We keep hearing that the new car supply is recovering and that prices will eventually stabilize, but the situation on the ground at many dealers doesn’t align with that worldview. iSeeCars recently released its list of vehicles priced the highest over their MSRPs, and the news doesn’t suggest that we’ll see an easier car buying experience anytime soon.
Back when the Dodge Demon originally launched, Fiat Chrysler indicated it would do everything it could to prevent dealer markup. As one of the car’s best features was its comparatively low MSRP, at least for the amount of power Dodge was offering, FCA didn’t want price gouging sullying the monster’s good name. Besides, the factory isn’t seeing any of that extra cash so there’s no incentive for it to support markups.
Unfortunately, gouging still took place. Some dealerships found a workaround by having intermediaries on eBay auction off the right to buy one of their Demon allocations — resulting in customers paying tens of thousands in bidding wars to have the opportunity to purchase the car at its “fair price.”
While grimy, it’s not much different than dealerships automatically tacking on premiums to the likes of the Honda Civic Type R or Toyota Supra. Pretty much every manufacturer building a rare or coveted automobile takes some precautions these days, but there’s always someone waiting to screw you. For example, Porsche is pretty good at selling its rather expensive vehicles at MSRP, yet rarer models are frequently flipped online for a small fortune.
Hoping to cut markups off at the ankles, a subset of buyers interested in Chevrolet’s new Corvette have been busy strategizing — resulting in an effective-sounding plan.
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