I know for a fact that the last two Ford I bought got "dealer prep," mostly
becasue they made me wait while they did it. The salesman actually let me go
watch them prep my F150 (including the stupid process of pumping down the
tires and then refilling them with "Nitrogen" - I told them no tot bother
with that, but they did it any how). On my Fiesta, I actually had to make
them stop prepping the car becaue I needed to leave the dealership to make
an appointment. The salesman practically had to beat the car wash guys away
from the car so I could get it and go (but they did fill up the tank with
gas and it was immaculately clean inside).
yes,the product should already be in presentable,salable shape.
It's not IKEA ready-to-assemble furniture.
But these days,everybody is adding extra fees for things they should be
or were doing anyways,not that that makes it alright.
There wasn't a "dealer prep" charge on my invoice. There was a "destination
charge" built into the MSRP, which I assume was intended to cover
transportation and dealer prep, but as far as I can recall that has always
been listed as a separate item on the window stickers for all cars. The
charge that drives me crazy is the "documentation fee." They didn't try to
hit me with that one on the Fiesta, but it seems to be the norm now for
dealers to add that one. For the last car my Mother bought by herself, she
told them to give her the paperwork and she would take it to the DMV
herself. They dropped the charge that time, since she was going to walk away
if they made her pay it. A lot of those sorts of charges would go away if
people walked away more often.
Just offer them a bottom line, out the door, keys for title dollar
figure. You don't really care how they do their internal paperwork to
make it happen.
Out the door--no additional anything. If that's what the car is worth
to you, and if making that deal happen benefits their business, then
everyone is happy.
That whole "documentation fee" bullshit is nothing more than what the
airlines and cell phone companies do to try to put forth a more
attractive price that you can never buy the car for.
I'm always amused at the sales-weasel's response when I tell him I'm not
going to pay any $298 "title and documentation" fee. "Just give me the
MSO after the check clears-- I'll take it to the tag office myself, pay
the $18 title fee, and get the title in the mail in a week or two," I say.
At this point, they pompously point to the box on the sales order where
$298 has been pre-printed. I take out my pen (or even better-- ask to
borrow his), lean over, and draw a line through the $298.
They sputter, fume, and say "you can't do that." But I just did, I tell
them. And when they tell me the computer always adds the $298 in when
the sales contract is printed up, I say fine, take $298 off the price of
the car-- or increase my trade in by $298-- whatever you want. Sometimes
if I'm feeling especially sarcastic, I throw in "Who runs the business
anyway-- you or your computer?"
Occasionally you'll have to head for the door to get them to agree. The
furthest I've ever had to go was back to my car in the parking lot (seat
belt on but engine not yet started) before the guy ran up to my window
with an "approval" from the "sales manager."
Such a silly dance...
At delivery all four tires on my 2010 Accord turned out to be about
6psi below recommended, too, which I discovered only when the warning
went on a few weeks later.
So I suspect this is dealer standard practice, and not just laziness,
though just why I can't really say.
This in Los Angeles where outside temperature was not a significant
the guy at the dealer probably used one of those shirt-pocket stick-type
gauges. they can be inaccurate.
there's no excuse for not checking yourself.
overpressure is not as big a danger as underpressured tires.
sure,your tire will wear more in the center,if they keep that overpressure
Especially on SUVs,that can roll if a tire blows.
My wife took delivery of a Mitsubishi SUV several years ago with the
tires inflated to the max inflation pressure listed on the sidewall-- I
think it might have been as much as 45 psi or so. The first clue was the
vehicle rode like it had wooden wagon wheels! I mentioned it to the
dealer next time we were by that way and he said the prep guy must have
misunderstood how to inflate the tires.
He started to squirm a bit when I asked what other tasks that guy was
responsible for when getting the new car ready for my wife and kids to
ride around in-- things that I couldn't readily see and measure. He did
eventually apologize and offered me 2 chits for free oil changes, also
saying he would make sure the guy got some more training. "More," I said....
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