As I mentioned back in Cwatkin’s thread regarding the fire sale on 2015 Mitsubishi Mirages; I too was in the marked for a new, though decidedly different car. I had been thinking about getting a new car for quite a while (I even considered getting a 2008 Bullitt Mustang back in 2008), but I really didn’t need a new car at the time. Fast forward to 2016, my loved, but, rickety 2003 Mustang GT was starting to nickel and dime me , since last November, I’ve had to replace no fewer than four coil packs (they somehow failed in 3-4 week increments), and I had to replace the intake manifold gasket, which on a car with an aftermarket supercharger is time consuming. So I instead of waiting for the other shoe to drop and have something really expensive go wrong. I decided to buy a new car.
Not surprisingly I decided on a new Mustang. The only problem was that up until recently, the incentives on the 2016 Mustang were not exactly fantastic, $500 retail cash off. So I decided to wait until the incentives changed. The incentives changed on 4/5/16, but I had been doing research and seeing what cars were around that met the specs I was looking for ( Mustang GT Premium , manual, with the Track Pack, and Nav, in Deep Impact blue with an ebony leather interior). I found a couple cars that checked all the right boxes in dealerships that were about 90 miles away, there was nothing local.
Then I decided to tryout Truecar and see what came up. I put in my information, hit submit, and literally within 10 seconds, my phone rang, it was a local dealership. I told the lady who called me that I wasn’t planning on buying until the 2nd week in April, and I was very specific about what I wanted and unfortunately he dealership didn’t have what I was looking for. She agreed that they did not have what I was looking for in stock, but thought that they might have something like what I was describing coming in on the truck later that week, and that she would email me if the car was what I was looking for. I thanked her and hung up.
Then about 40 minutes later another dealership called and gave me a similar spiel, they didn’t have what I wanted but they could probably get it if needed. I was also called by another local dealer with the same result.
Last Friday I got a call from the first dealership, they indeed got a new Deep Impact Blue Mustang GT Premium with the track pack and nav. It didn’t have the 401A option package (12 speaker audio system and blind spot monitor), and it did have a faded silver racing stripe, which I didn’t want. But it was close. I told that I might come down to take for a test drive some time next week.
On 4/5/16 Ford changed the incentives again as predicted. Cash back went up to $750 off, and they gave another $200 rebate for being a AAA memeber (I am), and another $100 off if you went the auto show late last month (strange that it wasn’t offered before). So around $1050 in rebates, up from $500, not as big a jump as I was hoping for. Truecar stated a $3200 discount before rebates, which was agreeable to me. So on the 5th I emailed the first dealership and asked if the car was still available, it was. So I set up a test drive for the 6th.
I went to the dealership after work, the lady who I had been corresponding with informed me that she wasn’t my salesperson, she just handles internet and Truecar correspondence. A younger guy is my salesman. He’s a nice guy and pretty agreeable. We go on the test drive, the car is much different than my 2003, but I like it. On the test drive I told him that sold cars for a living in former life, and actually recognized one of the other salesman at the dealership.
Being the car nerd that I am, I told him that I didn’t need a walk around or for him to spend an inordinate amount of time explaining the benefits of various features, and that I knew that the way truecar works is that he’s given a flat $300 if I buy the car. I told him that if we could get this over and done with quickly, he’d make $300 for about an hour of work, and not have to explain anything about the car to me, because I’d already done my homework and was well aware of how everything worked. I was also paying in cash so there would no financing hoops to jump through. The salesman agreed.
The only sticking point was my trade in value. I expected this, as they aren’t making a huge amount of gross profit on the new car. My car, being heavily modified, I knew was going to be a sticking point. You never get anywhere close to what you put into the car back when you sell or trade, unless you happened to find a very specific buyer, and I’m fine with that. I was only really hoping for the upper end of what I could expect for a stock car. They hit me with an offer that was about $1000 below what I wanted. I balked at the low ball offer. They went up by $250, I still balked. Then they offered a figure that was $250 below that of my asking price, and they would not go any higher.
I then told them that I would learn to like the tacky racing stripe (I had requested that it be removed), if they would knock $150 off the price of the car. The GM said that he wouldn’t loose a sale over that amount of money and agreed. So I ended up paying $50 more than I had envisioned, but I’ll take it.
Went to see the finance guy next. I declined the extended warranty, super miracle wax, and prepaid oil changes. I told the finance that tomorrow (4/7/16) I would go by my bank after work and get a cashier’s check, and I would sign over the 2003 Mustang at that time as well. He agreed that it sounded like a plan.
The whole process from the time I stepped in the door to the time I left took about 90 minutes, and about 30 of those minutes were spent waiting for the finance guy and ogling the Shelby GT 350 they had in the showroom. It really did go very smoothly.
So today (4/7/16) I went to the bank after work, and got the cashier’s check, went over to the dealership, and got my new car.