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Let me start by saying that this is a RANT thread and if you don't want to hear it, stop reading NOW.

I have owned 3 Ford Focus' a 2000 Kona ZX3, a 2001 ZX3, and a 2004 SVT. My Fiance bought her 2004 Escape new and regretfully traded it in on a 2007 Nissan Frontier last fall. Needless to say we were excited with the new 2012 Focus and with gas at $4 a gallon we realized the 15-16 MPG Frontier needed to go.

We had shopped around for used cars but she really wanted to look at new compacts (this was going to be for her). We looked at the Mazda3, 2011 Elantra, the Civic, and the 2012 Focus. She really liked the Elantra and all that it offered for a lesser price, but we have owned many Fords and we really liked the hatchback cargo space.

We started price shopping at our local Ford dealer (were she bought her Escape years ago). They dicked us around on both the trade in price and the Focus price. We ended up going to another dealer in a small town about 25 minutes away. They were AWESOME! Gave us the fair price we wanted on the trade in and a price I could live with on the new Focus (about $350 over invoice but due to the trade in value and ease of the sale we felt it was fair).

Our dealer had located two of the exact model we were looking at and said they should be able to get it traded with in a week. So I thought we were done and we would only have a short wait. I WAS WRONG [bash]

After waiting almost two weeks with only minimal information were were told that they were not able to trade for either car and that we would have to order the car and wait another 6-10 weeks. They also said that they would not be able to honor the trade price then because of the time difference and mileage we would put on. (I was also concerned about the incentives expiring)

So I decided to just contact the dealers directly that had the Focus we wanted on their lots. The first dealer was 4 hours away but we had friends in the area so we decided to talk to them first. I sent him a copy of the purchase contract we had made with the first dealer and said "Match it and we will be there in 4 hours!" They would not. Understandably the trade in complicated matters so I sent 38 high quality photos along with detailed description of the 1 lone door ding. I also sent a copy of the NADA trade in value, Auto-trader trade in offer, and even a copy of recent Manheim auction results with similar trucks. We were not asking for top dollar trade value, in fact we wanted lower than NADA or recent auction closings. I understood that we would not be able to close a deal over the phone before they had seen/driven the truck, but I asked then to make a deal pending the trade evaluation so that as long as the truck was as I said it was, they would be willing to make a deal. I did not want to drive across the state just to waste my time/gas. They proceeded to tell me that based on the pictures I sent the "door ding" would cost $400 to fix and that silver was a very difficult paint color to blend. [8] So the deal they wanted would have cost me $500-$600 more then my first deal, plus I would have to drive almost 8 hours round trip with me footing the gas bill. Not worth it and now I could see why my first dealer could not get them to trade. Keep that in mind, my local dealer had no problem what-so-ever with the deal or trade that we had worked out. He just couldn't get the car.

On to car 2. I called the dealer and communicated in pretty much the same way. Up front and as honest and detailed as I could be. He said they could not quote the trade in without seeing it but $16,000-$17,000 was the range they were thinking for our trade. (We wanted $17,000 which is what the first dealer gave us.) He said that if we made the 2 hour trip he was sure we could work something out. On good faith I believed him. We jumped in the truck and drove two hours to make it there last night. When we arrived the salesman I spoke to was friendly and remarked that the truck was in excellent shape just as I had described (and our photos depicted). We then sat down with him and I gave him the purchase contract from the first dealer and said "Match it". He then went into his managers office and did not return for 25 minutes! (it wasn't even busy) When he returned he gave us a # that was $1000 higher then the first dealer/purchase contract!!! As I stood with my jaw on the ground and blood boiling I asked him why they were so far off. He said it was because THEY have the car that everyone wants and have no reason to sell it below MSRP. [rant]

I wasn't even able to speak at this point for fear of of ripping off his head and going to jail. My fiance could tell and kindly said, "Well thank you for making our decision easy, we are headed to the Hyundai dealer." They still had our keys so he went to the mangers office to get them and took 10 minutes to come back with them. He then said that we would not be able to get a better trade offer because Nissan just yesterday started a $3000 rebate on new Frontiers. This was his attempt at a follow up offer?!? To insult me and make me wait to be insulted again!

After leaving the Ford dealership I called the salesman I had talked to weeks earlier when we test drove an Elantra. I asked him if they had one in stock and if they were willing to work out a deal with them closing in minutes. He said they would wait and he was sure we would be able to work out a deal.

He was right! We ended up getting MORE for our trade in ($17200) and we got more options for less money. Plus a better warranty and most importantly NO GAMES! We didn't get out of the dealership until and hour and half after they closed (10:30 PM) yet they were still all very friendly.

We would have happy with the Focus as well so I am not trying to say one car is better then the other. Please don't take this as a Ford/Focus bashing thread. This is more of a "dealership" bashing thread. We would have loved to have "swapped our ride" for a new Focus. However crappy dealers who are unwilling to work with customers or even work other DEALERS for that matter are what pushed us away from Ford.


END RANT
 

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Understand your frustration but keep in mind that dealers are not obligated to trade with other dealers in fact,I have some on my ignore list that I just absolutely cannot/will not trade with for whatever reason...your beef shouldn't be with the Ford dealers,sometimes you run into hot merchandise located at dealers you cannot deal with...stuff happens.

In fact,Ford dealers are the worst to trade with,most imports are far easier because the cars are usually only in a few different trim levels making them more apples-to apples in terms of trading.

I'm sure your original dealer would have loved to make your deal,he just couldn't get the car.

On a side note,I appreciate you trying to be loyal to Ford,that's not a trait you see too much anymore.
 

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To be honest, I'm surprised you got that much for a Frontier in this market. Looks like the Hyundai dealer really wanted the sale and I can imagine that picking up your Frontier ate all their profit. So from a business standpoint, I can see why the Ford dealer didn't wanna bite since their transaction price on the Focus would have taken a hit, and they'd still have to get rid of your truck in a crap used car market.

To each his own, hope you're happy with your Elantra.
 

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Posted via FF Mobile Sounds more like just running into bad dealers. Its unfortunate because it happens a lot and then a company looses a sale because of a bad experience. You also need to remeber that these foci are just arriving, numbers are limited and many dealers dont wanna give up their stock. They also know that you not buying wont effect them much because someone will come and snatch up the focus in no time. The elantra on the other hand is plentiful at this time on dealer lots and they will do more to move them out. Wait six months or even three and Im sure Ford dealers will start doing the same thing once they are loaded with inventory and have them coming in and out on a schedualed basis. Right now, most got what they got and dont know when theyll get more in that are not already spoken for.
 

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Altoona must be remote. I've got literally 5 Ford Dealers all within an hours drive. Enjoy the Elantra. Honestly all the cars in this class are pretty much the same anyway more or less...unless you're obsessed with options which I'm not.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The trade value was "fair" at $17000. Recent dealer auctions were ($17200-$17800) for similar options and mileage. The truck was in mint shape crew cab, 4x4, loaded, low mileage.

My issue was that I had such an easy transaction with the first dealer who was very fair and upfront (he basically wanted to make $1000 on the Focus with hold back). If I had not had such a easy time getting the price I wanted right away, we probably would have just went with the Elantra right away. My frustration really began when other dealers would not trade even though my dealer said he offered a car with a higher MSRP in return. Then for those 2 dealers to be more than $500-$1000 more then the first deal.

The topping of the poo cake was the smooth talking salesman that reassured me multiple times that if I just took the 2 hour drive he was sure we "could work something out". [bash]

Altoona/Eau Claire has 1 Ford dealer and several very small towns around it with zero inventory. (I wanted a manual hatch with sport package- was flexible on color and other options)

The funny thing is that I called my original dealer today (who tried like hell to get the deal to work) to break the news and thank him for trying. He informed me that the dealer by Minneapolis had actually received the car I wanted on trade from a dealer in Rochester that originally had the car and traded it to them for a different car. So the car had already been in inventory between those two dealers for awhile and had some miles on it. The Minneapolis dealer had several models on his lot so I assume he was a volume dealer. I guess none of it matters now. My fiance loves the Elantra and I still have a hatch for the dog and cargo room. Plus she got an automatic with bluetooth, and a better warranty all for less $. [cheers]

Just needed to vent my frustration...
 

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Sorry for your horrible ordeal, and I wish you well with the new Elantra!!
It is really too bad that the first dealer did not have access to the car, since none of the other dealers would share! Greedy people just cost themselves business!
 

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Hey who can blame you? You were being a smart consumer and bought a great product. It stinks that the Ford dealer wasn't as customer oriented but sometimes things happen for a reason.
 

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My frustration really began when other dealers would not trade even though my dealer said he offered a car with a higher MSRP in return...

The topping of the poo cake was the smooth talking salesman that reassured me multiple times that if I just took the 2 hour drive he was sure we "could work something out". [bash]
It really doesn't matter what one dealer was offering the other,the point is one dealer had the car and knew the other one wanted it...that gives him an upper hand...again,it's his merchandise,he's not forced to trade it if he doesn't want to...for whatever reason.

And as much as you may hate it,it's the salesmans job to get you into the dealership and then let the house (or closer) close the deal.
Often times,you can switch the customer to a car in stock but you can't sell what you have if you don't get the customer to come in...so don't blame the salesperson,they're just doing what they were trained to do...you guys don't seem to understand that.[wave]
 

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Join the crowd, altho I did stay ford. With the price of a titanium and no incentives I found I could have more car at about the same price, I ended up picking up a 11 fusion sport for what the overpriced focus would have cost.
I'm actually glad to be away from the focus. the fusion sport gets slightly better gas milage than my 07 did running 89/eth.
why what started out as an economy car that was pretty decent, turned into an overpriced economy car, I'll never know. But I'll let others waste their money on it.

By the way, don't be afraid to let ford corporate know who the dealer is and what went on. Sometimes they need a good slap upside the head.
 

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My frustration really began when other dealers would not trade even though my dealer said he offered a car with a higher MSRP in return...

The topping of the poo cake was the smooth talking salesman that reassured me multiple times that if I just took the 2 hour drive he was sure we "could work something out". [bash]QUOTE]

It really doesn't matter what one dealer was offering the other,the point is one dealer had the car and knew the other one wanted it...that gives him an upper hand...again,it's his merchandise,he's not forced to trade it if he doesn't want to...for whatever reason.

And as much as you may hate it,it's the salesmans job to get you into the dealership and then let the house (or closer) close the deal.
Often times,you can switch the customer to a car in stock but you can't sell what you have if you don't get the customer to come in...so don't blame the salesperson,they're just doing what they were trained to do...you guys don't seem to understand that.[wave]
and some salesmen don't seem to understand that people arent afraid to walk out on them these days. They seem to forget the internet and other resources give the customer knowledge (not all, but some).
Pretty sad that two dealerships lost out on a possible sale because they were the ones who were ignorant about a customer and tried to play pressure tactics with me.
 

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and some salesmen don't seem to understand that people arent afraid to walk out on them these days. They seem to forget the internet and other resources give the customer knowledge (not all, but some).
Pretty sad that two dealerships lost out on a possible sale because they were the ones who were ignorant about a customer and tried to play pressure tactics with me.
Yes,possible true...but the bottom line with these cars being "hot merchandise" as you guys mentioned,they'll probably sell the car to someone else for more money...and they know that...so why not take their stance?

You would do the very same thing if you were the boss and were running that dealership...just because someone walks in with some internet numbers and facts does not mean the dealer has to sell you the car at that price...supply and demand...they did teach you guys that in school,right?[wave]

I have a guy who wants to purchase the lone Boss 302 we have on order,my bosses will not put a price on it that would buy it,they'd rather have the car arrive and sit in the showroom attracting interest so they can sell it to the highest bidder...so I tell my guy his money's no good.

What else can you do when you don't own the cars and can't call the shots...?[screwy]
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
Those tactics are why I avoid salesmen all together. When I want to buy a product I spend hours upon hours researching brands, problems, specs, reviews, etc. Then I make a buying decision based upon the price I am willing to pay. At that point I don't need someone to "sell" me something, I need someone who is willing to make "X" amount of dollars for a fast transaction. No hassle or games. I realize I may not be the "normal" consumer but there ARE people that understand my position. With the ease and abundance of research available I believe the percentage of customers that need their hands held will dwindle.

I have been an Apple technician for 10+ years. I assist customers in both service and sales from ages 8-85 on a regular basis. I can sell to any of them quite easily. Find the right product for them at the right price. If I talk to a customer and find out their "needs" and "wants", I point them to the best product that fits those criteria. That being said I would say half the customers that come in know what they want already and just want to know the best price. This can be frustrating due to the very LOW markup of Apple products, but I don't waste anyone's time. I tell them this is the price we can sell it at, but if you decide to buy it online please remember us for your service needs. About half of the customers will say OK and be fine with paying a few dollars more (usually its just the tax free reason they buy online) because they want the instant gratification of walking out with the product. Some of the other customers were just window shopping and the rest may buy online. Though in the end they are usually happy that we were upfront about our pricing. And when it comes time that they need something serviced they can't send it into the "online" store they bought it from so we still make money on the service.

I'm not saying that I am the "best" type of salesman. We have dedicated salesman that use similar tactics. Yet I have several loyal customers that will only deal with me because I have an established relationship with them.

I consider myself a technician first and foremost. In fact if given a choice at a dealership I would buy a car from a MECHANIC over a salesman any day of the week. They are the ones that know what they are talking about and are usually pretty straight forward.

The whole bit about "they have the car and I want it" is bull$h!t. If I sold iPad 2s that way I would lose my loyal customers and prevent any from becoming loyal. The ill will gained with that attitude can not be offset by advertising dollars no matter how hard you try.

Either of those dealers could have walked away with $1000 profit and a mint condition used truck that they would have made money on. In addition I forgot to add that the dealer near Minneapolis was so arrogant that I asked him if I just kept the truck and bought the car outright with X-plan would we have a deal... he said NO. "We are not honoring X plan on the Focus at this time".

Greed cost these dealers any of my money or future business. Yes, they will get what they want from someone else who is less informed or more desperate, but in the end FORD lost a customer. I wonder how they would feel about their dealers being unwilling to accommodate each other to meet a customer's needs.

END RANT 2.0

My frustration really began when other dealers would not trade even though my dealer said he offered a car with a higher MSRP in return...

The topping of the poo cake was the smooth talking salesman that reassured me multiple times that if I just took the 2 hour drive he was sure we "could work something out". [bash]QUOTE]

It really doesn't matter what one dealer was offering the other,the point is one dealer had the car and knew the other one wanted it...that gives him an upper hand...again,it's his merchandise,he's not forced to trade it if he doesn't want to...for whatever reason.

And as much as you may hate it,it's the salesman's job to get you into the dealership and then let the house (or closer) close the deal.
Often times,you can switch the customer to a car in stock but you can't sell what you have if you don't get the customer to come in...so don't blame the salesperson,they're just doing what they were trained to do...you guys don't seem to understand that.[wave]
 

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I have a guy who wants to purchase the lone Boss 302 we have on order,my bosses will not put a price on it that would buy it,they'd rather have the car arrive and sit in the showroom attracting interest so they can sell it to the highest bidder...so I tell my guy his money's no good.

What else can you do when you don't own the cars and can't call the shots...?[screwy]
We thankfully live in a society where the market tends to police itself, but I really wish dealerships would stop it with the ridiculous markups. Yes, they are absolutely within their right to do it. But far, far too many dealerships would rather make a quick $2-5k in profit in exchange for working to destroy brand image. They don't care that Ford brand image takes a hit so long as they make a quick buck. It's pretty short-sighted. Again, they're certainly free to do as they wish and the market determines what products are worth (which is why Ford isn't have a problem moving Titanium Foci, btw [;)]). But the dealer network for the Big Three is absolute and pure garbage compared to their competitors. The Big Three make outstanding products right now. They really need to take a much, much harsher approach with the dealer network. GM very politely asked dealers to not markup the Volt due to a number of circumstances. That didn't do a bit of good. Your average dealership owner is far, far more concerned with a few thousand here and there than he is with promoting the brand image and creating a better customer experience. And that's why the dealership experience is so much better at non Big Three dealerships.
 

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Yes,possible true...but the bottom line with these cars being "hot merchandise" as you guys mentioned,they'll probably sell the car to someone else for more money...and they know that...so why not take their stance?

You would do the very same thing if you were the boss and were running that dealership...just because someone walks in with some internet numbers and facts does not mean the dealer has to sell you the car at that price...supply and demand...they did teach you guys that in school,right?[wave]

I have a guy who wants to purchase the lone Boss 302 we have on order,my bosses will not put a price on it that would buy it,they'd rather have the car arrive and sit in the showroom attracting interest so they can sell it to the highest bidder...so I tell my guy his money's no good.

What else can you do when you don't own the cars and can't call the shots...?[screwy]
That sort of business is great in the short term. However, if you can garner as much business as possible, build rapport and trust with customers they will come back to you time and time again. You make money on the front end, and the back end when they come in for service. Additionally if one person has a great experience their friends will hear about it. Businesses should treat their name and brand like it's the most valueable thing they own.
 

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I totally hear what all you guys are saying and believe me when I say I agree 100% with all of it but the short story is: 2012 Boss 302 production=3200 cars (of which 640-650 will be Laguna Seca pkg) so many dealers will not even get one.

What they want to do is bring it in and start a frenzy and in the end,when all the dust settles I'll bet the car goes for $10k over...just what my guy would pay...and instead it has to sit there so everyone can get their shot at scratching it.Meanwhile,my guy (who is a personal friend and owns an historic 1970 Mustang trans-am car that he runs currently in the series and has a Raptor SuperCrew on order with me ) will have already purchased...but like I said...I don't make the rules,it's the only one we get.
 

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what I dont get is your on a focus board, but yet you keep bringing up limited run or high end cars in everything you say as comparison. while nice, how many people here do you really think can buy one of those in the first place? It's like comparing steak to hamburger... while impressive, most could give a rip
 

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I think he is just giving an example of the games some dealers are willing to play to make a buck, even when they have a buyer ready to go at sticker price....

Just an example of SHORT upscale supply and demand applied to the Focii. You know lets sell 5 cars at sticker(+) to people who have to have it now and don't care about the money versus selling 30 cars at sticker(- incentives) and making the same money while alot more customers are happy now and in the future.
 

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Ford i think needs to really look at some of there dealers , I have bought two brand new focus's a 2004 and a 2010 and the 04 was a amazing transaction the 2010 not so much. In the bottom line it was communication i had to have my SES shipped in from out of state and the car took over three weeks to get there when i was told 10 to 12 days so i was pretty upset they did let me use the same model just a automatic but my thing with them was the run around and the lies if you say your busy at work and i show up and your watching TV its obvious you don't respect me or my business. Or the fact that the car took over 10 days to leave the other dealership(really) If i was a dealership i would want to make the buyers experience memorable because that's how you get them to come back if something happens give them something to feel that your sorry like a gift certificate something. Not ignore them they are spending 20k of there hard earned money with you after all. Just my 2 cents don't me to thread jack!
 
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