I Hate Stealerships
June 11, 2009 at 5:42 pm #2989
Went to pick up my Shark RSR2 yesterday, and while I was on my way home, I saw Kelly’s Kawasaki. Dropped in to take a look at the bike for a minute, and remind myself why I just bought $1k in gear. Walk in the door, INSTANTLY being spammed by salesmen…”Hey man! What are you looking for? Can I help you? ….la-dee-da-dee-daaaaaa!” But I expected it, so I had him take me to the 650R. Beautiful, as usual. So I figure while I’m there, I’ll do a bit of recon work, since I’m planning on buying with cash in two months. It went like this:
– Hey I have a question for you. I have a big wad of cash (lying), I’m not going to tell you how much because it defeats the purpose of what I am doing. I’ve been going to some different dealerships today (lying) and asking them what their lowest price is for the ’09 650R if I pay one lump cash payment.
– (Picture a big black guy who’s name is OJ Brown and has a southern twang accent) Man! I am number one Kawasaki dealership in the NATION! 13 years runnin’ boy! I sell more Kawasaki’s than anyone else! (You get this speech EVERY time you go to Kelly’s Kawasaki no matter the salesman)
– Yes, I know. But, what is your lowest price.
– I’ll tell you what. You go find the lowest price from any other dealership, and as long as it’s reasonable, I’LL BEAT IT!
– By how much?
-I’ll BEAT IT! I will beat ANYbody else’s price!
– By how much?
– You get the lowest price, and I’ll beat it!
– Okkk. Um, will you tell me the lowest price you would sell it for if I paid cash?
– Nah, man! I’m not going to do that back-and-forth bullshit. You give me someone else’s lowest price and I’ll BEAT IT!
I started getting uncomfortable so I said thanks and started heading for the door…he was chasing me out trying to give me his biz card. We’ll see what happens when I actually have a roll of paper waving around in front of them…can’t wait to be in charge of the sale!June 11, 2009 at 6:53 pm #19565ranetteParticipant
So, basically you walked into the place, lied right to the man’s face, and you’re pissed that he didn’t tell you he’d sell you a bike at cost.
Why not simply walk into the dealership and tell him the truth, you’re just looking at the moment but will be purchasing a 650R at some point in the future. My guess is the salesperson’s reaction would be to initially say something along the lines of if he could arrange it so you could walk out today with the bike would that be of any interest to you? If you bluntly tell him no, granted you might have to tell him two or three times, you’re just looking, he’ll most likely give you his card, tell you to look around the showroom and please call him when you’re ready to purchase. It’s the only logical move when you’re presented with an objection you cannot overcome. I’ve never sold cars or bikes, but I was once in high ticket retail sales, and yes, the only way to make a living is to move product, preferably at as high a margin as possible. That doesn’t just go for cars and bikes but for all types of sales. Sometimes it’s not the easiest way to make a living, and what really pisses you off isn’t tire kickers, today’s tire kicker can be tomorrow’s sale, what really pisses you off is people lying to you, essentially wasting your time. Your thought might be that salespeople lie, I’ll lie right back to them…fair enough. All I can tell you is that my best success has been, when I’m ready to buy, know what the price I want is-and tell the salesperson this is what I’m willing to pay. They’ll either do it or they won’t, no drama. It might take a few back and forths, a few I’ll check with the boss, but the bottom line is keep a price in mind and stick to it. If they can’t do it, don’t be insulted, don’t feel like you’re being stolen from, simply move on. Different dealerships have different philosophies and cost structures. If your price is realistic someone will sell you the bike.
I’d be naive to suggest that all dealerships are wonderful places run on the up and up. I realize that much like any other business there are all kinds of dealerships. So would you call all dealers Stealerships or just this specific Kawasaki dealer? Bottom line is that salesperson out there is simply trying to make a living just like you and me. If you don’t like the way a specific dealership operates, just move on. However to paint them all with the Stealership brush is simply wrong and insulting. In the past 12 months I’ve purchased a scooter, a motorcycle and a car and every purchase was handled in an utterly professional manner. Incidentally, the DEALERSHIPS I dealt with were Brooklynbretta for the scooter and Great Bay Motorcycles for the motorcycle.June 11, 2009 at 7:16 pm #19567zeppelinfromledParticipant
I had good luck at the dealership where I bought my bike. My first time in, I kind of got paired up with one salesman and only really worked with him. So if I came in and told him that I was just browsing, then I wasn’t bothered for the rest of my time there.
For my negotiation, I had better luck in getting them to give me some amount of free stuff (in the form of a gift certificate) from their parts department. I already had a fair amount of gear, but I needed some pants, frame sliders, swing arm spools, a cover for the bike, a tank bag. I also put the entire thing on my credit card (to be paid off immediately, so I got a rebate from that). So I got a pretty good deal in the end, even though I technically paid sticker price for the bike.June 11, 2009 at 7:58 pm #19431motokidParticipant
I just think that you expect too much form the fact tat you expect to pay cash. Dealer really doesn’t care what you use to pay, as long as it is liquid. Actually, they’d prefer you use loan because they might get an incentive from the landing institutions they refer and more importantly, with cash you are limited in what you pend, with the loan, they can milk you more if they know howJune 11, 2009 at 8:01 pm #19305Clay DowlingParticipant
Elias, it was so painfully obvious that you were running a game from the opening of the conversation that you’re lucky he talked to you at all. I’d have given you MSRP just to move the thing forward, with the caveat that if you can find it lower we’ll talk.
You come on to me like an asshole, I’m going to treat you accordingly.
What you do, you name a price you’re willing to pay. If it’s too low he’ll probably come back with something higher. It’s called negotiation and it works pretty well.June 11, 2009 at 9:10 pm #19571eonParticipant
My brother once tried to get a deal for paying cash at a bike dealership. He was told no deal as the dealer actually got a cut back from their finance arm for sending business their way. This was some years ago, not sure how things work in todays climate.
My question for Kellys Kawasaki is why should I buy from you? It’s great that they are #1 but what does that have to do with me? Why should I buy from you? Simple question. If price between dealers are comparable then what are the differencing factors? It could be getting a deal on gear, it could be getting a deal on servicing, it could be building a relationship with a dealer/service area.
And yeah, I would keep it simple and stick to the truth. If you are just browsing then say so. They will then work to make a sale and you might get a good deal. If you pretend you are buying and then do not, come the day you do have the cash they may not give you the time of day. Why should they? You have been kicking tires for the past two months.June 11, 2009 at 10:00 pm #19574SafetyFirstParticipant
I have to admit, I agree with eon.
Car dealers love to say they are “#1” or sell the most of their line in the region, blah blah blah. That’s nice. But what does that mean to me, the buyer?
I don’t care if you have a giant inflatable animal on the roof of your dealership. I don’t care if you are a volume seller.
I don’t care if your young son is telling me to buy a car in your TV ad.
People care about what buying a dealership means the them.
Saving money, well a lot of that is just fluff.
Tangible things like free oil changes for life — that could be useful.
Service after the sale is important, especially for a newb on a bike. Mechanical problems on a bike can kill you. I’d rather know that they have well qualified mechanics, rather than one of the salesperson’s high-school son working for the summer who has no clue what he’s doing.
And, Elias, I only wish I found a bike dealership that had ambitious sales staff. I walked into ASK Motorsports in Columbus one day to look around. 10 minutes later, not a single person had said hello or even asked me if I needed help finding something. And they really weren’t that busy – it was a rainy day. Even if it was the kid at the parts desk asking me if I needed help, or making a comment about the weather. Anything. I wasn’t going to buy a new bike, yes, I was just window-shopping. Still, I’d never think of buying a bike from there. I’m not saying I like high-pressure sales people, but at least someone could spend 30 seconds asking me what I was looking for.June 11, 2009 at 10:40 pm #19575
Alright Clay. I’ll give you I was obvious, IDC if the dealer knows I’m trying to get a deal, they should probably assume it as I am an intelligent consumer. But coming out and calling me an asshole for the way I conduct my business is really outlandish. Look, I bargain EVERY time I’m making a big purchase. I’ve saved thousands doing exactly what I still do today, and at the end of every sale, the salesman is always happy with our exchange. Blind assumptions about how I treat people will just start unnecessary flame wars.June 11, 2009 at 10:48 pm #19576
Yes I agree with you and Eon too. That was kindof the point of this thread, to point out this awkward self-promoting crap that they gave me when I walk in just trying to get a number. And that sucks that nobody helped you, but I honestly have never had that experience. I have been to large car lots where I park as far from the main building as I can to browse, and they come running out like it’s dinner time lol. Don’t have anything on salesmen/women, but here in Phoenix, dealerships have made a pretty bad name for themselves in the way they rip people off with no mercy at all (with some exceptions). The reason I went to this dealership in specific is because I don’t know anyone who has had a good experience there. My friend bought a bike there and they lied to him about the availability of aftermarket parts and ripped him off. Granted, some of that was his fault for being an unknowledgeable consumer. But I went into Kelly’s knowing I would never buy a bike from them unless the price was good, and they didn’t give me a price, so whatever, nobody lost anything.June 11, 2009 at 11:05 pm #19579
Before a nasty flame war ignites, I would like to point out that I do not disrespect salemen, I treat them like real, living human beings which is a concept that they are actually not used to. A lot of people might disagree with what I did, going in and pretending I was ready to buy, and that’s fine, you don’t have to like it. I was simply simulating what the experience will be like in a few months when I actually have the cash in hand. Because of a poor reputation and bad customer service that Kelly’s has become known for here, I was only planning on buying from them if they offered a good price to me. And that’s where I lose a lot of people. They get mad at me trying to get a better price than MSRP, or trying to ‘haggle’ with salesmen at official dealerships and megastores. But, more commonly, people understand that going to buy a vehicle is doing a favor for the dealership. People often get the feeling that they owe the dealership something when they go in to purchase, but you don’t. Anyone can get a good deal by understanding this, and there have been some great threads on BBM about how to do it correctly. The people that get mad at me are the people that accept the MSRP price, go in and buy the thing. Please realize that me getting a good deal does not piss the salesmen off, half the time they let me know how impressed they are. I do not disrespect them or talk down to them, but simply bargain with them. This is part of what they are paid to do. So, please do not assume I am some prick lowballing salesmen to the point that they are rolling their eyes at me. You can put whatever tone you like onto the dialogue I wrote above, but that does not make it so. It is always an intelligent and mature conversation that involves pleasing both parties involved. Sorry if I offended anyone, but honestly it doesn’t matter. The salesman at Kelly’s isn’t upset, I’m not upset, so let’s move on.June 11, 2009 at 11:08 pm #19580ranetteParticipant
I don’t think anyone on this board would criticize you for using a specific negotiating technique. I think what some of us have commented on was the fact that you weren’t negotiating, you were lying about being ready to buy, hence, wasting a man’s time. In my mind this is wrong, and I also believe-though many would disagree with me-that it is counterproductive as far as eventually negotiating in good faith. We all bargain on high ticket items and there’s nothing wrong with trying to get the best price you’re able to, or at least a price that you’re comfortable with.
As for that magic word. I didn’t use it in my initial post but it did cross my mind when I was composing it. I can unequivocally state that I am not an asshole but on occasion do act like one. I’ve read your other posts, you seem like a normal guy with interests(or should I say obsessions) similar to most of us on this board, certainly not an asshole. However, when I read Clay’s post I have to admit I agreed with the way he characterized your actions on that particular afternoon.June 11, 2009 at 11:19 pm #19581
And that’s fine. Everyone can be an ass at times, but it’s a bit offensive when I’m called out as being an ass when I did nothing wrong. If we were going to discuss how often dealerships lie to consumers as opposed to how often I lie to dealerships, you might notice a shockingly obvious trend. But I gave the salesmen a concrete impression that I am not buying a bike at that store at that second, but in fact that I was going to different dealerships and comparing best-rate quotes. He knew I wasn’t buying anything as soon as I finished my first two sentences, so why would he be offended? He shouldn’t. Which is why he wasn’t. No harm, no foul. I don’t mind name-calling on forums, but why people get so offended about an event in which nobody was originally upset is beyond me, but to each his own…June 11, 2009 at 11:21 pm #19577
Cash IS a magic word! In my experience, I have found that cash is a very good bargaining tool. You definitely have a point about incentives from banks that dealerships might get from a financing purchase, but overall, cash has been good at saving me some serious…cash.June 11, 2009 at 11:24 pm #19582MunchParticipant
I agree on both sides. Sorry, yea I know they are their trying to make a living… but having me do the hoop jumping ..I don’t think so. I will ask your price just like Elias… wether or not the sales person thinks I am lieing is not a call he needs to be making. Pre judging a customer is a good way to lose one. I could be a millionaire all messed up and smelly from doing god knows what tickled my fancy that day, ripped jeans , wife beater whatever, if your gonna pre judge the fact that you don’t think I have money… got no time for ya. The sales person SHOULD have given him a price…period. Know also it definitely would not have been his best price, but playing cat and mouse is crap sales tactic and I see it all the time.
However for my personal buying… the first thing that pops a u-turn for me is to see sales people flock around you like vultures. Wait til I am in the door and looked for a minute or two. Try and see exactly what it is I am looking at/for. I usually just tell them what I am looking for then if they ask if they can help I get to the point and quick.. .I tell them what I am looking for and if they want to help they will give it to me for X amount. Depending on answer depends on what happens next.
There are good sales people out there that know how to take care of the person and not just their wallets.June 11, 2009 at 11:31 pm #19583
EXACTLY. Dealerships will play cat and mouse unless you act like the cat. When I go to the dealership, I don’t want a sales pitch, I want what I came in to buy…I try to get straight to the point, a yes/no conversation. I don’t like wasting people’s time anymore than the person who’s time I would be wasting.
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