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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
So, the lease on our 2003 Acura TL-S expires in August. It's a nice car, and probably still worth more than almost any other new Pontiac on the lot.
We have had two Grand-Am's before that, which put me off Pontiac's. However, with what is really a 400hp Monaro on the lot for $32K, I thought I'd drag my dad along for a test-drive.

When we get to the dealer, a cool salesguy named Patrick greets us, I'd spoken to him the previous weekend. They had a GTO on the lot this time. We asked for a test-drive, and he said OK, and went to make a copy of the driver's license. He then told us that his manager said that "unless you are going to order today, you can't test-drive one". WHAT?!?!?! At this point, my dad marches out the dealer, loudly declaring "you won't sell many if you don't let people test-drive them!"
The manager then storms out after him, shouting "whoever buys this car isn't going to want to have a lot of miles on it!" and "Have a nice day!!!"

I stay with the salesguy for another minute or two, and he starts the car and lets me inside to at least get an idea about it. After that, I get in the Acura with my dad and we leave.
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I have several problems with this. The car had 3 miles on it. Most new cars have 8-12 miles from the factory. Like anyone would notice, or could even use that as a bargaining point.
Secondly, what the manager doesn't realize, is that he's working at a PONTIAC DEALER!!! The GTO is the only car I'd consider buying from them, and it's not like they're selling like hot potatoes either.
Thirdly, how do they expect to sell you a car without test-driving it??? It's a Pontiac, not a DB9!!!

We have always been treated right at Acura, Honda, and BMW dealers. NO WONDER GM IS GOING DOWN THE DRAIN!!!

Sorry about the rant, but the manager is a real dick. I am contacting Pontiac costomer care (if they have one) about him. Just make sure not to go to that dealer.
 

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This seems to be a widespread problem with this car. I am guessing that a lot of people have gone in for a test drive with no serious intention of leasing/buying the car. Why should the dealership waste their time with those people? The problem is when they make an assumption about someone that is serious and blow them off. That happened to me when I went to the Dodge Dealer to test drive a Charger. Two hours later I picked up a GTO so F those Dodge guys. I'm inclined to drive over there in my GTO and ask them if I can still test drive a Charger (They told me they were busy and to come back tomarrow). So I am not convinced this is just a Pontiac problem either.
 

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It isn't just Pontiac... Back in January a week before I ordered my GTO, I went to Chapman Ford in Columbia PA. They had just gotten in their first New Mustang GT. I was testing the waters between one of them and a GTO. I went in to see the sales "KID" I had spoken to 4 weeks earlier about test driving one to compare them to the GTO before making up my mind. At that time they had a 6 cyl and damn near threw the keys to me not once but 3 times to test drive. I told him I didn't want one of those, and wasn't wasting my time in it...(that car was ok to test drive) I wanted the GT. I said I'll be back when you get a GT. When I went back that "KID" refused to let me drive one. He wanted me to buy it on the spot. Needless to say I hold him to "take that car and shove it up your ass" and left...I went home and filed a complaint with Ford, told them that because of that dealers policy they lost a sale and am going to order a GTO. They didn't give a rats ass.... So............ one day next week when the weather is nice I am going to drive back to that dealer and ask to speak to the Sales Manager.. I am going to show that idiot what I driven there in and tell him I wasn't playing games.... tell him to have a nice day and give him an exhaust rock opera from my duel duel exhausts as I leave. Would I have taken a Mustang GT over the GTO?... naaaaaaaaaaaaaa
 

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There are two sides to every story. A lot of people like to go joy riding in cars -- and that wastes a dealer's time and money. However, how can somebody scratch out a check for 30 large without having the opportunity to know what they're getting into?

A lot of consumers think car dealers are scumbags -- but a lot of dealers think consumers are scumbags, too. Truth is there are scumbags on both sides of the fence.

I sold cars for a little while during college -- and there were consumers out there that would lie like a rug all day to get test drives or the best possible number -- then leave even though you met all of their requirements for purchase -- just to take your number some place else. I even had one jerk come back to me after buying a car at another dealership for FIVE DOLLARS less to see if he could somehow get 0% financing -- even though the incentive started a couple of months after his purchase! It's just the nature of this beast.

The best thing you can do is keep your cool, be honest and say "look, I'm just at the evaluation stage right now. I really am in the market for a car. You want to run my credit? Fine. But I'm not doing anything until I drive the car to see if I like it. The ball's in your court. You can either let me drive a GTO here today and have a shot at my business -- or say no. If you say no, I'm just going to another Pontiac store and try it out. And if I like it, they will be in the running for my business because they showed an interest in working with me. What do you want to do?"

Once the dealer sees you're being on the level with them -- you're able to build a relationship. If you immediately blow your stack and start screaming -- you're done because, unfortunately, there are idiots in the business who live for getting into firefights with consumers -- instead of selling cars.

Now, say they do let you go for a test drive. When you get back, you either like the car enough to negotiate -- or you still have to see other stuff. It's that simple. And if you get into negotiations -- and they start playing games, then walk. It isn't rocket science. If you do walk, you can go online, search dealer inventory and call around. Frankly, your best bet is not to have a trade, have great credit or a preapproved loan check in hand -- and proof of insurance ready to go.

Good luck. Hang in there. Hit another Pontiac store and take one out. You won't be disappointed.
 

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Sweetride01 said:
So, the lease on our 2003 Acura TL-S expires in August. It's a nice car, and probably still worth more than almost any other new Pontiac on the lot.
We have had two Grand-Am's before that, which put me off Pontiac's. However, with what is really a 400hp Monaro on the lot for $32K, I thought I'd drag my dad along for a test-drive.

When we get to the dealer, a cool salesguy named Patrick greets us, I'd spoken to him the previous weekend. They had a GTO on the lot this time. We asked for a test-drive, and he said OK, and went to make a copy of the driver's license. He then told us that his manager said that "unless you are going to order today, you can't test-drive one". WHAT?!?!?! At this point, my dad marches out the dealer, loudly declaring "you won't sell many if you don't let people test-drive them!"
The manager then storms out after him, shouting "whoever buys this car isn't going to want to have a lot of miles on it!" and "Have a nice day!!!"

I stay with the salesguy for another minute or two, and he starts the car and lets me inside to at least get an idea about it. After that, I get in the Acura with my dad and we leave.
~
~
I have several problems with this. The car had 3 miles on it. Most new cars have 8-12 miles from the factory. Like anyone would notice, or could even use that as a bargaining point.
Secondly, what the manager doesn't realize, is that he's working at a PONTIAC DEALER!!! The GTO is the only car I'd consider buying from them, and it's not like they're selling like hot potatoes either.
Thirdly, how do they expect to sell you a car without test-driving it??? It's a Pontiac, not a DB9!!!

We have always been treated right at Acura, Honda, and BMW dealers. NO WONDER GM IS GOING DOWN THE DRAIN!!!

Sorry about the rant, but the manager is a real dick. I am contacting Pontiac costomer care (if they have one) about him. Just make sure not to go to that dealer.

Hey Sweetride!!!! Dude, read my post under the other Dont Go to Thread...... I had the same BS with Autoway Clearwater on 19. GO TO Dick Norris Buick-Pontiac-GMC on 19 just north of Curlew and see a guy named Dan King, Steve Newcommer is the sales manager. They are the most AWESOME guys, best car buy experience I have ever had. Trust me, beautiful dealership and very cool people. They have 2 Torid red's in stock right now!! 1 auto, 1 M6. Dick Norris came out and shook my hand, told me he envied me. Gave me a black cloth GTO cap. I cant tell you how cool these guys are. Tell Dan that Jason Vorbeck told you to see him. You will have a great experience there.
 

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Drive south - Sarasota or Ft. Meyers

Both these dealers are good. Mike Kelly in Sarasota, or Steve in Fort Meyers. They will both deal with you, got mine for 500 under sticker in April. The guys in Fort Meyers are really good, would have loved to bought one from them had the had the color. Last time I drove by the Sarasota dealer they had 4.
 

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Patrun

Which dealership in Ft. Myers are you refering to?
I have bought both from Sarasota and Ft. Myers I think it was Suncoast Pontiac in Sarasota and Galeana in Ft Myers. Service in Ft. Myers is about the best you can get I personnaly know both the Service Manager and the head dude the Service Director and they treat me like I was the owner of the Dealship! I am waiting for delivery on a MBM M6 '5 Goat sometime in july-Aug
Maybe it is because once in a while I personnaly deliver a six pack of their favorite beer for their personal enjoyment!
:cheers
 

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Sheehan Pontiac in Pompano Bch are GREEDY!

Hey guy, I just joined this forum, it's Outstanding! So what would ya all say to close to 40k for a Goat? Well, this was what I was faced with when I went to Sheehan in Pompano! Every one of their 8 Goats were marked up 3 grand for "market availability"!! They had the one I wanted, but in no way was I going to pad their pockets to that extent. In addition to the 3g's were another thousand of BS stuff like: paint selant, fabric protectant, door edge guards and STRIPING! I was like: "OH HELL NO!" I asked what the $448 "dealer service" fee got me and the salesman sheepishly replied that's just pure profit. If you added it all up, plus tax and tags we were on the high side of 40,000!!! Lets just say I didnt walk away, I RAN! Needless to say with the new GM Employee price program, I got the car for $30,262 from another dealer. They were more than happy to let me take the car unescorted for a drive.
 

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b_a_betterperson said:
There are two sides to every story. A lot of people like to go joy riding in cars -- and that wastes a dealer's time and money. However, how can somebody scratch out a check for 30 large without having the opportunity to know what they're getting into?

A lot of consumers think car dealers are scumbags -- but a lot of dealers think consumers are scumbags, too. Truth is there are scumbags on both sides of the fence.

I sold cars for a little while during college -- and there were consumers out there that would lie like a rug all day to get test drives or the best possible number -- then leave even though you met all of their requirements for purchase -- just to take your number some place else. I even had one jerk come back to me after buying a car at another dealership for FIVE DOLLARS less to see if he could somehow get 0% financing -- even though the incentive started a couple of months after his purchase! It's just the nature of this beast.

The best thing you can do is keep your cool, be honest and say "look, I'm just at the evaluation stage right now. I really am in the market for a car. You want to run my credit? Fine. But I'm not doing anything until I drive the car to see if I like it. The ball's in your court. You can either let me drive a GTO here today and have a shot at my business -- or say no. If you say no, I'm just going to another Pontiac store and try it out. And if I like it, they will be in the running for my business because they showed an interest in working with me. What do you want to do?"

Once the dealer sees you're being on the level with them -- you're able to build a relationship. If you immediately blow your stack and start screaming -- you're done because, unfortunately, there are idiots in the business who live for getting into firefights with consumers -- instead of selling cars.

Now, say they do let you go for a test drive. When you get back, you either like the car enough to negotiate -- or you still have to see other stuff. It's that simple. And if you get into negotiations -- and they start playing games, then walk. It isn't rocket science. If you do walk, you can go online, search dealer inventory and call around. Frankly, your best bet is not to have a trade, have great credit or a preapproved loan check in hand -- and proof of insurance ready to go.

Good luck. Hang in there. Hit another Pontiac store and take one out. You won't be disappointed.
:agree Well said.
 

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While looking for the GTO, I went to a Subaru dealer to look at a WRX STI. 38 years old and I pulled up in a Corvette Z06. No test drives allowed. I asked them if I can't drive it, how do I know that I'll like it? They said they were not putting miles on cars. I again said what if I don't like the way it drives can I return it? They just laughed.

I won't buy a pair of shoes without trying them on, let alone a 30k plus car.
 

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When they put the '04's on sale at the end of Sept. I stopped by and it was my first look at a GTO. Opened the door, then the hood, looked underneath.

They gave me what I wanted for my trade, an '02 SS Camaro, Black M6, slightly modded. Got the 3500. off, plus extra 1000. for GMAC finance, plus a little more off MSRP.

Drove out with the GTO, never having driven it. The whole deal took one hour. Never been at that dealer before. (Champion Pontiac/GMC Houston)There was no need to drive and hasn't been a single regret.
 
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