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I purchased my car on-line, and I would do it again. I test-drove a whole mess of cars at local dealerships, and selected the one I liked (99 Integra GS-R). I went to a bunch of online sites and found the price I wanted everywhere--$200 over invoice. So rather than having to haggle to get that, I just entered my name address and creditcard number (for holding purposes--never charged a cent) and the price was mine.

It seems the dealers like this not for mark-up but for volume--if they sell an additional 40 cars a month through an online service, the manufacturer will start treating them nicer, and all that goes along with it. I'm sure that a profit was still made--just a smaller one than the average Fool gives up.

I also know that the dealer never pays invoice...they get discounts, rebates, and holdbacks on every car. They are thus selling it to the buyer with zero effort at a price higher than they bought it. And the car spends less time occupying lot space.

The car wasn't delivered to me--this is my only gripe. CarsDirect merely brokers sales, while I believe carOrder actually delivers to your home or office. I had to drive 120 miles to get the color I wanted...shoulda gone with the guys that deliver! live and learn...But I got the car, which I love, at a great price, with no haggle work. Correct colors and all.

I don't feel like I gave up anything--I still have nation-wide Acura service and all that. I did spend a good deal of time inspecting my car, as another poster suggests. They don't mind you doing this, and in fact were quite helpful in showing me the nuts and bolts.

Dealers are the old way...they'll eventually find themselves replaced like the old phone switchboard ladies.
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