Friday, November 23, 2018

The Black Friday through Cyber Monday window—and beyond—could present bargain opportunities for new-car shoppers too

2018 Chevrolet Camaro and 2018 Chevrolet Silverado
Whether they’re seeking sports cars, sedans, trucks, crossovers, or SUVs, consumers may find that retail stores aren’t the only businesses offering bargains, with many car dealerships running promotions during the Black Friday through Cyber Monday window—and maybe even further into the holiday shopping season. Photos: Chevrolet Pressroom.
Black Friday and Cyber Monday 2018 are upon us. And if you’re like the more than 164 million consumers in the U.S. who plan to shop over the five-day period between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday, maybe you’re already pouring through websites, newspaper inserts, and other promotional outlets looking for bargains.

But what if you’re in the market for a new car as 2018 comes to a close? Will the Black Friday through Cyber Monday timespan be an opportune time to get great deals at car dealerships as well?

According to Edmunds, a company that operates a website and mobile app that support nthe car shopping process from research through purchase with resources from reviews to pricing analysis tools, the answer is “Yes.”

However, the company adds that, for 2018, the window of opportunity isn’t limited to Black Friday alone—and also emphasizes the importance of a smart strategy that involves taking care of a lot of the homework and “due diligence” ahead of time that a well-informed new car purchase requires.

“Black Friday is a great marketing tool for dealers, but the fact is, car shoppers can score just as great deals just before and even in the weeks after the holiday,” said Ivan Drury, Edmunds’ senior manager of industry analysis. “Even though dealers don’t have as much excess inventory to move as they did last year, they still have a lot of 2018s to clear out before the end of the year. And unlike last year, we’re seeing many more excess SUVs and trucks, which means car shoppers no longer have to settle for something they may not want just to get the best bargain.”

With a broader time window to take advantage of potential bargains, tips like the following can boost your chance of making the optimal purchase:
  • Start the car-buying process from home, where you’re likely to keep a clearer head and more able to gather data that will support decisions that are informed rather than impulsive. It’s especially important to think about the financing side. With rising interest rates, getting preapproved for a car loan will give you a more concrete sense of how much car you can afford. And knowing that your financing is taken care of ahead of time will simplify your conversations at the dealership.
  • Gather information ahead of time on auto sales rebates and incentives that automakers and dealers are offering, to give you a better baseline for price comparison.
  • Get a firm trade-in price evaluation ahead of time—with no ambiguity about how much the car you’re trading in will reduce the purchase price of your new car, you’ll have one less factor to cloud your thinking and a firmer sense that your price comparisons are “apples to apples.”
  • Plan ahead for your test drives. To avoid making a purchase you might regret later and understand what kind of driving experience you can expect from your new car, identify cars available to test drive that match your criteria. You’ll want to test drive cars that fit what you’re looking for in as many respects as possible, from powertrain to accessories to paint and interior color. If you want to buy a car with leather seats, test drive a car with leather seats to make sure what you buy will meet your expectations. According to Edmunds, their website and mobile app can help you search car dealer inventory in your area to find a car to test drive that matches your automotive wish list.
  • Again, you don’t have to feel limited to Black Friday or Thanksgiving weekend itself to take advantage of the extended automotive bargain windows that, according to Edmunds, car dealers are offering in 2018. If you don’t feel up to dealing with the Black Friday crowds and craziness, you don’t have to. But if you’re itching to visit the local new car dealerships on Black Friday, arriving early can improve your dealer experience. Try to set an appointment for early in the morning to get a head start on the big crowds. And tell the sales rep that you’re planning to make your purchase decision later in the weekend—this should help reduce some of the sales pressure while also making it clear that you’re a serious potential purchaser with whom it will pay to negotiate.
  • See how much paperwork you can complete ahead of time to ease the hassle at the dealership. If you’re happy with a deal and ready to sign off on a new car purchase, ask the dealer if there is paperwork that you can complete online—preferably from the comfort of your own home rather than in the midst of the distractions of a crowded car dealership.
  • Take your time to review your new-car purchase contract and read the fine print. Once you’re in the finance office, you’re taking that crucial last step of committing to the terms of your purchase and financing. Make sure that all of the pricing and terms that you’ve agreed to have shown up in writing in the contract, to avoid unpleasant post-purchase surprises. This is also the time that you can expect the last-minute pitch on add-ons to your purchase. Today, you can expect pitches for everything from extended warranties to ceramic coatings to protect your paint and clear-coat. Research add-ons like these ahead of time so that you’ve already made a firm decision about whether you want them.

“Great bargains are to be expected at this time of year, but don’t be rushed into buying a car just because you are caught up in the hysteria of a seemingly good deal,” said Matt Jones, Edmunds’ senior consumer advice editor. “Make sure to do your research in advance so that you don’t get stuck with a purchase that you might regret down the road. And if you need to hold off on your purchase, the good news is that these deals are likely going to stick around beyond the holiday weekend and through early next year.”

No comments:

Post a Comment