Originally posted by Bigrob
Has anyone had a successful experience buying a Pilot via a Buying Service, like United Buying Service (UBS) or Costco's auto program?
I had an experience with United Buying Service but I don't know if it could properly be termed a "success." Judge for yourself....
When I was seriously Pilot-shopping in late Nov.-early Dec., I became increasingly disappointed, since EVERY dealership I checked with in my general area wanted AT LEAST MSRP, and a couple were asking $1000 above MSRP. I tried a couple of internet-based buying services--Edmunds.com and another whose name escapes me--but basically got nowhere, since the salesmen wouldn't quote me prices on the phone or supply them via email. In the meantime, I ordered a Consumer Reports Price Report on the Pilot, but all it really said was "expect to pay MSRP for vehicles that are extremely popular or in short supply."
I contact UBS as last resort
Finally, kind of despairing about discounts, I contacted United Buying Service, which ASSURED me that I could buy the Pilot (AND accessories) at a discount working through their network of dealers. UBS sent me the name of ONE dealership about 50 mi. away...saying that only one area Honda dealer had consented to work with them to give lower prices on the tremendously popular Pilot. I made an appt. to see the salesman I was told to visit in person. He indeed opened a UBS book and quoted non-negotiable "reduced UBS prices" for the vehicle and accessories my husband and I wanted. The base Pilot EX was quoted at $29,075, but the accessory prices (which he emphasized were INSTALLED prices) quoted were higher than those given on the HONDA website and also higher than an earlier quote from another dealer. (Though I realize now that the website and the other dealer's prices probably DIDN'T include installation.) Oh, and he would need a $500 deposit for dibs on a Silver EX scheduled for delivery 2 months later. My husband and I, thinking this was the best mere mortals could do, said OK, we're seriously interested but want to mull it over the weekend and left $500 with the guy pending our final decision on Monday.
Whoa, not so fast with UBS.......
On the way home, on a whim, we stopped by Criswell, a new Honda dealership that I pretty much had eliminated from consideration, since I was SURE they'd want outrageous money for a Pilot!! Turned out, this dealer had EXACTLY the Pilot we wanted on the lot!!! We asked Criswell to match the UBS price on the vehicle, and they readily did so. But it was a fight about the accessory prices....in the end, Criswell's final price was still about $200 more than we were quoted at the UBS-affiliated dealer. But....Criswell offered a good interest rate (3.62, I believe), and there was no wait for the car. So, we went ahead and finalized the purchase with them, driiving our silver baby home that evening!!!!. (I do think we made a mistake in not asking Criswell to BEAT the UBS affiliate's price rather than match it, but oh well....).
The UBS-affiliated salesman tore up our $500 check on Monday. He wouldn't have been able to match the interest rate we got, so he said......