How to Beat a Car Dealer Salesman


Outside of sitting in a dentist chair, nothing causes more stress for consumers than having to deal with a pushy car salesman. From the moment you stepped into the showroom, the car salesman followed you around the dealership as if you carried around the magic potion that cures everything ailing us.

It’s not that car salesman want to sell you a car you do not want. They want you to purchase the vehicle of your dreams…at the price he or she wants to sell it to you.

How to beat the car salesman typically requires superior negotiation skills. However, with the digital era influencing car sales more than ever, consumers have several ways to get a leg up on a car salesman long before the negotiation stage of the buying process.

Follow the Boy Scout Motto

Be prepared. Nothing excites a car salesman more than dealing with an uninformed customer. Even if you can detect a car salesman’s underhanded sales tactics, you still need to arrive at a car dealership armed with statistical facts, such as the recommend price for the make and model presented by trusted online resources such as Edmunds and Kelley Blue Book. Make sure to type in the correct year to ensure accuracy. You should also research the safety, reliability, and performance features of the car you want to buy. Some car salesmen like to offer “optional” features that are in fact included in the purchase price of a vehicle.

Call to Confirm Price

Many car salesmen love to manipulate emotions to motivate consumers to take action. Hence, the often heard reference “Here’s your new baby.” Car salesmen want you to savor the smell of freshly upholstered leather seats and hear the flawless humming that comes from under the hood. Instead of meeting with a car salesman to discuss price, call the dealership and ask a car salesman to offer a price quote for the vehicle you want to buy. By calling the dealership, you eliminate the emotional games played by manipulative car salesmen.

Conceal Your Ace in the Hole

When asked by a car salesman if you have a trade-in, tell the car salesman you do not have a vehicle to offer. Wait until you agree to the price of a vehicle before revealing you have a trade-in. You can claim you changed your mind and now want to trade in the car as a separate transaction from the purchase of a vehicle from the auto dealership. Car dealers love to pad profit margins on the price of a car to make it appear they are paying much more for trade-in vehicles. Conduct negotiations on the purchase of a new car and the trade-in of your used car separately to ensure you receive the best deals on each transaction.

Price Compare

You do not have the tools to beat the car salesman until you go price shopping at competitor lots. If you live in a fairly remote area, research prices on identical vehicles by visiting other dealership websites. You also need to learn about the average selling price of the car you want to buy for negotiating the interest rate that comes with an auto loan.

Discuss the Price, Do Not Mention Payments

If you want to spark a twinkle in the eyes of a car salesman, mention the word “payment.” Car salesmen deflect the discussion about price by referring to the low monthly payments you can make order an extended period. The low monthly payments over an extended period ruse does not decrease the price offered by the car salesman.

Patience is a Virtue

The timeless axiom has special relevance for consumers who are in the market for new or used vehicles. Outside of buying a home, no other purchase you make requires more patience than the patience you need to exhibit during negotiations with a car salesman. Auto negotiations often come down to who has the strongest will power, which is otherwise phrased “Who will back down first.” Remember one important fact for negotiating the price of a vehicle: Car salesmen earn their livings from drawing commissions. They want to sell lots of cars quickly. The longer you hold out, the more likely the car salesman backs down first.

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