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Who Has Your Car?

Mar 25, 2008
You Need To Use Dealers In Order To Test Drive Vehicles - There's no substitute for going to dealerships for a hands-on evaluation of the cars on your list. Unfortunately many shoppers hesitate: a recent Yahoo poll found that 17% of new car buyers never took a test drive. Dont bypass this important step of the buying process.You may miss out on some very vital information.

Different Dealers Offer Varied Experiences - Why do most of us feel uncomfortable when we first visit a car dealer? Usually we are unprepared and fearful of paying too much or being coerced into buying something we don't want. To counter this common apprehension, automakers are trying harder to make car-buying a pleasant experience. Manufacturers now issue consumer relations guidelines that dealers are supposed to follow. Even so, you will be treated differently at every place you visit. The selling style and buying experience at different dealerships depends on the personality of the owner. Owners interested in quick profits are most likely to employ a high-pressure sales staff. Laid-back sales staff indicate an owner interested in good customer relations, and the profitable referrals good relations bring. Talking with your salesperson, you'll get a feeling for the dealership's personality and will quickly find out if you need to go elsewhere. When you enter the dealership, look like you're ready to do business. Be polite and feel confident in your preparation and knowledge. Go to another dealer if you feel you're being mistreated. Remember you are in charge of the process,so do your best to have fun and enjoy

Choose a Good Dealer - Choose a dealership with as much attention as you choose your vehicle. Establishing a firm relationship with the dealer can be important later on. Vehicles bought and serviced at the same dealer are always given a service priority when problems arise. Free loaners may be offered to good customers, while rental cars may be the only option for not-so-good customers. You may regret a decision to purchase a vehicle from a discount dealership 400 miles from home. Your hometown dealer will figure it out the first time you try to service it with them. And don't expect VIP warranty service from your foster dealership; that's reserved for their own good customers.

Look for the showroom and surrounding grounds to be neat and well-organized, with a varied supply of vehicles. The atmosphere and sales staff should be friendly, helpful, and polite. Ask to see a copy of the dealership's latest Customer Satisfaction Index (CSI), a report showing how customers rate the dealer's sales and service departments. How the dealership treats you in the showroom can indicate the kind of service help you'll meet once you've purchased the vehicle; but you can also call the service department directly and ask the service manager about the shop's CSI score, staffing, turn-over and training. An adequately-staffed parts department doesnt always suggest a good parts inventory. Clean well-equipped shops with ASE certified technicians are also a plus. Ask the service manager how many technicians have completed factory training programs (should be 90% or higher), and what percentage of his mechanics would be considered "A" techs (more than 50% is excellent).Try to always get work done by Ase or factory certified technitions.
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