In 2022, purchasing a car might be a major hassle. Dealer markup is a problem, and some cars are not only difficult to find at all since dealers sell out of popular models. When a dealer sells an automobile at a higher price than the MSRP (Manufacturers Suggested Retail Price), this occurs. This typically takes the form of a market adjustment, which may range from a few thousand dollars to up to tripling the cost of the vehicle in some more extreme circumstances.
Since years, this has been a contentious practice, with some dealers arguing that it is necessary to make up for losses on other transactions (or, more recently, to compensate for a lack of volume owing to chip shortages), and customers feeling as though they are being taken advantage of (because they actually are being taken advantage of).
Selling required protection kits for the automobile that offer little to no protection for the accessories, seating, or glass is another shady practice by dealers. They’ll either say the protection is already installed or they’ll refuse to sell the car to you, which is a cruel joke on folks who don’t know anything about cars.
Buyers can typically turn to the used market for relief when new car prices with markup and protection packages are too high, but in 2022 even that will be difficult. Demand for used automobiles is quite high right now because new cars aren’t readily available to buy off the lot and drive away, which frequently raises the price of a used car above the price of a new one of the same make and model.
How therefore can consumers combat dealer markup?
There are numerous approaches. Customers can first conduct advance research and find out the MSRP of the car they’re interested in before visiting a dealership. They can be certain that they are not being mistreated in terms of pricing in this way. To explore whether they can locate a better value, consumers might also shop around at various dealerships. This is frequently challenging because there are numerous dealerships selling the same automobiles for the same high costs, but it’s important to consider all your options before making a decision.
Last but not least, customers might consider aftermarket choices like purchasing a car directly from a manufacturer or via an online car buying service. Although visiting a nearby dealership is more convenient, these alternatives frequently provide better rates and a wider range of selections.
However, dealers have found out how to make using the internet to research cars difficult since they are aware that this is where purchasers will look for information. Many dealer websites don’t show the markup, so you won’t get that unpleasant surprise until you go to the dealer with a pre-approval and are prepared to make a purchase. Or the website might not even mention a pricing at all, but state “call for price,” keeping you in the dark until you get to the dealer.
How some consumers are retaliating There is now a new website thats trying to help car buyers fight back against dealer markup . Customers can report dealers that raise prices far above MSRP on the website simply named Markups.org.
According to the site’s About Us page, it was founded to compile markup information on a range of products offered by dealers and merchants. In order to gather information on different Toyota 4Runner and new-generation Tundra dealers who were inflating prices to take advantage of those who actually wanted those vehicles, the project started as a group of Google Docs pages in the middle of 2021. As a result, information on markups for Ford Raptors, Ram TRX trucks, HD pickups, and other vehicles was manually gathered.
Later, connections to its spreadsheets and papers were published in a sizable Toyota-focused newspaper, which generated a lot of attention and traffic. The Google Doc sheets have been combined and grouped on the brand-new Markups.org website. Additionally, they assert that they use web crawlers to compile and automatically add the markup data to their website from a variety of freely accessible, non-copyrighted user contribution lists.
Don’t be fooled by the website’s extremely straightforward user interface into thinking that it lacks useful information for prospective car purchasers. I made the decision to look for Chevy Bolt EUVs, the vehicle I want to replace my Nissan LEAF with, in order to test it out. I haven’t had much luck so far in trying to find one for sale, much less get one for a fair price (even if I were to order one in).
In addition to identifying the worst offenders—those who were asking thousands above MSRP—it also identified a number of dealers who weren’t marking up their Bolts at all. Many AutoNation dealers, I discovered, had extremely little markups of only a few hundred dollars, which is much more agreeable than the $5,000 some other dealers are trying to extort from customers.
When I looked for a different car I really wanted to buy, presuming I could find one for a reasonable price, it returned both excellent and poor results. Sadly, I doubt I’ll ever be able to buy a Jeep Wrangler 4xe, but at least I’d know where to go to order one without getting taken advantage of.
JUST BUY A TESLA, PLEASE. When the subject of dealers and markups is brought up on social media, I frequently see the suggestion that customers should only think about purchasing a Tesla. Tesla may simply increase the manufacturer’s price as they sell straight to customers, unlike dealers who engage in MSRP markups such market adjustments and protection plans (which isnt a suggestion).
I simply cannot purchase a Tesla at the current pricing, and many other automobile buyers would agree. They once offered a $35,000 Model 3, but it was a basic car and is no longer sold, unless possibly as a used car, and they are currently selling for more than the new ones. Therefore, encouraging irate customers to simply purchase a Tesla sounds a lot like Marie Antoinettes letting them eat cake.
For those of us who cannot afford a Tesla, even if we wanted one, tools like Markups.org are an invaluable resource.
Harry Wormwood from the 1996 film Matilda is the featured image. (Commentary, Fair Use)
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