Fortunately for consumers, there are many alternative car buying tactics floating around the internet that can help save thousands of dollars and hours of your time. The key to these strategies is that you have to know exactly what you want (upgrades and all), otherwise most won’t work.
If you do know exactly what new car you want then there is one technique in particular that I want to share with you. I found it one day on RedFlagDeals.
Long story short, you email all the local dealers in your surrounding areas about the exact car you’re looking for and that they need to reply with the final drive out of the lot price. And the dealership with the lowest bid wins. This can save you literally thousands of dollars on your new car purchase! Of course you need to gather information about the car pricing and such, but basically the idea is that you’re taking the negotiating power away from dealers and into your hands.
Here is the step-by-step guide on how to buy a new car using email:
1. Find Your Local Car Dealers
The first step is to find all the dealers in your area for the car model that you want.
Do a simple google map search and narrow it down to your local area. TIP: Don’t narrow your region too much because the more dealers you have the better.
Now that you’ve located the dealerships of interest, you need to gather all the contact information. Use an excel doc with the following headings:
If possible try to get the sales manager’s email address, but most likely you’ll run into their website’s email contact form. Copy and paste the url to the contact form in the email column if you’re unable to find a direct email address.
It can take up to 2 hours to enter all that information if you’ve made your range big enough. If you’re taking less time, than your range of car dealerships maybe too small to work. A simple hack could be to hire someone on Fiverr to enter it for you and skip the boring part.
2. How to Find the True Price of the Car
After you have all the dealers you want to contact, you need to draft up your email to send to the dealers. To do this you’ll first need the dealer cost invoice for the vehicle you want to buy. The cornerstone to negotiating tactics is breaking down the barrier of information. In this case it’s the true price of the car.
3. What do You Write in the Email?
It’s time to send those email bombs out! Here are some email templates I found from others on RedFlagDeals who’ve contacted dealers:
Email Copy #1
My wife and I have decided we are going to lease a 2014 Ford Escape Titanium. I am emailing about a dozen dealers to give them a chance for our business. Lowest price wins.
We are eligible for the $1000 Loyalty Rebate as I own an F150. I also understand it is Ford Employee Pricing, however there is of course still margin for haggling on top of that.
What I’d like from you is your best price for the following:
2014 Ford Escape Titanium
Front Wheel Drive (2WD)
White Platinum ($400)
Partial Leather Trimmed Sport Seats ($350)
Ford.ca Employee Pricing = $33,109, plus GST.
This will be a factory order as this is the exact vehicle we want. If you could include the final price excluding taxes in your quote that’d be ideal–not the monthly payments. It’s easier to compare.
We live in (town that is far from all the dealers) so this is the most efficient way for everyone. If you don’t want to send out prices by email, thank you very much for your time.
Email Copy #2
Hi Salesperson name (or I leave the name blank if I am BCC’ing multiple people within the same dealership),
I am looking to purchase a brand new what car you want with whatever you want package in some exterior colour with some interior material/colour as well as the following accessories: whatever you are looking for
I am ready to make a cash purchase and am looking to purchase from the first dealer to accept my offer. I will be able to arrange to come to the dealership to sign for it within the week.
I am looking to purchase this car for a price of whatever you want to pay on the road.
Please let me know. Thanks!
Take the time and email each of the contacts with an individual email and copy/paste the email template and change the name for each email. Yes this will take a lot of time, but if you really want the savings you have to do it right.
4. Negotiating Over Email
Click send and you should start getting replies with offers. To get these dealers in a bidding war, reply to the dealer whose offer is second best by letting them know their current position. For example, you can reply back saying:
“Thanks for replying back. Right now you’re second”
“Thank you for getting back to me. I am actually going with another dealer.”
Stay away from telling specifics of the offers from other dealers or even the identity of the other dealers. You hold the advantage on them (isn’t that nice for once?). Repeat this cycle until you feel you hit a good price you’re satisfied with. Here’s a diagram explaining the cycle:
So What Are The Results?
If you do it right you should be able to save anywhere from a few hundred to a few thousand. But remember there is no guarantee on what results you’ll see as it’s likely to vary based on the area, car of choice and how well you implement.
There’s a Catch
Even though this has worked for many others – there is no guarantee it’ll work for you and there are some possible consequences to negotiating with car dealers using the email bombing tactic:
- your email gets blacklisted
- emails will be ignored
- very time consuming
- small chance the dealer will go back on their word – leaving you in a pickle
The biggest issue I’ve heard others face when trying this method to buying a new car is that dealers will choose not to reply at all. The reason is that they don’t know if you’re actually serious about it or will try to get you on the call – by saying they don’t do deals via email.
Comment below and let us know of your experience in the “email bombing technique” or any other car buying hacks.