3 Misleading Claims Made by Car Dealerships

Most people take it as a universal truth that car salesmen are dishonest. At the very least, car manufacturers and dealerships have it in their best interest to stretch the truth. If you’ve decided that it isn’t worth it to repair your old car, and you’re thinking about getting a new one, make sure to sift through these 3 particularly misleading claims frequently made by dealerships and car manufacturers.

Deceptive language used by car dealerships and manufacturers

Estimated fuel economy

With the price of petrol these days, nearly everyone is interested in getting the best fuel efficiency they can. But it’s important to take the claims made in car adverts with a grain of salt, because these numbers can be skewed. First of all, if a particular model has decent extra-urban mileage but unimpressive urban mileage, the adverts could emphasize the number that paints the car in the best light. Second, the testing is often carried out by the car manufacturers and importers themselves, so it’s hard to be certain the numbers haven’t been fudged a bit. Lastly, the testing conditions aren’t necessarily representative of real life driving conditions, although the numbers are likely more accurate under EU testing schemes compared to the United States, for example.

Limited time offers

The words “limited time only” are designed to put pressure on you to buy quickly without doing your due diligence. The truth is, limited time offers will likely be back in a matter of weeks or months. And if you miss one dealership’s limited time offer, chances are good the next dealership will have a new offer for you. Even when dealers advertise the end of the model year, “everything must go”, they usually aren’t in any more of a hurry to get rid of their inventory than they are every other week of the year. Cars that stay on the lot for more than a few weeks are expensive for the dealership, so moving inventory is always a priority for them. That being said, there are certain times of year when prices tend to be lower than others, but don’t be fooled by high-pressure advertising gimmicks.

Special dealer financing deals

First of all, there’s no rule saying you have to finance your new car through the dealership. Dealers will often advertise special financing deals that are only applicable if you opt to get your financing through them, but banks are happy to loan you money before you even set foot on the lot. You might miss out on the special financing deal, but these usually aren’t much of a deal in the first place. Unless the dealership is offering something close to 0% interest, you can usually save around 2% by securing financing through your bank beforehand. Plus, you’ll have an excuse to reign in your spending and not splurge on more car than you can afford.

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