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Discussion Starter #1
Here is my situation and question:

A week ago, I test drove two models (2015 Fiesta and 2014 Focus) and decided I liked the Focus better. With the current incentives, the price becomes comparable to get the 2014 Focus.

That dealer does not have the car with the options that I want. The salesman says that there is a dealership 100 miles away that has one coming in that matches my specs, plus has some additional options for another $495. I talk it over with my family and we agree that it's OK to pay the additional amount to get those options. The salesman writes out the form with the VIN number of that car that's coming into the other dealer's inventory, and I charge a deposit of $1000 on my credit card. I failed to ask what the smallest deposit I'd have to put down for this "dealer trade" or "dealer swap" (in some forum posts here, I saw $500). I thought that $1,000 would show my commitment to go with the salesman that has been helping me with the test drives and not go up to the other dealership.

Well, I also told him that I wanted to finance the car with Ford Credit because there's a $1000 incentive on that. The finance manager calls me today and says that I must sign the finance paperwork *now* before he sends his "runner" the 100 miles to get the car. However, the car with that VIN number isn't even at its destination dealership yet! It is still on the train somewhere.

When I asked the finance manager "what if I changed my mind and didn't do financing but paid cash?", he says that I'd have to pay the entire cash amount *now* before the car even arrives at the destination dealership, and before they send someone up to get it.

This sounds wacky to me -- why would I pay 100% for a car when I haven't even seen it? When the runner could get into a collision accident on his way from the other dealership?

So my questions are:
- Is asking the customer to pay 100% of the amount on the purchase form to the local dealer really a requirement of the standard "dealer trade" process with another dealer?

- If I went ahead and paid the 100% amount to the local dealer in advance of him going to get it, what protections do I really have if the runner guy gets into an accident? Does the whole deal get unwound because they could not deliver the car to me?

Thanks!
 

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If you're willing to wait, and current incentives you are planning on won't expire, you should be able to order a 2014 Focus with the exact options you desire. This is usually easier than the hassle of dealers trying to execute dealer trades or dealer purchases from another dealer.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks TooOld -- are orders still being placed for 2014 Focus cars?

Dear TooOld, thanks for replying to my post! Your answer makes a ton of sense -- that there are hassles in the dealer-to-dealer process more than straight ordering. When I bought my first Ford, it was January and I could place an order and had the car within 4 weeks. And I can live with that timing now.

Can dealers still place orders for the 2014 Focus? I thought I saw another posting in focusfanatics.com forums that implied the last day the ordering system was open to dealers to place orders was the end of August.

Thanks again!
 

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I have bought quite a few new Fords that came via a dealer trade. I never paid a dime ahead other than using a $100 bill that I used as my "down payment" when negotiating the deal. I made my deal, filled in the credit app and waited for the phone call that they had the vehicle. After going in and looking the car over, i would then go into finance and sign all the paperwork.
Probably bought between 5 and 10 like this, easy peasy.

I would not sign the note before they had the car there.
 

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Dear TooOld, thanks for replying to my post! Your answer makes a ton of sense -- that there are hassles in the dealer-to-dealer process more than straight ordering. When I bought my first Ford, it was January and I could place an order and had the car within 4 weeks. And I can live with that timing now.

Can dealers still place orders for the 2014 Focus? I thought I saw another posting in focusfanatics.com forums that implied the last day the ordering system was open to dealers to place orders was the end of August.

Thanks again!
I would think you could still place an order for a 2014 as the 2015s are a few months away. However, I bet the end of the ordering period is near.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I have bought quite a few new Fords that came via a dealer trade. I never paid a dime ahead other than using a $100 bill that I used as my "down payment" when negotiating the deal. I made my deal, filled in the credit app and waited for the phone call that they had the vehicle. After going in and looking the car over, i would then go into finance and sign all the paperwork.
Dear JSB33, that is awesome information, thank you so much!

In posting my situation, I had been hoping that someone who's actually experience the "dealer trade" would reply and say whether my situation sounded on the up and up. I cannot tell you how much it helps to hear from someone like you that has actually experienced the "dealer trade" and could describe how it was handled. Most of my friends and family who have bought new cars have either ordered them and waited for the car to come in, or bought a car that was on the dealer's lot that they went to. And all they could tell me was my paying 100% upfront didn't sound right to them, though they had never experienced that process.

Thank you very much! You've given me great peace of mind that my feelings are not out of whack about this.
 

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I like to think of myself as having a better opinion of dealers than many of those who post on this board. But every once in awhile a story like this comes along detailing shenanigans on the part of the dealer, that feed their bad reputation.

Old Jerry Lee Lewis sang about it..."Too Much Monkey Business" (aka "bidness").
 

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I have bought quite a few new Fords that came via a dealer trade. I never paid a dime ahead other than using a $100 bill that I used as my "down payment" when negotiating the deal. I made my deal, filled in the credit app and waited for the phone call that they had the vehicle. After going in and looking the car over, i would then go into finance and sign all the paperwork.
Probably bought between 5 and 10 like this, easy peasy.

I would not sign the note before they had the car there.
This^^^^^^^^^^ My dealer never charged me for a dealer trade on my truck.
 

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I swear dealers can be the scum of the earth sometimes. I know there is pressure to make the sale, but come on. Trying to make someone pay full boat on something they have never seen is ludicrous. A refundable deposit fine but $1000 even seems high.

Tell them you are walking away unless they just order the car. Although now they have your $1000 to hold hostage. Hope you put it on a Credit Card.
 

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I swear dealers can be the scum of the earth sometimes. I know there is pressure to make the sale, but come on. Trying to make someone pay full boat on something they have never seen is ludicrous. A refundable deposit fine but $1000 even seems high.

Tell them you are walking away unless they just order the car. Although now they have your $1000 to hold hostage. Hope you put it on a Credit Card.
This^^^^^^^^^^
 

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Wow we bought a C-Max and the Focus within 2 weeks of each other and both of them came from other dealers in a dealer trade. We didn't pay a dime for either trade. We also leased an Edge 3 years ago. Same thing.
 

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If you have the time to take the drive just go deal with the other dealer directly.

I tried to have my Focus transferred to my local dealer I was working with because they offered free oil changes for life. They tried to sneak a $100 transfer fee in on the X-plan price, after telling me that there would be no cost, they then told me the car had been sold. This was coupled with a story about the buyer having trouble getting financing, etc.

The whole situation did not sit well with me. So that following Saturday morning I went to the other dealer before they opened and found the car I wanted still on the lot. It was the first one I walked up to, and it had not been sold. The dealer is about 70 miles from me but I am in that area all the time anyway.

So I don't know what dealer made up the story about the car being sold, but I learned the dealer I got the car from "does not trade" cars to other dealers, as I asked about that first. I have a feeling it was my local dealer because when I called the GM to let him know I got the car I wanted he accused me of talking with the other dealer behind his back ..... we clearly told them that we are in that are all the time but wanted to work with a local dealer.

So either order the car or just go to the dealer that has the car you want.
 

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Wow, I just bought my focus thru a trade 144 miles away. My dealer found me the car I wanted, correct color and all. We did negotiate a price before hand, 4K rebates plus 700 off MSRP. No down payment, no extra charge for the swap. I had the option to walk away from the deal when the car arrived.
I could have probably even pushed for another $500 or so off. But they treated me so well and went out of their way to make the deal that I paid the price quoted.
This was after spending 3 months looking at cars on lots, telling other dealers what I wanted, and being ignored or having them try to talk me into cars on the lot. The dealer I went with was aggressive to get me the car I wanted. They found it within 2 hours of my visit.
You should try another dealer. Use the Ford Build and price to locate the car you want.
 

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Wow, I just bought my focus thru a trade 144 miles away. My dealer found me the car I wanted, correct color and all. We did negotiate a price before hand, 4K rebates plus 700 off MSRP. No down payment, no extra charge for the swap. I had the option to walk away from the deal when the car arrived.
I could have probably even pushed for another $500 or so off. But they treated me so well and went out of their way to make the deal that I paid the price quoted.
This was after spending 3 months looking at cars on lots, telling other dealers what I wanted, and being ignored or having them try to talk me into cars on the lot. The dealer I went with was aggressive to get me the car I wanted. They found it within 2 hours of my visit.
You should try another dealer. Use the Ford Build and price to locate the car you want.


My experience was pretty much the same. I walked into the Ford dealer and said that I wanted a leftover 2011 (they were already selling 2012s) Focus, as close to base model as possible with manual transmission.

They found one 184 miles away, knocked what I consider to be a very reasonable mount off. They said the car would be there next Saturday and to show up with the down payment for the loan and I would leave in a new car.

Worked out well I think.
 
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