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Discussion Starter #1
I thought I was all set with my Pilot order. At a local dealer, I ordered a NHB EX-L and negotiated what I thought was a decent deal at $1500 off MSRP. The dealer thought he could get my Pilot in within a few weeks.

I've called him a couple of times since then (two weeks ago) and the story keeps changing. First, it was "let me check the log...yes, your Pilot just got put on the truck" and a week later it was "your Pilot isn't on the way....could still be a few weeks".

So the dealer has lied to me a couple of times already and I'm starting to wonder if it's really going to be a lot longer than he says.

This caused me to go looking around to other dealers today. I found one not too far away who had a NHB EX-L so I drove out to see it. I saw it, negotiated with the dealer, and here's what what I've found:

The Pilot: "new" 2003 NHB EX with dealer-installed leather. It has 174 miles on it and has been with the dealer for 92 days. This particular car is currently in their showroom.

The Deal: $700 off MSRP and $300 less on my trade-in than my first dealer.

My concerns with the Pilot are this: #1 - that seems to be a lot of miles for a brand-new car and what's with the 92 days on the lot? Makes me think something else is wrong. #2 concern - it's been in the showroom for a while and everyone and all their kids have been climbing all over this Pilot (I saw at least a dozen personally while I was there).

In regards to the dealer-installed leather interior, what do you all think about that? The dealer says it's better than factory installed - softer - and something else about being able to remove the leather later if I wanted to switch back to cloth. That last one had me scratching my head...it sounded like he was saying they just covered over the factory cloth seats.

On the face of it, it's surely not a better deal at $1100 more. But at the same time, for only $1100 more, I can get a Pilot now instead of waiting who-knows-how-long until for the Pilot from the other dealer-who-keeps-lying-to-me.

But then I start wondering about the deal with the leather seats (is dealer installed better? worse?) - the showroom condition - and the car's history.

Any suggestions? Advice? Thanks in advance.
 

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purchase dilemma

One thing at a time- by stringing you along the first dealer has effectively taken you out of the the buying market. He sees you as wedded to the vehicle you've signed up for. Look at your purchase contract, is there a time limit, is your deposit refundable?

As to the other vehicle - it may have been used as a demo, in which case you should expect a deeper discount. As to wear and tear on it, a good inspection should reveal problems. Use all this as a bargining point

Dealer installed leather can be ok, if it's well done, and some additional padding is put in. See this forum for problems with sagging leather
 

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Aftermarket leather can be much better than factory leather, for one its usually all leather, and usually thicker leather. Find out what company made the covers, and who put them on. Get the low-down on any warranty.
It should NOT be put over the factory covers!

174 miles is not much, maybe 10 to 20 test drives. Not enough miles that anyone could do much to it, but enough to ask for a better discount.

As for the time, maybe this dealer actually was honoring Honda's request to keep one vehicle in stock for show, rather than selling out. :)

As for the other dealer, time to have a sit down with him and his manager and ask for a serial number and delivery date or your money back!
 

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With 174 miles on it, should be sold as a Demo and not a new car. As far as the first dealer, if they say that your car is ordered, ask them to show you the production sheet. All Honda dealers get a list of the cars w/ serial # and status of their present location. You can tell if your car is really ordered or they are hopping that the color you want is going to come soon. Another point is $1500 below MSRP is good but 2004 should be out soon too. My car is 2003 and I bought in July of last year. When you decide to sell the car, its not going matter what month and year you bought and what year and condition is your car. Do you understand?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the replies re: the leather - that helps out. I'll have to clarify with the second dealer about exactly what's going on with the seats.

As for the car having so many miles on it - when you say that I should expect a deeper discount how much would you suggest? I'll need to go back to the second dealer with a figure.

BMWRT - good point about the 2004's being out soon. I'm going to be out of town for a lot of the month of July and if I don't get a car deal wrapped up in the next couple of weeks, I may as well wait until August - and then the 2004's will be just around the corner.
 

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We got a demo with 1701 miles on it. It had been on the lot 6 months and had just been released for sale. We got a discount and wood trim, running boards, tow hitch, etc. Can't say exactly how much we got off, but it was several thousand. We love the car and it seems not to have been mistreated.

Has anyone else bought a demo Pilot?
 

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My Mom got a Camry with aftermarket leather, and it was much nicer than the factory installed.... I'd say that's a plus... Good luck with your decision! ;)
 

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The after market leather that I have seen has been better that factory leather. It is softer and holds up longer.

As for the demo, thats a tough call, I wouldnt want a "new" car that people have been driving, not to mention climbing through. If your thinking about the demo, look it over well. Good luck
 

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What's the dealer's policy regarding interior "cosmetic" damage? The Highlander I bought had been the dealership owner's regular ride, so I was comfortable that it'd been driven with reasonable care. It was, however, sold "as is" with regard to cosmetic interior damage, and had several noticeable scratches on the dash. I remember the night I bought the Pilot, realizing that it had just arrived off the truck, and that the only people to drive it before me were perhaps the truck driver, a dealer lot jockey, and my salesman, who retrieved it from the prep area. I didn't even test drive that one, as it was still in pre-delivery as I test drove another one.
 

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Not sure where exactly you are in Charlotte, NC, but in zip code 28208 I got these finding:

MSRP: $30,980
Carsdirect: $30,480 ($500 below MSRP)
TMV (from edmunds.com): $30,045 ($935 below MSRP)
TMV LINK

I don't generally like to buy vehicles that have been on the lot that long. The reason being is just like you said, way too many people and their kids have been in there. Never bought a vehicle from carsdirect or TMV so not sure how they do business, only have used them for price matches. I hope this helps out a bit.
 

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FLPilot said:
Not sure where exactly you are in Charlotte, NC, but in zip code 28208 I got these finding:

MSRP: $30,980
Carsdirect: $30,480 ($500 below MSRP)
TMV (from edmunds.com): $30,045 ($935 below MSRP)
TMV LINK

Never bought a vehicle from carsdirect or TMV so not sure how they do business, only have used them for price matches. I hope this helps out a bit.
Before we bought the Pilot we were trying to purchase the Volvo XC90 but not one dealer had them on their lot, on top of that, all of the dealers were asking from 3 to 5 thousand dollars over MSRP and you had to put your name on the waiting list which was up to 6 months long.

The problem with Carsdirect.com was that they would quote prices for cars that didnt exist. I'm not sure how the other on-line companies do business but I'm sure its pretty much the same way. Carsdirect.com doesnt have their own cars, they just give you a contact name at a dealership near you. When I contacted the salesman at the dealerships that Carsdirect.com gave me, the problem was that not only didnt the dealerships have the car in stock, they wouldn't sell it for the price that Carsdirect.com stated.

Carsdirect.com and the others might be ok for buying vehicles that all of the dealers have plenty in stock but they dont do too well with the vehicles that are in short supply.
 

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tonyrwc said:
Carsdirect.com and the others might be ok for buying vehicles that all of the dealers have plenty in stock but they dont do too well with the vehicles that are in short supply.
Thanks for posting this insight!
 

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Buying from Carsdirect.com

Again I have never bought from carsdirect, but this is what I got from their page. You can read the entire thing here ----> LINKED



3. Depending on where you live, two options may be available at this point. You can choose work with a member of our authorized dealer network in your area, or you can continue your transaction with the help of an award-winning CarsDirect.com Vehicle Specialist.

On this page, you also get to select the options you prefer on your vehicle. The guaranteed CarsDirect.com price will adjust automatically to reflect the options selected, so you always know what you're paying for. Please note, however, that the Carsdirect.com price is not guaranteed if you choose to work directly with a member of our authorized dealer network.

4. Whether you've chosen to work with a top local dealer or a CarsDirect.com Vehicle Specialist, you will then submit your request by filling out a contact information form. If you've chosen to work with a CarsDirect Vehicle Specialist, you'll also need to lock in the guaranteed CarsDirect price with a credit card deposit. You will then be contacted within one business day by a vehicle expert who will help you buy a car or truck. Your credit card will not be charged until you've spoken to your Vehicle Specialist and agreed to a specific vehicle.

I hope this helped out.
 

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Re: Buying from Carsdirect.com

FLPilot said:
Again I have never bought from carsdirect, but this is what I got from their page.
..
I hope this helped out.
Sounds like a scary way to buy a car.
 

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Re: Buying from Carsdirect.com

FLPilot said:


4. Whether you've chosen to work with a top local dealer or a CarsDirect.com Vehicle Specialist, you will then submit your request by filling out a contact information form. If you've chosen to work with a CarsDirect Vehicle Specialist, you'll also need to lock in the guaranteed CarsDirect price with a credit card deposit. You will then be contacted within one business day by a vehicle expert who will help you buy a car or truck. Your credit card will not be charged until you've spoken to your Vehicle Specialist and agreed to a specific vehicle.

I hope this helped out.
I filled out my info on carsdirect.com. Was contacted by there "specialist" but there was no credit card involved.

Anyways I found a cheaper price from anotehr dealer
 

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cardirect

Carsdirect is still showing a price of $2K OVER MSRP for my area here in Jersey. What a joke!
 

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tonyrwc said:
The problem with Carsdirect.com was that they would quote prices for cars that didnt exist. I'm not sure how the other on-line companies do business but I'm sure its pretty much the same way. Carsdirect.com doesnt have their own cars, they just give you a contact name at a dealership near you. When I contacted the salesman at the dealerships that Carsdirect.com gave me, the problem was that not only didnt the dealerships have the car in stock, they wouldn't sell it for the price that Carsdirect.com stated.
Same thing happened to me when we bought DH's truck. Carsdirect allows you to request *very* specific options, but the vehicle they returned as a "match" didn't have those options. Phooey on them. :rolleyes:
 

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Ask for VIN number

When doing a pre-order, ask dealer to put down VIN number of your car on paper. That way they can't sell your car to another customer with better deal. If they do, send the piece of paper to Honda and they are in trouble.
 

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Re: Ask for VIN number

timchen said:
When doing a pre-order, ask dealer to put down VIN number of your car on paper. That way they can't sell your car to another customer with better deal. If they do, send the piece of paper to Honda and they are in trouble.
When doing a pre-order I'm not sure that the dealership could get a VIN number at that time, I dont think that info would be available until production had started.
 

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Re: Re: Ask for VIN number

tonyrwc said:
When doing a pre-order I'm not sure that the dealership could get a VIN number at that time, I dont think that info would be available until production had started.
So when he said your pilot had been trucked. Ask him for VIN. I believe if you told him no VIN no order, he will get you your VIN number.
 
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