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Yaris Chronicals: Sneaky Dealers

Okay, so I (finally) logged onto (also tried CarMax) and did a NATIONWIDE search; uh, I’m finding all kinds of cars I would like – out the wazoo… So why are these dealers telling me they can only find what I DON’T want (too loaded and thus too expensive)? Unscrupulous!!! Am setting out to call them all, confirm specs, and see if they won’t ship/trade.

Jeez, I guess if you want something done right, you have to do it yourself???

Dealers tend to stock cars with the options people want, hence it’s going to be hard to find a car without power windows, a CD changer, keyless entry etc. You might do better just to go in and negoiate on a “loaded” model and state to the salesman explicitly that you don’t want a car with alot of options, but you’d be willing to accept such a car if they can make a deal where the price would be the same as a stripped down model. It can’t hurt to try.

Problem #1-You’re wanting the cheapest car they sell, there’s just not much money in it for them!

Well, that’s fine and dandy, that they want to make money, but if I find one on the cheap (base), don’t they HAVE to deal with me based on the cost at the dealer they trade with? They’re insisting they can’t find a stripped-down model, but I CAN…

Exactly… the dealer has two options:

  1. try hard to find a car stipped down with no extra (margin making) options, make a trade with another dealer, arrange a swap and plan the delivery of the TWO cars (the Yaris to them and the swap to the other dealer), for them to make minimal money
  2. tell you that it is impossible, and go sell to the guy behind you looking at the fully-loaded Camary… While you still get your car by reaseaching on-line.

Why should the dealer spend the 2 hours doing the work to make a hundred bucks, while in the same 2 hours then can sell a car where they make $1,000 ?

Get real~ people are in bussiness to make money, not to make you happy. If you want to buy a stripped down cheep car, you have to go to the dealer that has in on their lot.

Exactly. Find a dealer a short drive or cheap flight from where you are that has your car in stock, do a deal over the internet, go get it. Your neighborhood dealer will be happy to service it.

What is the price difference from what you want vs what they offer with the options? And what are options on a Yaris?

The truth is that one stripped model on someone else’s lot allows a dealer to advertise a Yaris for a bare minimum price only to get you in to pay more. These strippo’s are for the manufacturer and dealers to get customers in the door but few are sold and produced. The other dealers may not want to release there minimum allottment of bare bones models.

I’m assuming you’ve test driven a Yaris or two and are sure this is the car you want.

Try working with the dealer’s online sales rep. You should be able to save a lot of hassle by not going to the dealership in person. Tell the internet rep exactly what you want, and that you’ve found cars that meet your criteria at other dealers.

Once you have settled on the EXACT car you want, right down to the VIN, ask for a price quote, then start dealing. Don’t expect a huge discount, because there’s not much wiggle room in the type of car you’re buying. Negotiate a fair price, ask them when you can have the car, then go pay for it and pick it up.

The dealer and the sales rep will both make money selling you a car, but they won’t make as much as the do on more expensive cars. They should still be willing to find a car for you, however, as they aren’t selling too many cars these days, and going into December is always a terrible time to be a car salesperson.

You can’t blame them for trying to sell you a more expensive car, because that’s what they are trained to do. Be calm and let them know you INTEND TO BUY a new Yaris, but you want the car YOU want, not the car they want to sell you.

I can’t believe they won’t find a car for you. If, for some reason, they won’t, go to another dealer.

Yes; I’ve test-driven and like it… Trust Toyota quality and don’t want to press my luck with another used car (although I’ve done well in the past)… Have the money and want an ‘easy’ car with no problems for the foreseeable future… Plan to keep it till it drops… I can’t blame them for pushing a more expensive car, but CAN blame them for lying about there not being one out there meeting my specs.

So I phone these dealers and ensure that they’ll trade or what? Then tell my dealers? Won’t their faces be red…

So have you actually physically found this car or simply found it on the net?
If you’ve actually found the car then why not go get it yourself?

Don’t phone them.

Either deal with their Internet sales rep or go to the dealer in person and deal with ONE sales rep. Only deal with one rep! Tell your chosen sales person you are serious about buying a car and willing to sign a sales agreement and give them a deposit IF they will get you the car you want, in a timely fashion, and at an agreed price.

Let them figure out where to get the car. That’s their job. Your job is to worry about the money.

I’d say waiting up to a week would be OK, but it shouldn’t take any longer than that. Make that part of the deal IN WRITING. If they can’t find a car for you in a week cancel the contract and go elsewhere.

Dealers trade all the time, and anyone who has a stripper will be glad to get rid of it, because they are usually hard to sell.

If you have money in your hand and are willing to sign a deal, they will take you seriously and try to help you. If you call on the phone you’re just wasting their time. Show them the money.

Dealers do trade cars around, but apparently both dealers must agree to the trade. In 2003, we decided that we wanted a Toyota 4Runner. The dealer didn’t have one equipped the way we wanted it, so he got on the computer and checked with other dealers. One dealer had exactly what we wanted, but wouldn’t make the exchange unless the dealer I was working with would send him a Toyota minivan.

We gave the dealer some leeway and he located one that was in our alternate color choice and had a sunroof that we really didn’t think we wanted. Sometimes if you are willing to compromise you can get a vehicle close to what you want. We’ve been very happy with this 4Runner and I like the color better than what had been our original first choice.

I’ve always liked the strippo models. In the late 1950’s, I thought an ideal car would be the Studebaker Scotsman and the perfect second car would be a King Midget. I am probably the only one on the planet that thinks this way. My wife certainly does not. In 1965, I did buy a 1965 Rambler Classic 550 that was a strippo. It had 7000 miles and the dealer had to take it back on a repossession. I got a wonderful buy because nobody else wanted it. I bought this before I was married and my new wife didn’t like the car. She found it annoying that there were no door switches to turn on the interior lights when you opened the doors. There were no armrests in the back seat and the wipers were operated by engine vacuum.

As I said, you may be able to compromise a little and work out a deal on a car that does have a few items and come close to your price.

No, you are not the only person on the planet that likes a simple car. My goal with a car is to get to where I want to be and then get back home again. I have ways of living well rather than with gadgets on a car.

To the OP: If you can’t find what you want in the used market, then order inexpensive new. Driving someone else’s castoff is not my way of living well. I like owning a car during the first half of its life, not the last half.

If nobody bought new cars, then what would people who gloat about saving money by buying used cars do for fun?

2009 Yaris 3 door, base price 12,925

All-Weather Guard Package with Additional Options $339

* (CP) All-Weather Guard Package-includes rear window defroster [9], larger window-washer tank with low level warning-indicator lamp, luggage door and back door trim, heavy-duty heater, heavy-duty starter, rear heater duct and Daytime Running Lights (DRL)
* (FE) 50 state emission
* (CF) Carpeted floor & cargo mats [13]
* (EF) Rear bumper protector [13]

Cruise Control with Additional Options $590

* (CL) Cruise control
* (CP) All-Weather Guard Package-includes rear window defroster [9], larger window-washer tank with low level warning-indicator lamp, luggage door and back door trim, heavy-duty heater, heavy-duty starter, rear heater duct and Daytime Running Lights (DRL)
* (FE) 50 state emission
* (KE) Remote keyless entry system [8]

Convenience Package with Additional Options $790

* (CP) All-Weather Guard Package-includes rear window defroster [9], larger window-washer tank with low level warning-indicator lamp, luggage door and back door trim, heavy-duty heater, heavy-duty starter, rear heater duct and Daytime Running Lights (DRL)
* (CQ) Convenience Package-includes AM/FM CD player with MP3/WMA playback capability, auxiliary audio jack, satellite radio capability [2] and CD text display function; 15-in. steel wheels with full wheel covers, rear window wiper and rear window defroster
* (FE) 50 state emission

Get this though, they have TRD performance options as well;
Sport muffler, performance air filter, rear sway bar, lowering springs, and 18 inch rims and tires

You should reasonably expect to pay the cost to transport the car from Lower Slobovia to your local dealer. Wouldn’t you rather pay for a couple of options instead of the transportation fee?

An alternative is to order the exact car you want. The dealer can add it to the purchase request they make the next time they buy some cars from Toyota. The Yaris is build in Japan, Thailand, and France so don’t expect an early delivery. You should be prepared to wait 6 months to get one since it’s a Ro-Ro delivery. But you should not have to pay a premium, since it will not sit on their lot.

I’ve been told (not only by ALL the dealers, but by disappointed buyers) that you can order, then wait and wait and wait and MAYBE get what you want (maybe not)…

Unfortunately, I put off the inevitable until I didn’t have that luxury. With the repairs my current car needs and the type of driving I do (remote country roads), I felt I couldn’t risk it, bit the bullet, swallowed the medicine, and paid the price.

Yes; the deed is done, and I’m suffering agonies of buyer’s remorse but hopefully will learn to love it. As for buying used, the Yaris has added safety features for 2009 and none of these “gas miser” are depreciating very much in this gas market.

Now, what the heck is an “MP3 player”???

“Now, what the heck is an “MP3 player”???”

A 4th generation 8-track.

Oh, and enjoy your new car. Did they soak you for undercoating and Scotchguard? :’)

Thank God! I was afraid you were never going to buy. Forget buyers remorse, you have a new car. Celebrate! Enjoy your new Yaris and stop over-analyzing your purchase. This is supposed to be fun.

MP3 player? I know what it is, but I don’t know why it matters.