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Discussion Starter #1
I'm currently going through the bargaining process on a Velocity Red SP23 manual hatch. Just thought I'd share various things I'm learning, or have been advised to do (I sit adjacent to the state sales team at work).

Firstly, if you're trading your old car as part of the deal, don't tell them this from the outset. Tell them your friend/brother is buying it off you. If a dealer knows you're trading he'll offer to discount the new car when really he's just presenting a lower offer on your old car to make up the difference. So now you're in a position to get the true figure on the Madza3.

Now, never EVER disclose your current best offer on the new car, who you've spoken to, whatever. They ask this early on in the piece because its valuable information to them. It's not rude to withold this, just smile and say something like, "I'm here to talk to YOU about YOUR price". If you're finding it hard to handle the pressure - and they WILL be persistent - tell them: "Look mate, I dont like where this is going. I came
in here to see whether you wanted to sell me a car. Let's talk about your offer."

Now, for cars over $20,000, don't even think about talking RRP. Ask them the RRP (even if you know it), pause thoughtfully, and say you'd like to start talking at (RRP - $1000). Are they still interested?

Now the salesman knows he's dealing with a shark (a pirhana at least). So he'll be listening very carefully to your words and watching your body language to see how hard you really are. Maybe you're an ex-car
salesman, maybe you're just arrogant. The main thing is, remember to be yourself. I bargained with one guy for an hour and its really draining. These guys do it for a living, they'll break you first, so do what comes
naturally.

If he uses words like "Help us out here, we really want to get you into this car", or "You're dead for a long time," or worse still, "Come on, its only money" you're dealing with a seasoned negotiator. I've had all of these lines used on me in the first 5 minutes, later found out he was the dealer principle at this branch for 18 years. So this guy will know every trick in the book and most likely walk away from the deal before you
do. Remember, its all about finding the absolute best deal you can get without things going sour. Be polite, thank them for any favours (such as coffee, brochures, a test drive) but don't give too gushy or they'll think you're easy. Be polite, respectful.

Most dealers told me that the car is in high demand, they can't get enough, they don't need to discount, blah blah. Look them in the eye and say "No worries. I'm prepared to wait until the hype has died down." Shrug and see what they say. You've just called their bluff. If they don't budge, leave them your number and ask them to call you if they change their mind, and walk out. Don't worry, they'll either stop you there or call you the very next day. The RRP always factors in SOME kind of discount. Hence the nice round numbers. Remember, on this $30k car you can get at least a grand off. If you're earning six figures you probably don't care... so turn off your PC right now and go for a drive down the beach!

Now... you know you've reached rock bottom when they stop smiling. Get your thousand-ish off, and (provided it's all true) say this: "Okay Mr X. You say that's the best you can do. I've got financed approved, insurance quotes, I've got a $500 deposit in my back pocket, I'm ready to do a deal RIGHT NOW. Give me your best figure and show me where to sign. I need to see a little bit more on that price."

That, my friends, is your last attempt to bring him down. If he says no, tell him you already have that offer. Where? Politely remind him that you're ready to sign at a better price, TODAY. I wouldn't push any
more after this. You'll seem ungrateful and you won't get any extras.

Extras...when you have the dollar figure, smile and say, "If that includes floor mats and a full tank of fuel I'm ready to sign". He'll nearly always oblige, grudgingly. Or he may start swearing and spitting. The point is, you've just added another $150 value to the deal!

If you want a sunroof, leather, whatever, now you have to add to that base value. You've worked him to the bone so I wouldn't push too much. Personally I'd leave these accessories until the FREE the 1000km service. That way you won't pay stamp duty on them as part of the new car purchase, and they'll probably do a better deal since you've become a loyal customer.

Now with the trade-in, this is very foggy ground. Firstly, you have to walk away for a few hours "to think about it", go back later and say that your friend/brother couldn't get finance...you'd like to consider the trade-in. Depending on the demand for your old car, mileage and relative condition, they'll probably offer you something in the trade-in range from redbook.com.au (sorry to the non-Oz readers). Remember that dealers have to detail your old car, provide a warranty and RWC. Plus it occupies floor/yard space which they pay rental on. You can't expect a street price on a trade-in.

Its very hard to gauge the upper limit on this, however a few things to remember are: don't get your car detailed (save the money for a Mazda3 turbo conversion) - they can see past the road dust and will appreciate the value anyway; if its a reasonable offer and you don't owe anything on the car, cut your losses and just go enjoy the FABULOUS deal on your new wheels; otherwise I would take the "minimum changeover cost" angle, arguing that you haven't *quite* got that much cash to pay the difference - can they help you out? That's about it. The used car market in Australia has been hammered by all these cars at $19,990... combined with easy/cheap finance options everyone is buying new cars. Thats my theory anyway!

Thats it - sorry for the long post! I hope somebody benefits from my experiences - be sure to let me know if you do.
 

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bah, I replied in the other post :p

anyway, i'll repeat as well, thanks for the tips.
 

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ah.. now you tell me! already signed :) j/k i got a good deal.. im in retail myself.. i know how to rip people off too.. :) thanks for posting your info. i really feel sorry for people that are given a ride when purchasing their new car. just remember what the salespeople are there for.. taking your money. thats it. some are nice about it but most are in for the almighty dollar.
 

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I'd like to add that if you want accessories the best time to barter them in is when you have reached what you think is their best price and they are ready for you to sign.

Ask for these items at cost. This way the dealer is not losing money out of it and you are not paying their stupidly inflated prices. If you want aftermarket wheels etc do your homework.....shop around before you buy the car and get the best price on the wheels you want.

The dealer will be paying trade price for them, and you are in a good position to know wether or not they are offering you a good deal.

Once you sign on the dotted line you have lost all negotiating power.
 
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thanks for the informative thread!!!

It's a bit late for alot of us tho...

:? :? :?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Well I have an almighty dilemma now. I just washed my 200SX ready for evaluation tomorrow and decided to take it for a cruise down to Frankston. After all, it could be my last chance if all goes well tomorrow. I was enjoying it so much I decided to make a round trip through Burwood to Penfold Mazda... maybe I can get into the yard and drool over the spanking new red SP23 hatch that they apparently have waiting. Sort my emotions out.

And there it was, under lights, behind glass, 2m from where I stood. After about 15 mins trying to view it from every angle I went back to the Nissan. Fired up the 2.0L turbo (prrrrrr). Gunned it up the onramp to the SE fwy fast enough to push sixth gear... nothing will give me this much driving pleasure for under 40k.

I'm torn... what to do? The SP23 is such an awesome car too.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
City, Brighton, Penfold (Burwood). Plus a few non-Mazda to get the Nissan valued.
 

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wish i knew this and read it just before i went to get my deal!

i was too honest - gave my price, and then just stayed there and didn't budge... i realised it was too high when after 1:15 mins of haggling they gave me the price i asked for initially :roll: :roll: then threw in mats and courtesy car (i already arranged with a friend to get the tinting done) - and i forgot about changing the plate holders (as samps said - i was broken first)
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Live and learn olorin! Now you know what to do in 5 years when you're haggling for that 911 turbo. :D
 

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There are good and bad salespeople. Its important to know who/what you are dealing with. Even within a dealership some may be good and some may be bad.

There are a couple of rules of engagement, such as;

Make sure you choose the salesperson you want, not the other way around. The best way to do this is by making a couple of phone calls to various dealers, while your chatting you'll get some idea about their personality. If there are any warning signs its then easy to terminate contact.

Now it's time to ask another series of questions about your salesperson:

Were you treated with respect?
Do you trust this salesperson to be open and honest when arranging the sale of this car?
If a disagreement arises, will you feel comfortable voicing your concern?
Was the salesperson listening to my needs? Or was he trying to sell me the car he wanted to move?

If you feel pleased after test-driving this salesperson, it's time to take the plunge and arrange a visit to test drive the actual car. During this time there is nothing wrong with making it clear that you want to know their best overall deal possible and you'll from there make a decision on shortlisting the best combination of car/manufacturer & dealership.

This makes them aware that you intend doing your homework, don't have a slavish devotion to buying their model and are not to be treated lightly.

Even if your mad about the car don't let the dealer know under any circumstance until after you've purchased it.

Other important notes are;

1. Dealers have monthly targets. At the start of the month they're least likely to negotiate.

2. Manufacturers want new cars to be selling strongly with good reviews, they incent their sales team in the first couple of months not to move on list price and to instead offer trade in's and accessories.

3. Don't buy a new car manufactured last year from a dealer under any circumstances unless you've been offered a compensatory discount.

As you work toward completing the deal, your early decisions about selecting a salesperson should make it a stress-free, enjoyable experience. And why not? There are some great salespeople out there.

Note: This is reposted from a topic that didn't really tie in with the subject.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
fiordland, one question... today I purchased a new Mazda3 SP23 off the showroom floor. This car has a build date of Dec '03. Do you think I should have been compensated? It's still a 2004 model and I doubt it was on our shores in 2003. Is this likely to make it a year older when I go to sell it?
 

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As I mentioned in my response to your purchase you've been given a very good price and Mazda have a high residual value. In three years time if you decide to sell it you'll have a negligible difference compared to a January build.

What I was reminding everyone was not to buy a Mazda3 in say May 04 that was built in November '03 without a sizeable discount. In its first year with production limited this will be unlikely to occur, it tends to happen with models that are not selling as strongly.

The fact that your vehicle was registered immediately after arrival this year and was made only a couple of weeks earlier means your situation isn't what I was referring to. :wink:
 

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samps said:
Live and learn olorin! Now you know what to do in 5 years when you're haggling for that 911 turbo.
how did you know that was going to be my next car?? :D

j/k - it will most likely be a bmw/merc :shock:

perhaps i wrote it incorrectly. it was after 1hr 15 mins that they got down to the price i first stated as i did not move at all. it was very tiring as they were moving down so slowly... and i thought a $2500 discount on a new car worthwhile. *grins* if only life had a rehearsal too...
 

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