Buying a new car online


#1

I need to replace my ten yo car within the next four months and was considering buying a new car online. Does anyone have experience and/or advice doing this? Thanks in advance!


#2

It is generally a good idea. There are many ways to go about it.

Check out this link first: http://www.carbuyingtips.com/referrals.htm. You will find plenty of information about the different methods and services available to new car buyers. Decide what is right for you.


#3

Thanks, Steve. I went to the site and will check out quotes for a couple of cars that have made it to my top 3 list.

Have you actually bought a car this way? I love the idea of not haggling with sales people and having the car I really want delivered to my driveway, but want to be sure it’s not too good to be true. : -)


#4

No Deborah, the last new car I bought was in 1995. (I still own it, and there have also been three used cars.) Online buying was not in vogue back then.

As you can see from the link, there are various methods and services you can use. If I were buying now I’d use the internet to determine which of three dealers in my area had the car closest to my needs already in his inventory, and then use the e-mail option to haggle for the price. Maybe on the side I’d use a car quote service. But I wouldn’t mind visiting the showroom either. That’s why I suggest to you to decide the method that suits you best.

Check back here with progress reports. Good luck.


#5

I don’t think you have to go through a service (although it might be a good idea, I just don’t know). When my daughter bought her last car, she knew exactly what car, trim level, and options she wanted (Honda Accord), which is a must, I think, for Internet buying. She then got on a bunch of local Honda dealer web sites and asked for quotes. The good part, I guess, is the Internet guys at these dealers were really hungry, because they hounded her constantly on her cell phone and sent her emails with really low prices. That might have annoyed me, but for her, no big deal. She learned their phone numbers, and just didn’t answer.

When we finally went in, there was a little confusion, and we ended up with a non-Internet salesman (our mistake). Once we test drove the car, and selected the color, when it came to price negotiation, my daughter asked for (and got), the price the Internet sales guys had given her. What I learned: The Internet sales guys at dealers that sell on the Internet really do offer MUCH lower prices than you are likely to get if you walk into the dealership.

By the way, in most cases, buying on the Internet doesn’t save you from the dreaded experience where they take you in the back room and try to get you to buy all kinds of dealer-added options and extended warranties. You just have to suck it in and say, “No thank you.”


#6

We have purchased two vehicles, using the Internet as a negotiating tool. In one case, the dealership had a specific salesman who deal in Internet purchases. The other dealership was smaller and all salesmen had internet access. Both buying experiences were fine.

As indicated in other posts, closing the deal and avoiding unnecessary additional options/costs is still done in person.

We will probably do it again, for our next purchase.


#7

Most if not all dealerships near you have on line sales. You can use a service or find the car you want on their web site and negotiate the purchase. Find a similar car at a few dealerships so that you have a choice. A friend bought her Sienna on line and is very happy. The dealer is near home so that she has no problem getting work done and juggling her chores.


#8

Thanks everyone for sharing your advice and experience. Hearing about the positive experiences you’ve had has encouraged me to buy online. I’ll post back in a few months to let everyone know how it went for me.

With a smile - Deb


#9

Why does a good car go to auction?