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I have been looking for a slightly used S240/new Exige S/new Elise SC/slightly used Elise SC and have been rather flustered with the process.

2 cars that I was very interested in both sold to fellow LT members, so I am at least happy for them.

However, my gripe lies within the dealers asking prices on some of these cars they have on their show rooms. I know that the dealer doesn't have to sell a car at a certain price level if he doesn't want. However, I am seeing some cars that have been on the market for well over 2 years still sitting in the dealer lots and the dealers not offering discounts. Isn't it good business to move inventory more than once every 2 years? Does a dealer still think he is going to get $60,000 for a new 2007 Exige S?

I may be way off base on this, but it is just extremely frustrating. The market obviously isn't where these cars are priced at (or else they would be selling) and no one seems to care.

Feel free to add your thoughts.
 

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Listed price on the floor may not be that relative to a final sales price.

Me, I don't get any emotion over it. Just offer what you are willing to pay and either they take it or not. Simple business.
 

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It goes without saying it depends upon the dealer. Sure one would think that the motivation is to sell cars and make money, but there are dealers (not just with Lotus) where the Lotus (exotic) brand is there to entice the sale of their main car brands.

Having an Exige in the showroom acts as eye candy and can be used by the salesperson to leverage the price of the Exige without a cup holder to justify selling a mini-van with a gazillion cup holders for $35-40K. "Look at this cool car that is half the size and doesn't even have a cup holder... this mini-van is only $XXXXX and can hold the whole family!" In the end the Exige helped get $500-2000 more out of the customer than had it not been there.

Another scenario is using the Lotus brand to attract showroom traffic. It costs a great deal of marketing money to get customers to walk onto the car lot. Again, having that bright red Exige in the window attracts a lot of attention.

In both of these scenarios, the Exige is not a direct profit center but more of a marketing cost where selling the vehicle can come at anytime at the right price.

Cheers,
Kiyoshi
 

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this is the key to a good purchase.
sounds easy, but many cannot do it.
+1 and +1

I purchased my Elise in September of 2005, used with only 3k miles on the clock. After a full month of negotitation, I got it for 40k, which was all I could afford at the time. Mine was a private sale, though I did get a similar deal from a dealer, but the dealer one didn't have the hard top or the touring package or the somewhat uncommon interior color of blue.

When I bought my Mazda3, on the other hand, I had to compromise on price because my wife REALLY wanted that color option and 3s were flying off the lots at an amazing pace. Got it for a decent deal, but not stellar by any stretch of the imagination.
 

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My problem is the attempt to convince the sales guy that this is how I do business. And his business model and mine might be different. Sadly often he will not get it and I just go somewhere else.

His:
Appeal to a low monthly payment. I normally pay cash.
Pressure into a decision right then. I normally wait to think about it.
Suggest I debate more, then with his sales manager. I like it simple. If the deal has to keep changing, I walk.
Offer a trade in. I like it simple. We can discuss buying my car, but it has nothing to do with my buying the new one.
Appeal to my emotions. It is a car. Like many others. I am not going to get that emotional about it.
Try to play up the performance or options. Look... I know what I am buying. I bet I know more about the car or brand than you do. Can we make a deal or not?

So... here is what I want. I want to pay this. Is that okay? If not, thanks. And this should not take more than 10 minutes to discuss. Prefer by email or fax instead.
 

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+1 to email. That's how I bought my last car, emailed an offer, he called, we talked for 5 minutes and settled on price. I went to the dealer, test drove, bought the car. Shouldn't be a hassle.
 

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Absolutely e-mail is the way to go in negotiating. I stopped in to a dealer recently, praised the beautiful car on his lot with its rare color, birdseye maple wood and specially dyed leather...then, said the price was out of my range. Here's the max I'll pay. You get the warranty work which will make your dealership money for the next six years, I get the car I want at the price I know is right. And here's my card. We're e-mailing back and forth at the rate of once a week...the price is creeping downward, but it's not where I want it to be yet. If it doesn't get that low, no problem. But maybe it will...

As my father-in-law, the king of negotiating, once told me "The worst they can say is 'No.'"

Someone else may come along and buy that car for the higher price, but at some point, he may decide it's time to sell it to me.

Tom
 

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I am WAY to impatient for all of this negotiating stuff!! :D
 

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I am WAY to impatient for all of this negotiating stuff!! :D
+1 rotfl

I simply say what i will pay for the car and if they agree then i buy it but if they dont then thats the end. I cant deal with going back and forth negotiation crap.
 

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However, my gripe lies within the dealers asking prices on some of these cars they have on their show rooms. I know that the dealer doesn't have to sell a car at a certain price level if he doesn't want. However, I am seeing some cars that have been on the market for well over 2 years still sitting in the dealer lots and the dealers not offering discounts. Isn't it good business to move inventory more than once every 2 years? Does a dealer still think he is going to get $60,000 for a new 2007 Exige S?

I may be way off base on this, but it is just extremely frustrating. The market obviously isn't where these cars are priced at (or else they would be selling) and no one seems to care.

Feel free to add your thoughts.
Companies are there to make money and if they want to sit on a product for longer it is their choice. You're the consumer and you're not forced to purchase anything from anyone. If you end up buying a product, it is because of your own will... I can't stand people that turn around and say they were ripped off by a dealership. No one FORCES you to sign anything.

My advice is you keep on shopping until you find the right car and price. If people are buying the cars from under you it may be because the prices are within the market, right?
 

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Companies are there to make money and if they want to sit on a product for longer it is their choice. You're the consumer and you're not forced to purchase anything from anyone. If you end up buying a product, it is because of your own will... I can't stand people that turn around and say they were ripped off by a dealership. No one FORCES you to sign anything.

My advice is you keep on shopping until you find the right car and price. If people are buying the cars from under you it may be because the prices are within the market, right?
+1 :up:

Couldn't agree more. I laugh when I see people use the term "stealership"....yeah right, like they really stole something :rolleyes: Another one of my pet peeve's is when they say "I'm not buying that car because their asking price is too high, they're just waiting for a lay down" Hello! it's called an "ASKING PRICE" not a "selling price" and 10 times out of 10the dealer WILL negotiate. Listen, I have no problems bashing a dealer when they deserve it but to bash them because YOU won't bother to negotiate or because you did not come to agreement on price is rediculous. :shrug: Also, I can't stress this enough, 'IF" you have to go to a dealership unannounced, either ask to see an internet sales person or a manager. A sales person has absolutely no power and will only do whatever his manager tells him to do (which means a lot of back and forth). Internet sales people seem to have a little more leverage and work their own deals without a manager. Obviously, working with a manager, there's no back and forth.
 

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I sold Lotuses for about 3 years. Some dealers move on pricing, some won't. The key to buying anything (cars or not) is figure out what it's worth to you and set your price. It doesn't mtter what the MSRP is or what Invoice is. It's good to be realistic and realize that as much as you like to get paid for your work, the dealer also needs to earn money to pay his/her staff and stay in business. Offering $30k for a new 2009 Exige obviously isn't reasonable. The purchase is a very personal matter. I guarantee you that if you look hard enough, there will always be a "better" deal. But you need to ask yourself if making everyone (including you) miserable in the process of beating up someone over price is worth it. Remember that you will likely need to deaal with them again and/or the community is very tight and small. Reputations travel on both ides of the sales desk. Ive had people buy cars from me for over MSRP (Audi R8 comes to mind) and be very happy while other weren't content until they cut deals that I couldnt even get paid on.

The dealer needs to be reasonable about the market but you/we need to also be mindful that the dealer needs to make money as well.
 

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My problem is the attempt to convince the sales guy that this is how I do business. And his business model and mine might be different. Sadly often he will not get it and I just go somewhere else.

His:
Appeal to a low monthly payment. I normally pay cash.
Pressure into a decision right then. I normally wait to think about it.
Suggest I debate more, then with his sales manager. I like it simple. If the deal has to keep changing, I walk.
Offer a trade in. I like it simple. We can discuss buying my car, but it has nothing to do with my buying the new one.
Appeal to my emotions. It is a car. Like many others. I am not going to get that emotional about it.
Try to play up the performance or options. Look... I know what I am buying. I bet I know more about the car or brand than you do. Can we make a deal or not?

So... here is what I want. I want to pay this. Is that okay? If not, thanks. And this should not take more than 10 minutes to discuss. Prefer by email or fax instead.
I must be getting old, I don't even go through that much. Sitting down with the sales person.
Hi, I'm ...... Hi, I'm Josh, can you make the sale without speaking to someone else first!
Well, no! Then, can I speak to that person!
Hi, I'm the high pressure sales GM! Hi, nothing personal, but I'd rather have my teeth pulled out without novocaine, then go through this. That being said, I've done my research and know ballpark what is the right price. You have one shot at this, give me your best price. I'm not trying to get $100-$200 off by taking your price to the next guy. But, if you're not close, you or your sales guy can't chase me down in the parking lot or on the phone to give me that best price, that you could have given me the first time.

This used to take 2 dealerships at the most. I know it's acting like an A-hole. But, I'm just so tired of their games.
 

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+1 :up:

Couldn't agree more. I laugh when I see people use the term "stealership"....yeah right, like they really stole something :rolleyes: Another one of my pet peeve's is when they say "I'm not buying that car because their asking price is too high, they're just waiting for a lay down" Hello! it's called an "ASKING PRICE" not a "selling price" and 10 times out of 10the dealer WILL negotiate. .
The problem is it's become a huge game, that does rip people off who are not in the know. Cars or homes are just about the only 2 things in your life you negotiate on. So, buying a car for the first time with no one to guide you is an arduous experience at best. And, if you don't know to negotiate or how to negotiate or are just timid, you get ripped off. How many people here remember when the sales guy sold you the extras. Twenty years ago, they got smart, now you have the finance guy playing games with you. Boy, you made a great deal. Oh, by the way, did you want that (GPS, Alarm, Radio, Steering Wheel).... "YOU SAW IN THE CAR (already installed). Are you saying that doesn't come standard? How about the extended warrantee. Let's see what kind of financing (how many points over the actual loan can I steal from you suckers) is available. How's $595 a month for 5 years? What percentage is that? Oh, you want me to be honest! Let me double check that.... Sorry guys, Stealerships sounds about right.
 

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Dealers have higher costs and expect whatever premium they can get. I recommend buying from private party. The problem is with the Lotus is that there is no readily available price list available. I have posted previously the key to finding the real price is to search Ebay motors under "advanced search" and then look at "closed sales only". The cars that actually sold (private and dealer) are drastically cheaper than the pie in the sky dealer asking prices that predominate the listings.
Another annoying thing is the dealerships tend to negotiate while consuming as much of your time as possible in order to break you down. Im pretty sure they know within 30 seconds what they can sell the car for, but there is always this game of making it take half an hour for counteroffer while they talk to managers. Clearly, negotiating by email instead of in person is the way to win this tactic.
Lotustalk seems to be the best of all. Plenty of cars for sale, prices good. After negotiating sale price dependent on inspection, just have the car brought to dealership by seller and have it inspected for about $200. They will tell you every scratch, mechanical tidbit, and ECU dump. Then renegotiate if necessary and have it shipped blind if far away. Unlikely you can find anything wrong that the dealership didnt, and the dealership is on your side rather than trying to cover up the defects they know about and dont want you to know about when they sell the vehicle.
 

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The problem is it's become a huge game, that does rip people off who are not in the know. Cars or homes are just about the only 2 things in your life you negotiate on. So, buying a car for the first time with no one to guide you is an arduous experience at best. And, if you don't know to negotiate or how to negotiate or are just timid, you get ripped off. How many people here remember when the sales guy sold you the extras. Twenty years ago, they got smart, now you have the finance guy playing games with you. Boy, you made a great deal. Oh, by the way, did you want that (GPS, Alarm, Radio, Steering Wheel).... "YOU SAW IN THE CAR (already installed). Are you saying that doesn't come standard? How about the extended warrantee. Let's see what kind of financing (how many points over the actual loan can I steal from you suckers) is available. How's $595 a month for 5 years? What percentage is that? Oh, you want me to be honest! Let me double check that.... Sorry guys, Stealerships sounds about right.
Sorry, but have to disagree with you. If you're too lazy, dumb or timid to learn how to buy a house or car then you deserve to pay as much as you did (not implying you did :)) and keep in mind that regardless of what the dealership sold the car for or added in financing, it was legit. No one put a gun to anyone's head and the customer has a mouth to say "NO", has legs to walk out (or wheel chair :shrug:) . There is so much available information for consumers now in days that NO ONE has an excuse (no one ever did to begin with). I hate that some people feel they must protect the dumb, lazy, timid or illiterate people (again, not implying you here).

I see you're in CA, Did you know that in the last 10 years CA has adopted some of the strictess (is that a word?) guidelines to buying and selling a car from a dealer? For instance:

1. If you purchase a pre-owned vehicle for less than $40K, you have the right to "purchase " some type of 24-36 hour return policy. Can cost anywher from $250-$500 depending on the price of the vehicle.

2. Financing aftermarket accessories, the law states that if you purchase lo-jack, GPS, warranty or any type aftermarket accessory, the dealer has to print out a form which the customer and dealer sign indicating a break down of your monthly payment. Example:

Your payment was $300 but because you went with Lo-jack it is now $350. You also decided to go with the warranty which now bumps your payment to $375 and remember that GPS you picked? Your monthly payment now comes out to a total of $450.

3. If you run a customrs credit, the dealer prints out another form indicating which bureau he used, how many bureau's he used, what the customer's fico score was on all then the customer signs.

4. CA-LAW contracts, that's the long contract you sign when purchasing a vehicle. The dealer MUST go over each and every line with the customer and explain what he/she is signing.

5. This is the best one because CA is so diverse. If you negotiated in a different language, the dealer MUST have you sign (2) contracts. One in english and the other in the language you negotiated in (assuming it's part of the languages CA recognizes) :huh: :D


You see Josh? Must we protect the unwilling, the entitlement people, the "woe is me, I'm dumb, lazy, shy or the world is out to get me type person and need protection from myself"? I think not :no:
 

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The problem is with the Lotus is that there is no readily available price list available.

I have posted previously the key to finding the real price is to search Ebay motors under "advanced search" and then look at "closed sales only". The cars that actually sold (private and dealer) are drastically cheaper than the pie in the sky dealer asking prices that predominate the listings.


Lotustalk seems to be the best of all. Plenty of cars for sale, prices good. After negotiating sale price dependent on inspection, just have the car brought to dealership by seller and have it inspected for about $200.
I agree with most of what you stated except these. When dealing with exotic cars, you won't find any type of blue book only black books/NADA books.

Others before you have said the same and many here will agree that Ebay is not a good source of information regardless what someone might find. You do not know the condition of the vehicle, you do not know if there was some issue after the deal was consumated. too many variables hence why people do not like it and are wary when looking on Ebay.

It seems like a lot of cars but take a closer look, it's not. If you can afford to buy cash, then private party is one solution however, some need financing and "MOST" banks do not finance through private party.
 

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The problem is it's become a huge game, that does rip people off who are not in the know. Cars or homes are just about the only 2 things in your life you negotiate on. So, buying a car for the first time with no one to guide you is an arduous experience at best. And, if you don't know to negotiate or how to negotiate or are just timid, you get ripped off. How many people here remember when the sales guy sold you the extras. Twenty years ago, they got smart, now you have the finance guy playing games with you. Boy, you made a great deal. Oh, by the way, did you want that (GPS, Alarm, Radio, Steering Wheel).... "YOU SAW IN THE CAR (already installed). Are you saying that doesn't come standard? How about the extended warrantee. Let's see what kind of financing (how many points over the actual loan can I steal from you suckers) is available. How's $595 a month for 5 years? What percentage is that? Oh, you want me to be honest! Let me double check that.... Sorry guys, Stealerships sounds about right.
My FAVORITE part about buying a new car is walking out on the finance guy, after letting him know what an #$%^&ing greaseball he is. I usually get called back within an hour and can usually sweeten the original deal.
ALWAYS examine the purchasing contract. In California, the finance guy usually slips some arbitrary figure (never less than $1000) on the 'accessories' line. I'll usually ask "what the f#$k is this?" in an intimidating tone of voice, putting him on the defensive. Whatever the answer is, I'll ask "When did I $%^&ing order that?" Half the time it's some sort of alarm/immobiliser that is totally redundant to the factory system. I'll then browbeat them for insulting my intelligence.

Around 1996 when buying a used Miata, I ripped up the original purchase contract in front of of the finance guy's face after identifying the ripoff (I think they were still pushing undercoating and Scotchguard back then) and he ran a new one with a DIFFERENT add-on. I grabbed him by the tie (ripping it off in the process) made various threats of Grievous Bodily Harm at which point he threatened to call the police. I said if he did that, while we were waiting I was going to make it worth my while and make sure he spent the night in the hospital and six weeks healing. I then convinced him that he could probably get me a better interest rate.
 
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