Recently, My Favorite Domer (AKA my son) permitted me to go car-shopping with him.
His decision, I’m sure, came after a frustrating day where he found:
- Car salesmen who refused to take his search seriously.
- Salesmen who ignored him on the lot.
- Salesmen who tried to sell him more vehicle than he needed.
- Salesmen who tried to charge him more than he wanted to pay.
Part of me misses the buying experience Saturn dealerships used to offer. No haggling. No gimmicks.
Just pay the sticker price and take the car.
But Domer was born too late for that, so he had to suffer the joys of “search and wheedle.”
And he wanted me along for the ride.
He insisted he wouldn’t buy from any place where he had to go inside and hunt down a salesman.
“If they don’t want to try to sell, then they haven’t earned my business,” he said.
Okay. Works for me.
The first place we went, we scoured the lot peeking into car windows and examining stickers.
No salesman (or woman) approached us.
I suggested going inside. Domer didn’t want to, but we did.
Walked the entire length of the showroom, nodding at the salespeople sitting alone in their cubicles.
Not a one spoke to us!
Puzzled, we left.
The next place wasn’t much better.
This salesman approached us, made a few cursory remarks, learned Domer wasn’t a big spender and pretty much sent us on our way.
What’s going on here, I wondered.
At the third dealership, no sooner had we parked my car when a young, energetic, pretty sales girl welcomed us, introduced herself, and promptly started showing us cars.
In Domer’s price range. With the specs he’d outlined.
And if she’d had the car he wanted, she’d have made herself a sale.
The next day we traveled far out of town to a dealership where Domer immediately found “the car.”
It was beautiful, shiny, sleek, and looked perfect for him.
After driving it, we sat down with the salesman to crunch some numbers.
Now Domer majored in Finance. He loves numbers.
But I see figures, and my eyes glaze over and I zone out.
When the bottom line total appeared, Domer shook his head.
Too much, he insisted.
The sales manager stepped in, offering a lease.
Domer couldn’t get out of there fast enough.
Finally, we found another dealership with another female sales rep. And while they didn’t have the car Domer wanted on their lot, she and the sales manager worked to get a fair price both they and Domer could live with.
And they searched around until they found the right car for Domer.
It was in Ohio.
He drove it off the lot Fourth of July weekend.
Now, if he’d just stop calling it a cash drain!