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(NPR)   Almost anything can be purchased online, except a new car from an Internet-only dealership. Turns out sleazeball dickwad car dealership owners are in bed with sleazeball dickwad politicians, thus ensuring you're screwed forever   (npr.org) divider line 324
    More: Obvious, internet, National Automobile Dealers Association, AutoNation, state sales tax  
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11612 clicks; posted to Main » on 20 Feb 2013 at 2:00 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-02-20 03:12:37 AM  

iheartscotch: So, you're saying a pack of elderly lawmakers and obscure laws are making your life miserable?

/ welcome to the modern era; where things can't ever, ever, EVER; be simple.


this isn't limited to today. it's another example of those with money & power making damn sure they don't lose theirs. in lesser ways this has been going on ever since way back when extended families / villages worked together for their common good, side by side. eventually a few genetic misfits were born here and there, malcontents, evil people and some mentally ill, who were cast aside or unable to fit in the social structure so they left. some greedy evil clever ne'r-do-well gathered together a band of these bastards and they rode rein over a local family, stealing their wares and claiming their homes and land as their own as they made slaves of the men and raped the women.

these horrible people were the first to enjoy power and control over others for self gain. they were the ancestors of the wealthy and powerful families that exist today, more or less. simply horrible people that will do whatever it takes to make certain their personal wealth and comfort is undisturbed as others suffer.

it's rare that the masses rise up against those with power and control so it usually remains status quo. the longer this structure exists the more wealthy and powerful those families grow, along with their understanding & application of how to control and manipulate the masses to minimize backlash.
 
2013-02-20 03:18:34 AM  

Yogimus: Buy car overseas.


Are you familiar with the current exchange rates?  Are you familiar with how difficult it would be to source parts for a european-spec car in the US?  Do you have any idea of the shipping costs associated with it?  Do you have any idea how to ensure that a foreign-procured vehicle can be certified in the US for emissions so it can be registered?
 
2013-02-20 03:18:47 AM  

PerilousApricot: Great Janitor: The reason why is for the car salesman.  If the lot wasn't forced to be closed at least one day a week, then most of the salesmen would be working open to close seven days a week.

That's why all the restaurants, clothes stores and shops near my house close one day a week.


And that day is usually Monday. Why do car dealerships close on a weekend day, probably the day folk have the most time to shop for a new car?
 
2013-02-20 03:21:25 AM  

wax_on: PerilousApricot: Great Janitor: The reason why is for the car salesman.  If the lot wasn't forced to be closed at least one day a week, then most of the salesmen would be working open to close seven days a week.

That's why all the restaurants, clothes stores and shops near my house close one day a week.

And that day is usually Monday. Why do car dealerships close on a weekend day, probably the day folk have the most time to shop for a new car?


The answer I got was it was a state law.  Some states said that the dealerships had to be closed on Sundays, others say one weekend day.  To me it's evident that the choice isn't up to the dealership or it might be a Tuesday when they were all closed.
 
2013-02-20 03:25:00 AM  
 A similar story was aired on NPR on the way to work a while back about a woman who wanted to order either a Honda or Toyota online and have it made to order. She could do that but had to have the car delivered to a dealer specializing in the company to do the transaction to get the sales.  It made the price of the car much higher in price.

Found out that the automobile industry had got a law passed so that all new cars had to be sold by a dealer. I had never knew about the law until that story.  I wonder why it has not been challenged, but I can guess.

Another story I also heard is why America can not have an efficient commuter or long distance passenger rail systems is because the tracks in the US are privately owned and the owners are afraid it would slow down freight shipping and refuse to share the track. So until commuter trains would have to have their own rail systems no bullet trains will be coming to the US anytime soon.
 
2013-02-20 03:29:01 AM  

Great Janitor: The answer I got was it was a state law.


From Wikipedia

In Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Maine, Minnesota, Missouri, Oklahoma, New Jersey, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, car dealerships continue to operate under blue-law prohibitions in which an automobile may not be purchased or traded on a Sunday. Maryland permits Sunday automobile sales only in the counties of Prince George's, Montgomery, and Howard; similarly, Michigan restricts Sunday sales to only those counties with a population of less than 130,000. Texas and Utah prohibit car dealerships from operating over consecutive weekend days. In some cases these laws were created or retained with the support of those whom they affected, to allow them a day off each week without fear of their competitors still being open.[5]

I did not know that.
 
2013-02-20 03:29:03 AM  

wax_on: And that day is usually Monday. Why do car dealerships close on a weekend day, probably the day folk have the most time to shop for a new car?


For the same reason that all cartels with political clout will seek to limit hours: so they can reduce costs.  If everyone is closed on Sunday, they don't have to worry about the dealership down the road snaking customers from them.

In CT up until last year, Sunday alcohol sales were prohibited.  CT is probably the least religious state in the country, so it wasn't due to some sort of outdated notion of religious prudence.  It's that private shopowners didn't want to have to man their shops on Sunday, but they didn't want to lose business to competitors who were willing to be open on Sundays.  So they colluded to continue the Sunday prohibition well beyond its sensible life.  They still collude, by limiting the hours to 11a-5p.  There is no social good - it's simply to avoid having to staff their shops.
 
2013-02-20 03:29:31 AM  

Babwa Wawa: Yogimus: Buy car overseas.

Are you familiar with the current exchange rates?  Are you familiar with how difficult it would be to source parts for a european-spec car in the US?  Do you have any idea of the shipping costs associated with it?  Do you have any idea how to ensure that a foreign-procured vehicle can be certified in the US for emissions so it can be registered?


What if you leave the car overseas, smart guy?
 
2013-02-20 03:31:42 AM  

HaywoodJablonski: What if you leave the car overseas, smart guy?


Well, you got me there.

JABLONSKI!!!!!!
 
2013-02-20 03:33:11 AM  
I bought a new car at a dealership last year. I paid a good price according to the internet, and got great financing to boot. YMMV.
 
2013-02-20 03:33:55 AM  
local corruption at its best.
 
2013-02-20 03:38:30 AM  

Babwa Wawa: Yogimus: Buy car overseas.

Are you familiar with the current exchange rates?  Are you familiar with how difficult it would be to source parts for a european-spec car in the US?  Do you have any idea of the shipping costs associated with it?  Do you have any idea how to ensure that a foreign-procured vehicle can be certified in the US for emissions so it can be registered?


Yes I do.  Are you aware of:
http://www.saab-militarysales.com/militaryprogram/main.html
http://www.autoexchangeonline.com/

They don't actually care if you are in the military.
 
2013-02-20 03:42:52 AM  
Because the seats do occupy 16 percent more floor space, the airline would have to sell 16 percent fewer seats.

Having experienced firsthand how ridiculously crowded the airlines are in the corner of the world this kid is from, I'm gonna say no to his genius invention.  You lose.  Good day, sir.  You get nothing.
 
2013-02-20 03:43:24 AM  
In Vegas the car dealerships are required to be closed on Sundays and it irritates the heck out of me.
 
2013-02-20 03:43:43 AM  

HotWingAgenda: Because the seats do occupy 16 percent more floor space, the airline would have to sell 16 percent fewer seats.

Having experienced firsthand how ridiculously crowded the airlines are in the corner of the world this kid is from, I'm gonna say no to his genius invention.  You lose.  Good day, sir.  You get nothing.


Well, that was an epic fail.
 
2013-02-20 03:46:29 AM  

Great Janitor: PerilousApricot: Great Janitor: The reason why is for the car salesman.  If the lot wasn't forced to be closed at least one day a week, then most of the salesmen would be working open to close seven days a week.

That's why all the restaurants, clothes stores and shops near my house close one day a week.

The difference is that salesmen work on pure commission.  Restaurant/Retail employees are hourly.  In a pure commission environment everyone works 6 or 7 days a week.  If you're having a bad week, you work that seventh day in hopes of having a paycheck.  If you're having a good week, you tend to keep it going buy working that seventh day.  Having a law that says that certain industries, like car sales, must be closed one day a week means that no one is going to force themselves to work seven days, and the boss isn't going to expect anyone to work seven days a week.  Something else that happens in pure commission environments.

I've been in some places were the work week was just four days last sales appointment was at 7pm.  I've been to others were it was officially six days, but in reality it was seven days with the work day starting at 8am and being told that if you're home by 9pm you probably didn't make any money.

When everyone is paid hourly or salaried, the work week gets limited to 40 hours in most cases to avoid over time or comp time.  So the business can run seven days a week and the staff can have two days a week or more off (used to work retail.  One week put in almost 60 hours, next week lucking to put in 10 hours).


Okay, gonna get a lot of grief for this, but I made it to the bottom of the thread... guys? I *work* at a car dealership. Buick and GMC. Internet Manager. And man oh man, there is a TON of butthurt in this thread. Please allows me to teach...

1) yep, salesmen lie. you know who lies more? customers. Can't tell you how many times I had a customer (back when I was selling) say "Well we were just looking" and when I called to follow up the next day was told "oh we bought at XYZ dealership" oh well, go fark yourself.

2) better deal if you pay cash? hey the 80s called... we take deals that are so damn slim would make you wonder how we stay in business. I can say without hesitation or doubt that WEEKLY, we sell vehicles that are $50-60k and make a whopping 500-750 in profit. For those of you playing the home game, that's a 1% profit. Stop by your local grocer and tell them that you only want them to make 1% in profit. They will laugh their ass off. And probably throw something at you.

3) A salesman works by referrals, so he'll treat you right.......? Actually true. There's a gentleman in our dealership, been with us for 16 years now, doesn't even have to deal with "fresh" business, because he has a decade and a half of customers who know he'll take care of them. Sure there are some fly by night dealerships, some salesmen who don't cut it, etc etc etc... but if you get a real sales man, a CAREER salesman, then know what? he/she will see to it you're taken care of... because statistically, you know someone who will be in the market for a vehicle in the next 18 months. Industry standard.

4) And lastly? If you haven't worked in the business you don't what the fark you're talking about. Go back to that used lot where they put 40 weight in the engine to hide the knocking. You get what you deserve. Its not that different from cultivating a relationship with a waiter/waitress at your favorite restaurant- find someone who you know will take care of you, and go from there. Or be an idiot. Your call.

incidentally, Janitor? Don't know you, but sign me up for your newsletter.
 
2013-02-20 03:47:08 AM  

Babwa Wawa: Great Janitor: That's no different than going to the doctor after breaking your arm, seeing the doctor walk into the examine room and saying "Oh, yeah, everything's okay, gotta go!" and leave the hospital.

Imma go on a limb and say that's a really stupid analogy.  The idea that I need a car salesman as much as I need a doctor when I've got a broken arm...  That I can't look at cars on a car lot without the "assistance" of a salesperson.  Well, hell, I don't even know how to express how dumb that idea is.


The role of the salesman, or at least the way I do it, I make it clear that I am there to answer all their questions about the car, if I don't know the answer I will find out with them there.  I'm also the their liaison to the person who can finalize the deal and to do everything I can to make sure that they leave with the car that they love.  And I make it crystal clear from the start "If you do not love this car, let me know now and I won't waste our time working out a deal.  Instead we will go back and find a car that you do love."   

Great Janitor: And, by the way, a good salesman isn't going to lie to you because sales is a referral business.

Oh that's just horseshiat.  First, 50% of the employees you see at a dealership will not be there the next year (http://ezinearticles.com/?High-Employee-Turnover&id=3126149).  Even if you buy a car every two f*cking years, chances are you're not going to buy it from the same guy.

And I'm going to go on a limb and say that nobody has ever - EVER - told me, "you've gotta see my guy Steve up at the Ford dealer.  He'll get you a solid deal, yessirree!"  That's absurd.  This isn't Mayberry.  The dealer and sales guy knows that they will very likely never see you again and will thus bilk you out of as much money as possible while you're in front of them.

The idea that a car salesman has any compunction about lying to you is ridiculous and contrary to nearly everyone's experience.


One reason why dealerships have a high turn over rate is that it's not an easy job.  My first job as a car salesman I lasted one week.  The one car I sold that week was returned the following day.  Kind of figured that was going to happen when she complained about her $300/month payment on her current car and I put her into a $500/month car.  It's long hours, its six days a week, rejection is high.

Also, car salesmen can be sued for lying.  Everywhere I worked, if the salesman lied about anything, he was fired on the spot.  Not telling someone something and justifying it with "You never asked." isn't lying.  Saying the car gets 30 miles to the gallon when it can only get 15 miles to the gallon is a lie that can get a salesman fired.

As far as the referrals go, no one goes into car sales expecting to be there a month before getting fired.  My father in law has been with Kia for over ten years and has a successful enough referral business that every car he sales now is by appointment.  He doesn't need to sale to anyone who just walked onto the lot.  Also, and I've been in sales long enough to know this, when the salesman does great by the customer/client, the customer/client will happily refer friends and family members to the salesman.  The most referrals I've ever gotten off of one person was 8, and of those 8 I closed business with 5.  Had I lied to the first client I would have lost out on five sales.  And those five sales all brought in referrals that brought in more money.

Honestly, I don't get this idea of salesmen being lying greedy bastards because being in that industry, it's rare, and with some of the stuff I've sold, lying could lead to me getting sued or having licenses or certifications revoked.  Plus, it's just bad business.  When I start a sale I have to sell the product, I have to sell the company and I have to sell myself.  If the company is shady or has a bad reputation (Kirby, Primerica), the sale isn't going to happen no matter how good of a job I do.  If the product is bad (Kirby), the sale isn't going to happen.  If I treat the client or their spouse like shiat, if I lie and get caught, the sale isn't going to happen.  I don't even let the person sign a thing until I've read all the print on the contract to that person and dumbed it down if needed just so they could know exactly what they were about to sign.  I refuse to do business with those who can't speak english because I want there to be absolute clarity about what's happening, something that can't exist when I only speak english and the client can barely speak it, and the last thing I do is I am very careful of what I say.  Because everything I say can be taken at face value.  So if I say something, I better be able to back it up 100% (That's actually why I left my last company.  They gave us stuff to pass out and told us what to say about the deals that were being offered, then they went back on the deal after I told a few skeptical clients that they have the fliers, they have the offer in writing, so of course the company has to honor what's on that flier and there is no fine print.  There was so much trust lost between the company and the clients that I made almost no money as I lost clients because the company refused to honor what it wrote down on paper what it would do and how it would do it.  So I left the company explaining that the company's lies cost me money and I hope they fail).  Salesmen who lie and cheat just to make the sale find themselves out of a job very very fast.
 
2013-02-20 03:52:45 AM  

Yogimus: Babwa Wawa: Yogimus: Buy car overseas.

Are you familiar with the current exchange rates?  Are you familiar with how difficult it would be to source parts for a european-spec car in the US?  Do you have any idea of the shipping costs associated with it?  Do you have any idea how to ensure that a foreign-procured vehicle can be certified in the US for emissions so it can be registered?

Yes I do.  Are you aware of:
http://www.saab-militarysales.com/militaryprogram/main.html
http://www.autoexchangeonline.com/

They don't actually care if you are in the military.


Yeah, no.  Audi A4 quattro premium.  $34K on autoexchange.  $37K MSRP.  Not a great deal.
 
2013-02-20 03:53:05 AM  
"There are plenty other businesses employ lots of people but don't have so much protection from state laws. "

now thats some fine editing.
 
2013-02-20 03:54:07 AM  

Babwa Wawa: Great Janitor: That's no different than going to the doctor after breaking your arm, seeing the doctor walk into the examine room and saying "Oh, yeah, everything's okay, gotta go!" and leave the hospital.

Imma go on a limb and say that's a really stupid analogy.  The idea that I need a car salesman as much as I need a doctor when I've got a broken arm...  That I can't look at cars on a car lot without the "assistance" of a salesperson.  Well, hell, I don't even know how to express how dumb that idea is.

Great Janitor: And, by the way, a good salesman isn't going to lie to you because sales is a referral business.

Oh that's just horseshiat.  First, 50% of the employees you see at a dealership will not be there the next year (http://ezinearticles.com/?High-Employee-Turnover&id=3126149).  Even if you buy a car every two f*cking years, chances are you're not going to buy it from the same guy.

And I'm going to go on a limb and say that nobody has ever - EVER - told me, "you've gotta see my guy Steve up at the Ford dealer.  He'll get you a solid deal, yessirree!"  That's absurd.  This isn't Mayberry.  The dealer and sales guy knows that they will very likely never see you again and will thus bilk you out of as much money as possible while you're in front of them.

The idea that a car salesman has any compunction about lying to you is ridiculous and contrary to nearly everyone's experience.


I get the feeling you're kind of a dick. Also, you know nothing about buying cars. Just saying. I know people who can recite the last 5 times a customer bought a car from them, what they bought, why they bought, what color, etc. I'm going to go out on a limb and assume you're a moron who has no clue what he's talking about
 
2013-02-20 03:58:16 AM  

weave: Amen to that.  I want to go online, order exactly what I want with options, pay for it, then a few weeks later a truck pulls up and drops off my new car.

Of course dealers will still exist to rip you off on service, so they'll still have that.


My mom bought a new car like a pizza once, she called the Toyota place told em the model and color and what she wanted, and they delivered it to her door for a check and proof of insurance. She did give her friend that worked at the dealership and who handled the whole thing the check a few days prior and they waited for it to clear I think, but I'm guessing that if you called and really stuck to your guns about wanting that type of deal you could probably get it pretty easy
 
2013-02-20 03:58:36 AM  

Great Janitor: Babwa Wawa: Great Janitor: That's no different than going to the doctor after breaking your arm, seeing the doctor walk into the examine room and saying "Oh, yeah, everything's okay, gotta go!" and leave the hospital.

Imma go on a limb and say that's a really stupid analogy.  The idea that I need a car salesman as much as I need a doctor when I've got a broken arm...  That I can't look at cars on a car lot without the "assistance" of a salesperson.  Well, hell, I don't even know how to express how dumb that idea is.

The role of the salesman, or at least the way I do it, I make it clear that I am there to answer all their questions about the car, if I don't know the answer I will find out with them there.  I'm also the their liaison to the person who can finalize the deal and to do everything I can to make sure that they leave with the car that they love.  And I make it crystal clear from the start "If you do not love this car, let me know now and I won't waste our time working out a deal.  Instead we will go back and find a car that you do love."   

Great Janitor: And, by the way, a good salesman isn't going to lie to you because sales is a referral business.

Oh that's just horseshiat.  First, 50% of the employees you see at a dealership will not be there the next year (http://ezinearticles.com/?High-Employee-Turnover&id=3126149).  Even if you buy a car every two f*cking years, chances are you're not going to buy it from the same guy.

And I'm going to go on a limb and say that nobody has ever - EVER - told me, "you've gotta see my guy Steve up at the Ford dealer.  He'll get you a solid deal, yessirree!"  That's absurd.  This isn't Mayberry.  The dealer and sales guy knows that they will very likely never see you again and will thus bilk you out of as much money as possible while you're in front of them.

The idea that a car salesman has any compunction about lying to you is ridiculous and contrary to nearly everyone's experience.

One reason why dealerships hav ...


Great Janitor: Babwa Wawa: Great Janitor: That's no different than going to the doctor after breaking your arm, seeing the doctor walk into the examine room and saying "Oh, yeah, everything's okay, gotta go!" and leave the hospital.

Imma go on a limb and say that's a really stupid analogy.  The idea that I need a car salesman as much as I need a doctor when I've got a broken arm...  That I can't look at cars on a car lot without the "assistance" of a salesperson.  Well, hell, I don't even know how to express how dumb that idea is.

The role of the salesman, or at least the way I do it, I make it clear that I am there to answer all their questions about the car, if I don't know the answer I will find out with them there.  I'm also the their liaison to the person who can finalize the deal and to do everything I can to make sure that they leave with the car that they love.  And I make it crystal clear from the start "If you do not love this car, let me know now and I won't waste our time working out a deal.  Instead we will go back and find a car that you do love."   

Great Janitor: And, by the way, a good salesman isn't going to lie to you because sales is a referral business.

Oh that's just horseshiat.  First, 50% of the employees you see at a dealership will not be there the next year (http://ezinearticles.com/?High-Employee-Turnover&id=3126149).  Even if you buy a car every two f*cking years, chances are you're not going to buy it from the same guy.

And I'm going to go on a limb and say that nobody has ever - EVER - told me, "you've gotta see my guy Steve up at the Ford dealer.  He'll get you a solid deal, yessirree!"  That's absurd.  This isn't Mayberry.  The dealer and sales guy knows that they will very likely never see you again and will thus bilk you out of as much money as possible while you're in front of them.

The idea that a car salesman has any compunction about lying to you is ridiculous and contrary to nearly everyone's experience.

One reason why dealerships hav ...


For the record, Kirby isn't crap, it's just ridiculously overpriced. just saying.
 
2013-02-20 04:09:18 AM  

HotWingAgenda: HotWingAgenda: Because the seats do occupy 16 percent more floor space, the airline would have to sell 16 percent fewer seats.

Having experienced firsthand how ridiculously crowded the airlines are in the corner of the world this kid is from, I'm gonna say no to his genius invention.  You lose.  Good day, sir.  You get nothing.

Well, that was an epic fail.


I actually thought it was kind of beautiful.
 
2013-02-20 04:19:36 AM  

Babwa Wawa: Yogimus: Buy car overseas.

Are you familiar with the current exchange rates?  Are you familiar with how difficult it would be to source parts for a european-spec car in the US?  Do you have any idea of the shipping costs associated with it?  Do you have any idea how to ensure that a foreign-procured vehicle can be certified in the US for emissions so it can be registered?


so all this made sense up until emissions. i would bet this idea is  10 - 20 years out of date and every european country has better emissions standards than we do. along with regulating GMO an d fixing roads and we everything that sucks here now that used to kick ass before i was born.
 
2013-02-20 04:21:08 AM  

Mimic_Octopus: Babwa Wawa: Yogimus: Buy car overseas.

Are you familiar with the current exchange rates?  Are you familiar with how difficult it would be to source parts for a european-spec car in the US?  Do you have any idea of the shipping costs associated with it?  Do you have any idea how to ensure that a foreign-procured vehicle can be certified in the US for emissions so it can be registered?

so all this made sense up until emissions. i would bet this idea is  10 - 20 years out of date and every european country has better emissions standards than we do. along with regulating GMO an d fixing roads and we everything that sucks here now that used to kick ass before i was born.


Still needs the sticker for US emissions. (which they will happily place on your car at the factory)
 
2013-02-20 04:22:46 AM  
sonorangal: ....

Another story I also heard is why America can not have an efficient commuter or long distance passenger rail systems is because the tracks in the US are privately owned and the owners are afraid it would slow down freight shipping and refuse to share the track. So until commuter trains would have to have their own rail systems no bullet trains will be coming to the US anytime soon.

A major issue is US geography, with the distance between population centers, especially between the coasts. Also, unlike Europe (where I have lived on and off), roads and rails often preceded the towns. Designing the system to reach out to serve localities was unnecessary because the localities came into existence to serve the system. After WWII the roads won; lobbying by trucking companies and unions got federal regulations to favor OTR transport over rails, and the Interstate system (and subsequent expansion in feeder roads) made the personal car king. Families and their housing spread out, away from the density that makes commuter systems feasible. Now, old trunk line rails are pulled up and abandoned or turned into public pathways. Railways fight a constant battle to keep open the road crossings they have, as towns try to end or divert freight traffic so that (car) traffic can flow smoothly; adding commuter trains to that is unthinkable. We went through this in the Portland OR area with the addition of the WES commuter express, which resulted in a compromise of WES running only limited hours. Additionally, railways have to deal with Darwin Award winners (afoot or a-car) who cross tracks when a train is coming, or clueless NIMBY people who move into a neighborhood near tracks and try to get a law passed that the freight trains can't use horns at night because people are trying to sleep. I'm not partial to railroads; having lived in places where they were prominent, if not dominant, transit choices, I think we Americans could be a bit more accommodating.
 
2013-02-20 04:23:43 AM  

king of vegas: In Vegas the car dealerships are required to be closed on Sundays and it irritates the heck out of me.


yes, no one in teh entire automotive distribution pipeline should have a day off the same day as their office bee wife and school aged children so you can go shopping once every 4 or 5 years.  retail gets moday off cause they mostly kids anyway or retired.  you'll never see the pitcher form your high school baseball team selling suits at sears.
 
2013-02-20 04:30:12 AM  
DRTFA because it appears to have been written by a gerbil.
 
2013-02-20 04:48:14 AM  

AverageAmericanGuy: But once you leave your little technologically enhanced sphere, there are plenty of disadvantaged people out there that rely on bricks and mortar stores to supply their needs. If you kill off the local dealership, you're taking that choice away from them and hurting us all.


A) We could just ensure that everyone has easy access to the Internet. That's probably a worthwhile and reasonable goal all by itself, regardless of how people buy cars, and it's something we already do for phone and mail service. Even homeless people often have at least some access to phone service; we could do the same thing for the Interwebs.

B) You're argument about "choice" works both ways: If you insist on keeping your local dealerships (though anti-competitive laws), you're taking away the choice of online dealerships from me and hurting us all. I don't think either argument is particularly compelling.
 
2013-02-20 04:59:53 AM  

sonorangal: So until commuter trains would have to have their own rail systems no bullet trains will be coming to the US anytime soon.


We could just move to unified transit technology. The idea that a "highway" and a "rail line" need to be fully distinct things is 19th-century thinking.

And I don't mean loading automobiles onto slow-moving trains, I mean building a new hybrid system that allows for the high-automation, fuel efficiency, and weight capacity of long-haul trains lines but with the individual routing possible with automobiles. It's not as implausible as it might sound technology-wise, it's just a big investment in infrastructure.

Given that the last major transportation technological change (steam->diesel) almost put the railroads out of business, and that car companies haven't done much other than safety/efficiency tweaks for decades (which is good and use engineering, just not very revolutionary in the base form of the vehicle) I'm not sure we can trust either of them or the politicians they own to bring us the next version of transportation.
 
2013-02-20 05:02:57 AM  

AverageAmericanGuy: Amazon killed Borders. Now people without the Internet can't buy books.

So, yeah, it sounds great and it's really convenient to buy stuff online and have it delivered. But once you leave your little technologically enhanced sphere, there are plenty of disadvantaged people out there that rely on bricks and mortar stores to supply their needs. If you kill off the local dealership, you're taking that choice away from them and hurting us all.


Borders killed Borders.
 
2013-02-20 05:57:45 AM  
I find this thread hillarious

Americans are being ripped off repeatedly but strangely generally accept that (I find this odd since I have many American friends who are quite brilliant and should not be so accepting or ignorant of this)

I bought a car in the US when I first arrived there and was charged about 20% higher than the sticker price with descriptions of "delivery charge", "sales tax", and a host of other charges.

I was forced to sign a loan agreement even though I was paying cash in full (they used homeland security as an excuse accusing me of money laundering because I could pay in full).

AWESOME car, a lot of fun driving it on the I880 but ... what a load of codswallop.
 
2013-02-20 06:13:16 AM  

Slartibartfaster: I bought a car in the US when I first arrived there and was charged about 20% higher than the sticker price with descriptions of "delivery charge", "sales tax", and a host of other charges.

I was forced to sign a loan agreement even though I was paying cash in full (they used homeland security as an excuse accusing me of money laundering because I could pay in full).


Last car I bought, I looked it up online, figured out what I wanted, grabbed a salesman, and paid for it up-front for the manufacturer's standard price as listed on the manufacturer web site along with the specs.

Then, I was buying from a manufacturer-affiliated dealership.  If you weren't, that was probably your first mistake right there.  The internet is a thing now, you don't actually need a salesman to do anything but help you with the paperwork.
 
2013-02-20 06:27:16 AM  

Babwa Wawa: AverageAmericanGuy: Amazon killed Borders. Now people without the Internet can't buy books.

So, yeah, it sounds great and it's really convenient to buy stuff online and have it delivered. But once you leave your little technologically enhanced sphere, there are plenty of disadvantaged people out there that rely on bricks and mortar stores to supply their needs. If you kill off the local dealership, you're taking that choice away from them and hurting us all.

This isn't just about online competition.  This is about ANY competition at all.  The rules designed to raise the cost of market entry for car dealers wouldn't be tolerated in many other industries.


Um, it's not just tolerated, but lobbied for, in MOST industries.  Just not as blatantly, usually.

Try opening your own bank or insurance company, for instance.
 
2013-02-20 06:40:58 AM  

gadian: If a person feels comfortable enough to buy clothes online, they'll likely feel comfortable enough to buy a car without trying it on as well.  So long as there is a return option, I guess.


Yea, because ordering and taking delivery of a 40k automobile, driving it around for awhile, then deciding "you know, I'm really not satisfied with the lumbar support", and deciding to return it (as a "used" vehicle btw) is the same as trying on a hat.

This is the dumbest thread I've seen on fark, and that's saying something.

You're all probably the same people biatching and moaning about all the jobs being sent overseas too.

So what the hell, let's throw a few thousand more people out of work in every county across the country so I can save a few hundred bucks on a car purchase.

I'm not a car salesman, but I understand economics. Do you know what kind of property taxes these dealerships pay? Not to mention some of them being the largest employers in their respective locations? Advertising dollars spent locally, sponsorships of local kids sports teams, ect., ect.

Some businesses need to be local. Car dealerships, as sleazy as they are, are one of these.
 
2013-02-20 06:55:54 AM  
My wife bought a car a few years ago. She did all the research on various car sides (e.g. edmunds.com), reviewed the online inventory for multiple dealers in town, found the exact model and trim package that she wanted, and did all the negotiations by phone (less pressure that way). The dealers all competed with each other for her business, would offer to beat other dealer prices, etc. She kept meticulous notes of each conversation and when certain details were to be discussed (for example, the price) would record the call and got the dealer consent to do so -- that way there'd be no misconceptions or "he said, she said" accusations.

Finally, after she got the best offer from one dealer she physically went into the shop to finalize the sale. Even then, they tried pulling a lot of bogus stuff, tried to sell her useless add-ons, services, doing shady financial stuff, etc. On several occasions they tried saying certain things were required (and she knew they weren't) and so she got up to walk. They ended up changing their minds and suddenly "required" things became "optional".

She ended up buying the car that she wanted at the priced that had been previously agreed upon with no extras. They even removed the dealer sticker and license plate frame as a condition of the sale.

Moral of the story: do your research online and contact dealers by phone ahead of time (preferably by Google Voice so you can block their annoying follow-up calls that they make for weeks afterwards even after requesting that they don't call you). Be prepared to walk if they try pulling anything shady. There's no need to be an ass to car dealers, as they're just doing their job, but don't get suckered.

/dislikes having to interact with salesmen and high-pressure sales tactics
 
2013-02-20 06:59:17 AM  

king of vegas: In Vegas the car dealerships are required to be closed on Sundays and it irritates the heck out of me.


Do you buy new cars that frequently that the dealerships not being open one day out of the week is a big deal for you?
 
2013-02-20 07:01:02 AM  

sonorangal:  A similar story was aired on NPR on the way to work a while back about a woman who wanted to order either a Honda or Toyota online and have it made to order. She could do that but had to have the car delivered to a dealer specializing in the company to do the transaction to get the sales.  It made the price of the car much higher in price.

Found out that the automobile industry had got a law passed so that all new cars had to be sold by a dealer. I had never knew about the law until that story.  I wonder why it has not been challenged, but I can guess.

Another story I also heard is why America can not have an efficient commuter or long distance passenger rail systems is because the tracks in the US are privately owned and the owners are afraid it would slow down freight shipping and refuse to share the track. So until commuter trains would have to have their own rail systems no bullet trains will be coming to the US anytime soon.


That's not the only reason. In addition to needing more infrastructure, they'd have to abandon numerous smaller stations at stops in places like Podunk Arkansas that were created to satisfy the political needs of various members of Congress.
 
2013-02-20 07:05:52 AM  

nolanomad: 2) better deal if you pay cash? hey the 80s called... we take deals that are so damn slim would make you wonder how we stay in business. I can say without hesitation or doubt that WEEKLY, we sell vehicles that are $50-60k and make a whopping 500-750 in profit. For those of you playing the home game, that's a 1% profit. Stop by your local grocer and tell them that you only want them to make 1% in profit. They will laugh their ass off. And probably throw something at you.


Of course you'd rather people finanaced through your preferred program. Oh, and if you're really making 1% profit, you're going out of business very, very soon. My guess? You're lying.
 
2013-02-20 07:09:32 AM  
The car dealership system makes absolutely no sense to me.
 
2013-02-20 07:10:55 AM  

Basily Gourt: gadian: If a person feels comfortable enough to buy clothes online, they'll likely feel comfortable enough to buy a car without trying it on as well.  So long as there is a return option, I guess.

Yea, because ordering and taking delivery of a 40k automobile, driving it around for awhile, then deciding "you know, I'm really not satisfied with the lumbar support", and deciding to return it (as a "used" vehicle btw) is the same as trying on a hat. - The law says you can return a vehicle before 3 days for ANY reason, already.  Many dealers offer 30-day return policies already.

This is the dumbest thread I've seen on fark, and that's saying something. - I'll reserve judgement on that until the next thread you are in.

You're all probably the same people biatching and moaning about all the jobs being sent overseas too. - So, your argument is that we should maintain a stupid outdated system because it might save some jobs.  By that logic, there should be a BestBuy on every corner.

So what the hell, let's throw a few thousand more people out of work in every county across the country so I can save a few hundred bucks on a car purchase. - Again, see BestBuy.

I'm not a car salesman, but I understand economics. Do you know what kind of property taxes these dealerships pay? Not to mention some of them being the largest employers in their respective locations? Advertising dollars spent locally, sponsorships of local kids sports teams, ect., ect. - Actually, you don't understand economics.  If you did, you would understand that dealerships are essentially monopolistic competition.  They compete against one another, but they have structured the market in such a way that it creates false barriers to competition.  Time and time again, this has been shown to be an inefficient market model, and ultimately, it is the consumer that gets screwed.

Some businesses need to be local. Car dealerships, as sleazy as they are, are one of these.

- Fine. let them be local.  There is no reason why dealerships all have to go away.  Some people, especially old folks will never want to buy their cars online.  But is that a valid reason to use sleazy political moves to prevent innovation?  fark, no.
 
2013-02-20 07:14:26 AM  

harlock: I bought my last new car through Cars Direct in 2003 and it was the easiest experience I ever had. The way it works out is you order it from there and pick it up at a participating dealership. It's a done deal and they are not allowed to mess with you. I walked in, signed papers and drove out. At the time the going price for most cars on there was $500 over invoice minus any factory incentives etc available, which for my car were very substantial (always buy at the end of Dec for good deals...) and I got a really great deal.


I am not sure how their process works, but if you can get a firm price from them it may be worth while to sniff around the dealer to see if they can beat it.

Last car I bought I got it at invoice -1000 (manufacturer discount), no financing tricks, it was amazing pleasent.  On top of that they paid me over blue book for my trade in...I almost felt guilty.
 
2013-02-20 07:16:24 AM  
weave:
Amen to that.  I want to go online, order exactly what I want with options, pay for it, then a few weeks later a truck pulls up and drops off my new car.

Of course dealers will still exist to rip you off on service, so they'll still have that.


So will you still go to a B&M dealership beforehand to test drive it, and then order it for cheaper online?  Or will you buy a car without so much as sitting in it?

Close2TheEdge:
There is no reason why dealerships all have to go away. Some people, especially old folks will never want to buy their cars online. But is that a valid reason to use sleazy political moves to prevent innovation? fark, no.

But this.
 
2013-02-20 07:30:27 AM  

Babwa Wawa: MaudlinMutantMollusk: It's not news

Anything that drives public awareness of this mockery of the free market is a good thing.


This has been going on since long before the internet existed though.  Even before the internet, we were forced to buy cars from middlemen (dealers) because it was illegal for for OEMs to open retail outlets that could sell directly to the customer.  Regardless of the technology, it's just state governments choosing to protect local business (read: middlemen) from outside competition (an OEM retail store would be able to undersell local dealers AND have more money behind it).

The problem is that no one really questions the system.  Even though it's perfectly legal for Apple to sell their products directly through their own retail outlets, it's not ok for Ford to do so---but most people don't find that unusual, because that's the way it's always been.  You're right though, raising awareness of the dealer scam will help, but it's an uphill batter to change "the way things have always been."
 
2013-02-20 07:30:41 AM  

RandomRandom: How are these state laws not a violation of the commerce clause of the Constitution?

Why have the auto manufacturers never challenged them in court? ...or have they?


For the first one: states can regulate commerce within their borders.

For the second, I'm surprised that even in Michigan, where the US auto industry in based, the cart dealers have traditionally had this much power. GM, Ford, and Chrysler must have wanted this setup, for done reason.
 
2013-02-20 07:42:05 AM  

HMS_Blinkin: Babwa Wawa: MaudlinMutantMollusk: It's not news

Anything that drives public awareness of this mockery of the free market is a good thing.

This has been going on since long before the internet existed though.  Even before the internet, we were forced to buy cars from middlemen (dealers) because it was illegal for for OEMs to open retail outlets that could sell directly to the customer.  Regardless of the technology, it's just state governments choosing to protect local business (read: middlemen) from outside competition (an OEM retail store would be able to undersell local dealers AND have more money behind it).

The problem is that no one really questions the system.  Even though it's perfectly legal for Apple to sell their products directly through their own retail outlets, it's not ok for Ford to do so---but most people don't find that unusual, because that's the way it's always been.  You're right though, raising awareness of the dealer scam will help, but it's an uphill batter to change "the way things have always been."


Apple sells products at the retail level but they are almost always the most expensive place to buy an apple product. It would be like if car manufacturers were allowed to sell to consumers but they only sold at MSRP.
 
2013-02-20 07:42:39 AM  

gingerjet: I can understand the idiotic laws around liquor sales because of the repeal of the 21st amendment   But car sales?  No.  I should be able to drive my ass to any state, buy a car, and drive it back.  But thanks to idiotic state laws, collusion, and outright threats - that isn't possible.

/also want to be able to buy a car on a fark'n sunday


You think that's bad?  Try buying a new handgun in another state.  That's a federal felony, and a stupid, stupid left-over from before the time when all new gun purchases were subject to an instant background check.
 
2013-02-20 07:45:02 AM  
When I bought my car, I offered $21,500 on an MSRP of $23,500. The salesman looked at me like quizzical dog and asked "You want me to just give you two thousand dollars?" as if no one had ever haggled for the price of a new car before. There are ten dealerships up and down the street I live off of. I got my discount.
 
2013-02-20 07:46:38 AM  

Corn_Fed: If you buy a new car from the floor salesmen at the dealership, you're DOING IT WRONG and will pay a sucker premium.


This article pretty much says there is literally no other way to do it, so if you know a hack, we'd be a great audience to share with.
 
2013-02-20 07:46:51 AM  
fark car salespeople. It's a archaic system that needs dismantled. Thankfully, these losers have backed themselves into the "Best Buy Corner". Within a decade or so all they'll be good for is as a fancy showroom. People will test drive some selections then they will go online and buy the model, color and options on the vehicle they want.

....Or better yet, maybe Hertz or Enterprise will get into the game specifically AS a rental and vehicle showroom, then you go buy the vehicle online.
 
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