressed that she took the time to call a year later, and she still knows how to get in touch with me to sell another vehicle.

    I said I was happy, but if I hadn't been, she could have used the opportunity to turn another vehicle, if she'd used the right tactics. I've had follow-ups a month later, but a year later was quite nice.

    MODERATOR

    Need help navigating? [email protected] - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

    Share your vehicle reviews

  • jlawrence01jlawrence01 Member Posts: 1,828
    How much is "Good Service" worth in $$ to a consumer. If you have had a good experience with Service and the Sales associates were well informed, polite, and proffesional will you pay that store an extra $100, $200, $500?

    As much as I hate to admit it, I do not think that I ever get the best deal on my personal ride.

    I like to shop at dealers where they keep only the best cars. If I drive around your used car lot (not the service area) and I see poor looking body work on half of your used cars, I have to think that you'll sell anything.

    I also like to buy from people I have dealt with before - if they have the inventory available. $500-700 on a purchase that I make every 7-10 years is pretty irrelevant in the long run.

    Personally, I won't accept any additional fees after the negotiation. And yes, I have gotten up to walk out on occasion.
  • bobstbobst Member Posts: 1,783
    In our area, we have bought cars at six dealers and they all seemed about the same. As long as the dealer has the car we want, we will go there.

    EXCEPT when I was looking for an Acura RSX in October 2003. I visited a dealer and they had the exact car we wanted. As I recall, it only had about 30 miles on it but the interior was filthy. I could have reached down and picked up a handful of dirt from the carpet.

    I decided I didn't want to buy a car from a dealer who could treat a beautiful car so cruelly. I don't mind if they lie to me and try to cheat me, but I don't like it when they mistreat a poor helpless automobile.

    We bought a car at Pohanka Acura in Herndon instead.
  • jlawrence01jlawrence01 Member Posts: 1,828
    Since February 5th, I have been looking for a vehicle to replace my 1996 Olds Ciera. Since I needed to own a car to keep my insurance coverage in force, I bought a 1989 Cutlass Ciera as a "bridge" car. However, the bridge is rather old and falling apart.

    I have been to 10-12 different dealerships. I have to admit that I did not find a single sleazy dealership. Of course, I could attribute that to avoiding the two dealerships in the area that have a bad reputation.

    Only one overly aggressive salesman out of ten. Only one helpless greenpea (no, the Fusion does not have AWD as standard equipment on the base model.)

    Today, I went into the local Toyota dealership with a Chicago Tribune ad from Saturday's paper advertising a Toyota Corolla LE with Auto, AC, PW/PB for $13,950. I have to admit that I believed that I would not see a car at that price as most of the Carolla LE models stickered at $17.1.

    I showed the ad to the salesman and he took me to a row of 15 Corollas on the lot at that price and asked me which color I wanted. No pressure and the transaction was done in under 50 minutes including test drive.

    I chose the dealership because it was the closest Toyota dealership to home and work. I wanted to deal locally as it is a lot more convenient AND the local dealerships provide free loaners when you bring the car in for service. The other dealerships generally don't.

    I chose not to haggle at all because the OTD price was less than I had expected it to be.
  • jipsterjipster Louisville, KentuckyMember Posts: 6,064
    but I don't like it when they mistreat a poor helpless automobile.

    What happened to the "grow up... expect nothing from people and they won't disappoint you" philosophy? They had the "exact" car you wanted. Probably left the windows down near a construction site. You could have had them vacuumed and cleaned out the interior in half an hour, and had the "exact" car you wanted.

    The dealership we bought our Mazda MPV from was near a construction zone. It's exterior was filthy. I didn't whine about it because it was the "exact" car we wanted. Bought and drove it home that night as service dept. had closed for the day. I came back the next day and the delearship washed and detailed it for me. Easy peasey.
    2020 Honda Accord EX-L, 2011 Hyundai Veracruz, 2010 Mercury Milan Premiere, 2007 Kia Optima
  • bobstbobst Member Posts: 1,783
    "Probably left the windows down near a construction site."

    How could any person with a conscience do something like that and still live with themselves?

    Actually, it was an amazing amount of dirt on the carpets on both the driver and passenger sides. Maybe the car had been in a flood or something, but then wouldn't the dealer have made more of an effort to clean the car and hide the flood damage? It was kind of strange.
  • jipsterjipster Louisville, KentuckyMember Posts: 6,064
    Well, it wouldn't have bothered me if it was just dirt in the carpet. I have a dog and 2 kids... so dirty carpet I'm use to. But, if any dirt was in the seat upholstery (non leather) then I would have passed on it as well. Flood damage? You add flood damage and a lazy owner together you may get the car you're describing. If the "new" car was unusally discounted... that would be my guess.

    I did feel sorry for whoever the lot boy was at the dealership I bought from. He probably was out washing and drying every car on the lot 2 or 3 times a day... a lot of dirt and dust from construction work.
    2020 Honda Accord EX-L, 2011 Hyundai Veracruz, 2010 Mercury Milan Premiere, 2007 Kia Optima
  • redsox24redsox24 Member Posts: 3
    I asked for a copy of the invoice and the dealer said no way. Yikes. Did I make a mistake?
  • thenebeanthenebean Member Posts: 1,124
    if you were planning on taking a copy of the invoice home with you, dealer is gonna say no. asking to see it on the other hand is a different story, and the dealer will probably let you do that...

    -thene
  • joel0622joel0622 Member Posts: 3,299
    I am going to take the fact that since not one person put a $$ figure on the value of good service that no one cares how they are treated as long as they save a buck.
  • jipsterjipster Louisville, KentuckyMember Posts: 6,064
    WELLLLLLL.....JOELLLLLLL.... I think we want both(service & price). :blush:
    2020 Honda Accord EX-L, 2011 Hyundai Veracruz, 2010 Mercury Milan Premiere, 2007 Kia Optima
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H EdmundsAdministrator Posts: 11,114
    It's not an exact $ figure. When I bought my last car, I paid asking prices (which I thought was decent anyway) on the condition that they could get me totally OUT of there in an hour, no need to return to "finish up."

    I absolutely HAD to be somewhere, and was happy to just wrap up the deal on the spot. If I'd had to return on Saturday, no biggie, but I would've had more time on my hands and thus might have spent some of it haggling. The quick & easy transaction was worth the few extra $ in that case - no idea how much I could've saved haggling.

    MODERATOR

    Need help navigating? [email protected] - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

    Share your vehicle reviews

  • joel0622joel0622 Member Posts: 3,299
    The only reason I asked is because folks are quick to let you know when dealer in there eyes mistreats them, and it always seems to be the same dealers doing it. And if you go to dealer and are treated well every time that is not by coincidence.

    That means one dealer is taking the time to screen employees to try to get what in his eyes is in the top of there field, where dealer B is looking for a warm body to greet you and get you in front of a manager.

    Good dealerships come with a cost. it usually means more time and money is spent on training and Customer Service. I personally think it is money well spent ;) I was just wondering if Joe Consumer is willing to pay a few hundred more for it.
  • bobstbobst Member Posts: 1,783
    "no one cares how they are treated as long as they save a buck."

    Yep, Joel, that's how it is for a lot of us.
  • bobstbobst Member Posts: 1,783
    "I was just wondering if Joe Consumer is willing to pay a few hundred more for it."

    Maybe Joe Sucker is.
  • joel0622joel0622 Member Posts: 3,299
    Wow thats amazing. So if you bought a car and came back 6 months later with a service problem and the salesmen said "To bad bud, I don't build them or fix them, I just sell them, you need to carry your butt to service. I will talk to you next time you come to buy something". That wouldn't bother you and you would buy another car from him as long as he was the lowest price?
  • jipsterjipster Louisville, KentuckyMember Posts: 6,064
    I absolutely HAD to be somewhere...

    I would strongly advise fellow members against buying an expensive item under such time constraints. For most people it is a recipe for disaster.

    no idea how much I could've saved haggling.

    You got an Infiniti G35 about 3 years old, if memory serves correct. I'm guessing you could have saved one to two grand haggling. Unless the dealership had it on the lot for several months, wanting to get rid of it as it was close to being wholesaled.
    2020 Honda Accord EX-L, 2011 Hyundai Veracruz, 2010 Mercury Milan Premiere, 2007 Kia Optima
  • audia8qaudia8q Member Posts: 3,138
    the salesperson isnt going to fix the service problem so if he said I don't build em or fix em I wouldnt be surprised or upset. Based on real world turn over statistics there is a good chance the salesperson won't be there in 6 months.. How will paying more when I buy the car benefit me as a consumer?....Wouldn't I be better off building a relationship with the folks in service who have much less turnover and see me more than once every few years? should I pay more in service to get a better tech?
  • joel0622joel0622 Member Posts: 3,299
    the salesperson isn't going to fix the service problem so if he said I don't build em or fix em I wouldn't be surprised or upset.

    Baloney, maybe not you, because I don't know you but 99.99999999% of the people here would be on this site cranking up the worst experience ever thread talking about how they went to a dealer they bought a car from 6 months ago and the salesmen blew him off blah, blah, all dealers are terrible, blah blah blah, I will never go there again.

    You know which one of my customers get the best deal every single time no questions asked, no haggling needed? The loyal ones. Not Johny Drive Up, who wants the best price so he can drive all over hells half acre to save $87.50 and get a free oil change. But the guy who I know and have a relationship with. It don't work for every one I know. I guess seeing it from the consumers side here is different for me. People just keep saying things that amaze me.

    If i have a guy who trades with me all the time he can call me and say "Joel, I want a new 2007 Fusion, i want to trade my Explorer for it" I say, "Sir is it in the same shape all your trades are usually in"? How many miles? How are the tires? I call him back and say, Sir i will trade for $10K, what time do you want to come buy or do you want me to bring it to the house?

    Done finished, he trades cars in 15 minutes, and never leaves his house if he does not want to.
  • joel0622joel0622 Member Posts: 3,299
    One quick follow up. When I said

    99.99999999% of the people here would be on this site cranking up the worst experience ever thread talking about how they went to a dealer they bought a car from 6 months ago and the salesmen blew him off blah, blah, all dealers are terrible, blah blah blah, I will never go there again.

    You would be doing it with good reason, because no one deserves to be treated to that extreme.
  • tidestertidester Member Posts: 10,059
    I don't know you but 99.99999999% of the people ...

    That would correspond to 1 person in 10 BILLION. It will take about another 50 years or so before Earth's population reaches that level and probably a bit longer before our membership achieves the same. ;)

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • joel0622joel0622 Member Posts: 3,299
    Hey easy with the selective cut and paste now. :D You left out the one key word

    99.99999999% of the people here

    So you and all the other Host go back to your seceret room and continue to talk about us. We got this covered :P :):D
  • tidestertidester Member Posts: 10,059
    99.99999999% of the people here

    But we only deal with WHOLE people. :P

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • joel0622joel0622 Member Posts: 3,299
    But we only deal with WHOLE people.


    Well then you obviously have not read some of the HALF cocked post I have :shades: ;):D

    btw, you all really need a better lol ha ha ha i am just kidding smiley. :)
  • audia8qaudia8q Member Posts: 3,138
    99.99999999% of the people here would be on this site cranking up the worst experience ever thread talking about how they went to a dealer they bought a car from 6 months ago and the salesmen blew him off blah, blah, all dealers are terrible, blah blah blah, I will never go there again.

    Consumers talk big but rarely do what they say. Of course they will go there again, all they have to do is sell the car for $50 cheaper than the next dealer. For most consumers its all about price. How else would some of the junk on the market get sold?
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H EdmundsAdministrator Posts: 11,114
    It had been there for awhile, yes. The price had been dropped a few times and was already below what I've seen many others pay. I got a good, but not Top International Haggler price.

    I had all day to shop originally. Hadn't found anything I wanted, and that place was my last stop. I could've come back the next day, but that was a Saturday, and the dealership was ~20 miles from my house, and I was tired of being in a rental car (after vehicle totalling). So... it was my decision to say hey, why not - just see if they can wrap the whole thing up in an hour and let me be done with it.

    MODERATOR

    Need help navigating? [email protected] - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

    Share your vehicle reviews

  • joel0622joel0622 Member Posts: 3,299
    Nothing wrong with that Kirstie, its not like you are going to be put in the Haggler Hall Of Shame or anything. You are just a person who values there time.

    Hey I will admit it. Before I got into sales I was the an easy mark. And now I am as easy as they come. I have not negotiated the price on one thing in the last 13 years. After a couple of years in this business I just couldn't do it. I told my wife, "how can I come home on Monday and complain about all the tight asses buying cars and then go on Tuesday and negotiate the price of a TV?"

    So any of you folks on Commission who sell anything but cars might want to give me a card. If you look up Lay Down in the dictionary there is a picture of me. :D
  • drewbadrewba Member Posts: 154
    I'd say that having a pleasant purchase experience where I don't need to spend a weekend driving from store to store is worth an extra 1-2% of the purchase price to me.

    However, $1,000 is a bit extreme. I'd probably try e-mailing dealer C. :-)
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    I value dealer service very highly and I do in fact pay extra for it. Case in point---I take my car into the dealer for its services. Do I pay more? Yeah, probably $50 to $75 a visit every $5,000 miles. And what do I get for that?

    Washed car, call on my cell phone when it's done (on time, always), name of service person I can call up for questions, and, one time---a new bumper for the one they scratched while the car was on their premises.

    Not only do I pay extra for these services, I actually tip the service manager $10-$20 bucks.

    As for that well-dressed young kid with shining eyes, just learning his business, who sold me the car, I've sent him two customers, and so when I call HIM up to help me, he helps me locate a part or answer a question on extended warranty or figure out a deal for a friend on the phone.

    Of course, this kind of mutually beneficial relationship requires TWO cooperating parties. Yes, you can sometimes be caught casting pearls before swine and so you have to use common sense in dispensing your generosity and trust. Some dealerships are unrehabilitatible and will always go back to the Big House. You cannot cure larceny or laziness just by being nice, but if there is goodwill to be reaped, by all means put in your half and get it done.

    The dealer is, in fact, your portal to the factory. The dealer is your intermediary. You slam that door shut, or if you contract with a dealer who doesn't accept his responsbility as trusted doorman to your satisfaction, you are essentially screwed for 5 years or 50,000 miles, whichever comes first in its agonizing slowness.
  • jipsterjipster Louisville, KentuckyMember Posts: 6,064
    Do I pay more? Yeah, probably $50 to $75 a visit every 5,000 miles... I actually tip the service manager $10-$20 bucks

    Edmunds must pay you guys fairly well. :)

    So, roughly every 5,000 miles, when you go in for an oil change, you're out of pocket expense is about $90. That's kind of high for an oil change and wash. I suppose if it helps with a borderline call on warranty repair, it may be worth it.

    But, how do you know you wouldn't get these "extras" anyhow .... without having to pay more and tip?

    I go into my dealership about every 4 or 5 months, unless the service advisor is taking notes, I doubt that he remembers me. So, for most people I don't think this building a repore with dealership will be beneficial. $$$
    2020 Honda Accord EX-L, 2011 Hyundai Veracruz, 2010 Mercury Milan Premiere, 2007 Kia Optima
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    Well your math is fine and there's no argument from me about it BUT---it also depends on what your time is worth I guess. If you and I went to the same doctor and I was ushered in right away and got 45 minutes with him by paying an extra "concierge fee" (which I do, to my doctor) and you sat and read magazines for 45 minutes and 10 minutes with the doctor, who's to say who got the best deal? It's not just about dollars, in other words.

    Or let's look at it another way. If my engine blows up 1,000 miles out of warranty, I have oil change receipts with the dealer's name on them, while Mr. X has no receipts, or receipts from Jiffy Lube.

    Can you guess what happens next? I have an idea.
  • joel0622joel0622 Member Posts: 3,299
    I pay for services all the time. There are a couple of Restaraunts that my wife and I frequent. When there is an 1 1/2 wait for a table we are usually seated in about 15 minutes. Why? Because when we come in we don't get out the tip calculator and figure a tip. We reward for good service and they remember us. Thats just one example of many. I tipped the ADT guy who put my alarm in and he called a week later to check in and I commented that all was fine, just wish I would have put an additional control pad in. He was there in an hour and put another one in Gratis.
  • jipsterjipster Louisville, KentuckyMember Posts: 6,064
    Can you guess what happens next?

    The dealership calls the manufacturer to get approval on out of warranty work I suppose. At only 1,000 miles out of warranty, I would think the dealership would do this irreguardless of whether your receipts are from Jiffy Lube or dealership... as long as you bought your car from said dealership.

    But, if it works for you guys great. Anyhow, I always figured you to be a DIY'er Shifty. :shades:
    2020 Honda Accord EX-L, 2011 Hyundai Veracruz, 2010 Mercury Milan Premiere, 2007 Kia Optima
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    Nah, I look under the hood of a new car and just scratch my....head....

    Some dealers have discretionary monies to pay for goodwill out of warranty but this depends on the dealer's reputation with the factory. A dealer who sells a lot and wins awards is going to get more from the factory than some surly backwater dealer who just creates grief for factory and customer, that's for sure.

    Well of course we reward good service. I wasn't passing out bribes---these are rewards for missions accomplished.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonMember Posts: 20,350
    There are people reading your words that are slowly shaking their heads. For those people it's all about paying the LEAST for anything they buy.

    For me, that would be a tough way to go through life.
  • tidestertidester Member Posts: 10,059
    For those people it's all about paying the LEAST for anything they buy.

    And for some of them, the act of negotiating the "best deal" is a reward in itself though many would view it as painful.

    I prefer to keep the whole process as brief as possible. :)

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • teamyonexteamyonex Member Posts: 42
    For me, the sales department means nothing. It's all about the service department, because after the couple of hours it takes to buy the car, you'll never see the sales people again, and the relationship with the service people is most critical. I've called the service dept. and said, "My vehicle is spitting blue smoke and shudders and weaves... I need to get it right away." If they say, "Certainly. Our next available appointment is in 5 weeks," then I know what I can expect. The bigger and better the service department the better.
  • tidestertidester Member Posts: 10,059
    That's an excellent point. Interestingly, I have had the good fortune of dealing with great salespeople who have been most helpful after a purchase. That may be an advantage of living in a small town?

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • mazda6iguymazda6iguy Member Posts: 365
    I am turned off by showrooms that are filled with sales desks, instead of cars on display. We have a Chevy dealer like that here. All desks are separated by partitions. Other dealers have cars on display.
  • maddmikemaddmike Member Posts: 12
    teamyonex, you're 100% dead on. You only deal with the sales folks once. You spend the rest of your relationship at that dealer with the service department.

    Thanks for the reminder on the appointment backlog. I'll make sure to call a few of the dealers I'm looking to buy from.

    I was trying to come up with a list of things one would look to evaluate a dealer's service department if they've never been there before. Here's just a few items:

    Does my purchase include the first service for free?
    Does your service department wash my car when it comes in for service?
    Do you provide a free loaner car if my repair takes more than a day?
    Do you provide any additional services to your purchasing customer that bring their cars into your service department?

    Feel free to add to the list.
  • gasman1gasman1 Member Posts: 321
    Is that FREE car wash brushless or one that will leave swirl marks in the paint. My dealership uses the brush system and has my account annotated NOT to wash my vehicles.
  • misfit815misfit815 Member Posts: 8
    I was told by a local dealer that the manufacturer (Toyota) doesn't make the model (Tacoma) in the trim (V6 4dr Double Cab 4WD 5.0 ft. SB (4.0L 6cyl 6M)) that I'm looking for in my area, and that they'd have to bring one in from elsewhere.

    Well, do I stick with that dealer or plan a road trip? Is it worth it to find out where I can get one, and how would I do that? All of the automated "Get a Quote" webbies default to local dealers.

    J
  • esteezeesteeze Member Posts: 102
    misfit815,

    Check with as many dealers as you can, even if they are out of your area. For example, one of the primary dealers I'm working with currently is about 2 hours from where I live.

    Generally speaking, the more dealers you get involved with, the more options you will have as far as options, prices, etc.

    Good luck!
This discussion has been closed.