Sunday, April 20, 2008

Car challenge

We need to upgrade our garage with a new car. The oldest one now needs to be jump started almost every time despite several changes of batteries and other car parts I have now idea what they are called - and the AC and heater isn't working. Heater we can live without - but you can't go through a crazily hot Northern California summer without air condition in your car, believe me. Unless you have a convertible - and this is not.

So now we're spending time reading boring reviews and fact sheets online, trying to figure out what we need and want, getting us ready.

I hate buying cars. The whole "game" at the car dealer, both parties pretending to need/have a certain amount of money and in the end - the feeling of always having gotten ripped off anyway.

I wish it could be as simple as shopping online. You just go online, make your choices and click "go to checkout" and two days later a the car will arrive with FedEx.

11 comments:

kbbryant said...

I don't work for Car Max, but buying a car with them was like buying on line with no games played, the price is the price you pay and you are able to shop on line. I too hate car dealerships and the manuvering they do with you but Car Max was a pleasure and I would buy with them again, anytime. Good luck!

kathy b

SweFlo said...

I can recommend you buy a new car online. We did last time and it was THE best experience! We used www.cars.com, and you plug in the kind of vehicle you want plus features, and it spits out offers from local vendors. We arranged financing before hand, so we already had that approved. The car we picked was $1300 less than any similar car we seen at dealers, and the offer we picked was through a well known local dealer. You don't have to haggle, the price is already set when you get there. Plus, you only sign a contract after you have seen the car and approved. We were in and out of the car dealership in no time, and got a great car at a great price! I highly recommend it!

Isle Dance said...

Decide which automaker you want. Then which of their models you would be happy with. Then find out the official dealer cost for those models (this is the cost that the dealer pays to get that particular auto, with those particular features, on their lot). Then browse several lots, telling them which models you are trying to decide on. (The end of the month/end of the year is a great time to get better deals.) Then let them offer you the price. Choose the price that comes closest to dealer cost. They might want to get rid of certain models/colors they are not selling well. Each lot has different needs. I bought my auto for $3000 less than the dealer's cost, because they were making lots of money with their other models and needed to get rid of mine. That was not a loss for them, as they were making more than enough money to make up for it by making lots of money off of the other sales/models. But it was a good deal for me, and nearly $10,000 less than the sticker price most others were paying. Remember: Dealer cost is their cost. And I paid $3,000 less than that. (Of course, this is just how I would do it...be sure to follow your gut and do what works for you.)

Annika said...

Är det Jeepen som gett upp?
Vi ska göra oss av med vår också. Vi måste, precis som ni.
Visst är det jättejobbigt att köpa bil.
Har faktiskt hört bra om car max, och Sweflos råd verkar också väldigt bra!
Lycka till. Alltid trist med nya "car payments" men ibland måste det ju ske...

SweFlo said...

Det var nog www.CarsDirect.com när jag kollade på lite papper här...

Anne said...

Åh, det här spelet är verkligen hemskt. Jag gillar det inte alls. Här är det också (inte hos alla, men många firmor) att man först expedieras av en person, sen när man kommit så långt man börjar prata priser så går ens försäljare iväg och säger "ursäkta mig, jag måste kolla med min chef vad han har att säga" och så går han iväg några meter och står och tisslar med en annan gubbe i ett hörn, kommer tillbaka och säger "chefen sa att XXX inte är acceptabelt, men föreslår YYYY istället". Och så säger vi som kund, att nej, det kommer aldrig på fråga. Snackar med vår försäljar, han kommer med en massa argument, vi kommer med nåt nytt bud. Försäljaren säger IGEN "ursäkta mig, jag måste gå iväg och kolla med chefen". Han går iväg, de står och tisslar i ett hörn, han kommer tillbaka...Och så håller det på.
Jag har pratar med andra som köpt bil här och de säger det fungerat likadant. Verkar rätt löjligt, kan man inte sitta och prata allting med samma person istället för att se hur de står och småpratar i ett hörn.
Lycka till!!!

SweFlos tips måste jag kolla upp, det låter bra.

JaCal said...

KKBryant - I had heard good things with CarMax too - sounds much easier. We might have to trade in both cars and do a more complicated switch however.. sigh...

Sweflo - thanks for sharing - sounds like a good idea - have checked out the website and now we have spent an evening starting our online research... how we get as lucky as you!

Isle Dance - thanks for sharing! So good to read - we really need to better prepared this time than last - and do it slower so we can walk away. I soo appreciate your input!

Annika - japp! Jeepen... bye bye.. Vill försöka hitta ett upplägg så vi kan undvika car payments - båda bilarna är avbetalda vilket är trevligt... har vant mig av med att ha dem nu... ;-) Nu ska vi bara researcha,researcha och researcha...

Anne - ja, det är ett gräsligt spel! Hua! Hatar! Funderar på att - om vi inte hittar någon online lösning - ta in en kompis som är bra - han är lite "utanför" processen och blir inte så emotionell berörd av hela galenskapet i processen. Puust!

cecilia said...

Say it loud and clear: Audi all the way!!!! An audi all road, maybe, or an a4?
We bought our car through a car-broker, he was great, and it was slightly cheaper than buying it new from the dealer - do you want me to get you his details?

JaCal said...

Cecilia - I like Audi - but I think this time we're going with Chrysler actually. A car broker - how great! I'll talk to the Husband - maybe that's the way to go.

Isle Dance said...

Oh no...Chrysler??!!! LOL. Not a Volvo?? (I must have a Volvo.) My only thought: Check the three safety rating organizations to ensure whichever vehicle you purchase, it is truly a safe vehicle. Some ratings just compare safety for that size of vehicle (not an accurate rating). I always look at the safety ratings for the ((safest)) vehicle of all the vehicles. But that's just how I do it...

JaCal said...

Isle Dance - haha! No, no Volvo... even that would be fun. Yes, safety ratings are really, really important - driving with your kids on 7 lane highways can be scary in the first place... you need to feel safe in your car.