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Old 05-28-2013, 06:38 AM
 
17,470 posts, read 22,220,438 times
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I have sold (dumped) 4 cars at CarMax but never bought one or even seriously looked at one. The prices are high for what they offer and to me the cars are far from mint condition just simply used cars.
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Old 05-28-2013, 08:42 AM
 
2,268 posts, read 3,729,631 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sandyrn0224 View Post
We recently were able to pay cash (so to speak) for a car and went on a whim to the CarMax here in Charlotte, NC. We had done research on used cars, 2012's, no more than 14k mileage, and we had a max price in mind.

We walked in, the guy talked to us in his office about our options, what they had on the lot, and what was within their 250 mile range that they could move a car in from another location for us. We were going to have one moved in from a store across town, and as we were leaving a car caught our attention in the showroom.

It was a 2012 Ford Focus. This one had like 40k on it, WAY too much for us, but they had another 2012 on the lot that had less than 14k on it, and was way below our max price limit.

We drove it, loved the car, it was the right size as we already had an SUV at home. We decided to buy it and were in, and out, driving our new car off the lot, within 2 hours and...to top it off, had the new license plate and title in our hands as we left! I never expected that. Figured we'd have to apply for the tag, plate, and title...but no, we left with all of it!

It was an absolute pleasure! Best car buying experience I've ever had! Granted, it was the only time we've ever been able to purchase a car outright without financing, but still...it was incredible!

I highly recommend them!! At least our experience was A+! It could honestly not have been any better! I've head good things about others' experiences with them as well.

Doesn't hurt to go look, talk to a salesman there, see what they have on the lot. If you're not happy there, maybe you have more than one location where you live, and can try the other lot out.

I know that I would go back for certain the next time we need to buy a car...whether we finance or pay cash (highly unlikely again, but who knows). I say go for it!

We love, note, LOVE our car and we can bring it there for the maintenance and if there are any problems, it's under warranty for a good long time yet, and if we take it there we get a discount on any work that needs to be done that's not on the warranty, etc.

ps...to address those that say they were overpriced, we checked online while we were waiting on the car to be brought out to test drive, and after we drove it and it was cheaper than any other "on the lot" price of local dealers, including Ford dealers. We got a good deal, with absolutely no bullsh#t at all....like I said, best experience ever...and a great price that we're more than happy with.
Of the few people I know that have bought from Carmax, I've heard too many horror stories to go into one. When I bought my last Jeep in Feb, I was in and out of the dealer, including financing, in about an hour. I got a good price through a Jeep website group buy, agreed on the price online. The only thing I went into the dealer for was to deal with my trade in and sign the paperwork. Did the trade that night (about 45 minutes or so). Went back the next night to sign the paperwork after they agreed on my trade. I was in and out of F&I in 10 minutes. Picked up the Jeep when it was delivered, took them 10 minutes to swap my tags and I was gone. The dealer I bought my '12 from was a nightmare though.
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Old 05-29-2013, 09:09 AM
 
Location: Grosse Ile Michigan
30,707 posts, read 79,987,040 times
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If you have time to shop for direct sales, it is always worth it. People dump cars at dealers or into the wholesale system when they cannot sell them on the market at a low low price. That often means there is something wrong with the car and they do not want responsibility for it. Sometime is means they are too lazy or timid to sell the car themselves. The dealer system then marks up the car, usually at several levels. Everyone need to cover their operating costs and make a profit. You have to pay for the dealer's rent, insurance, advertising, marketing (supporting sports teams etc), receptionist, accountants, lawyers, construction costs (or rent/mortgage), taxes, health care for employees, etc etc. If you think the dealer is not getting a premium for these costs from you, then you are deceiving yourself. If the dealer says they are desperate to sell that particular vehicle and therefore are selling it at cost, the dealer is deceiving you. And no, the dealer is not giving you a "free warranty" You are buying a warranty. It is in the price. They do not operate their business to lose money and they make tons of money on warranties (that is why they push them so much). They also make money on financing - a lot of money. Often they will give you a better purchase price if you finance through them than they will if you pay cash. They make a lot of money on add ons too. Alarm systems or security cut outs. Scotch guard type treatments, service contracts. . . Dealers make money at every turn and they make more on things that are not the sale of the car itself than they do no the car sale.

In a private sale, you are paying for the car. Period. If you shop amongst private sellers you will eventually find a bargain. Many private sellers will agree to a better price if they like you. However you have to watch out for car flippers. A few are good deals, but many car flippers are as big or bigger shysters than dealers. One big advantage IMO is with a private sale, you are more likely to find a one owner car and get an honest history. When we sell a car for example (which is rare - we usually drive them into the ground and donate or scrap them) we disclose every possible problem and tell them all we know about that problem. We do not want some angry person showing up at our door a month later if the transmission goes out. I woudl rather take the hit in the sale price than risk ripping someone off. If they make a fully informed decision, they are not likely and have no justification for blaming you if something goes wrong. Dealers on the other hand will never mention problems and will do all they can to cover them up. Their goal is to move cars.
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Old 05-29-2013, 03:50 PM
 
Location: Charlotte, NC
446 posts, read 832,414 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ReblTeen84 View Post
Of the few people I know that have bought from Carmax, I've heard too many horror stories to go into one. When I bought my last Jeep in Feb, I was in and out of the dealer, including financing, in about an hour. I got a good price through a Jeep website group buy, agreed on the price online. The only thing I went into the dealer for was to deal with my trade in and sign the paperwork. Did the trade that night (about 45 minutes or so). Went back the next night to sign the paperwork after they agreed on my trade. I was in and out of F&I in 10 minutes. Picked up the Jeep when it was delivered, took them 10 minutes to swap my tags and I was gone. The dealer I bought my '12 from was a nightmare though.

My ex husband bought a used Caddy, a nice car, heated and cooled seats, all the gadgets you can imagine and many you can't...he got it a couple weeks after we got ours and had a great experience, too.

All I can tell you is my experience. So far it's been very good...I say that knocking on wood since I haven't had any service done yet. The buying experience was very good.

We did buy a Jeep Cherokee thru our credit union and we bought it, got financed, etc, online. They delivered the car to our house which was the first time we saw the car, and it turned out to be in fantastic condition....but while that turned out to be great, not actually seeing or driving the car made me nervous. Our credit union guaranteed the car, that at least we were satisfied for a certain amt of time after it was delivered. It was a 2000, we bought it in 2006, and it only had 34k on it. We still have it and tho we have some issues with the locks/windows, the car runs perfectly...again, knock on wood.

It's like anything else...you can have good experiences and bad ones.

With Car Max we had a good one. With the credit union, we had a good one. My son sold his car at the same Car Max and had a great experience. I'm assuming that this particular dealership is a good one because of the 3 experiences my family has had, all 3 were good. 3 outta 3 ain't bad.
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Old 05-29-2013, 03:55 PM
 
Location: Charlotte, NC
446 posts, read 832,414 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jlawrence01 View Post
You are comparing the out-the-door price (Carmax) with the dealer's dream price (on-the lot) price. No dealer really EXPECTS to get the price that is on the window but is happier than heck to get it from you.
I realize that they don't ever get what they put on that sticker. Or, rather, they SHOULDN'T get it. It's not the first time I have bought a car. In GENERAL and in the research we did online, I know that we got a good price. I should have qualified that statement about the list/sticker price. Car Max doesn't go thru the back and forth of haggling. Their sticker IS the price, period. I've found that everything we looked at there seemed fair price wise.
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Old 05-30-2013, 06:14 AM
 
Location: WI
3,961 posts, read 11,046,408 times
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i only had one experience with Carmax, but was enough to really turn me off. My wife and I were looking at 2-seat convertibles (Miatas, s2000's) and were out test driving some to make a buying decision (serious buyers, at our age we werent out joy-riding lol). The local Carmax had a Miata we had interest in, price was fair given what we saw at other lots. But then we were told we could not drive the car together, that we had to take turns with the rep. Now if i was a 'kid', i'd understand. But being 50, and one who has bought plenty of cars over the years (and sold in the 90's as well); i thought this "policy" that they would not budge from was idiotic. We let them know they were losing any chance at a sale, didnt matter. So we left.
And i'll note that every other dealer had zero problem handing us the keys and telling us to take it out for a few hours and really put it thru it's paces.

So because of that instance, i dont know if i could walk on their lot again.
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Old 05-30-2013, 07:34 AM
 
2,268 posts, read 3,729,631 times
Reputation: 1815
Quote:
Originally Posted by ranger17 View Post
i only had one experience with Carmax, but was enough to really turn me off. My wife and I were looking at 2-seat convertibles (Miatas, s2000's) and were out test driving some to make a buying decision (serious buyers, at our age we werent out joy-riding lol). The local Carmax had a Miata we had interest in, price was fair given what we saw at other lots. But then we were told we could not drive the car together, that we had to take turns with the rep. Now if i was a 'kid', i'd understand. But being 50, and one who has bought plenty of cars over the years (and sold in the 90's as well); i thought this "policy" that they would not budge from was idiotic. We let them know they were losing any chance at a sale, didnt matter. So we left.
And i'll note that every other dealer had zero problem handing us the keys and telling us to take it out for a few hours and really put it thru it's paces.

So because of that instance, i dont know if i could walk on their lot again.
That's funny...I'm in my late 20's and I've never had a dealer tell me I couldn't take a car out with the wife. When I was looking at a 4 door Tacoma a few years back, the salesman handed me the keys and said have a good afternoon! We didn't wind up buying it (I'd have had to put a phonebook on the seat and blocks on the pedals for the wife to drive it), but it was a nice gesture either way.
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Old 05-30-2013, 08:13 AM
 
Location: WI
3,961 posts, read 11,046,408 times
Reputation: 2503
Quote:
Originally Posted by ReblTeen84 View Post
That's funny...I'm in my late 20's and I've never had a dealer tell me I couldn't take a car out with the wife. When I was looking at a 4 door Tacoma a few years back, the salesman handed me the keys and said have a good afternoon! We didn't wind up buying it (I'd have had to put a phonebook on the seat and blocks on the pedals for the wife to drive it), but it was a nice gesture either way.
and that's how it should be, and how i treated younger buyers when i sold (and wanted to be treated at that age as well). If my wife and I didnt get the respect we deserved, we were out the door in a heartbeat. BUT, many sales staff tend to prejudge younger prospects especially on certain style cars. Unfortunately the serious buyer (regardless of age) looking at say an evo or Sti has to deal with the garbage brought upon by those who do just want to take one out for a quick thrashing.
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Old 05-30-2013, 09:21 PM
 
4,500 posts, read 12,371,794 times
Reputation: 2901
Quote:
Originally Posted by ranger17 View Post
i only had one experience with Carmax, but was enough to really turn me off. My wife and I were looking at 2-seat convertibles (Miatas, s2000's) and were out test driving some to make a buying decision (serious buyers, at our age we werent out joy-riding lol). The local Carmax had a Miata we had interest in, price was fair given what we saw at other lots. But then we were told we could not drive the car together, that we had to take turns with the rep. Now if i was a 'kid', i'd understand. But being 50, and one who has bought plenty of cars over the years (and sold in the 90's as well); i thought this "policy" that they would not budge from was idiotic. We let them know they were losing any chance at a sale, didnt matter. So we left.
And i'll note that every other dealer had zero problem handing us the keys and telling us to take it out for a few hours and really put it thru it's paces.

So because of that instance, i dont know if i could walk on their lot again.
First of all, I agree that it's an odd policy (which Carmax is recognizing with the rollout of their next gen store where you can test drive alone), that being said: The sales consultant will lose his job if he lets you test it alone, if a manager approved it, the manager would very likely lose his job, even the store manager does not have the authority to authorize that.

So I wouldn't blame whoever you spoke to, but rather Carmax corporate, for strictly enforcing policies that don't do what's best every single time.
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Old 05-31-2013, 05:05 AM
 
Location: WI
3,961 posts, read 11,046,408 times
Reputation: 2503
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheViking85 View Post
First of all, I agree that it's an odd policy (which Carmax is recognizing with the rollout of their next gen store where you can test drive alone), that being said: The sales consultant will lose his job if he lets you test it alone, if a manager approved it, the manager would very likely lose his job, even the store manager does not have the authority to authorize that.

So I wouldn't blame whoever you spoke to, but rather Carmax corporate, for strictly enforcing policies that don't do what's best every single time.
Yep, understood. I actually contacted another Carmax location just over the line in GA on a vehicle and they verified the policy. I wasnt rude to the salesperson, nor were they to us, just both sides held firm in what they could do or wanted to do. It was more of a surprise to me, after buying cars for several decades to run into that issue.
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