Odd Happenings At The Car Dealership

My wife and I bought a new car about a week ago. We were all set to buy from one dealership, but they decided to give us a ridiculously low offer for our trade-in. Admittedly, the car wasn’t worth much, but they only offered $200 and wouldn’t negotiate. Then, the guy in charge of buying used cars proposed the following deal: We’d trade the car in for $200. He would then sell us the car back for $300.
“Then you can sell it to anyone you want!” he said. I told him, “We can do that now without paying you a hundered bucks.” After us failing to see the benefit and him refusing to do anyting other than repeat himself, we got up and walked out.

We ended up buying the car from a different dealer who gave us $700 for it. We never did figure out what the first guys scam was, but it was just weird.

Hm… the only thing I can think is that he’d give you a $200 credit towards the financing, lowering your payments a tad. If you couldn’t find a buyer right away and didn’t have a down payment, that may be beneficial. I’m sure you made the right decision, though.

Sooo…pay them $100 to take ownership of your car for a few days? Were they going to fix it up for you? Give you the warranty that the car dealership usually gives with used cars? I’d be calling the BBB or Consumer Protection Department or something in case it is some sort of scam. Even if you didn’t get scammed, someone’s Grammy might fall for it and nobody likes it when someone’s Grammy gets scammed.

When I was buying my first van, I did a lot of homework and intended to look at several models before making a decision. I went to a Ford dealer where the salesperson was determined to sell me a particular demo van. I made it pretty clear that I didn’t like the van, but she wouldn’t discuss other vans with me. The demo van had 8000 miles on it, which made it a used car in my opinion, but the salesperson (or her manager or whoever) was not willing to knock the price down more than a tiny bit from the new car price. Also, I caught her in a couple of lies, which she wouldn’t back down from even when I showed her documentation that she was wrong. I eventually left, with the salesperson warning me that the price she’d offered was only good for that day.

I then went to a Chrysler dealer where I bought a van I loved at a very good price (cheaper than the Ford). The next day the Ford lady called me at home to ask when I was coming back. I told her I’d bought a Chrsyler, and she went ballistic. She demanded that I return the Chrysler and buy her demo van (“It’s not too late,” she told me).

Okay, you want to sell me a van I don’t like. You won’t show me other vans. You won’t negotiate on the price. You lie to me. And now you want me to return the better cheaper van I bought. That’s just a big “HUH?”

I’ve always wondered if these sales tactics work on other people. I’m still puzzled by the experience.

I think a lot of salespeople actually believe their own spiels - that their promotion is the best deal around, etc. - and thus any customer who doesn’t buy from them is obviously stupid and/or insane, and can be treated accordingly.

A woman who works at a local liquor store told me this one:

She had a for sale sign in the window of her car. The owner of a local car dealership saw it while he was shopping in her store, and asked her if she was in the market for a new car. She said yes, but that she was pretty sure she knew what model/make she wanted, and it wasn’t one of his. The guy leaves. He shows up later, with a new car off his lot, hands her the keys and tells her to drive it around for the weekend. So now she is at work, with her old car and this new car, and she is too responsible/nice to just leave the new car in the lot overnight. She arranges a way to get both cars home, later to drive both cars to the dealership (10 miles away). She goes and buys the new car she wants. Later, the cardealer comes back to her store, sees her new car in the lot, and gives her a hard time for his entire visit, about how she didn’t buy a car from HIM.

This lady is way to polite. Personally, I’d have been willing to tell this guy “NO” several time. Pushy jerk.

After several years of working as a mechanic in auto dealerships, I concluded that it is impossible to insult a car salesman or to hurt one’s feelings. They are, as a rule, the thickest skinned set of people I’ve ever known.

My only car salesman story is from the Summer of the Crashes in 2001.

I crashed my van. Short while later, my husband has an accident with his car and it is in the shop for weeks. He uses a company truck to get around and I stay home with kiddies as penance.

Mr. Ujest was insanely busy that summer ( until September 11th…and the aftermath of that.) and from January until above date, he worked 7 days a week, 12 -18 hours a day. The man was a machine.

I really needed to get a car before preschool started. It’s 9 miles to school one way. I can’t walk or bike that twice a day…not without puking up a lung.

He took a Friday night off and we drove to every car lot in our neck of the woods and a few in another county looking at used cars in our price range. Everything is closed. By midnight, I was exhausted from all the car looking. The kids were great, but gahhh.

The next night, we looked at at least 20 more dealerships ( YAY for being the Motor City to the World!) and no dealership was open. You just wrote down the make and model you were interested in and you’d get a call on monday to discuss particulars.

Well, I filled out a few little slips because on a varity of lots there were a few I was interested in. But, being that Mr. Ujest was not pleased with anything he was seeing and I wasn’t getting overly orgasmic over anything either, we decided to peruse the classifieds in the East Side ( middle to lower class people who put the $ into their car and not their hair cuts, if you follow my generalization.) and found at the first ad the van that would be mine until just a few weeks ago. Bought and paid for it on the spot and I was happy and it was a great van. Couldn’t be happier. I got my new wheels for the price we were willing to pay and my husband could go back to working like a robot.

Anywhooo, on Monday I get the phone calls from the various sorts of dealerships that I left notes in their mailbox system thingie they have.

I was polite to them all and said I had bought one already off a private owner but thanks for the call back. No worries.

One guy I asked, " Hey, why is it that dealerships are not open on weekends? You are missing alot of prospective buyers…blah blah blah…"

He said, " We like to spend time with our familys…(blah blah ) 50 hours a week is a hard work week."

I, if you can imagine, dropped the Sarcasm Bomb, " Oh man, that’s rough. My husband works from 4am until midnight 7 days a week on his feet and you can barely sit on your ass for 50…wah wah wah…"
I’ve never yelled at someone like that before, but, it was a carsalesman, so I don’t think it counts. Are they human?

I still think about that conversation whenever I drive by that place and want to drive my truck through their front window just out of pure malice.

50 hour work week is too hard. BAH!

Sorry, where were we?

That’s why my husband quit doing it. He couldn’t handle the lies and scams he was expected pull.

I was told this story second-hand, but from someone I consider to be quite reliable. But it’s still a FOAF (friend of a friend) story.

A married couple (both employees where I work) went out shopping for cars. They visited a dealership that was long rumored (and later exposed) for some shady practices, which included bugging the room where prospective customers were left while the salesman ‘went over the figures with (my) boss’.

The idea being that the salesman could listen to customers’ private discussions, learning how high they could go, how much they liked the car, which one liked it more, etc. Informaiton useful to the salesman.

In general, good stragedy. Except with this couple:

They were both employed as Chinese translators. And they decided to play it safe and conduct all their discussions in Chinese.

When the salesman returned, the look on his face spoke volumes.

I left out an important detail – they were both American-born Caucasians.