Do "Drive Offs" include state sales tax?

I’m shopping for a new Subaru right now, and a couple dealers/brokers have spreadsheets with numbers: on the monthly, they specify “tax not included”, but on “drive offs”, there is no stipulation… Or is the whole thing taxed? And is first month included, because then it’s partially taxed.

Most of these drive offs are around $900-1000, which would seem to only include first month and registration plus some tiny misc fees. Not the inception, which is $595 and too high for the figures they quote.


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Taxation varies by state. Acquisition fee of 595 is low, Volvo is 995, BMW is close to that, Audi is 895. Best thing to do, is talk to the broker or dealer and get an actual quote, not eyeballing their spreadsheet.


CA taxes the monthly payment, so it’s not due upfront. Every deal can be structured differently, so it’s best to contact the dealer/broker with your zip code and they can give you the exact monthly payment and DAS amount.

Except for upfront tax on taxed incentives/cap cost reductions.

Subaru does not offer large (in any) customer incentives, so there should not be much, if any, tax due on those upfront.

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Depends on how you structure the deal: you can roll in the acquisition fee or you can residualize it. If your MF is low enough, maybe, but personally, unless I’m doing $0 DAS deal, I pay that as part of my CA Driveoffs: typically: acquisition fee + 1st month payment + sales tax, + dealer fees + Govt fees: DMV TTL + tax on incentives.

So to get an accurate drive off number: dealer needs your ZIP.

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