Bias Against Domestic Cars

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On Thu, 26 Nov 2009 16:26:58 -0800 (PST), snipped-for-privacy@my-deja.com wrote:


playing the fool. Persistent cuss, wasn't he? He did have some good points about Saturn timing chain lubrication/failures, just somewhat over the top. He was touting the Toyota he owned of course. Pretty proud of how he flew from S.F to LA to cut a deal on it and take advantage of dealer price differentials. He did a good job on that, and is to be commended. He really "loved" that Toyota. And here he is - a CR subscriber I guess - claiming people aren't biased. hehe.
--Vic
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wrote:

Yeah, some things never change. Not in our case, though. Three kids later and we have a Honda minivan and now a Toyota Prius. Nothing against domestics. I'd have rather had a Fusion Hybrid, especially for the extra room and superior crash protection. Unfortunately, those available at the time were almost $10k more expensive than our base Prius. Funny thing, CR has had mixed reviews on the Prius, too. We bought one anyway. From reading owner forums, you'd think the chronic complaints amounted to a lemon, but they rate pretty well in reliability according to CR, also. Go figure!
Hadn't thought about my Saturn in a while. Decent enough car at the time. I do miss my stereo system. These days, it's factory stereo and sports/news radio as I run the kids around town. Pathetic, I know, but not as bad as trolling newsgroups in a personal war against certain products or companies.
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We bought Toyotas after decades of buying substandard GM crap. We have not ONE complaint against the Toyotas.
The GMs were crap. Each one had a different, serious, and unwarranted problem. Every freaking one of them.
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That may be your opinion but one would suggest that your stop by you local GM, or other domestic dealership, and count all of the so called superior imports you see on their use car lots, that were traded in for a domestic brand.
Obviously not all import buyers believe the import THEY bought was better than a domestic, because they did not by another import.
In addition you can look at the import dealership used car lots and see how many switched brands, as well. ;)
wrote in message news:4b0e0214$0$1664

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Is this theory of yours valid?
It seems to me that the local new car dealers in my area mostly off load all but the very best trade-ins to either local independent lots or auctions. They only keep the very best trade-ins and many of the used cars for sale at local new car lots are actually cars picked up from rental car auctions. I know the local Ford dealer has a bunch of used Toyotas on the lot, but they all appear to be former rental cars, not cars traded in for new Fords. They were pretty obviously former rental cars. It seems to me that this was an indication that the dealer was buying used Toytoas so he would have something on his lot that Customers wanted to buy. I did not take it as a positive sign at all. In fact, I thought it was sad that a Ford dealer was going out and buying used Toyota rental cars to sell. Of course the local Toyota dealer does this also. I think they are all trying to compete with CarMax - which brings up a whole different line of thought - why do people buy used cars from CarMax. When I was looking at trucks, I could buy a new F150 from the Ford dealer for only a little more than CarMax was asking for a used 1 year old F150 with less equipment. It seemed to me that their "below blue book, no negotiation prices" are just a scam to rope in lazy shoppers.
Last year I trade in my Frontier (in excellent condition) for an F150. The truck was cherry, but they didn't sell it on their lot. It showed up at an independnet lot within a couple of days. This surprised me. The truck was only 3 years old, no blemishes, and less than 80k miles. But it appears they didn't even try to sell it off their lot.

There is industry data available that shows brand loyality. Last time I saw it reported, Honda's was the highest, then Toyota's. This was on a percentage basis, not raw numbers. If you use raw numbers (say the number of GM owners who bought a new GM car), then GM might be able to claim to be the best. However if you do it on a percentage basis (percent of Honda buyer who buy another), I am sure Honda and Toyota do far better than GM.

I have the same problem with this theory as your looking at import used cars on domestic lots theory. I assume most new car dealers, including import dealers, only keep the best trade-ins. I know when I bought the Frontier, the dealer wholesaled the Saturn Vue I traded in on it. Heck, I didn't even want to try to sell that car. And when my Sister bought a Toyota, the dealer told her that they would take her car in trade, but they didn't want it (a 10 year old Honda Civic in poor condition). They offered her so little for it, that she sold it herself (and amazingly had to beat off the buyers).
Ed
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No viable dealership BUYS used cars, period! New car dealers need to GET ride of their used cars to preserve capital to buy more NEW cars to sell.
If any dealer MUST buy cars for his used car lots, he is not selling enough NEW cars and needs to fire his New Car Sales Manager. The fact is vast majority of new cars sales involve a trade. Well over HALF of used cars sold at a new car dealership involve a trade as well. The dealership does not earn it gross until the last trade has been removed from inventory.
IF they do buy some late model used units on occasion, they buy them from the OWN brand auctions, where only the brand dealer can bid, not general auctions where all brands are sold. We never kept trades longer than two months, except for rare units or extremely low mileage units. If we traded a Toyota or Honda in one of our GM or Ford stores we took it to one of our Toyota or Honda store. The only non-brand cars on our lots were traded on one of our used cars.

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wrote:

Mike, that may be the way it works where YOU do/did business - but that is by far not universal
Most new car dealers up here make more money on used cars than new, and sell more good used cars than new cars. They LEASE a lot of new cars.
Those leased cars come back in and are SOLD as used cars. The heaps that come in on trade are either shuffled off to local car lots or wholesalers, sent to the auction, or scrapped, depending how bad they are. The REAL GOOD ones go back on their lots for resale.
MANY dealerships DO buy used cars from the large centralized auctions because their market for used cars is larger than their supply of latemodel trades or lease returns. It is this wholesale auto auction activity that sets the blue-book value for used cars. If there is no demand at the auctions for a particular car, the Kelly Blue Book will reflect that with a low wholesale value.
They also buy from their manufacturer's auctions - lease returns, company vehicles, executive driven vehicles, etc - and with dealer principals owning more than one franchise, they often end up on "competitor's" lots.
If there IS a high demand, it will reflect that with a high wholesale value. In YOUR area a vehicle may sell better or worse than the regional average, so you may have trouble either getting close to book value for a car, or buying one for close to book value.
That's how the "iron" business works.

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C. E. White wrote:

No, his theory is not valid. At least in my town. The local Buick/exPontiac dealer gets a lot of cars at auction and sends a lot of cars there too. He has a minimum that he will handle in terms of age and quality. The rest he takes in trade go to the other local dealers, as you noted.
I was at the Caddy/ex Old dealer in town. He took a Lincoln in trade and called the local Ford dealer.. He sold it over there. He mentioned that they often swap cars amongst themselves as Mikey did point out, a used same model often does sell better at the new car dealership of the same brand.
Same with the Chevy dealer. I know people that have traded at his shop and a few days later the trade would be sitting for sale up the street at the low end dealer's place. Some dealers do very well specializing in the low end 5+ year old stuff that a new franchise won't touch.
I passed the Buick dealer on my way home today. He has a red Lucerne on the lot that he sold twice before. It originally came from the gold tournament a few years ago. He handles a lot of "program" cars. He also says he makes more on them than the new cars.
My grandson also works part time for a Subaru dealer. He takes cars as far as 200 miles and swaps them, both new and used. Most of the used he brings in are from auctions and yes, the majority are Subaru.
Mike used to work for one of the big mega dealers. Some of their policies may be different, but he seems to be unaware of what other small town dealers do every day.
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You could have just stopped at "unaware".
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C. E. White wrote:

That's what happens at most Ford dealers. They'll wholesale out used vehicles that really are not that old because they just can't sell them on their own lot. What they want on their own used car lot is Hondas and Toyotas. Either they get them from a dealership within their own dealership group (or at least with the same ownership) or they get them from places like rental car fleets (at least for Toyotas, Hondas are rare in rental fleets).
It's important to understand that those Toyotas and Hondas you see on the Ford or Chevy lot are rarely the trade-ins of unhappy Toyota and Honda owners that traded their cars in for a Ford or Chevy (this happens, but it's extremely rare that a Toyota or Honda owner would trade for a Ford or Chevy.
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Mike Hunter wrote:

Mikey's comments translated:
"GM, GM, rah, rah, rah!
GM, GM, sis boom bah!!! (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cheering )
GM, GM at any cost! Damn the Dexcool, full gaskets ahead!"
Or words to that effect :-)
AKA Mikey can see the back side of his front teeth.
--
Civis Romanus Sum

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On 08/01/2010 2:32 PM, Jim Higgins wrote:

And I bet they still haven't fixed those issues with new models.
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Mike Hunter wrote:

So all of the used cars were traded in? Have you ever heard of an auction? What about all the domestics on Toyota and Honda lots?

If they didn't buy another import, why would they think the import they bought was better than a domestic?

And you can look at any dealer and see how many switched brands. There is a lot of brand switching when people get new cars. IIRC, Toyota owners are the ones most likely to buy another car from the same brand.

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wrote:

The domestic dealers keep any imports they get because they know they will sell. The import dealers don't keep the domestic trade-ins because they know they won't sell as easily from their lot.
The 3 biggest GM dealerships locally also own import franchises. One has Hyundai, one has Kia, and the other has both Toyota and Mazda. The one that has Hyundai USED to be the Toyota dealer, and also either owns or once owned the Acura dealer.
Makes it pretty easy to ballance the inventory of used cars to their best advantage without having to redort to the auctions.
ANd I USED to be the service manager at the Toyota dealership between when it was owned by the GM guy that now owns the hyundai store and when it was bought by the other GM guy - for almost ( the first) half of that time span.. Our retention rate was the envy of every dealership around, import or domestic. ( and no, I don't drive a Toyota - as I explained in an earlier post)

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On 08/01/2010 11:33 AM, Mike Hunter wrote:

It is his opinion, but he isn't alone. My last GM experience was my last. I will not even rent-lease one.
Have previously bought two made in Japan vehicles when they were made over there. Both were first class.
But I suspect this is mute. With Americans earning less, if they have a job in a crappy economy, they will also buy less expensive GM crap and put pressure on getting Hyndai, Tata and other truly green cars.

Yep, used GMs and Chryslers litter the lot.
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Canuck57 wrote:

What do you mean by "truly green cars"? And how do Hyndai and Tata qualify?
Jeff

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On 08/01/2010 6:28 PM, dr_jeff wrote:

Green as in green in my pocket.
Lets face it, if a Tata Nano at $3700 loaded with A?C etc dies completely in 5 years, that is a mere $61.66 a month in TCO for capital cost.
GM Volt at say $40,000 by the same depreciation would have to last 54 years. And I can assure you a Volt will not last near that long.
Forget car payments, buy a Tata Nano. Even gets 52 mpg city, 61 highway and holds 4 imperial gallons (5 US gallons). Not a big cost to fill up. I wouldn't even doubt in a REAL driving test, on a 400 mile hiway run the Nano is easier on gas than the Volt!
Factor in the Volts need for new batteries every year at what? $4000 or 5000 per pop? Plus tilities and 2 drives to maintain.
Volt is a stupid priced and GM has a pretty bad small car record. Firenza or Geo anyone?
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Canuck57 wrote:

A GM is much safer. And the Tata will never make US environmental standards.
Jeff
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On 08/01/2010 9:16 PM, dr_jeff wrote:

You mean D3 auto puts enough cash in every senator, govenor, and every congress persons pocket to make sure they done get into the US (or Canada) as a protectionist move. They already do if for many an Asian comapnies.
But it will not last. The new economy isn't paying people enough after taxes to keep GM & Chrysler in a fashion they are accustomed too. And sooner or later government is going to rebel on GM as its insatiable blood sucking of public debt raised cash is going to get very unpopular.
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Canuck57 wrote:

I see what you mean. Those companies with names like Toyota, Honda, Suzuki, Kia and Mazda have never entered the US market.
Actually I mean the safety and environmental standards that keep our air and waterways clean, and our highways safer. These are the same standards that the auto makers argued against.

Keep up the positive attitude for that company that says that it will be making money within a year or two.
jeff
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