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F55/F56 How to Buy a New Mini -- The Art of the Deal

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F55/F56 How to Buy a New Mini -- The Art of the Deal

  #651  
Old 03-19-2019, 08:09 PM
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I've been getting those as well for the lease end as well as the final payment for the Countryman I gave my son. At least 5 things a week and yet, never a phone call. I guess calls are passe.

Son isn't trading up and wife doesn't want another MINI 😭 so more bad news for Mini sales figures.
 
  #652  
Old 03-21-2019, 11:36 AM
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Originally Posted by 2017All4 View Post
Emails are pouring in from MINI USA and from my dealer. Also starting to get these teasers from other brands about early lease termination opportunities. Basically the competing brand folds any remaining lease payments into a deal on one of their vehicles. Got one from Chevy and one from Honda the other day.
How does that work? Do they pay off your lease and then tack that money onto your new car's financing? That seems like a lousy deal, if that's what it is. You'd end up paying interest on the last few lease payments for years.
 
  #653  
Old 03-21-2019, 01:24 PM
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Originally Posted by bratling View Post
How does that work? Do they pay off your lease and then tack that money onto your new car's financing? That seems like a lousy deal, if that's what it is. You'd end up paying interest on the last few lease payments for years.
How does that work?? Just as with a purchase when the buyer is "upside down" and owes more than the trade-in is worth, the Finance Director says, "No problem. We'll just roll the outstanding loan balance from your trade-in into the new deal and, by extending your loan to 72 months, we can actually lower your monthly payment." As Bratling astutely points out, "you'd end up paying interest... for years." Lease payments/car payments. Roll 'um over, fold 'um in, keep the customer buried in debt forever.

Okay, it is a bit more complicated when one receives a "pull ahead" lease offer. Usually, but not always, the manufacturer is providing some undisclosed money directly to the dealer to subsidize the early lease termination. BMW/MINI, when they make such offers, have been know to offer as much as 6 month pull ahead deals -- the dealer and the manufacturer work together to provide the funding to absorb those last 6 lease payments.

But wait, there's more!! If a MINI dealer takes in a MINI lease return, they call MINI Financial services and get a pay off quote, which can be less than the residual stated in the customer's lease contract. The MINI dealer can then decide to accept the turned-in MINI and place it into dealer inventory for resale. If, for any number of reasons, the dealer doesn't want the turned in car, they do the steps to "ground" the car, meaning they do the lease return inspection and fill out some paperwork and then turn the car over to MINI Financial services. MINI Financial then sends the car to either the exclusive BMW/MINI dealer's auction where only other BMW/MINI dealers can bid on the car, or MINI Financial sends the car off to a regular wholesale auction where anyone with access to that auction can bid on the car. These systems are very sophisticated. Outfits like CarMax have algorithms that show what a specific car, with certain equipment, will sell for in various parts of the country and they can calculate if it's worth it to ship a car across the country to get a few more bucks because, say, all wheel drive is worth more in the Northeast than it is in Texas.

Also, MINI has dis-incentives for dealers to sell lease returns to the leasee at lease end. MINI wants a leasee to get into a new lease or purchase on another MINI. If a dealer takes in a lease return and sells or leases a new MINI to that lease customer there are bonuses for that. For BMW (and maybe for MINI too), if a dealer sells a lease turn-in to the leasee who is turning in the car, the dealer has to pay BMW corporate an extra fee!!

Now, when a Chevy dealer sends out a mailing to a MINI leasee who is nearing lease end, and the flyer says, "Regional Lease Return Center," or something like that which implies that they offer some special lease return service, it is simply a ploy to attract potential new customers who, because they are nearing lease end, are highly likely to be in the market for another car. The Chevy dealer's attitude is, "Hey, within the next 6 months this customer is gonna get another car. Let's give our sales team a crack at him. We'll get the customer in the door with a lot of meaningless gobiltygook in our slick flyer, and, once he stumbles into our store or calls our highly-trained 'lease return specialist' who knows all the word tracks to use to entice the customer to come in for a free lease end evaluation, we've got a shot at a conquest sale that will turn a MINI customer into a Chevy customer." And General Motors probably pays dealers a little spiff for every conquest they achieve -- double gold star for turning a MINI driver into a Chevy driver.

And on it goes.

The thing smart shoppers need to know is that, if they get an offer to come in for early lease termination, there may be some hidden incentive money from the manufacturer to the dealer. That incentive money can be used to sweeten the deal on the next car, or it can end up as more dealer profit.

But when you turn in a leased car early, the remaining payments don't just go away. They get absorbed somewhere. Either the potential discount on the next car is less, or the incentive money isn't there to reduce the cost of the next car, or something.

So the game is always the same. Work out the best price and terms on the new car and then figure out how the trade-in or lease return figures into any deal. NEVER get caught in the trap of getting $1,000 off of MSRP and the dealer absorbs any upside down-ness versus getting $2,000 off of MSRP but you eat the $1,000 upside down-ness. Dealers can shuffle money around faster than you can see what they're doing. They are experts and get to practice every day. But we Deal Artists are pretty darned good at the game too. We try for the entire $2,000 discount and the dealer eats all upside down-ness. Or maybe $5,000 discount from MSRP. Yes Indeedy!!
 

Last edited by 2017All4; 03-21-2019 at 01:32 PM.
  #654  
Old 03-22-2019, 07:10 AM
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Getting a Good Deal on a Pre-Order

Very informative thread, thanks to all for the helpful posts. Very interested in a four door hardtop base and have found this forum to be extremely informative. Before getting to my question, I'll give a quick contribution. Recognizing that what's easier mathwise for some is not for others, I find it easier when calculating the estimate invoice to simply multiply the MSRP by .92 and add back $68 (which is 8% of $850). Gets me the same answer as the formula used here, but for me it's quicker.

As for my question, I've seen some but not too much discussion of negotiating a pre-order, and even those discussions are likely only as good as the market conditions at the time the original poster asked the question. That said, I know for other cars the general consensus is you can get a better deal off of the lot. However, because mini dealer inventory seems to be limited and pre-ordering is almost like a right of passage in the mini world, is it really all that unreasonable to still get a deal a few hundred above invoice (before incentives) on a pre-order, particularly when there are ten dealers within 300-400 miles? I understand not being able to get one of the all time great deals on a preorder compared to a car that's been sitting, but given the slow sales of minis, I would think a little above invoice pre-incentives should be doable. Is my head in the clouds on this?
 
  #655  
Old 03-22-2019, 07:44 AM
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Did you see post #646 about custom orders?
 
  #656  
Old 03-22-2019, 07:49 AM
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Yes, but I view that as an incentive. I'm talking about negotiating the base price. Also, I'm not a previous mini owner so I don't think I qualify, unless I misread that post. BTW, I find your posts throughout this forum to be very helpful.
 
  #657  
Old 03-22-2019, 09:45 AM
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Originally Posted by dsw13 View Post
Very informative thread, thanks to all for the helpful posts. Very interested in a four door hardtop base and have found this forum to be extremely informative. Before getting to my question, I'll give a quick contribution. Recognizing that what's easier mathwise for some is not for others, I find it easier when calculating the estimate invoice to simply multiply the MSRP by .92 and add back $68 (which is 8% of $850). Gets me the same answer as the formula used here, but for me it's quicker.

As for my question, I've seen some but not too much discussion of negotiating a pre-order, and even those discussions are likely only as good as the market conditions at the time the original poster asked the question. That said, I know for other cars the general consensus is you can get a better deal off of the lot. However, because mini dealer inventory seems to be limited and pre-ordering is almost like a right of passage in the mini world, is it really all that unreasonable to still get a deal a few hundred above invoice (before incentives) on a pre-order, particularly when there are ten dealers within 300-400 miles? I understand not being able to get one of the all time great deals on a preorder compared to a car that's been sitting, but given the slow sales of minis, I would think a little above invoice pre-incentives should be doable. Is my head in the clouds on this?
My Clubman was custom ordered.
MSRP was $42,680
Dealer Discount was 7.5%
MINI Incentives at the time were $2,000 on top of dealer discount
In the end I saved over 12% off of MSRP, plus I got some other free stuff.
That was Fall of 2016 on a new 2017 MINI.

So, yes, ordered cars can be had at substantial discounts.

HOWEVER, the month the car is delivered will differ from the month in which the car is ordered. Thus, the discounts and incentives are subject to change. Some things can be locked, but incentives expire. So it is important to negotiate a "not to exceed" deal, which dealers often hesitate to do. In other words, If there are $2,000 in incentives that expire at the end of the current month, the dealer cannot lock those incentives into a future month. So, not knowing what will or won't be available at time of delivery of an ordered car, a dealer will be hard-pressed to guarantee that extra $2,000 discount -- because the incentive may not be there in the delivery month.

The idea behind most incentives is to move metal off of dealer inventory now, thus the common wisdom that better deals are easier to negotiate on cars the dealer has sitting on the lot. But, since many MINIs are custom ordered, and MINI has, in the past, encouraged people to build their cars and order them, it has been the experience of many that equally good deals can be made on cars that will be built and delivered in the future.

It is VERY IMPORTANT to have all of the conditions clear and IN WRITING at the time the order is placed -- that all terms, and thus all costs, are spelled out. A buyer is not required to take delivery of an ordered car if the numbers of an agreed to deal change for the worse. But some dealers require deposits, which, in almost any instance, should be refundable.

There's always more.... There are 2 types of orders. Dealer stock slots and customer "sold priority 1" slots. One trick is to get your special order to be one of the dealers allocated slots, yet have the dealer code the order as a priority 1 car -- it often moves through the delivery system faster that way.

To keep your head from blowing up about this, the simple way is to calculate invoice as you have mastered. (Take the time to build your car using the Edmunds.com configuration tool, because invoice is always changing, and 8% is the max spread we believe still exists for most MINI models, but it's always changing, and it never increases, as manufacturers try to hide more and more back door payments to dealers so that dealers can say, "here's the invoice. See, I've only got 6%, or 5%, or whatever profit." Never mind that the dealer is getting 3% holdback that isn't on the invoice you are shown. So, use your 92% formula, but it may or may not be dead on.) Stack in all current incentives for which you are eligible, come up with a number that makes sense to you. Sleep on it. If the next morning you look into the mirror and tell yourself, "I will be pleased to buy/lease this car for these numbers," then all that remains is to go to a dealer with your build specs and rinse and repeat, "I will be pleased to acquire this MINI for these numbers. I'm ready to say yes to this deal today. Can you make this happen for me?"

That's basically what I did. First dealer said "no can do." Second dealer, over the phone and confirmed via email, said, "yes." First time I visited that dealer and met the people who put the deal together for me was the day I went to pick up the car. No deposit, no back and forth in the showroom. It was, truly, that simple. And I got the lowest available lease rate and all the rest, including free car washes for the lease term and a cool MINI windshield sunshade. One of the easiest car deals I've ever done... and I've done a lot of them.

BTW, dsw13, is dsw an academic designation, as in doctor of social work, or something else?

Best of luck.
 
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  #658  
Old 03-22-2019, 10:00 AM
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Allways good to remember, he/she who has the gold makes the rules.

THE PERSON WHO BRINGS THE MONEY TO THE DEAL HAS ALL THE POWER.

Dealers understand this and their selling systems are designed to disempower customers.

All we can do is be clear regarding what it will take to get us to say yes to a deal and then keep giving the dealer an opportunity to sell us a car. If we keep asking for what we want and a dealer says no, we can choose to deal or to walk. But NEVER apologize or try to justify an offer. Just say, "For this price and terms I'll say yes. Can you do it?"

If they say they can't do it, then you can ask, "How close to my numbers/terms can you get?" Or you can say, "Thanks for your time. I'm at yes at these numbers and terms. Let me know if you can find a way to get there. I'll go see if someone else can meet my terms. Bye."

Just depends on the value of your time and how you want to spend it.
 
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  #659  
Old 03-22-2019, 10:20 AM
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Thank you so much, that's exactly the answer I was looking, and hoping, for.

Originally Posted by 2017All4 View Post
My Clubman was custom ordered.
BTW, dsw13, is dsw an academic designation, as in doctor of social work, or something else?
Nope, just my initials.
 
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  #660  
Old 03-29-2019, 08:07 AM
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This weekend might be a good time to go get a deal… This just landed in my inbox:

 
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  #661  
Old 03-29-2019, 08:32 AM
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Potentially a $10K savings, like to see that one car they have in the back, maybe a leftover Paceman in pink? The problem for MINI is it is $10K more than other brands offering the same thing except the cachet of being MINI over Mazda, Subaru , etc.

Going to be a hard sell to get wife to re-up for a new MINI this summer.
 
  #662  
Old 03-30-2019, 02:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Minnie.the.Moocher View Post
Potentially a $10K savings, like to see that one car they have in the back, maybe a leftover Paceman in pink? The problem for MINI is it is $10K more than other brands offering the same thing except the cachet of being MINI over Mazda, Subaru , etc.

Going to be a hard sell to get wife to re-up for a new MINI this summer.
Maybe she would like a Pink Paceman.

 
  #663  
Old 03-30-2019, 05:52 PM
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Originally Posted by bratling View Post
Maybe she would like a Pink Paceman.

lol. Maybe people will think Mrs. Moocher is a top Mary Kay salesperson -- I mean a PINK MINI certainly would signify higher sales status than a pink Caddy.
 
  #664  
Old 04-02-2019, 04:48 PM
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March 2019 Sales Data :eek2:

For March, MINI USA reported 3,769 vehicles sold, a decrease of 16.8 percent from the 4,531 sold in the same month a year ago.
MINI Certified Pre-Owned sold 1,238 vehicles, an increase of 10.3 percent from March 2018.
Total MINI Pre-Owned sold 2,849 vehicles, a decrease of 5.8 percent from March 2018.
A look at the chart below shows the new large BMW X7 SUV is off to a strong start -- just the opposite in size and characteristics from a MINI.

 
  #665  
Old 04-22-2019, 03:50 PM
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Subtle Changes

The old saying is: The more things appear to change the more they remain the same.

Car buying is changing, in subtle ways that are not always easy to detect. First of all, the distribution is changing with sport utility/sport activity vehicles, along with trucks, eclipsing sedan and hatch and coupe sales across the board. Ford has announced that, for the North American market, they are essentially getting out of the sedan business, focusing on the #1 selling vehicle in the USA, the Ford F150, along with other SUV models and, of course, the venerable Mustang. GM is cutting models and re-tooling plants to make SUV type vehicles for every niche they can think to define. BMW has X1, X2, X3, X4, X5, X6, and X7. MINI is pushing the Countryman. With an electric MINI on the way.

On top of the rapid shift in consumer preferences toward sitting up high and driving a beast, there are also issues emerging regarding average transaction prices for automotive sales -- $34,000 seems to be the "average" transaction cost for a new vehicle purchase here in the US of A. That is pushing monthly payments on loooong 72 month loans up into the $500 range, keeping people upside down for almost the entire length of the loan. And people are stalling out -- defaults and delinquencies on car loans are on the rise.

And people are keeping their vehicles longer, meaning fewer qualified customers are arriving at dealer showrooms looking to buy or lease a new car or truck.

Demographics are shifting, and younger people are waiting longer to get their driver's licenses. Getting one's hands around the wheel of that first car is not the craving it was a decade ago.

Niche brands, like MINI, are hunting harder for new customers. Even among those who define MINI as "cool" or "fashionable" or "hip," there is not as much motivation, or wealth, to result in the decision to acquire.

Logic would suggest all of this favors prospective MINI buyers -- too few customers chasing too many manufacturing slots should mean it's a buyer's market. And to some extent, it is.

Those who shop hard and hold out and are willing to travel farther for a deal are finding those deals. But the thing to keep in mind is that the car companies are Masters of The Data. They KNOW all about customer behavior patterns, often before customers figure it out for themselves.

So you can bet the smart people at MINI are tweaking whatever is tweakable in order to manage their business model. Maybe it's an electric future. Maybe it's a 300HP MINI, maybe both. Maybe the cars will stay relatively small and nimble, maybe they'll get bigger. Certainly we've already seen limitations in how one can custom build a MINI -- packages and categories are gently nudging motorers into Signature and Iconic and whatever. You want a certain color, well, then you need to slip into this channel and pay the price for the package.

What hasn't changed is that more and more of what a savvy, informed buyer needs to know and understand when negotiating a car deal is going to get harder and harder to discover. Smoke and mirrors, and funny business with the numbers, will remain the challenge.

Now that everybody can calculate dealer invoice, those invoices mean less and less in terms of actual dealer net cost. Rebates and special offers continue to change monthly, hiding the true current market value of a new MINI. If MINI offered $2,500 in incentives last month, and this month the offer is $1,000, does that mean MINIs suddenly increased in value by $1,500 from one month to the next? How does a customer convince a car dealer that they should only pay as much as the guy paid last month? Where does the MINI dealer find the extra $1,500 to make this month's deal as good as last month's? Is there hidden manufacturer-to-dealer money to offset the difference, or maybe not?

So, the more things appear to change, the more they are probably staying the same. For smart MINI shoppers, take your time, do your homework, and shamelessly grind hard. And keep a careful eye on all the numbers, as always and forever.
 
  #666  
Old 04-29-2019, 11:37 AM
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DiSC

Inside Baseball here. There are a number of systems out there that dealers train salespeople to use. One example is the DiSC Profile system. It is based on the idea that people tend to fall into one of four main personality categories, and, based on that, they respond to interactions in differing ways. So, in the DiSC system, "D" people respond to direct approaches and tend to be blunt, accept challenges, and are quite goal focused, whereas "S" people don't like to be rushed, place a high value on sincerity and calmness, and like cooperative approaches to problem solving.

And on it goes.

Dealerships who train using these approaches are training their salespeople to listen and assess the needs of customers, which is good. They are also encouraging salespeople to put people into categories, which isn't always so good.

The thing to remember is, dealers are always working to find ways to figure out customers with the goal of finding the key to unlocking a sale and getting the customer to say yes to a car deal. And car dealers do tend to put customers into pre-conceived categories based on their experiences with many, many customers. No matter who you are, when you go to buy a car, you're gonna be stereotyped by the sales team, for better or for worse.

This is why, like a broken record, this thread continues to stress the value of telling the car salesperson what you want.

The clearer a car buyer is about what he/she wants, the smoother the process. Regardless of which box the salesperson tries to put you in.

So, do your homework, figure out what you want, what you're willing to pay for what you want, and how you want your deal to be structured. Then go to your dealer and ask for it, and keep asking for it, and, unless the dealer comes up with a better deal than you have designed, stick with it and motor.
 
  #667  
Old 04-29-2019, 12:23 PM
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Recent car buying experience thoughts - Wife wanted to end her MINI experience and lease is about up. So we went shopping. It got so bad I refused to go to one of the visits. Salespeople are so poorly trained that you can close your eyes, listen and not even know what car you wanted to buy. They all have the same exact word for word pitches. Young salespeople generally have no idea how to deal with older car buyers.

We went to one place and the guy hanging around out front was half our age. By the time we exited the car he had been replaced by a somewhat senile guy who was 10 or more years older than me. He babbled on for an hour or more, didn't know anything about the cars. At the end all the bs fell apart and he launched into the tired old methods.

At this point we were both exhausted of the process. I told my wife to focus on exactly what car she wanted (VW GTI Rabbit edition) which of course is a limited edition model so you figure no pricing deals. I went back to the old VW forums I used to visit and found the threads related to what are you paying for this car (NAM needs one). Found that the best deals were East Coast based and used those comps. Provided those comps to a local broker who came back with a deal not as good as those, but much better than I could have hoped for. We thought about it for 2 minutes and told him OK.

The actual buying process was painless, skipped all the finance office nonsense as the broker sat with us as we signed and paid. The VW guy mentioned that he could have sold the car off the lot for more money, but we were there with cash in hand and ready to buy. It was many thousands of dollars less than the VW dealer we visited was trying to extract from us.

HOMEWORK, COMPS and if you aren't a good disinterested negotiator (I'm not) hire someone else to do it for you. Broker was a flat $400 fee.

Down to a two MINI family soon.
 
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  #668  
Old 05-04-2019, 09:46 AM
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I have been toying with replacing my 2012 Cooper, but it's a want and not a need, so I can afford to wait for the right deal. I'm not seeing any screaming deals at the moment, so I think I'm going to wait until mid-June to start looking around again. Does Mini go by calendar month or do they use a fiscal month system where the last day of fiscal June isn't necessarily June 30?
 
  #669  
Old 05-06-2019, 12:25 PM
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Originally Posted by MMM View Post
I have been toying with replacing my 2012 Cooper, but it's a want and not a need, so I can afford to wait for the right deal. I'm not seeing any screaming deals at the moment, so I think I'm going to wait until mid-June to start looking around again. Does Mini go by calendar month or do they use a fiscal month system where the last day of fiscal June isn't necessarily June 30?
Each calendar month the offers are updated -- sometimes it takes a few days after the first day of the calendar month before the MINIUSA Special Offers are updated.

Right now many suspect that more direct manufacturer-to-dealer stuff may be going on. We know that people are getting good deals. But the MINI financing and lease rates are not great at the moment.
Also, we are fast approaching changeover, with July the month that model year production has historically switched. As a result, 2020 model year cars will start to appear in September, which is when buying a 2019 off of a dealer's lot often results in very aggressive deals.

However, in the past, very aggressive incentives have appeared on new model year cars in the fall. and, of course, if you do a custom build, some offers expire prior to delivery and sometimes the offers available at delivery are better; sometimes not.

It is often suggested that the thing to do is research the best offers that have appeared during the year and benchmark any offer you make based on the best deals MINI has offered. Dealers will often do a lot for someone who is willing to "buy today," especially if it's end of month.

Another thing that's different these days is the model refresh cycles. The current models are continuing with minor changes/updates for awhile longer than in the past -- MINI/BMW is extending the life cycle of the current models. Many speculate that this is to save money or, more likely, to play for time until the next wave of technology is ready to roll out -- as in electric MINIs??? Who knows.
 
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  #670  
Old 05-06-2019, 05:05 PM
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Thanks, 2017All4!

My benchmark is what I have seen recently (seems like I have seen manufacturer incentives up to $2000 within the last 6 mo - part of that might have been loyalty credit, but I qualify for that). I'm expecting an additional dealer discount of ~$1500+, so really I'm looking for $3500-4000 off MSRP depending on how optioned out the car is. I have not found my local dealer willing to play ball, probably because there isn't much local competition. I was offered $1000 off on a build plus whatever incentives are running (currently $500 on the base Cooper). That's nowhere near enough to entice me given I don't need to buy a car immediately. Other dealers are advertising $1500+ off the top, which makes me think I'll have better luck buying out of town. If there is direct to dealer stuff going on, my local dealer isn't willing to dip into that to make a sale.

It's a waiting game at this point. I'm happy to see what rolls out in June (end of quarter) or in September when they need to move out the 2019s. One tricky thing is that I need roof rails, and not many dealership seem to spec out their cars with those.
 
  #671  
Old 05-06-2019, 05:31 PM
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Originally Posted by MMM View Post
Thanks, 2017All4!

My benchmark is what I have seen recently (seems like I have seen manufacturer incentives up to $2000 within the last 6 mo - part of that might have been loyalty credit, but I qualify for that). I'm expecting an additional dealer discount of ~$1500+, so really I'm looking for $3500-4000 off MSRP depending on how optioned out the car is. I have not found my local dealer willing to play ball, probably because there isn't much local competition. I was offered $1000 off on a build plus whatever incentives are running (currently $500 on the base Cooper). That's nowhere near enough to entice me given I don't need to buy a car immediately. Other dealers are advertising $1500+ off the top, which makes me think I'll have better luck buying out of town. If there is direct to dealer stuff going on, my local dealer isn't willing to dip into that to make a sale.

It's a waiting game at this point. I'm happy to see what rolls out in June (end of quarter) or in September when they need to move out the 2019s. One tricky thing is that I need roof rails, and not many dealership seem to spec out their cars with those.
You are in the best position because you feel no urgent need and thus you can let the right deal come to you.
If, by some chance, your local dealer has a car in stock that fits your needs and desires, the best you can do is tell them the terms you are prepared to say yes to today. Confirm they have your contact info and tell them that if they can find a way to get to your numbers, you'll be right in to sign the papers. If they let you walk and they don't follow up, you know they're not moving. That rarely happens.

If you decide ordering a car is something you want to do, you should only have to pay a slight premium over an in stock car. Unless, of course, the dealer needs to move that in stock car and is willing to make an unusually aggressive deal.

You may need to reach out to a few dealers and do some traveling to get what you want at a price that makes sense. And, you need to be clear regarding what you plan to do with the MINI you're driving now. If you want to trade it in that can really make things confusing because the dealer won't give you much for it and this will be reflected in any deal they will consider.

Remember the golden rule -- the person who brings the gold to the deal gets to make the rules. And, as the customer, you're the one with the gold. The dealer wants all the gold he can get from you. You decide how much the dealer gets.
 
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Old 05-06-2019, 05:42 PM
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April 2019 MINI Sales Data

For April, MINI USA reported 2,621 new vehicles sold, a decrease of 29.8 percent from the 3,731 in the same month a year ago.
  1. MINI Certified Pre-Owned sold 1,170 vehicles, an increase of 9.9 percent from April 2018.
  2. Total MINI Pre-Owned sold 2,637 vehicles, an increase of 5.8 percent from April 2018.

 
  #673  
Old 05-24-2019, 02:46 PM
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Memorial Day Weekend Deals?

MINI USA is putting a little more cash "on the hood" for the upcoming holiday weekend. Still not stunning amounts of money, but for those thinking about getting a new MINI, every little bit counts.

Though I have no special inside scoop, my gut tells me there is also more loot hiding where customers can't see it. For example, some dealers are offering "loyalty" cash, but it's not money that is part of anything you can find on the MINI USA web site. This suggests that MINI is providing dealers extra direct manufacturer-to-dealer "trunk money" which dealers can use, at their discretion, to sweeten deals.

We are coming to the end of the month -- always an opportune time to buy or lease a car. We are coming to the end of this year's production run, with the changeover usually happening in July. MINI sales have been in a nosedive in the USA for several consecutive months.

This situation can cut both ways. Dealers may try ever-harder to hold onto the gross. Or.... they need to move that metal, so, any month-end deals they can book might be very welcome.

Followers of this thread know the drill. Estimate invoice and start your calculations from there. Assume there is dealer cash you can't see. So, invoice minus the nationally advertised bonus cash would be the most some motorers would consider offering this week. Some would start much lower than that, figuring if there is any trunk money lurking, why not have some of it flow into my deal? That's how I'd be thinking if I felt the need for a new MINI before the end of May.

Let us know how you do. And don't forget to enjoy the free Memorial Day hot dogs or whatever else dealers are doing to get customers into their very, very quiet dealerships these days.
 
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  #674  
Old 05-30-2019, 10:16 AM
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Start Early/Stay Late

Why does it take so long to complete a car deal?

Car dealers have the survey data. They know customers want things to move quickly and smoothly -- customers consistently report on surveys that they don't like it when it takes all day to buy a car.

Dealers will tell you that they can get you in and out very quickly. Just come in, point to the car you think you want to buy, go for a 10 minute test drive, say, "Yep, I'll take it. How much?" The salesperson will get you a number, appraise your trade if you have one, and all you have to do is say yes to everything and the dealer will set a speed record in putting your deal together and handing you the key fob to your new ride.

But if you are a follower of this thread, you are probably interested in finding ways to improve the deal you hope to get on your next car.

Well, good deals usually take a bit more time and effort. Sometimes it's front-end research before you engage with a dealer. Sometimes, after the research, it's a few phone calls or back-and-forth emails with different dealers. Then it's a bit of calculating to get your mind around the numbers so you know how much the sales tax and tags will add to the cost and whether the tire 'n wheel coverage is worth it at a certain price, and so on and so forth.

Once you're locked in and you know what you want and know what you hope to pay, it's a matter of convincing a dealer to do the deal you want. And that may take some time.

Dealers are amateur psychologists. One thing they understand is that the more time someone invests in a car deal, the less likely that person is to walk away over a few hundred dollars. In fact, one of the oft-used closing lines dealers like is, "You love the car. You want to drive it home today. We can make that happen right now. After all the time you've spent on this today, don't walk away over a few hundred dollars. Take this great deal my manager is offering and just say yes so we can get the car detailed for you to drive off tonight."

It takes a very determined customer to respond to such a close with, "The only reason we're still talking and I'm not driving home in that new car is that, even though I've told you six times what I'm ready to say yes to right now, you keep coming back with numbers that are too high for me. You're right. After all the time we've all spent on this, it would be a shame for me to walk away at this point. So please go and tell your manager you've got me to "yes," and I'm ready to sign as soon as the price is right. Please don't make me walk away over a few hundred dollars."

I've had deals happen quickly for less than I planned on spending. I've spent hours on a deal and still ended up paying a bit more than I had planned. I've walked. But ONE THING I have always told myself when getting myself psyched to do a car deal is that I have more time than the dealer, even if I have to start early or stay late. Or both.
 

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  #675  
Old 05-30-2019, 08:19 PM
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Wish me luck! I go visit an out of state dealer on Saturday, which is the last day of the dealer's fiscal month. I can't get there until around noon, which gives me 5 hours to get the deal I want. I'm happy with the numbers we've worked out via email. Question now is will I be happy with the particular car after a test drive, and will they give me what I want for my trade-in. KBB and Edmunds are pretty far off on their trade-in estimates, so it's hard for me to tell what a reasonable number is.
 

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