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We are members of Costco and AAA (Trucar) so there are two choices. Anyone with real life experiences with these or others?

I'm tempted to try both - wonder if they would send us to the same dealer and who would give a better price?


I know this is tough advice to take especially if you don't like the process, but if you have a local dealer you have any relationship with...either previous car purchases or service history..and just go to their website directly, pick a vehicle and request a price quote. This is what they call an organic lead. These leads close much better, they don't have to pay for them and if you engage with the internet team with questions or even make an appointment you will go right to the top of their priority list and get lots of attention. I know typically you may not want attention from marketers but in this case you are in the market for a car so attention is good...on your terms. DO NOT put your info into the Costco or TrueCar system.

Once you get a little bit further in the process, pick a vehicle and start to negotiate, tell the manager that you have access to Costco and know about TrueCar, but have not submitted a lead to them. Ask for that pricing. They should be able to validate the price to your satisfaction so you don't even need to get the price from TrueCar, which will ultimately cost them $499 and they are well aware of that. You may even be able to get a better deal than Truecar since the dealer is saving the referral. There has to be a certain level of trust between both parties though because you could at any time, even after you drive off the lot, log onto TrueCar and they would be able to match your info with the dealer transactions they download every month and charge the dealer the fee.
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