Buying a Car II

After yesterday’s post, I have more to add to the saga. It’s of such incredible content that I must do it immediately before I forget.

Last thing yesterday, we put my gf’s details into a car broker’s website. This website will contact all Toyota dealers in the UK in an effort to get us the best deal on the Aygo that we wanted.

Obviously this service notified the first dealer we saw on Satuday, because he rang the gf this morning in an effort to try and revive the previously failed sale. Just as a reminder, we eventually managed to beat this guy into giving us £3500 for the old car, and £200 off the list price on the new car, which made it £7845.

Taking a £500 deposit into account, this would have made the amount payable £3845, which wasn’t good enough. We wanted the car for £7500 with left £4000 for deposit and a finance agreement. We didn’t get anywhere with the salesman, called ‘Phil’, on Saturday, but he rang back today and wanted to talk.

Talk is fine, so we listened.

The first deal offered was as follows:

Aygo Platinum 3-door with AC. AC is not as standard with this model and ordinarily costs £500 on top, so the list price on this model would be £8545. Phil offered this for £8277. With the £3500 part-ex, this would make the total payable £4777 on finance at 5.9% APR.

Hang on, this is more than we wanted to pay. We wanted the Plantinum without AC for £500 off the list price, so if they want to push us at one with AC, I’ll want £500 off that list price too. This deal was still £300 too expensive. It’s pretty much the same deal they offered us on Saturday, except the AC is not included.

No deal, the gf rang back and restated our desire for the standard model at £7500. Off Phil went to try to meet this.

As expected, he came back not with the deal we wanted, but with the most astounding amount of obfuscated bullshit that my gf had to ring me and relay all the figures so I could work out just what the fuck had been offered.

It goes like this:

They claimed to be unable to move on the list price AT ALL, all of a sudden, but said they could give us a saving by being ‘creative’ with the financing. The financing deal, in which numbers were randomly thrown at my gf who couldn’t hope to understand them are as follows.

The car would cost £8045, and they’d give us £3000 for the old car (why this had suddenly reduced by £500 I don’t know), making the total to pay £5045, minus a £500 deposit, so £4545. Here’s where it gets really funky. They told her they could offer her an ‘interest rate’ of 1.5%, making the deal so cheap she’d save money overall.

The payments would be over 48 months. £150 for the first month, 46 payments of £113.93, and a final payment of £198.93. For anyone counting that adds up to £5589.71. On a balance of £4545 this is not 1.5% APR. It’s over £1000 in interest over 4 years and works out to more like 5% APR.

So confused that I was that I took the drastic action of ringing the dealer myself.

I speak to Phil, and query the figures, telling him its clearly not 1.5%, he assured me it is, and passes me on to ‘Mike’, who then ‘explains’ it to me.

It’s not 1.5% APR, it’s 1.5% flat rate. While I’m on the phone I look up what ‘flat rate‘ means, and it basically means that unlike most other loans, the amount of interest paid does not decrease in proportion to the balance. Meaning that on month 47 of the payments she’d still be paying the interest on the full, original balance of £4545.

I told Mike this was a misleading cost for comparisson, because APR is what people are most familiar with and as such the actual deal was no better than that originally offered, in fact, it was worse. What I didn’t realise at that instant was how much worse.

When asking ‘Mike’ to clarify the deal, he mentions the loan amount to be £5045. I query this, as my gf was supposed to pay a £500 deposit which would make any finanace deal start at £4545. Right? Wrong.

Mike starts babbling all kinds of nonsense and I start to tune out. This is bullshit designed to confuse people but I recognise it for the gibberish that it is. During this conversation, Mike tells me that the ‘cost’ of setting up this ‘deal’ is over £1000, of which £500 was being met by Toyota finance, and £500 was being met by my gf.

For those of you not following, this means my gf was due to pay £500 not as a deposit towards the balance, but as a COST of setting up this fucking finance deal.

I check my figures.

£8045 for car, minus £3000 on the part exchange. £5045 outstanding balance. My gf’s £500 goes NOWHERE to set up this fucking 1.5% flat rate deal, and over 4 years she’d pay over £1000 in interest.

Total cost: over £6500 after the part exchange of £3000.

Now, if you were an average, unassuming person, you might have been confused by the conflicting low numbers and intense level of bullshit and actually be taken in by this deal. Unfortunately I’ve heard enough.

Me: Ok Mike, I’ve heard enough from you, can I speak to Phil again please?

*I get transferred*

Phil: Hi Pete.

Me: Hi Phil. I’ve just spoken to Mike and he’s tried to explain these confusing rates to me and I’ve done the numbers. I’ve worked it out and I can tell you quite categorically that this deal is actually worse than the one you offered me on Saturday.

Phil: No, how it works is….

Me: No Phil, I’m actually really quite good with my numbers, and it’s an inarguable, mathemetical fact that this deal is NOT as good as the one you’ve previously offered.

Now, we’re in no rush to buy a car, and we’re in a near recession here, so I’m quite happy to sit and wait 2, 3, 4 months for the right deal, even if it means we risk losing trade-in value on the Fiesta. It’s only the dealer that gives me the offer I want that is going to get this deal.

Phil: I can’t do anything more for you Pete, I’ve been really good to you and your girlfriend, I’ve made the absolute best offer I can here, and I’ve worked really hard on it. You can wait for as long as you like, but you’re not going to get a better deal than this. Even if you come back to me later today I won’t offer you this deal again.

Me: But this deal is worse than the last one you offered, you’ve just made it confusing. Let me tell you the deal I want.

Phil: No Pete, I think I’m going to have to end the conversation here. You’re going to ask for more and I can’t give it.

Me: It’s really simple Phil, I’ll tell you the deal I want. If you can offer it, ring me back, if you can’t, don’t. Ok?

Phil: Well, what deal do you want then?

Me: Ok, don’t interrupt me or appear incredulous, I’m just going to tell you the figures.

Phil: No, sorry Pete, I’m going to end the conversation here.

Me: Ok, no problem

*I slam the phone down hard enough to break it*.

I then ring the gf and tell her we’re not dealing with Phil anymore. Amusingly Phil then rings her and leaves a message on her answerphone, thanking her for her enquiry, but that there’s nothing more they can do for her. i.e. Don’t ring us again. As if we would, dickface.

Clearly, Phil realised that he wasn’t talking to an utter fucking moron that could be taken in by confusing figures, utter nonsense and complete lies like other people must. With me, there was no deal he could bullshit to his own advantage and he must be one of those salesman who, if he can’t sell it at the price he wants, won’t sell it at all regardless of whether he’d make a profit.

While I’m sure I appear aggressive (but polite) over the phone, and very no-nonsense, I strenuously refute any criticism of my manner. Why should I react submissively when I’m being told a bunch of lies? They’ve set out to confuse my girlfriend by a badly explained, confusing finance deal that when you work it out is the biggest fucking ripoff we’ve been offered yet. When you try that on, I’m going to react badly.

Consider me even more beyond belief than I was yesterday, as this is a new low that even I didn’t believe to be possible.

I suppose I could agree to the deal, but then go and burn down the dealership. I wouldn’t get the deal I wanted, but they wouldn’t have made any money off me off me, either. It’d be the moral victory, but I’d rather have the financial one.

The search for a car continues.


4 replies on “Buying a Car II”

I am not prepared to discuss this further..I am terminating this call..

Who does he think he works for the DSS?

Well done to you sir.

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