My 335i Coupe pricing inquiries from 31 dealers.. SouthWest USA (Enjoy the long read)
I hope this is the correct section for this, if it's not, moderators please move it to the right area, I appologize in advance.
This post is for informational purposes based on my experiences alone. All of the information I am providing is fact based upon emails sent from all of the respective names and dealerships I worked with when I started my hunt for a 'fair' price on a new 2007 335i Coupe. I have included all of their names and contact information pulled straight from the signatures of their response emails or off the BMW USA website in case you want to do business with one of them based on my findings. I take no responsibility for typos, and appologize in advance if I made any. This is not meant to bash any dealership, every dealership has it's pros and cons, but this was MY experience when buying a new 335i Coupe, and MY opinions.
I sent 31 requests for pricing to dealers... I received 23 responses back, 2 of which were from the same dealer. That means out of 31 dealers I asked, only 22 cared enough to respond. I did very little negotiating, and wanted to see what dealers were offering before I tried to get lower pricing.
To set the stage, I sent the exact same e-mail / web form to every single dealer on this list, I listed a very specific car, the invoice price, and the MSRP price for that vehicle. I then asked two simple questions... "What's your price on this car? And when is your next build date/production number available?". I didn't provide any info I found from other dealers, I just listed Invoice, MSRP, and asked what they would sell it for, and when I could get it. I know I have to order the car, not many dealerships have the vehicle, let alone the exact things I want on mine, I accepted that before I even started this process. I handled all of my responses in a nice and courteous manner, I asked the same style of questions to every single dealer that responded to me. I'm an honest and straight forward business man, tell me the bottom line and skip the BS in the middle, especially if I already know what I want (which most of us here do, we want a specific BMW). My feeling is if you do right by me, I will always do right by you, until that trust barrier breaks, we'll continue to do repeat business ventures.
I want to note that it seems a handful of these dealers use "dealerspace.com" to handle their internet leads, and I must say that they should all re-evaluate their agreements with this company. All of them have the same online web form, and all of them generate the same template email, including all of the broken variables. If you're going to host several dealer websites, their credibility and reputation are on the line, and you are doing them a giant dis-service by not having that form, or that e-mail response working correctly. Not to mention, it would be nice to have individuality between dealership response letters, I mean who wants to be "just another dealer?" ... Ever think to maybe ask the dealers what they would like their e-mail response letter to say? Maybe you do ask them, and maybe you can make them different, if that's the case, then some of these dealers should really make the effort to change the default letter, because it's poor quality.
I live in Southern Nevada and our dealership availability is limited (we have 2 dealerships in a 200 mile area, not much for options), and due to that those dealerships tend to strong hold their customers because they know most people don't want to go 200+ miles to another state to find a car. Well, I don't mind the distance and my research and time opened my eyes to some interesting things about purchasing this car. This is not my first new car purchase, in fact it's my 8th "New" dealership car, so I've been through all the usual games that dealers play. Here are the facts that I found about our Southern West Coast BMW dealers despite what your dealer may tell you about pricing and availability of this car. All of the dealers COULD get the car .. it was just a matter of WHEN they could get it .. almost all of them had production numbers for builds in January with a February delivery, I only found 1 dealership who had a December build date, and I found 1 dealership who had a February build date... most were January, which means that the market is fairly stable and you're going to get the same timeframe no matter where you go in this region if you order your car, so service, pricing, and experience are even more important since you will be getting your car around the same time regardless.
There are a few dealers below that I want to mention directly, take extra time when reading about these 3, they really were over and above the rest when it came to service, friendlyness and general responsiveness. These 3 were just damn great through my entire process. I would happily purchase from any of them, but only one could earn my business.
Ben Majidi - Chapman BMW on Camelback, Phoenix AZ
Chris Pruitt - Savage BMW, Ontario, CA
Greg Poland - Pacific BMW, Glendale, CA
Henry Male - BMW North Scottsdale
Best Price Offered - $500 off MSRP, resistant to negotiation, production number available, January build time.
A persistant man, friendly, and generally very responsive to e-mails, but not the best price.
Brad Williams - BMW of Palm Springs
Palm Springs, California
Best Price Offered - $1,000 off MSRP, fairly good price, production number available, January build time.
Informative form letter response, but friendly and helpful when I replied with questions.
Chris Pruitt - Savage BMW
Best Price Offered - $1,750 over invoice, regardless of options, no questions asked. Production available, January build time.
Chris was just fantastic, no hassle at all, he nailed the price coming out the gate and was just pleasant to deal with. He was kind, courteous and helpful. He knew his product, he knew his market, he knew what others were charging and he still beat them. He gave me the feeling that his price was fair given the market condition, and he'd be happy to help me regardless if I bought my car from him, he offered to drive the car to me if I was out of state, or ship it for a few hundred dollars. To me, that says a lot. So thanks Chris, it was tough to choose, if I ever buy a 2nd BMW, I assure you, I will be knocking on your door.
Ron Lu - Assael BMW
Best Price Offered - MSRP, not open to negotiation at all.
Ron was a grade A prick. Rude, arrogant, unhelpful, and told me the pricing other dealers were offering was not true, then he became sarcastic and started asking me where he could buy one for that price because it was too good to be true, and please inform him where he could get more than one so he could resell them at his dealership (Yah, clearly as noted by all these dealers, getting a price under MSRP is hard to do), He then told me if I could get such a great price, I should just go buy it from them then. (Newsflash Ron, I did, and I got a great price) After going back and forth with him a few times, I would never do business with him, he is a prime example of the car salesman you dread ever meeting.
David Boerman - Henderson BMW of Nevada
Best Price Offered - $500 off MSRP, not open for negotiation. Production available, January build time.
David was nice, responsive, and up front on his pricing. No complaints, just not the best price.
Roger Campbell - BMW of Las Vegas
Las Vegas, Nevada
Best Price Offered - MSRP, no negotiation.
Roger is an interesting one.. he's brutally honest and blunt, some can take it to be rude but I like straight forwardness, he and his partner David Thoreson are definitely arrogant and think they have a gift for us all because they sell a high demand vehicle. I originally wrote a long long detailed story about these 2 guys and their dealership's management (who was less than stellar too), but I decided to delete that because it got too far off my point of this post. Here is my summary: Don't buy your car here, don't buy anything here, you will regret your decision, I learned the hard way, trust me... it was a painful painful experience and this dealership did things unimaginable by any dealership, I have never in my life been drug through such BS that this dealership drug me through. I learned a valuable and costly lesson, and this dealership is the whole reason I started this search for pricing and a better dealership. They sell at MSRP, they think they're doing you a favor there, they lied to me, they screwed my car order up even with a deposit down and a production number, they called me a liar when I said some dealers don't sell it at MSRP, I proved my statements with hard written documented and signed facts, then they changed stories on me and back peddled. Thanks, but no thanks, so my opinion: Avoid them at all costs.
Luigi Alvarez or Payman Zadeh - Shelly BMW
Buena Park, California
Best Price Offered - Unknown, couldn't get any answers out of them via e-mail, they wanted to speak over the phone, and they won't stop e-mailing me their stupid template response letter.
This one has to be the most annoying one so far, they keep sending the same form letter to me over and over and over asking me if I've driven an "Unknown" vehicle before and do I need any help researching my "Unknown" vehicle. And how soon would I be interested in purchasing my "Unknown" vehicle. If you're going to use a template based form letter at least learn how to properly fill the fields that I inputted on your website. Thanks but no thanks.. you lost this sale on pure technical inability. And they are STILL e-mailing me this stupid form letter even after I responded to them... I'm up to 7 now.
Russ Fowler - South Bay BMW
Best Price Offered - Unknown, same as above... got 2 form letter responses, also with variables misplaced... as much as I'd love to buy a brand new "Unknown" .. I think i'd rather buy a BMW, I responded to the form letters anyways, and inquired about price, and they never responded... so much for customer service.
Jeff Kline - Bob Smith BMW
Best Price Offered - $1,250 off MSRP, no questions asked, negotiation possible depending on additional options added.
Jeff was also a friendly and helpful individual. Although his initial e-mail was an automated response letter, and the e-mail address on it had a typo, once I actually got to him he was great to work with. Friendly, and straight forward about pricing, no head games... then it got interesting. 1 day later, he sent me another e-mail as if I was a new customer and he quoted me $1,000 off MSRP. Which is it Jeff? Is it $1,250, or is it $1,000? Do you even remember talking to me yesterday? Thankfully you were pleasant to deal with and very helpful, for many this would have been an instant deal breaker, but I give you the benefit of the doubt, I'm sure you deal with lots of people daily.
Jack Lorent - Cunningham BMW
El Cajon, California
Best Price Offered - MSRP, fairly unwilling to negotiate.
Jack was a bit abbrasive. First he asked me if saving a few hundred dollars on a $50k car would make a difference in my purchase. (Tip Jack, not the best way to start off a conversation with a customer, asking them if money really matters on something so expensive.... of course money matters on ANY purchase) then after I responded letting him know that service, experience, and a fair price were all important, then he got defensive. At the end of the multi-email spread, he wasn't going to sell it for less than MSRP because that's "fair" in his mind, because he doesn't even have the car so it's not worth his time negotiating on a vehicle he doesn't even have available (Yah he actually said that... all dealers have to order it, imagine that .. I said that in my very first line of my message to you when asking about the price). You coulda saved me some time Jack and just said you were selling it for MSRP, instead of dragging me through several emails to get that answer.
Doug Alverson - Harloff BMW aka BMW Encinitas
Best Price Offered - Unknown, got a form letter response, and never heard a word from them after that.
Internet Sales (No name tied to it) - Long Beach BMW
Signal Hill, California
Best Price Offered - Unknown, got a form letter response, and never heard from them after that.
Neda - Beverly Hills BMW
Beverly Hills, California
Best Price Offered - Never came to one, back and forth on a few e-mails, no real answers.
Neda was very friendly, and very responsive, just never got to the goal of what the price was. I'm sure Neda would be great to work with once a price was set, she was persistant, and did respond fairly promptly.
Scott Callister - Bill Pearce Motors
Best Price Offered - %1 off MSRP (On a 50K Car, that's $500 off MSRP). He was open to negotiation, as long as I could provide proof that other dealers were discounting it beyond that, OR if I was a return customer.
I didn't respond to his e-mail, he gave me all the details and facts in his response, and it didn't sit well with me, no need to contact him back, I'm sure he'd be fine to work with, but it shouldn't matter if I'm a return customer or new customer to get a great price, and 1% isn't that great of a price.
Joe Chamoun - Bill Pearce Motors (NOTICE: Look above, a different guy, same dealership)
Best Price Offered - His response came 1 day after Scotts above. He told me to call him to discuss a price. I didn't bother, considering someone else from the dealership already responded to me, 1 day earlier, and gave me the info I needed. Chances are, he wasn't going to offer me a better price than Scott would, which wasn't super to begin with.
Candace Fisher - Brecht BMW
San Diego, California
Best Price Offered - None received, the auto-response letter was so poor, I didn't even bother responding. I wish people would take a few minutes and at least look at the e-mail letters they send out before they go to customers. Another thing that would be great, is if you provide fields for people to fill in, read them before you respond so you have a clue what I'm interested in. To her credit though, she did follow up with me 7 days later to find out if I was still interested in the car, and if she could help me in any way (Didn't include a price though). Not the most timely response, but at least she followed through with it, so props to you Candace for at least trying but 7 days is too long, I bought my car 6 days ago, most of us future owners know what we want before we come to you and we move fast, which means you have to move even faster to earn the business.
Ben Majidi - Chapman BMW on Camelback
Best Price Offered - $1,800 off MSRP .. after some discussions and option changes on the vehicle, it ended up being $2,200 off MSRP or $1,700 over invoice depending on which you prefer.
I can't say enough good things about Ben, I was a stranger to him, I sent him my request, he responded with a phenominal price, with zero hassle. He was the 17th dealer I mailed out of 31, and after I got his response I knew that the next 14 probably didn't matter, he was in the game to sell cars and he knew exactly where he was on price and availability. He was friendly, honest, and went over and beyond. He provided me a rock bottom price, tossed in a couple of BMW freebies, offered to pick me up from the airport when I flew in to get my vehicle, offered me out of state temporary registration so I could get the car home safely if I didn't want it shipped, and to top it off I didn't even have to ask, this is what he offered openly. There was no bartering or bickering, it just wasn't necessary for what he was offering. Then after I agreed to buy my car there, he had a signed purchase order detailed with the complete price breakdown including tax/license deposit due and remaining balance, an active production number changed with my options including the full option sheet printed in detail to me on my fax machine in under 30 minutes. He made this purchase the smoothest I've ever had in buying a new car. In case you havn't guessed, this is who I bought my car from after all of this research was done. About 3 days later, I came to find out one of my executive staff bought a car from him 5 months ago and got another buyers full feedback on him and his experience, he had nothing but good things to say about Ben as well, and told me to say hi to him when I picked my car up. I'm very happy with my purchase so far.
JD Decoste - Irvine BMW
Best Price Offered - Unknown, typical dealerspace email with broken links and variables and never heard from him after that.
Don Helm - BMW of Bakersfield
Best Price Offered - I'm not sure if he made a typo or not, but he marked my vehicle up nearly $3,000, I'm not sure if he meant to type a 4 or a 1 on his keypad, but if it was a 1, he would have given me $700 off MSRP, if it really was meant to be a 4, then it's $3k over MSRP .. regardless, it was enough for me to skip on to the next dealer... did I do him a dis-service by not asking if he made a mistake? Maybe .. but with 31 dealers to choose from... I'll continue on and see what happens.
Peter Abeysekera - Crevier BMW
Santa Ana, California
Best Price Offered - He wouldn't give me one .. he also didn't have any January production, only February, which would mean March delivery... that's a month longer than the other dealers, so I'll move on. This however could be a sign that they are a great dealership since they have lower availability ... or the opposite, they have limited production due to lack of sales. I didn't bother to find out, maybe you could and report back.
Hans Dakhlia - Santa Monica BMW
Santa Monica, California
Best Price Offered - None, he replied back asking me to search his website to check his inventory (I guess him doing it for me to let me know if he did/didn't have the car, or could/couldn't order it for me is too much to ask)... maybe he didn't pickup on the extremely detailed e-mail (including all of BMW's part numbers) I sent him outlining the exact car I wanted, that would need to be ordered. Oh well, I checked his inventory anyways and guess what? No car that matches what I want ... on to the next dealer I guess.
Greg Poland - Pacific BMW
Best Price Offered - $1,000 off MSRP for a coupe, but he included in his email sedan pricing at $800 over invoice. Too bad I want a coupe... but that's a great price.
Greg actually was good to work with, no games, he cut me the facts in one email, saved me loads of time and told me what he could and could not do. I appreciate the fast pace, and honesty Greg, if your pricing was just a little better, I could easily buy from you.
Edmund Cronin - Alexander BMW
Los Angeles, California
Best Price Offered - $750 off MSRP, he had December availability (Week 52 of '06), which would mean early February delivery time.
Straight forward, put all the facts and numbers in one email. Thanks Edmund, I appreciate that kind of response.