New Car Savings

courtesy of Bob, The Auto Answer Man

Dear Bob,
I used three helpful "tools" when purchasing my last car. This saved me thousands of dollars.

  1. I applied for a GM credit card. You can earn up to $500.00 each ear as a 5% rebate from normal credit card purchased that can be applied toward the purchase price of a new car. (Was $1,000, but effect May 1997 amount reduced to $500.00). You must have the discipline to pay the amount off in full each month.

  2. I checked my local Sunday paper each week until GM announced a $750.00 rebate program on the car of my choice. Car manufacture rebates are listed in the Chicago Tribune each Sunday.

  3. I used a buying service to insure that my final price was only $50.00 over invoice. The service I used was USAA Buying Service located in San Antonio Texas.

Using these three techniques, I was able to purchase a new 1994 GM Blazer (loaded) for slightly under $17,000.

Well, it sounds like someone did their homework.... In addition, FORD offers a similar program with cash rebates on a credit card that can be used towards the purchase of a NEW car. Yes, this rebate only applies to new car purchases... and I believe that it can be transferred.

A friend of mine had a GM card after he bought his 92 Bonneville. Subsequently, he bought a Ford Mustang, but his mother was able to use his accrued rebate towards the purchase of her blazer. In addition to buying clubs, I found that you can actually do better yourself, if you have the right ammunition.

I recently went through the purchase of a 1996 Ford Bronco. For those of you who do not know, after 30 years, Ford is dropping the Bronco line. So I had to get one. Traded in my old 90 for the newer edition. But anyway, back to business. You can get dealer cost of any vehicle on-line. This way, you know what the dealer is "supposed" to pay for the car to the manufacturer. That are hidden factory to dealer programs that we don't know about. But anyway, you can at least find out what the vehicle costs the dealer to have.

You then go to the lots, look at the window sticker, and price it yourself. Now, remember that option packages can save you money so read carefully. When it comes time to negotiate price, you will have some ammunition.

The only thing that really throws a wrench in the deal is the trade. If at all possible, SELL IT YOURSELF! You WILL do better than what the dealer is going to give you. Even though Galves (the book the dealers use to price cars) says that your car is worth X, it might be the wrong season or your car is not as cherry as you thought.

Another thing that will save time is be getting a vehicle locator list. This list will tell you where your model vehicle is located in your local area. But local might not be so local. I live in Central New Jersey with car dealers everywhere. I had to travel over 65 miles one way to find my car.

I actually wound up getting the car BELOW dealer invoice! 1 by knowing what it was worth and by doing my research and 2 by those hidden factory to dealer programs that I mentioned before. The dealer saw that it was going to take that additional rebate to make the sale go the right way.

All in all, It was a very favorable experience with a New car dealer. Some of them can be nightmares, but this place was the exception. They were very nice and accommodating. The name of the dealership is Rice and Holeman Ford located in Mount Holly New Jersey. If any of our new Jersey or Pennsylvania readers are looking for a new ford, then go there. This was the nicest dealership that I have ever been to! I can also tell you where not to go, but in order to avoid possible lawsuits, remember if the deals sounds too good to be true, then it is!
Good Luck!
Drive Safely!
Bob, The Auto Answer Man

True or False

Debt is preventing me from taking a vacation this year or the vacation I'd like to take this year! Tell us: Yes, debt is affecting my vacation plans! or No, we're going exactly where we want to go but we'd love to learn make our trip as inexpensive as possible!

Have a car care question? Visit our automotive center and see if we've already answered it or a similar question.

Stay Connected with TDS

Little Luxuries

to any newsletter and get a copy
of our ebook
Little Luxuries:
130 Ways to Live Better...For Less
for FREE!

The Dollar Stretcher
Dollar Stretcher Parents
Dollar Stretcher Tips
The Computer Lady

Your Email:

View the TDS Privacy Policy.

Get Out of Debt