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Discussion Starter #1
Boardwalk Lotus and Smith Lotus of CA

If any of you are considering buying this awesome car, I just want you to know that both of these dealerships told me that, with a laugh, they believe they should make more money than just MSRP.

As such, IMO, they are going to be charging THOUSANDS over MSRP.

Thought you all should know!

Good luck with your purchase and enjoy, enjoy, enjoy!
 

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Capitalism.. oh gee.. how awful. I think it's perfectly in a dealer's right to charge more for a car if people are willing to pay for it. While I'm sure most people are not willing to pay over the MSRP (myself included), it seems silly to me to vilify a dealership for acting just like every other business in this country.

I'd be happy with any dealer that is up front and honest with a potential customer. We'll see how many people have a deal at "MSRP" and get screwed on prep and paperwork charges. Hopefully it won't happen to me.

Some of the same people that complain about a dealer marking up a popular car are the same people that would happily sell that same recently purchased car for a nice profit, or even sell their "spot". That's really no different then the dealer doing the same thing.
 

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Smith Lotus is a great dealership!

Don't know who you talked to at Smith Lotus, but I'd like to defend that dealership and Brent Smith. He's an honest dealer and a long time elise enthusiast (he races one too). He is just as excited as us to finally get a Fed Elise. So there most be some kind of misunderstanding...this is a fine dealership and worthy of your business.
 

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While it doesn't thrill me that dealers would charge over MSRP it is the other side of them discounting under MSRP for cars that are not moving well. When offered a discount or rebate I have never refused one even when it means the dealer is not making enough on that car to pay their bills. I like the discounts, and if I want a car bad enough to pay over MSRP, well that is my decision, if I don't like it I can find another dealer.
I bought an M5 in 2001 when most dealers were charging far over MSRP, in that case I searched for a dealer that did charge MSRP. In the case of the Elise I was fortunate to find a very , very good dealer who took my deposit and gave me a receipt that said, one Lotus Elise at MSRP expected to be $38,500.
I agree with Zor, at least these people are up front.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
You all are correct, however it really does come down to the fact that if dealers require thousands over MSRP then they ARE asking for more money. Thus, they are, in my opinion. GREEDY.

I am sure they make more than enough profit at FULL PRICE to keep the doors open.

Also, I did not comment on the professionalism of these dealerships, merely that they require buyers to pay "Fees" "Premiums" or whatever you wish to call them.

It is a Buyer Be Ware posting...

As far as buying and reselling, I persoinally have no intention of doing so.
 

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Zor said:
Capitalism.. oh gee.. how awful. I think it's perfectly in a dealer's right to charge more for a car if people are willing to pay for it. While I'm sure most people are not willing to pay over the MSRP (myself included), it seems silly to me to vilify a dealership for acting just like every other business in this country.

I wonder if you'd feel the same way about a store charging double for bottled water or batteries with a hurricane moving towards the city ? It's profiteering, no matter what the circumstance. Car dealers make a bundle selling at MSRP. It's very very rare even when discounting that they sell at a price that loses money.

I will not buy an Elise at over MSRP. I will no longer be a Lotus fan if they allow dealers to charge over sticker without any ramifications, such as stopping or cutting allocation of those dealers that rape Lotus customers.

Steve
 

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I've seen dealer selling '03 S2000 at $10k over MSRP. I wonder who would buy it. :rolleyes: Maybe someone can get the price down to $5k over MSRP and they think they are getting hella a deal?
 

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It feels like I need the Elise.....
 

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zvezdah1 said:
Sown,
Big difference, you don't need an elise for survival, water, etc you do.
Chris
Great observation...

Doesn't change anything though charging an excess for anything in short supply is profiteering. It will piss me off if Lotus allows it. It will be a boon for other car dealers pushing "on the fence" Elise buyers in another direction.

Steve
 

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Sorry folks, but any car manufacturer has little or no control over what a dealer charges (by law). It is extremely difficult to control pricing. It's unfair to blame Lotus for dealers charging 10K over MSRP.

Think about it for a moment, these same dealers have been Lotus dealers in some cases for years, yet only selling 2-4 Esprits per year. Considering the flooring costs and space it took in the showroom I seriously doubt they made any money off Lotus (selling, maybe service made up for it?). It's amazing that some of them didn't dump Lotus long ago.

So, now they're looking at an opportunity to recover some of that investment. I can't say I blame them.

As a consumer, you have a choice to do business with them or not. Vote with your wallet. At some point if they aren't moving their allotment they'll be pressured by the market into lowering their price.

Kiyoshi
 

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Sownman said:
I wonder if you'd feel the same way about a store charging double for bottled water or batteries with a hurricane moving towards the city ? It's profiteering, no matter what the circumstance. Car dealers make a bundle selling at MSRP. It's very very rare even when discounting that they sell at a price that loses money.

Steve

I'm sure I'm in the minority, but I wouldn't mind a store charging double for bottled water etc.... it causes 2 things..

1. helps keep down hoarders. People that don't really need the extra items will be less likely to buy too much.

2. Because of the higher price, more supplies will be brought into the effected region faster. This will be done usualy by the current vendor (because the higher prices/demand can justify a larger purchase order and possibly faster shipping etc). Outside vendors could also ender the effected market and supply more.. um.. supplys. Overall it means more water and batteries for everybody.

I beleive pretty strongly in the ol' supply and demand laws. Trying to artificially control prices usually never works for anybody's benifit. The exception being of course in a monopoly situation. (and no.. that doesn't apply in this case either).
 

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When the Miata came out in 1989, dealers were getting a premium of up to $5000 (on a car priced at @ $15,000). I waited six months to buy one, because I refused to be gouged. I finally bought mine just before Xmas and still paid $500 extra, since that seemed to be as good as it would get at the time.

Unfortunately, the current trend seems to be to price gouge consumers on hot new cars, at least when they first come out. I fully expect Lotus dealers to engage in this practice, I just hope that they will limit it to latecomers and not their long-term deposit holders.

This trend is not limited to cars. Look at rock concert tickets. It's often impossible to get tickets, especially if you want good seats, without going through a ticket broker and paying a premium, at least in southern California.
 

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The fact is when dealers have cars to sell that are not hot, they have to discount off MSRP - no buyer would go to the dealer and say no thanks I want to pay you MSRP. It is supply and demand - you cant have it both ways -want them to sell no higher than MSRP on a hot seller, but expect a discount on a slow mover...
 

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I don't have problem with an auction format -- have Lotus setup online auction and we can all bid over it. But gouching is simply gouching. Wait till we have water shortage, and some old lady has to decide whether to pay for water or pay for medicine.
 

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I would pick my elise over either:D
 

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ivan1 said:
The fact is when dealers have cars to sell that are not hot, they have to discount off MSRP - no buyer would go to the dealer and say no thanks I want to pay you MSRP.
MSRP is not the "break even" point. Invoice is. MSRP represents about 15% profit. Even when a dealer is selling "below invoice", it is because they are getting incentives from the manufacturer that allow them to sell at that price and still break even.

When the cars are selling above MSRP, the dealer pockets the profit. When they are selling below invoice, the manufacturer takes the hit.

Most dealers seem happy to operate at a 2-3% profit on high-volume models on an everyday basis, so I don't believe the sob stories about the hardship of selling below MSRP. It's like trying to sympathize with striking professional athletes.
 

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I am not defending price gouging. But we are talking about a low volume product so it is inevitable that some dealers will want an even higher profit margin. Noone is forced to buy a car from them (and I personally never would).I hope it drives customers away from them to dealers that sell at MSRP. In the long run they will have lower sales volumes and hopefully lower allocations from Lotus and wiil be shooting themselves in the foot. But it is a free market and they can do what they want. Besides, the govt. doesn't like it if the car sells for the same price everywhere - they will call it price fixing.
 

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I think someone willing to pay over MSRP on a used car versus a Dealer marking up the cost of a new car over MSRP are two different things here.
Let's say if I were to place an order for a new car and it becomes the "IT" car of the moment, and when the time comes to pick up my new ride the dealer then wants to charge me over MSRP, I'd go to tell 'em to stick it where the sun don't shine BUT if I never had an order in for the new "IT" car and suddenly had to have it and my only option was to pick up a slightly used one at over MSRP for my instant gratification then that's my own fault.

:D I hope that makes an once of sense...it did when it was in my head but putting it into words was harder than I thought:)
 
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