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"People liked the honesty and relaxed when I convinced them I would help them if possible."

As a former sales person and sales manager, these are words I tried to live by. I am currently moving from the research phase to the bidding phase of purchasing a minivan. Quotes received so far range from $500 to $364 to $300 over invoice (must add the $441 for dealer holdback to get a better idea of price over "cost"). Because of the refreshing service we received from one dealer during a test drive, we will give them the final chance to match our best offer received (we might even pay a little more, as they are conveniently located, and in an effort to reward the kind of salesmanship we appreciate).

Referring to CalCar's comments, I certainly do not want to waste the salesperson's time, because that implies I am wasting my own as well. I am somewhat frustrated when I know more about the vehicle I am trying to purchase than the salesperson does. Just the other day I informed a salesperson where they could get interior measurement data and other specs on a brand new model (they were having a seminar on it the next week). The salesperson I dealt with was honest and above board with me, so I was happy to turn him on to the info, so that he could help other customers make a better buying decision. I only wish that salespeople would avail themselves of the internet to get this kind of info for themselves during down times at the dealership rather than (as many do) standing outside the showroom door waiting for prospective customers to enter the lot.

Other than doing comparative test drives with the three finalists (after much research), my only dealings with the dealerships is via email, fax or phone, until such time as we decide on the location for the purchase. The way I go about it, the dealership is not there to SELL me on their product (I can make that decision by myself), but to COMPETE for my business (on price, service and convenience).

CalCar, you didn't have any info in your profile, so I don't know where you are located, or what makes you sell, but if you want to compete for my business (in Southern California), you can hit the "email reply to the author" block with the particulars.

Kaigun Chusa
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