This article from Consumer Reports: Dealerships keep consumers happy...stated, "Contrary to stereotypes, car buyers are largely satisfied with their dealership experiences and feel they paid a fair price for their new or used vehicle, according to new findings from the Consumer Reports National Research Center. Still, some groups proved vulnerable to costly dealer sales tactics".
found disturbing were those that showed some consumers are being
encouraged to give good feedback on dealers' own satisfaction surveys,
you know the call or card you are mailed after you buy a card to
complete...sometimes with pressure to give a good score. Of the 55
percent of car buyers who received a survey, 32 percent were asked by
the dealer to fill it out favorably. Eighteen percent were offered an
incentive like a free oil change to respond favorably, drawing into question the validity of the feedback.
Some other data returned from the survey says:
-- 68% said they paid what they expected, with 16% paying more and 15% paying less;
-- About one-third of buyers felt the sales staff lacked expert knowledge of competing products; most were of lower income, female, or from the North East;
-- When the shopper visited the new-car dealer's lot, the model they sought was available 72% of the time;
-- When the desired model was not available, 49 percent bought something else off the lot; 32% had a car transported from another lot;
-- Older buyers ordered a model built to their specifications at a relatively high rate (20%);
-- Of the 40% of buyers who traded in a car, 54 percent negotiated the trade-in value before finalizing the price of the new car;
-- Just 37% worked through the financial steps in recommended order;
-- A high 9% doesn't know when the trade-in value was determined.
To learn about the buying experience at new car dealers, the Consumer Reports National Research Center conducted a random, nationwide telephone survey from October 4 - 8, 2007, contacting 2,000 households. The survey data was collected from those adults who had purchased a new or used car from a new-car dealership in the past 12 months.
So what is really happening? Let's take our own survey! What was your last car purchase at a new car dealership really like?
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