I’ve never bought a new car, and I have bought at used car (and was pretty much screwed in the process), so I thought I’d ask for some advice in going about the negotiation process.
So far, I have done my homework and read reviews, looked at features, etc. so I know what I want: a Honda Element EX. I’m not sure if I want 2WD or 4WD yet. I don’t live in the country, but it does snow a lot here.
I’ve gone in and done the test drive and asked my questions, and set up an appointment to bring in my trade. I wanted to make sure all my credit cards were paid off to get my utilization very low (I have pretty much no debt) and to make sure my last payment on my old car went through. My trade-in is a really crappy 1996 Chrysler Cirrus with a big dent in the trunk (still functional) and it leaks oil (needs a new oil pan). It’s got like 130k miles and the AC is broken. It sucks.
He was pretty vague on the pricing, but the Honda.com does list sticker price pretty plainly. Apparently, he says there is a special deal on low financing for the Element only, I guess they’re trying to move those (1.9, 2.9, or 3.9 depending on length of the loan). Also, he stated in an e-mail that there are “special incentives” for Internet customers, but when I asked him in person, he was pretty nonresponsive on telling me what those are. He said “Well, I’m sure if you’ve looked on the Internet, you probably have a good idea of what price you want, so all there is left is for us to come together on price.”
Has anyone bought Elements this year and what sort of price did you get?
Is the sticker price really arguable on new cars? I know I didn’t argue on used, but I argued a lot on the trade.
Has anyone had good/bad experiences with the Element model?
Any other advice, warnings, and so on would be very much appreciated.