Friday, August 02, 2002

sluggish car sales(persons?)

I have recently been shopping for a replacement vehicle, spurred on by the upcoming conclusion to a lease and the low/no interest financing available with some vehicles. Even though it is clear that the economy is squeezing the new car industry I have experienced the following examples of "squeezing back":

A local GMC salesman denies having a vehicle that was on sale in the newspaper, even though that same salesman rode on a test drive with me and my wife in that vehicle. Yes, I could make a stink. But I just want to buy a vehicle. I am not looking for a lawsuit - I work with lawsuits every day and they are just;

A very local Dodge salesman located a minivan that met my needs, at another dealer in Pennsylvania, but couldn't afford to bring the vehicle here unless I bought it first, sight unseen. I was given the option to drive an hour to the other dealer to inspect the vehicle, or to even buy the vehicle from that other dealer. He was pleasant about it - he just was so far down he couldn't dig out;

My local Honda salesperson doesn't need to sell. For $1000 in advance, they will order a minivan for me to test drive in a month or two. None were available for me to view at the dealership. No sale, no incentive, no special deal, no discussion. They are apparently immune from the squeeze.

I was pleased with the folks at Sheridan Ford. They had plenty of information, without pressure, and decent incentives. Unfortunately, I don't think their vehicles suit my current needs. My wife and I did however see a really nice Thunderbird convertible there that excited our imagination. With kids, that kind of a car is only imagination.

I recommend not giving name and phone number information to salespersons, unless you want to be called.

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