Buying a New Car?
I would like to give the prospective buyer an unbiased, honest opinion based on my knowledge of the pros and cons of buying a new car. This is compiled information received from our customers and from a long-standing knowledge of Hondas and Acuras. This advice is directed towards Hondas and Acuras, but could also be applied towards the purchase of any new car.
Unfortunately, every customer will pay a different amount for the same car at the same exact dealer.
It’s similar to taking a trip on an airplane and wondering how much the person next to you paid for the same ticket. Unless the person next to me is my spouse, and I paid for the ticket, your guess is as good as mine.
Wouldn’t it be nice if all of the same cars, televisions and appliances would be the same price for everyone?
We’ve heard it time and time again: buying a new car is not a pleasant experience. Many people have a similar story to tell – they had been taken by the dealer, or at the very least, the dealer had tried to pull a fast one on them.
So, here I go:
Choose the car that you like, choose the color and then take it for a test drive. Do not buy the car just for the way it looks. If you have been driving a car, and now you’re considering an SUV, DRIVE IT! Driving an SUV is going to be entirely different from the feel of your car. The SUV could be noisier, mushier, softer, harder, etc. It will take you time to get used to it. Sleep on it, drive the car again, sleep on it.
Okay, you’ve picked your new car – now the fun begins. Get a brochure and look at all the standard fixtures the car has from the factory. Forget the options for now. Ready? All set?
Go to the nearest dealer and tell him/her what you’re looking for - model and color, no trades and price it with factory financing. Be sure they include all delivery charges and preparation fees. Do not buy it yet, do not sign anything. Be patient!
Now you know what you want and also the price. It’s time to work on it. Go to two or three more dealers, tell them what you want, what model and color, and tell them what price you’ve been given. If they beat the price (they will, they always do), ask them if they have the car in stock. If they don’t have the car in stock, just walk away. They just want you off the market.
Off the market? What’s that?
Off the market,” means that if you go to a dealership, they offer the best deal, and they want a deposit but they do not have the car. Now you’ve just left your money with them, and you’ve stopped shopping around, and you are “off the market.” Now the only thing left for the dealership to do is to sit on your money, and once you’re impatient, they’ll call you and say that your car just came in, but with $2,000.00 worth of accessories. If you want another car with no options, you are going to be at the bottom of the list. Believe it or not, this is an old trick which is still in use today.
If you do leave your deposit, your receipt MUST show a “Vehicle Identification Number (VIN)” on it. If they tell you that they don’t have a VIN for you, WALK AWAY! Remember, walk away!
Congratulations, you’ve found your car at the best deal, the best price and in the color you’ve always wanted. Now you go to that nice fellow that wants to fill your car with goodies.
These are the things that they are going to try to sell you. It’s up to you to believe what they say, and what the truth is.
Alarms: Your Honda most likely comes with a Security System, especially if the car you chose is an EX (in which case, you definitely don’t need one). All modern vehicles have an immobilizer system that prevents the car from running if the proper key is not inserted to start it.
Non Honda Remote start: Who doesn’t want to get into a warm car in the morning when it’s below 30 degrees outside? If you could see how the fixture is installed, you would think twice about it. They cut wires and the connections are poor. The future problems with a remote start are similar to Pandora’s Box: you never know what problems will arise or when. But they will – believe me, they will. The installation of a remote start bypasses the most important antitheft device your vehicle has: your immobilizer. Also, your car will be running outside, unattended, wasting fuel and putting on extra wear. Just figure that at 2,200 RPM an Accord will travel about sixty miles in one hour. With remote start, your car will run for 10 minutes every morning, it will start at 1,500 RPM and will idle at 700 RPM. That is an average of 50-60 minutes per week that your engine will be burning fuel in the worst condition possible. Call American Honda and ask if they recommend a remote start installed into their vehicles and they will tell you that they do not. While you’re at it, ask them why their dealers are selling them and installing them on Honda and Acura cars.
Now there is an exemption to all this mambo jumbo I just said. and is the Honda Remote Starter, but this accessory only works with a few 2009 Accord, CRV and Civic 2009 only models. If you click on the picture and go to the Honda web site, their explanation just enhance what I said prior. This “Honda” remote started has all the fixtures that the after markets don’t
Paint protection: What a joke! You are paying for insurance and most likely a part that will never be installed on your car, and will remain sitting in the installer’s drawer.
Extended warranty: This could be (with an emphasis on the “could,”) a good thing to buy. But when and from whom? The dealer wants you to buy it today because they’re aware that if you leave without purchasing it, you’re not coming back.
If you buy a factory extended warranty, whether for a Honda, Nissan, Toyota or any manufacturer, you are bound to bringing the car to the dealership for repairs. They may word it differently, but it is in the contract. Most of my customers find this when they want to have a repair done years later and realize that I cannot do it, and they must bring the car to the dealer.
Why buy it now? All Hondas come with a 3 year or 36,000 mile warranty and 6 years or 60,000 mile power train warranty. So, if you are buying 7 years and 100,000 miles, what are you buying? You’re buying four more years to hurry up and use all of those miles.
What about buying a warranty at the end of the 3 years that will allow you to buy 3, 4, 5 or 6 years? What happens if at the end of the three years, you only have 20,000 miles on your car? You’re never going to make it to 100,000 miles before your warranty time expires.
The best deal is to explore your options at the end of the three years, or when you reach 36,000 miles, and see if you still want to buy an extended warranty. If you do, then you can see how many miles you are driving per year and buy accordingly. Perhaps you should buy 6 further years and 100,000 miles if you don’t use the car that much, or three years and 100,000 miles if you use the car often.
Remember, most warranties are transferable and the good ones will reimburse your money after the end of the policy if unused. It is also very important to check the reputation of the warranty company as well.
I would not be honest if I did not mention that we sell extended warranties. Honda warranties are designed so that you are required to bring the car back to the dealer. The private extended warranties are accepted by over 90% of the repair shops, including the dealers. In buying a private extended warranty, where you have your car repaired is not imposed upon you and is left up to your decision.
As per all of the accessories, before buying them, check prices with us first. You may pay and extra $10 per month for an accessory, but in the end you may end up paying double for it.
If you want to hear or read more about “my” opinions just drop me an e-mail or give me a call.