Car Buyers Being Tricked by Lower Sticker Prices
In recent months, a number of cars have come with much lower base MSRP prices for 2012 compared to 2011, notes USA Today.
To create the lower prices, however, companies are removing standard features.
A prime example is the 2012 Nissan Murano CrossCabriolet. Down a whopping $1,850 compared to the 2011 base model. The catch? GPS Navigation is no longer a standard feature.
Chevrolet made a similar decision with the Volt, dropping the base price about a thousand dollars. To accomplish that, however, the company removed not only navigation from the standard equipment list, but also the Bose Stereo and other smaller items.
Automakers know that the vast majority of car buyers DO NOT buy the base model. In fact, it can sometimes be very difficult to even find bare-bone base models on dealer lots.
By removing standard features from the base model, car companies can advertise much lower starting prices, even though they're unrealistic for the vast majority of consumers.
Essentially, the idea is: When comparing prices between model years, be sure you're looking at equivalent equipment levels rather than just the price.
3 Steps Every Car Buyer Needs to Take to Save Maximum MoneyThe key to getting the best deal is to gather price or lease bids from as many local dealers as possible. Then shop that best price around until no one can beat it. Here are the steps:
Step 1 Get Prices From My Trusted NetworkSelect the vehicle you're interested in to see if there are local dealers in my network who will provide you with their best upfront price. You will get direct access to an internet sales manager who you can further negotiate with online (no need to visit dealership).
Step 2 Get Prices From TrueCar / CarsDirectTrueCar, and CarsDirect are my top 2 online price quote recommendations. These services show you pre-negotiated prices from dealers closest to you - and the deals are usually pretty decent. But remember, you can still negotiate further.
Step 3 Complete my ChecklistFollow this up with my checklist to make sure you squeeze out every last bit of savings.
- Gregg Fidan
Each week, I'll keep you up-to-date on the latest car deals and news that might affect your purchase. This includes...
- Best Rebates, Incentives, and Lease Deals
- Latest Car Buying Scams and Tricks
- The Best & Worst Time to Buy a Car
- Which Cars You Should Avoid