Social Question

cheebdragon's avatar

Will dealerships let you trade in any car?

Asked by cheebdragon (19245points) February 16th, 2015 from iPhone

My step dad is claiming that he was able to trade in my step brothers piece of shit car for $2000 as the down payment on a brand new car. It was an early 90s Tiburon with thrashed interior, severely peeling sun damaged paint, and a completely shoutout transmission. Why would a dealer buy a car like that?

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12 Answers

cheebdragon's avatar

That was kinda helpful, but even by their assesment the car would only be worth $345 in good condition.
Maybe he was lying about it?

ucme's avatar

Wishful thinking gone mad.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

I don’t know about in the US, but I’ve seen deals here where they’ve offered a minimum trade-in on any car. I remember years ago we traded in a really beat-up mini and got $2000 for it against a new car. It’s not unbelievable to me that a dealership would do such a deal.

jca's avatar

They’d take the car, give him $2k credit toward a new car, and they’d get the 2k back by not reducing the new car as much as they might for someone else.

elbanditoroso's avatar

In general, they buy cars that they can turn around and sell – either to a customer or to an auction house.

The Tiburon was on its way to crusher, I’ll bet. What this tells me is that they wanted to sell your step dad a new vehicle badly enough that they would eat the buyback cost out of their profit in order to make that possible.

What this also tells me is that the profit margin on the new car must have been huge, for them to take a $2K bite.

jca's avatar

They would also possibly be offering your dad financing, where they make even more money off of him.

The old Tiburon they would just sell with a quantity of other old cars to a lower type of dealer (used cars) or junk for scrap.

JLeslie's avatar

They are just dickering with the numbers, which is basically what @jca is explaining. Whatever will make your dad feel like the deal is good enough that he will go for it. If he is most concerned with getting a good price for his trade in, they will word the deal that way.

bob_'s avatar

Like @jca and @JLeslie said, it’s one thing to offer credit and another one to actually buy in cash.

It also depends on the brand. A Mercedes Benz salesman once told me that he had to turn down a guy who wanted to trade in his 2-year old car, because the paint was way too damaged. Guess they were not desperate enough to make a sale to go through the trouble of having it fixed.

cheebdragon's avatar

He financed the car in his name for his unemployed son, my step brother is supposed to take over the payments when he finally gets a job. My step dad filed bankruptcy a couple years ago and has more or less been sponging off my mom since then. She pays for most of the mortgage & utilities, buys all of the food, and she is making payments on a trailer they rarely use and a new dodge diesel he insisted they needed to pull said trailer (even though his last truck could pull it just fine), she’s paying insurance on her car, the new truck, and trailer, not to mention paying off her student loan.
It seems like a huge risk to take on his part because of his past bankruptcy and his sons unemployment history (even with the last 2 cars he gave him). He could have bought a used car for so much less.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

Oh they’ll take anything and give you a “deal” on your trade-in. What they lose gets tacked on to the new car price.

jayshree's avatar

Might be possible, if he is very fond of buying used cars

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