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      10-25-2011, 07:17 AM   #1
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Which dealership would you pick?

I've been negotiating for an identical build X3 at several dealerships and two of them have arrived at the same (acceptable) price.

Dealership A is only 3 miles away. I've purchased two cars from them before but it hasn't really made life easier for me in negotiating for this car. Their opening offer was to sell me the X3 at MSRP and to have me hand over the keys for my trade-in (i.e. worst possible deal for me). I'm not really connecting with the sales guy as he gives the impression that he's busy and that I'm more of a nuisance to him than anything. I always get the "beg 'em to buy 'em" vibe when I shop at this place, as if they're doing me a favor to sell me a car. Their biggest selling point is that they're local, and that I'd have improved service (not sure what that means exactly) and free loaners if needed.

Dealership B is 2.5 hours away. The sales guy has been about as open and helpful online as any I've dealt with, giving me the impression that he wants to earn my business and that I'd be helping them by buying from them. They have allocations to start an X3 build right away. The drawback is that they're 2.5 hours away and that I've never even seen the place. Once I show up there the entire vibe could change.

What's my move?
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      10-25-2011, 08:47 AM   #2
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Buy it where you're going to get it serviced, and where you're most likely to get a free loaner.
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      10-25-2011, 09:22 AM   #3
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Buy it where you're going to get it serviced, and where you're most likely to get a free loaner.
Absolutely! Your interaction will be with the service department, not the salesperson, once you buy the car. If the service people are reasonable, pick the close dealership.
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      10-25-2011, 09:32 AM   #4
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Either way I would be going to the local dealership for warranty and service needs, so if I were to buy elsewhere would I be losing anything other than the free loaner?
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      10-25-2011, 10:24 AM   #5
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Either way I would be going to the local dealership for warranty and service needs, so if I were to buy elsewhere would I be losing anything other than the free loaner?
You'll get a free loaner at any BMW dealership as courtesy when you bring your BMW in for service. They may give priority to ‘their’ customers as far as loaner availability and scheduling goes.
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      10-25-2011, 10:36 AM   #6
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The one that gives me the best deal of course , who else
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      10-25-2011, 10:38 AM   #7
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The one that gives me the best deal of course , who else
Both places are offering the same deal.
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      10-25-2011, 10:44 AM   #8
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You'll get a free loaner at any BMW dealership as courtesy when you bring your BMW in for service. They may give priority to ‘their’ customers as far as loaner availability and scheduling goes.
So far I have only taken advantage of the local dealership's loaner program on one occasion, mostly because they offered it, but I did not really need it. Both my wife and I have our offices within half a mile from our house, so we really could manage with only one car for quite a while.

I suppose there is something to be said for keeping money within our community, but the two salespersons have provided a vastly different negotiating experience.

Last edited by Toecutter; 10-25-2011 at 12:12 PM. Reason: typo
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      10-25-2011, 02:05 PM   #9
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You should be able to play the two off against each other and get a better price. You don't have to get service where you purchase the car. When I lived in rural Virginia I had to travel 1 or 1 1/2 hours for service on my cars. That was rather inconvenient and would consume an off day. If they had to order anything or if I had to leave it overnight it was even more inconvenient. You could always deal with another salesperson if you don't like the first one.
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      10-25-2011, 02:14 PM   #10
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You should be able to play the two off against each other and get a better price.
That's what I have been doing and is how we have ended up with them both offering the same deal. At this point I find the purchase price acceptable.

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You don't have to get service where you purchase the car. When I lived in rural Virginia I had to travel 1 or 1 1/2 hours for service on my cars. That was rather inconvenient and would consume an off day. If they had to order anything or if I had to leave it overnight it was even more inconvenient
I plan to have service and warranty work done at the closer dealership regardless of where I buy the car.


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You could always deal with another salesperson if you don't like the first one.
I thought about that, but it seems as if it would add another level of complexity to the negotiation. Based upon my previous interchanges with the staff at this dealership, I think that their sales technique is fairly uniform and I would likely end up with another salesperson with the same general interaction.


The big question for me now is whether I go with the dealership with the nicer salesperson so I feel good about doing business with them but is much farther away, or go with the nearby dealership for convenience and feel bad about giving my business to the place that provided a less satisfactory experience.

As an analogy, picture going out to a nice restaurant down the street where the food is terrific but the waiter is inattentive and maybe a little bit surly, versus driving all the way across town to another restaurant where the food is equally terrific along with the wait staff.

Last edited by Toecutter; 10-25-2011 at 02:21 PM.
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      10-25-2011, 11:56 PM   #11
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I would buy from the dealer that treated me with more respect. All things being equal (but location), I'd choose the local dealer, but in this case they're clearly not equal. The only way I'll give an a-hole dealer business is if the deal he offers is much better.

And if the SA or sales manager ever asks why I bought my car elsewhere, I'd tell them the truth. That's the only way it'll ever get better.
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