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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

  #101  
Old 12-25-2016, 08:41 PM
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Best used newer models in F series cars seem to be at competitive luxury dealers like Audi, etc. look for cars on the lot at least three months and low ball them based upon info above like Kbb, blue book, black book or other pricing guides.

Lots of people fall in and out of love with MINI after they find that it is too small to be the only car they have. My new used F only had 6500 miles.

Happy hunting.
 
  #102  
Old 12-26-2016, 08:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Sailorlite View Post
What about buying a used Mini? A buyer could do a lot of the same kind of research regarding financing and comparable asking prices, but cannot do the comparison shopping at multiple dealers. How can you be sure you're getting a good deal on a particular used Mini?
Cars.com gives a good overview of national and regional pricing trends.

A deep knowledge of what new MINIs are selling for can also inform what one should offer on a late-model used MINI. Factory incentives and discount financing/lease offers on new cars can often be compelling. If one can drive a brand new, fully warrantied MINI with all the latest and greatest goodies for $299/month and little or no drive offs, then a used MINI needs to be a better value proposition than that.

Minnie the Moocher makes good points about visiting non-MINI high line dealers who have taken a MINI in on trade and need to turn it fast. Good deals can be had.

Extended warranties on used MINIs can be a factor to hedge against "money pit" concerns, but one has to be careful to not overpay and one has to know what is and what isn't covered.

What a dealer asks for a car and what he will sell it for can only be truly determined when you make a firm, reasonable offer, once you've found the right car.
 
  #103  
Old 12-26-2016, 09:02 AM
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Originally Posted by Sailorlite View Post
What about buying a used Mini? A buyer could do a lot of the same kind of research regarding financing and comparable asking prices, but cannot do the comparison shopping at multiple dealers. How can you be sure you're getting a good deal on a particular used Mini?
The Original Post on this thread says:
"* A Few Words on Purchasing a Used Mini from a Mini Dealer.
Make sure you've researched all known issues with the year/model you are seeking. Make sure the dealer can certify that those issues have been properly addressed and corrected. Any dealer promises in this regard should be in writing -- in fact, anything a sales person promises is only as good as what's in writing. Remember, leases are generally NOT available on used Mini's, and special financing from MINI USA usually won't be as sweet as what is offered on new Minis. Expect to pay a premium for a clean used Mini from a dealer, but expect to get a used Mini from a dealer that is as close to flawless as used Minis can be. Low mileage lease returns are often your best bet. If the dealer has a Mini on the lot that is more than 3 or 4 model years old, it better be unusually clean. And, yes, extended warranties make much more sense on a used Mini than on a new one, but be careful to negotiate on the price of any extended warranty and make sure you understand what is, and what is not covered."


If you are shopping private parties and/or non-MINI dealers, get the VIN of the car you have found and have your dealer run it to confirm all factory campaigns have been addressed. If you are considering an out-of-warranty MINI, factor into your offer possible repair costs, because there will be costs.

A used car purchase, just as with a new car purchase, can be viewed from a total cost of ownership perspective. Repairs are a cost factor that has more weight in a used car purchase and the offer price should reflect this.

Resale cars are often more profitable for dealers than new car sales, which suggests the margins on used cars are often greater than with new cars. Offers should factor this in and the bottom can be tested if the buyer 1) doesn't need to buy that particular car (and can walk away if the deal isn't right) and 2) if the buyer is ready to do a deal, with either cash or good credit in hand and proposes a solid, reasonable offer based on current market dynamics, which change monthly.

All of the other information on this thread regarding negotiation holds true for used as well as new cars. The goal is always to make a solid, reasonable offer based on knowledge of all the moving parts of the proposed deal. New or used, a car purchase is a car purchase, and if a dealer is involved, all the things dealers do are going to try to happen.
 
  #104  
Old 12-26-2016, 12:57 PM
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What Will You Take for This Car?

If I’m a car salesperson standing in front of a car on my lot which has ‘SPECIAL $19,999’ written in big pink writing across the windshield, and a customer walks onto the lot and asks, “What will you take for this car,” some very unpleasant, sarcastic retorts are going to race through my mind. I might think, but never tell the customer, “We really want $25,000 but will take $19,999, JUST LIKE IT SAYS ON THE WINDSHIELD!!!”

So, let’s start off on the right foot and not poison the negotiating well from the get go by asking a question dealers hate. Instead of, “What will you take for this car?” let’s try, “I may be interested in purchasing this car today. Tell me a little about it.” Or, even better, “I’m here to see George. I spoke to him on the telephone earlier today regarding this car. Can you direct me to George. He’s expecting me.”

When, much to George’s surprise, the customer he spoke to on the phone actually got off the “be back bus” and came to the dealership as the customer committed he would do during the telephone call, after George shakes off his disbelief, he now enters the negotiation understanding that his new customer may just be a straight shooter who honors commitments, has a sense of responsibility, and might just maybe be serious about buying a car. But experience shows that many car salespeople will NEVER believe they’ve got a straight shooter customer, and thus, the game is played.

So the customer connects with George the salesperson and the customer says, “I saw the car we talked about on the phone as I came onto the lot just now. I’d like to take a closer look to see if it’s the one I want to buy today.”

And if it turns out to indeed be the car that the customer wants to buy today, there is no need to play games and pretend there is no excitement. Just move things right along and help the salesperson out by saying, “There’s my trade over there and here are the keys. Let’s go for a test drive while your people appraise my trade and if I love the car you’ve got, I’m ready to sit down and see if we can find the right deal I can say ‘yes’ to.”

If the salesperson can’t help himself and needs to run a trial close past the customer, that’s okay:

Customer: “If I love the car you’ve got, I’m ready to sit down and see if we can find the right deal I can say ‘yes’ to today.”

Salesperson: “What do we need to do to get you to ‘yes’?”

Customer: “That depends. First I gotta see if I love the car and we need to find out where we are on my trade. We can talk numbers later if it looks like this is the car.”

Salesperson: “What do you owe on your trade?”

Customer: (calmly and politely, but firmly) “AS I SAID, we can talk numbers later if it looks like this is the car.”

In this situation, the salesperson hasn’t quite figured out that something he rarely sees has arrived into his world. He doesn’t yet fully understand that he has a serious buyer who has done all the research, has his cash and credit in good order, knows what he wants, knows the current market, is ready to buy, and knows what he is willing to pay as a total transaction cost for a specific car.

The customer has TOLD THE TRUTH. The customer has essentially said, “I did my research. I found this car. I called you to confirm you had the car. I said I’d be in to see you. I showed up as promised. I want to take this in logical steps. Let’s check out the car and, if it’s the one, we can talk numbers and, if at all possible, quickly arrive at a straight-ahead, reasonable deal. I really don’t care what’s written on the windshield because I know what I’m willing to pay, which I know, from my exhaustive research, is a fair price. And I know the approximate current wholesale and retail values of my trade, so let’s see what your appraisal of my trade is and get that number in front of us to see how that number can work into the deal.”

The good news for the customer is he’s focused on the right car at the right TOTAL TRANSACTION COST. Let’s say the customer is hoping to have $2,000 net equity in his trade. Let’s say the dealer’s appraisal comes in low and there’s only $500 net equity. No need to haggle about it. The customer has a steady eye on the bottom line – the total transaction cost. When the time comes to sit down and do numbers, it can be straightforward:

Salesperson: “You liked the car. Let’s go inside and write this up.”

Customer: “Great.”

Salesperson: “Our used car manager is willing to go a little higher than usual on your trade, blah, blah, blah, … $7,500.”

Customer: “Okay. I owe $7,000. I’ve got my loan info with me. Let’s take a look at the invoice on my new MINI and see where we are.”

Salesperson: “My manager will need to know he’s looking at firm commitment to buy before he’ll pull out the invoice.”

Customer: (standing up calmly and speaking quietly but with firm resolve) “I understand. I’ve been on the internet and came up with the Edmunds.com invoice estimate so if you prefer we can work from there and then redo everything once we see the actual invoice you have. Seems like wasted time but if that’s the way you want to do it, I’m fine just so we all understand that we’re not getting into a bunch of back-and-forth today. How close to invoice do you propose to sell me this car?”

Salesperson: “It’s already on special for $19,999.”

Customer: “Where is that price in relation to dead invoice?”

Salesperson: “It’s discounted from MSRP by X dollars at the special price.”

Customer: “I understand. Dealing from actual invoice works best for me. Do you want me to make an offer based on my estimate of the invoice and then we can use that same formula to confirm the final selling price when we see the actual invoice?”

Salesperson: “Well, what payment will work for you?”

Customer: “The payment will take care of itself once we agree on the total transaction cost and where my trade fits in. My invoice estimate is $19,320 and my plan was to use my trade as the down payment. Let’s calculate a deal at dead invoice, plus tax, license and all other fees, and subtract the $1,000 factory cash MINI is offering from that, and use my trade as the down, and then calculate the payments at 48 months and 60 months using this month’s MINI USA special interest rate and see what that gives us. Are you ready to write this up?” (How about that? The customer is closing himself!!)

Salesperson: “I can try, but I’ve never seen a deal like this get approved. Can you help me out with the down payment?”

Customer: (Still standing) “Perhaps I haven’t been clear. I’m ready to do a deal right now. Dead invoice, my trade, the MINI USA incentive and interest rate. If you don’t feel comfortable writing it up, I understand. We can see your manager now and I can do this with him if you prefer. My goal is to get this deal, get the car delivered quickly, and, if everything goes smoothly, give you all 10’s on the survey, which I will gladly do. I showed up here when I said I would, I asked for you, I had the car picked out, and I’m ready to go. How can you help me make this happen now?”

Salesperson: “I’ll write it up but please understand I’m not promising anything.”

Customer: “I completely understand. Tell your manager I’m ready to do this.”

At which point the customer sits back down, leans forward toward the salesperson, and looks down at the paper and says through body language, “start writing.” The salesperson does the write up. The customer reviews the numbers, and then salesperson goes to “the desk” and comes back with the dreaded “first pencil.”

This is a decision point. The customer has already calculated the taxes and DMV and knows what the payment should be within a dollar or two. If the first pencil is close enough to the target, then maybe it’s time to give a little and take the deal. If it’s not even close it’s time to deal or walk:

Salesperson: “That wasn’t easy. The manager is stepping up more on your trade and eating the difference which gets us to $1,000 down plus your trade and puts us at $X per month out the door and the keys are yours today.”

Customer: “Let’s see. My calculations at the price I offered put the payment at $Y per month for 48 months and your $X per month is higher and it’s for 60 months and your manager has written ‘plus tax & fees’ but my number includes tax and DMV. Looks like we’re not even close. How much is he proposing to sell me the car for?” (see previous posts about the four square and three step bumps and all the ways car dealers try to move the customer away from focusing on the sale price of the car).

Salesperson: “Give me something to come back at him with.”

Customer: “No. (long pause to let this sink in). I have a better idea (standing up again). Let’s cut out the back and forth since you can’t or won’t answer my question. I asked you how much is your manager proposing to sell the car for and your answer to that clear question is ‘give me something to come back at him with’. I am ready to work this out with all the numbers in front of us. What you brought back isn’t remotely close to what I proposed and I bet if we calculate it out, it comes out to more than your $19,999 special price. This doesn’t feel good, George. I’m not having a 10 experience here. Let’s see if you can get this turned around. One more time. Dead invoice minus the MINI USA cash, my trade as the down, all fees included in the payment calculation, and the best MINI USA finance rate. I’ve run the numbers and it comes out to about $Y per month for 48 months with my trade. Do you want to see how close you can come to my numbers, do you want ME to go talk to your manager and see how close we can get, or is it time for us to admit there’s no deal here and not waste anymore of your time?”

If I were the customer in this nasty situation, while remaining outwardly calm, I would be thinking, “I’ll go one more round and if we don’t get close, I’m thanking the salesperson for his time and courtesy, telling him he’s got a deal at the numbers I’ve proposed, and if his numbers change he can call me but I’m going to be shopping around to see if I can find the deal I want elsewhere if he can’t make this happen today.” And if good old George comes back with a “second pencil” that isn’t even close and doesn’t have all the numbers used to arrive at the manager’s second offer, I’m walking.

I will REFUSE to bump myself up and start negotiating against myself. I will make all the counter-offers come from the manager. I will remain calm because I know what is happening. I understand the manager is testing to see what my real bottom line is. That’s fair. Dealers often do these tests in silly and annoying ways, but that’s the way it sometimes is.

In this case, perhaps the invoice deal is not possible and perhaps the customer is totally unrealistic regarding the actual cash value of his trade. The goal is to move the four square nonsense out of the negotiation and convince the dealer to give straight numbers. Here’s how it should go:

Sales Manager: Look, Mr. Customer. Here are the numbers. The invoice on your new MINI is $19,620. We have it on special for $379 over invoice. That’s honestly as low as I can go. So there’s no room there. Here are the tax and fee drive offs, which are $2,050 that I can’t do a thing with. At $22,000 out the door, not only is this a screaming deal, but the MINI USA incentive plus your trade just barely squeaks us by with the lender for the down, even with your excellent credit. To get this deal done you can visit our boutique and pick out a MINI cap or key fob and you get free weekly car washes here at the dealership for the life of the loan. At 48 months the loan is $X including everything, and at 60 months it’s $Y. We will pay off your trade for you and over-allow on its actual value to do this deal or, if you prefer, you can shop the car around and maybe get a bit more, though I’ve called everyone I sell cars to and I’m confident of what it’s worth to us today. We are at rock bottom and, hopefully, this earns us all 10’s and makes you a very happy customer. Take this sheet and go sit in the MINI and calmly look it over. I’m sure you’ll see this is a killer deal. I hope you take it because I’d love to get you into that car. If not, I hope you feel we did the absolute best we could, because this is the best offer I have for you.”

If a sales manager talked to me like that, and I really wanted the car, even if I felt I was leaving some money on the table, I’d be asking myself how much my heartbeats were worth, I’d be asking myself if I wanted to search out or order another car, if I wanted to pay off my trade myself and go on Craig’s list and try to sell my trade myself to some carjacker…. Or I’d be asking myself if I were really ready to buy a new car.

I’d probably end up saying to the sales manager, “I’ll split the difference plus a little for you. Make it $200 over invoice plus the goodies you’ve kindly offered, and I will give you all 10s and I’ll sign the deal right now.” 80% chance, if the sales manager believed I would walk out over $179, he’d say yes. And if he held firm, I’d take the hat, the car washes, and the deal as offered, unless I were dead certain I could snag a better deal elsewhere and was willing to take the time and effort to find that deal and do the dance all over again somewhere else.

My question to myself would be, “After all this, are you gonna walk over $179?? What kind of customer are you?”

And that last question is always the first question a car buyer should ask.
 
  #105  
Old 12-30-2016, 03:17 PM
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Yes and No

Why are children such great negotiators?

First, children aim high.

“Mom, I want a pony. Can I have a pony?”

“No, you may not have a pony.”

“But I want a pony. Pleeease!”

“Sorry honey. No pony.”

“Well, how about a bike?”

“So, no more talk about a pony and we can see about a new bike for your birthday.”

KA-ching! This kid did well. He got his parent from no pony to maybe a bicycle. This kid is a Zen master of the three step negotiation.

Or, the typical 2 year old who has only the power to resist by screaming “NO!!” To which the frenzied parent, running late for work, says, “Here’s a cookie, now hop in the car and let’s go.” YES!!!

The car purchasing experience has been refined for decades by sales pros and it is designed to gain control and make the purchaser feel powerless.

So let's think like children. Children don't know how powerless they are so they're not easily intimidated.

In a car deal, if you can start with “I was thinking $1,000 back of invoice,” and, as a result you are now negotiating from invoice, this is a major negotiating win.

And when the salesperson says, “Can you help me out with a little more down?” and you say, politely, “No,” because you’ve run the numbers yourself and you know that there’s enough in your trade, even though the dealer low-balled you on his trade valuation. And you are well-prepared with solid numbers so you can say, “Let’s try it with my numbers and see how close your manager can get and when you come back, MAKE SURE YOU BRING ME ALL THE NUMBERS YOUR MANAGER IS USING SO WE CAN SEE TOGETHER EXACTLY WHERE THE MANAGER’S OFFER DIFFERS FROM WHAT I’M READY TO PAY TODAY.”

The trick is to know when to use “no” in order to get to yes.

Child’s play, when you think about it.
 

Last edited by 2017All4; 01-08-2017 at 05:40 PM.
  #106  
Old 12-30-2016, 07:22 PM
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All4 -

Vogue tires? Vogue tires on your Clubman S? I bet there's a story there.
 
  #107  
Old 12-31-2016, 07:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Sailorlite View Post
All4 -

Vogue tires? Vogue tires on your Clubman S? I bet there's a story there.
Pirelli run flats removed at about 1,000 miles. New high performance Vogues mounted, balanced, and run flats individually bagged all for under $470 including taxes and fees.

Here's the whole story with photos: https://www.northamericanmotoring.co...man-tires.html
 
  #108  
Old 01-01-2017, 05:19 PM
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The deal is NEVER more important to you than it is to the dealer

Car dealers understand all too well that a new car purchase is a choice. They want the customer to forget this reality. They want the customer to sit in a new car, drink in the new car smell, visualize the new car parked in their driveway or at the work parking lot for fellow employees to see. They want the customer to NEED the car.

But the wise car buyer, no matter how much of the new car ether he sniffs, never gets so intoxicated with ‘gotta have it’ fever that the choice becomes need.

Previous posts have explored ways car dealers try to set up a back-and-forth negotiation between the floor salesperson and the customer, with the sales manager in the background, acting like the Wizard of Oz, behind the curtain pulling all the levers of the deal. One function of back-and-forth negotiating is to draw the buyer into that feeling we’ve all experienced – the “I gotta win,” or “I’m winning” feeling that draws customers deeper into the game. When a customer gets into the I gotta win mode, the choice of whether or not to buy a particular car can subtly evolve into “Getting this car is a win I gotta have.” Once a car buyer is in that frame of mind, the dealer has all sorts of ways to gently increase the total transaction cost.

It's not that different from the way slot machines play with gambler’s heads. Intermittent reinforcement is often the most powerful. The slot pays off a little bit now and then, and makes all sorts of noise and flashes lights and all the rest, and then it holds back, tempting the gambler to pull the lever again and again, as the gambler becomes confident that the big jackpot is coming soon. Sadly, given enough time, the house always wins.

In most instances, car dealers have all the time in the world. They are there for as long as it takes to close the deal. They have nowhere else they have to be. The dealership is where they feed their families and how they pay their rent. Whereas the customer has places to go, people to see, and, usually, after a few back-and-forth rounds with ever-changing numbers, starts looking for the payoff and is willing to throw more money than he should into the pot to get his hands on that shiny new car.

So don’t turn the choice to acquire a new car into gotta have it fever.
Tell yourself you’ve got more time than the dealer to make the right deal.
Remember, the deal is more important to the dealer than it is to you. They NEED the deal; you don’t.
And remember, the right car, and the right deal are available, somewhere over the rainbow. But you may have to walk down a few yellow brick roads before you find the car OF YOUR CHOICE.
 
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  #109  
Old 01-08-2017, 10:16 AM
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Bad Weather = Good Deals

It’s cold and wet and snowy in many parts of the country in January. Many people’s wallets are tapped out from holiday shopping. And many folks are more interested in football playoffs than in car shopping.

It’s slow and hungry times at car dealerships.

Great time to get a great deal on a MINI.

Just remember, many of the car salespeople are watching the games too, so weekdays would be better than playoff weekends for visiting a dealer.

MINI USA is a bit late out of the gate for publishing January special offers. Keep watching the web site for upcoming offers and, once MINI USA posts the new deals, analyze the fine print to calculate the deal you want on the MINI you want.

Happy New Year!
 
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  #110  
Old 01-08-2017, 10:20 AM
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MINI USA new vehicle sales year-over-year (2016 compared to 2015) fell 11% for 2016 and were down 7% for December 2016 compared to December 2015.
 
  #111  
Old 01-08-2017, 02:22 PM
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Originally Posted by 2017All4 View Post
MINI USA new vehicle sales year-over-year (2016 compared to 2015) fell 11% for 2016 and were down 7% for December 2016 compared to December 2015.
Hopefully the new COUNTRYMAN helps reverse the sales plummet. I want to keep seeing MINIs on U.S. roads. And have service for my new F55
 
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Old 01-08-2017, 04:58 PM
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Originally Posted by 2017All4 View Post
MINI USA new vehicle sales year-over-year (2016 compared to 2015) fell 11% for 2016 and were down 7% for December 2016 compared to December 2015.
That would certainly explain the Sales Mgr's eagerness to cut a deal with me back in October. I didn't get the full 8% discount, but darn near it and got out the door even with MSRP (i.e.- tax/title/etc), so not a bad deal IMHO.
 
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Old 01-08-2017, 05:00 PM
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Originally Posted by 2017All4
Bad Weather = Good Deals

It’s cold and wet and snowy in many parts of the country in January. Many people’s wallets are tapped out from holiday shopping. And many folks are more interested in football playoffs than in car shopping.

It’s slow and hungry times at car dealerships.
Story time!

My spouse and I went car shopping for her new car in the third week of December 2013. Her Countryman test drive was in a snowstorm on a Friday night. Seriously. We got a very nice price and she got a nice Christmas
 
  #114  
Old 01-08-2017, 05:07 PM
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Originally Posted by WhatV8 View Post
That would certainly explain the Sales Mgr's eagerness to cut a deal with me back in October. I didn't get the full 8% discount, but darn near it and got out the door even with MSRP (i.e.- tax/title/etc), so not a bad deal IMHO.
Good deal, good dealin'
 
  #115  
Old 01-08-2017, 05:08 PM
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Originally Posted by bratling View Post
Story time!

My spouse and I went car shopping for her new car in the third week of December 2013. Her Countryman test drive was in a snowstorm on a Friday night. Seriously. We got a very nice price and she got a nice Christmas
That's what we're talkin' about right there
 
  #116  
Old 01-12-2017, 10:39 AM
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What is your cost?

Dealers feel it is insulting for a customer to ask, “What is dealer cost on the protection plan you just offered me?” Dealers howl that the auto industry is the only business where customers feel entitled to know the invoice price of the product. Dealers feel customers won’t acknowledge that “dealer cost” includes reasonable overhead, and, thus, the disclosure of “invoice price” actually confuses the negotiations because consumers mistake “invoice” for “cost.”

Smoke and mirrors. We already know that "invoice" is not "cost" because there are undisclosed holdbacks and incentives for dealers that manufacturers try as hard as they can to conceal from public knowledge. And, while holdbacks and dealer incentives are primarily used to cover dealer overhead, there is, indeed, potential profit there for dealers -- profit they fight mighty hard to conceal and protect.

It is good to remember: In a marketplace, the “cost” of a product is what a willing buyer will pay and a willing seller will take. Period.

It is reasonable for a willing buyer to politely ask any question that might help that buyer determine an appropriate purchase price and it is reasonable for a willing seller, within the bounds of honesty and the law, to reveal only what is necessary to complete a sale.

So, as customers, we should feel comfortable asking nicely for whatever information we think will assist us in determining the price we are willing to pay. And, as savvy consumers, we should be prepared to stop a sales negotiation and walk if the selling party is reluctant to disclose information we request in our honest effort to achieve an appropriate price for a product for which there is often greater supply than demand.

In the world of car sales, every car dealer knows, while there may be only one baby pink JCW with green interior in the entire universe, there are also thousands of other cars available for sale on any given day and, while the scarcity of that baby pink JCW may, for the right customer, increase its potential market value, all the other JCWs, in all the other available colors, are there to be had at a fair price if the customer who wants baby pink can’t get it for the right price.

Why, we ask, are dealers so hinky when it comes to disclosing pricing on add-ons such as extended warranties, paint protection, wheel insurance, and all the rest? Why can’t the friendly F&I person just tell the customer, truthfully, “Our standard mark up on this extended warranty package is 100%. We buy it for a thousand and sell it for two thousand because, as I will explain to you, it is a fair value for you at two thousand dollars.” Then the customer can listen to the sales pitch and determine if, in fact, two grand is the right amount to pay for the warranty. Or, if the customer thinks there is some value in purchasing the extended warranty, but determines the value to be less than the offered price, they are free to say, “I’ll pay a hundred dollars over your claimed cost or I’ll pass.” This gives the F&I person the opportunity to make a sale and gives the customer the opportunity to make an informed offer.

So, let’s say, in the new honest world, the truth is that dealer cost is really a thousand and the F&I person honestly discloses this and explains why the warranty is worth two thousand to the customer and the customer does his/her own math and determines eleven hundred is the most he/she is willing to pay and the F&I person counters with fifteen hundred. The best counter to the fifteen hundred would be, “I appreciate your flexibility in pricing. As I said before, my comfort level is eleven hundred. If you can do it for that, I’ll take the offer. If you can’t, I understand but I’ll have to pass on the warranty.”

If the F&I person says the warranty can’t be sold for eleven hundred, the customer can pass or counter with, “I am interested in purchasing the extra warranty protection for all the reasons you explained. How close to eleven hundred can you get?” If F&I counters with, “I’ve reduced it to fifteen hundred. That’s FIVE HUNDRED DOLLARS LESS than we normally sell it for,” the customer should counter with, “So, how much closer to eleven hundred can you get us?” After a minimum of three rounds of this, a much better price than the dealer’s original two thousand dollar offer will probably be obtained or, if the customer is willing to forgo the insurance if he/she can’t get it for eleven hundred, there might be a pleasant surprise and the deal might just happen at eleven hundred because a hundred bucks for the dealer is better than nothing.

BUT BE WARNED. If the dealer agrees to sell the warranty for a hundred over cost (and you are confident that the “cost” you have been quoted is, in fact, the true dealer cost), the customer needs to be hyper-alert for any other tweaks and tricks that F&I might pull by adding fees or bumping interest rates, or increasing down payments.

Which brings us to the cardinal rule when negotiating for add-ons after the price and other terms of the car purchase have been agreed upon. Only discuss the price of add-ons if all other costs, rates, and terms of the deal are nailed, tight. And do your own math to confirm that any increase in down payment or monthly payment resulting from the purchase of an add-on is correct down to the last dollar!

Because it’s that last dollar that the dealer is always after. Truth.
 

Last edited by 2017All4; 01-12-2017 at 10:45 AM.
  #117  
Old 01-16-2017, 02:43 PM
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Here's a copy of a post I placed on another thread that might be of interest to those following this thread:

What to tell the Dealer when you Ask For Invoice Cost


Let's say a dealer has 50% mark up on an extended warranty. They "buy" it for, say $1,400 and sell it to you for $2,100.

If we know the dealer paid $1,400, then we know the "cost" of the insurance, from an actuarial standpoint, is $1,400, meaning the people who are paying for any claims feel that at $1,400 they can cover their risk. Anything beyond that $1,400 is profit ON TOP OF whatever profit the claims people have engineered for themselves into the $1,400 dealer cost.

So, the dealer should make something for his overhead and sales commission -- maybe a couple of hundred bucks. Beyond that is an awful lot of fat which should be trimmed off of the final price to the customer.

So the thing to tell the F&I person or whoever is selling the extended warranty is that dealer cost represents the true value of the warranty and you are willing to pay a bit more than that so the dealer can make a reasonable profit for providing the product, etc. So, Mr. Dealer, show me your cost and let's see if we can agree on a reasonable price for me to pay and, if we can agree, I'll buy it.
 
  #118  
Old 01-17-2017, 07:29 AM
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My MA didn't even bring up the extended warranty on my new Minis in 2007 and 2014. But we bought a 2004 Mazda and maybe financed it, and they tried to sell the warranty and I turned it down but they cut the price in half before I got out of the room.
 
  #119  
Old 01-19-2017, 02:46 PM
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Tax Refund Time

Here come the W-2’s and the 1099’s and, for many, that means tax refunds.

Car dealers love tax refunds. Many dealers advertise specials wherein if you bring proof of a pending tax refund they will allow you to commit that refund to a new car deal even if you don’t yet have the refund cash in hand.

Careful! Is the dealer “loaning” you the refund amount and charging interest? Is the dealer snagging that refund but not offering you the full discount you could potentially negotiate on the total transaction price of the car deal?

Winter is a time for killer car deals, and such deals can be easier on the bank account if part of the cash to do the deal comes from a refund of your money from your old Uncle Sam.

Don’t let the sudden riches of a tax refund knock you off your game.
 
  #120  
Old 01-19-2017, 03:00 PM
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January Program

MINI USA is trying something a bit different. Instead of listing national offers on their main web site, when you click on Special Offers it requests a zip code which then directs you to offers from a dealer or dealers near the zip code. The details of the offers are scant and it's all about "see dealer for details."

Makes it harder to do homework before visiting a dealership.

FIGHT BACK, MINI shoppers!!

Call or email the finance people at your local dealer. Tell them you're building a car on the MINI USA website and you've been directed to them for offer details.
Make them answer ALL of your questions. Have A LOT of questions.

What is the best money factor on the model I am building?

What are all available incentives and rebates? How can they be bundled or stacked together?

Please email me a list of all the drive off fees and other details that MINI USA used to list on their web site but now is telling me I need to get from you.

If a dealer even hints that they don't have time to give you the info you are seeking or they say you need to visit the dealership to get the information or if they IN ANY WAY are not immediately forthcoming with specific responses to your clear questions, CALL MINI USA and COMPLAIN, nicely. Tell MINI USA that you visited the MINI USA web site and were directed to the local dealer for specifics on current offers but that you were unable to obtain the information you needed. TELL THE MINI USA helpful person that you need their assistance. Give them your list of specific questions that the dealer was not able to answer.

We know the game they're playing. Don't cave, for the sake of all future motorers, let's keep MINI transparent.

If we didn't know better, we might think that MINI shoppers are getting smarter and are coming in better-prepared and dealers are starting to squak
 
  #121  
Old 01-24-2017, 05:40 PM
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Complete MINI USA and BMWNA 2016 Sales Data

 
  #122  
Old 01-31-2017, 10:45 AM
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Rate Bumps

One of the advantages of reviewing special offers on the MINI USA web site is that the special offer interest rates and lease money factors can be easily determined with a careful review of the fine print.

When the special offers aren't listed on the MINI USA site and shoppers must contact dealers for offer details, it is always possible that your local dealer won't quote you the best available rate. DEALERS ARE NOT REQUIRED TO OFFER CUSTOMERS THE LOWEST RATES AVAILABLE THROUGH MINI.

So BE SURE to ask the F&I person at your chosen dealership: "What is the best rate MINI/BMW Financial Services is offering this month?"

If you qualify, you should get the best special rates...always. If your local dealer won't give you the best rate, shop another dealer.
 
  #123  
Old 02-04-2017, 10:04 AM
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So, this thread has been somewhat popular over the past few months.

I really appreciate the comments and insights others have contributed.

Are followers of this thread interested in more or have we pretty-much flogged this topic to death?

Many, I'm sure, would benefit from people telling their purchasing experience stories, as we all learn from other's adventures in car dealerland.

Also, it's always helpful when people report actual prices negotiated and paid for their MINIs and for warranty and other add-ons. One way to lower the cost of motoring for all of us is if we know what others have paid.

Please weigh in with your input.

Or maybe it's time to let this thread die a natural death??
 
  #124  
Old 02-06-2017, 05:13 PM
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January 2017 MINI SALES -- A MIXED BAG but NOT GOOD

Some Good News on MINI Pre-Owned Vehicles:
•In January, sales of MINI Certified Pre-Owned were 851 vehicles, a 0.5 percent decrease from January 2016.
•Total MINI Pre-Owned sales set a January record with 2,187 vehicles in January 2017, an increase of 18.0 percent from January 2016.

But New MINI Sales continue a downward trend, especially for the Cooper/Cooper S:


 
  #125  
Old 02-08-2017, 02:37 PM
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Originally Posted by 2017All4 View Post
But New MINI Sales continue a downward trend, especially for the Cooper/Cooper S:
Ouch, that is a brutal January for a dealer. And good leverage for a buyer.

I hope this thread will stay alive, if only to keep it at the top of the forum for potential new MINI buyers to find. It really ought to be a Sticky, it's that useful.
 

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