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Recently made deal on a 2022 sonic pearl gray Ridgeline BE with HPD package. Out of state purchase due to availability in my area. Quoted an out the door price. Asked about "surprise" fees and was assured none other than $699 (outlandish) Doc fee. Okay I'll take it. Paperwork comes via Fedx with a surprise $1495 Rockledge security fee. I call and explain how I already have accepted the "desert pack" of $1995 and $295 misc. 3M add-ons. I call back and the finance fellow says "It's required on all our vehicles" and no they cannot remove. Friend calls sales person (other than mine) and asks for out the door price with and gets the same response. He then explicitly asks about required security add-ons and gets "nope, those are not required but we do offer as an option". I send an email requesting to remove said security system and fee along with Honda care + maintenance because now I am upset. If not I want to get a return on deposit and cancel. Then the finance manager calls and repeats the same verbiage "we can't remove the Rockledge security", "it's required on all our vehicles" blah blah. He did offer to extend the warranty and give some free maintenance. Nope, now it is a matter of principle. He refused after I explained to him I was lied to and the sales team and finance team had a major disconnect. Also explained how transparency is critical for successful business. After the criticism, he agreed to cancel my Ridgeline purchase. Texted the sales lady I dealt with initially and told her sorry the deal was off because finance would not remove the "required" security system. The sales lady was the best of any I dealt with by far at any dealership. She wasn't having it and went up the ladder until they did in fact agree to remove the system. They resent a newly amended finance sheet. So, be well prepared to deal with these required add-ons. Such a miserable purchase experience on something that is supposed to be an exciting experience.
 

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Yep, both my Ridgeline purchases in the last 2 years had surprise $150 wheel locks... Vehicles previous had surprise $400 VIN Etching which was just some useless sticker... Pretty normal now and even asking multiple times about surprise fees and out the door prices they still appear.
 

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I got hit for $99 for wheel locks. Truck at MSRP. That was it. I considered myself lucky especially the was no inventory to be found. Like you I had to go out of state.
 

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I guess I got lucky with my out of state purchase. All fees were disclosed, and I told the salesman up front that I’m not interested in any extras that the finance guy is going to try to sell me. Salesman said he would tell him. Got a call from the finance guy and you know what he said? “ I understand you don’t want to hear about anything additional for the truck, so we will skip all of that”. Then he went on to tell me about how/when I would receive the paperwork and what I needed to do. That’s it. Salesman drove the truck down, drove the trade-in back. Great experience. Umansky Honda in Charlottesville, VA.
 

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I guess I got lucky with my out of state purchase. All fees were disclosed, and I told the salesman up front that I’m not interested in any extras that the finance guy is going to try to sell me. Salesman said he would tell him. Got a call from the finance guy and you know what he said? “ I understand you don’t want to hear about anything additional for the truck, so we will skip all of that”. Then he went on to tell me about how/when I would receive the paperwork and what I needed to do. That’s it. Salesman drove the truck down, drove the trade-in back. Great experience. Umansky Honda in Charlottesville, VA.
Mine was similar, but about a year ago. No BS from the finance manager, no add-ons. In fact, they even removed the dealer decal and license plate frame at my request without any argument.
 

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After my 3 Ridgelines, I wanted to try something different. So, I bought a new Gladiator in 2020. Unfortunately, it was totaled (flood) while at the dealer in 2021 for a warranty issue (had 5K miles on it). But, that's a whole different story that I'm still dealing with.... and waiting for my court date (was finally scheduled for June 29th but was adjourned again).

Anyway, while trying to find a replacement (as we all know lots are empty), I called a Jeep dealership about 1 1/2 hours away to verify they still had a truck in stock. "Sure, come on down" they say. I get there to find out its got a lift, tons of lights and massive wheels/tires for a markup of about $15K. I say no thanks and drive home.

Next day I find another truck, but this time its the next state over. I call to verify they still have it in stock and they do. I then ask specifically if its all stock with no mods and I'm told "we do not add any modifications to our vehicles". Great, I think. I jump in my rental for another 2 hour drive. I pull up and see 4 trucks front and center all jacked up with mods but not the one I call on. So, I go in and speak with the salesman who says, "oh, your truck is right over there on the floor". I say "no its not, that truck is lifted, with lights, custom grille and other mods". Sure enough, we compare VINs and that's the truck I called about. He then proceeds to do the salesman quick talk.

I was quite loud (everyone there turned to look at the commotion) when I thanked him for wasting my time knowing I was driving 4 hours round trip. Of course he couldn't care less.

I hate car dealers more than anything.
 

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How to tell if the car salesperson is lying:
His/Her lips are moving.
 

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Thank you for sharing your buying, or not, experiences with us, @zukiplay and @2012 Alabaster. We always love the tidbits of wisdom and life experiences here on the ROC.
 
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When I purchased the RL in 2016, I found a dealer in NJ that had the best prices. I asked how much was due and all these mandatory add ons appear. I had specified sale price plus tax and tags only. Even with the NJ doc fee and the add ons it was still cheaper than other dealers but I passed and paid more to a dealer that wasn't shady on principle.

During Covid I purchased/traded a few cars over an 18 month period. Each one was a different experience. I learned a few things. If you have a trade, there can be huge variances between dealers and places like CarMax and Carvana so even with the savings from tax netting at a dealer it's best to run the numbers. I had a really good experience with CarMax and they were at least 4k higher on a trade than Carvana. Probably 7k higher than the dealer.

Early on, if you saw inventory on the lot, you may be able to snag one but as time went on, all the on the lot inventory and the websites were just for show, everything was presold. Some dealers have call centers that are located out of state and they'll say stuff like "do you want to test drive it today?" and when you go in for your appointment there's no inventory just lies. You may get lucky but in this current environment, assume that you are going to order from a dealer allocation and hope that the timeline holds true. Sales folks had zero follow up. They don't care about prospects all they want is to fill orders You could call a dealer and say you are looking for X. You drive by the dealership and call again and see a row of new cars and ask if X is available and they say yes, it is. How about some follow up sales folks? It's not just the supply chain, it's rail, transporters and sometimes ships that can add weeks to the process. I got hosed with a "quality hold" with Toyota. They supposedly do something to inspect quality. All I know from tracking is that it sat at the factory for about a month so units built a month after mine at the same plant arrived at the dealer earlier, frustrating.. Fortunately, I was able to get at MSRP plus tax and tags. Considering the crazy used prices which have gone up more than new car prices, it was a win, would have never purchased without the trades. Problem is the waiting involved.
 

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I LOL when hearing how you can tell if a salesperson is lying. Many dealerships have the attitude that "Buyers are liars". I don't even waste my time talking with a salesperson who have no decision making ability and generally know much less about the cars I am interested in. I only negotiate and talk with the New Car and Used Car Sales Managers. They are generally the only people that have decision making ability. Sometimes, I have had to talk with the GM when I found the sales managers were being micromanaged by the General Manager or owner. This strategy has worked most of the time. If the dealership puts up too many firewalls to this strategy, I simply move on to another business. Car dealerships have developed mean strategies for extracting money from unsuspecting people and have done so since car sales began. Oh, and don't get me started about the F&I (Finance and Insurance) folks that are a huge part of the profit in a sales transactions. They are some of the most highly paid scum bags in the dealership next to the Service Writers/Managers that are now trying to make every service encounter a $500 experience.

Basically, the days of car dealerships are coming to a close like pay phones and there will come a time I think, in the near future, where the manufacturers decide that they would rather put up with the retail hassles in addition to manufacturing hassles and cut out all of these bloated and dishonest people that are frankly now hurting the manufacturers' ability to smoothly operate their businesses.
 

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Recently made deal on a 2022 sonic pearl gray Ridgeline BE with HPD package. Out of state purchase due to availability in my area. Quoted an out the door price. Asked about "surprise" fees and was assured none other than $699 (outlandish) Doc fee. Okay I'll take it. Paperwork comes via Fedx with a surprise $1495 Rockledge security fee. I call and explain how I already have accepted the "desert pack" of $1995 and $295 misc. 3M add-ons. I call back and the finance fellow says "It's required on all our vehicles" and no they cannot remove. Friend calls sales person (other than mine) and asks for out the door price with and gets the same response. He then explicitly asks about required security add-ons and gets "nope, those are not required but we do offer as an option". I send an email requesting to remove said security system and fee along with Honda care + maintenance because now I am upset. If not I want to get a return on deposit and cancel. Then the finance manager calls and repeats the same verbiage "we can't remove the Rockledge security", "it's required on all our vehicles" blah blah. He did offer to extend the warranty and give some free maintenance. Nope, now it is a matter of principle. He refused after I explained to him I was lied to and the sales team and finance team had a major disconnect. Also explained how transparency is critical for successful business. After the criticism, he agreed to cancel my Ridgeline purchase. Texted the sales lady I dealt with initially and told her sorry the deal was off because finance would not remove the "required" security system. The sales lady was the best of any I dealt with by far at any dealership. She wasn't having it and went up the ladder until they did in fact agree to remove the system. They resent a newly amended finance sheet. So, be well prepared to deal with these required add-ons. Such a miserable purchase experience on something that is supposed to be an exciting experience.
Typically when buying a vehicle, there is a weekend shopping to figure out what make / model to buy and then get pricing from the dealers. I ALWAYS get the dealer to send an email with their price with a the line items broken out. Then from the email reply inquiring about any additional fees, etc. Once it is documented, there is not much room for any dealer funny business.
 

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We live near dealership row, where about 10 dealerships reside (Kia, Subaru, Buick, Honda, Hyundai, Nissan, Enterprise, Echopark, Carmax, Ford, Mitzubishi, etc). It used to be fun to head over to the dealership and just look around (without any access to money).

Today, when we visit the lot, we find that inventory is nearly non-existent, the ADM's are clearly marked on the window sticker (the highest being $4500 before additional dealer profit packs), and it is just not nearly as fun. The crazy thing is that the dealers with the high ADM are still selling those vehicles to someone. :unsure:
 

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The crazy thing is that the dealers with the high ADM are still selling those vehicles to someone. :unsure:
This... I paid a 1500 Markup on my 21 Ridgeline mostly due to timing. I woke up one morning and decided I wanted to see what my 19 was worth, found out Carmax offer was nuts, so went on my hunt for what I wanted. The crazy thing is I actually found a couple on lots un-sold. Tried to get rid of the markups and they basically said no, it'll sell tomorrow with the full 3k markup and they didn't have to do a thing. I bit because I knew it'd be gone tomorrow and my offer at carmax would expire in a week.
 

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I ALWAYS get the dealer to send an email with their price with a the line items broken out.
I couldn't care less about the individual line items. The only number I'm concerned with is the out-the-door price in the lower, right-hand corner of the sales order which I will have already calculated. They can show a $30,000 doc fee as a line item if they want - as long as the OTD price matches.
 

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I know times are hard in trying to buy a new or used vehicle now. You guys need to look at a woman trying to buy a vehicle. Salesmen try to add everything they can to boost the price and give you crap on a trade-in. The look on their faces when a woman calls them out is priceless. I'm 65 yrs old and I've been around the block. I bought 2 vehicles last year. I was looking for a 2021 RTL-E, red, and coming up empty. I finally went to the local Honda dealer and told him what I wanted realizing the lot was empty. He smiled and said follow me ... in the shop in the back was a new 2021 red RTL-E. I was told it was presold, but the person didn't like the color. I paid sticker price and drove it home that afternoon. Yes the finance guy tried to add all sorts of "goodies".

The next month we wanted to downsize our car from a 2016 Lexus RX350. A Toyota Highlander was what was wanted, but the salesman there insulted me with their trade-in offer, $5000 below Blue Book. I walked off with him hollering to wait, we can make deal. Went to Honda, had different salesman than previous, and all the add ons jacked the price up by over $4000. I walked. Ended up with a Mazda CX-5 Signature Turbo for less than the sticker since it was a dealer car with less than 500 miles.

I hate going to car lots, but I love it when I tell a sales man more about a vehicle than they know and their mouths drop open.
 

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Ended up with a Mazda CX-5 Signature Turbo...
That's a fine choice for reliability, interior material quality, and assembly quality. These aspects of my '20 CX-5 and '19 MX-5 Miata embarrass my Hondas. My nearly three year-old Miata has fewer rattles (actually, none) than my '21 Ridgeline which is littered with ticks, buzzes, creaks, and pops that mostly come and occasionally go.
 
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