I Literally Laughed in His Face

So I went in to one of my local dealerships after making an appointment so we could talk numbers on a lease. When I walked in, a salesperson (we’ll call him Jeff) walks up to me and asks if I have a VIP appointment. I say yes and he brings me over to his desk. He gets the usual info from me and asks what I’m looking for. I give him the details and explain I’m looking for a CR-V EX AWD. He then takes a minute to go speak with one of his sales managers and then here comes this big, sweaty, mafia-type looking guy (we’ll call him Vinny). He asks me the same usual questions and explains that they’re at the last day of the month and trying to reach some major sales goals so he wants to “do me a favor” and get me the best possible deal right off the bat. “No BS”. I say great! He then tells Jeff to go grab one of the models I’m looking for and have me take it for a spin while he talks numbers with the “boss”.

So, we head out and find the CR-V but as I’m walking up, I notice that this doesn’t look like an EX. Jeff gets in and exclaims, “It’s beautiful, isn’t it? Just what you were looking for?” I respond, “It’s nice, but it’s not an EX. It’s a Touring” to which he responds, “Oh… actually this is an EX-L” while I’m staring at the sticker on the window that says “TOURING”. I’m just like, whatever… I’ve already test driven these and I know I’m happy with them. I tell the Jeff a longer test drive won’t be necessary and we pull up to the entrance of the dealership.

As we walk in, Vinny looks surprised we’re back so soon, and walks up saying, “Hey! Looks like you loved it so much you’re ready to sign!” I told him it was an Touring when I specifically asked for an EX. I figured at this point, we’d all be on the same page and they’d realize they’d simply grabbed the wrong keys, but then Vinny says, “That’s an EX-L… I figured you might like to get a peak since I could probably get you into one for the same price today…” I laughed on the inside and explained again that I was looking for an EX. His response? “Well, we can definitely do that. We’re here make sure you get what YOU want.” I laughed a little harder on the inside.

At this point I’m a little incredulous of the whole experience, but figure I’ll hear him out on the lease numbers. We all walk over to his desk and he gives this whole shpeel about how badly they want my business today and that they’ll bend over backwards to get the deal done right away… blah blah blah.

Now, let’s get one thing out of the way… the advertised special on the EX lease was $269/mo with $2899 due at signing.

Soooo… I’d already explained to him that I wanted a $0 DAS lease deal before he went to run his numbers. He then pulls out the dreaded four square sheet and writes down some numbers. I watched him write them, seemingly in slow-mo, because something didn’t seem right. As soon as he was done, he plopped his pen on the table like he was dropping a mic and turned the sheet around so I could read it. His words, almost verbatim, were “I think you’ll be very happy with this deal”.

$5,000 DOWN… $533/MO…

I told you I laughed in his face… and oh boy did he look confused… The first words that came out of my mouth were, “Do you take me for an idiot?” and his reply was, “Oh, no… not at all, I mean, are we close to a number you’d be happy with?” I replied, “We’re hysterically off… like, you’ve pretty much doubled the total cost of the total lease according to the advertised price.”

I’ll spare you the next 20 minutes as he then gets the General Sales Manager to come and “shoot from the hip” with me and try to have a “man to man” so we can get a deal done. I told him straight up they were dreaming and that I’m just going home to which I was warned I was rolling the dice cause he didn’t know what the next month’s incentives would be. Before I got up, I grabbed my phone and showed him that the end date for their current incentives run through Sep 3. He looked at it like he’d never seen that before and that was my queue to get the hell out of there.

Granted, the GSM did call me later that night with far more agreeable number, but I didn’t bother calling back. the whole experience was insulting and quite frankly makes me want to warn everyone I know not to ever step foot in that place. I have since done all of my negotiating over e-mail and have a fantastic offer pretty much right off the bat. Hopefully all goes well, but boy oh boy was that doozy of an experience…


I don’t know what else you’d expect from walking into a dealership…


Joke is on you. He has to be there regardless, but you waste your own time.


Everyone all at once…thats why you dont discuss numbers at a dealership.

I dont know why you or anyone is going to be surprised. Businesses make money by generating profit.

If they drop their pants and go to rock bottom for every customer that walks in, right away, how can they sustain?


At least he walked away from the terrible deal unlike some people who post on here…

But I agree always email/call the dealers and save going in there once the deals set.


Oh, believe me. I knew what to expect, but had some free time on the last day of the month so i was going to humor them. I knew I’d get crappy numbers to start with, but not “that” crappy… either way, like I said, email is how I go from now.

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So you intentionally wasted someone’s time, and your own from what it sounds like, on what is generally a busy day for the store? I’m just not really sure what you’re hoping to gain by posting this.


For anyone who wants the Reader’s Digest version:

“I walked into a car dealership and asked for numbers.”


While I agree to never walk into a dealership to discuss numbers, some dealers I’ve recently dealt with wouldn’t discuss numbers unless I walked in. I eventually found some that would and signed with 1 but they were over 40 mins away. As the consumer, you’re in charge, not the dealership. There are plenty of cars to choose from. I told my local dealer that if they didn’t want to talk numbers, I would find someone who would. They claimed to be the best, biggest, largest selection blah blah blah.

OP - thanks for sharing.

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On the first day of the month, on the last day of the month, you do your price discussions over email. Maybe by phone if its getting down to the wire.

The only time, for any reason, that you walk into a dealer before having pricing in hand is when you need to test drive the car and do your due diligence. And since you won’t be buying that day, you do it in the middle of the week, at an off time, and with an appointment. If you like the dealer during that drive you can give them a crack at your business over email.

We are scraping the bottom of the barrel to get the deals we get here. And disrespecting everyone’s time (your own included) will not get you anywhere.


VIP appointment for a CRV… Hard to believe how OP didn’t laugh right there …


If not a broker and not walking into a dealership, what are the real options here? For the record, I’m pro-broker all the way, but it sounds like everyone is saying to never go into a dealership to negotiate…

Email preferably; phone at the end of the month when you’re trying to get something in on the last day.


I had similar experience with a local KIA dealership for stinger lease. Unlike others say deal over phone or email, some dealerships are reluctant to share numbers unless you show up at their dealership. Once you step into their territory, they will try to use all the force to get you into their ridiculous deal. There are three kia dealerships in my city and they follow the same tactics.

Yea, I’ve never really had luck with dealers sharing numbers over he phone or email. Guess I should be more persistent

You should have asked for the break down in writing just to post on here.

I’ve done that before :rofl:

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That’s because they don’t know who you are, how serious you are, etc. and a lot won’t bother wasting their time. I find that your best bet is to know what you want in their inventory and to have a realistic deal in your head. An email with a specific stock number and the details of the deal you’re looking with a note that you are ready to sign today if they can hit the number typically nets a better result.

Don’t go fishing, though. Actually be ready to buy and if they agree, make the deal


No need to go to the details of the deal you are looking for. Select the car that fits you best from dealer inventory (long standing stock & specials work best) and make an inquiry about best deal they can offer for that specific unit stating by when are you looking to close on it and if it’s going to be 0 DAS lease, finance or whatever.

Going to the dealership makes sense only if you want to take a test drive. The offer you receive afterwards is the “price” you pay for it.

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Well, you kind of have to go to the dealership to test drive, at least if it’s for the wife. My wife is not going to buy a car with a test drive. And when you’re there, even if just to test drive, they put you in a pressure situation with the manager and the manager’s manager, etc. I’ve been at dealerships and told them up front that we just want to test drive because we’re trying to decide between A and B, and they start bringing up numbers.

The sucker price comes first…

Evidently some small percentage of people will pay that amount. So they always start there.

It’s part of the dance. Don’t take it personally.