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2011 DTS super traveller
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Discussion Starter #1
After shopping at big name dealers, for a new to us used car, I am amazed at how little attention dealers give leather car seats! Apparently dirt doesn't have to leave and is acceptable. Is Dealer Prep worth much? What are your car sales insights?
 

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1992 Fleetwood S&S Hearse, 1993 Buick Roadmaster
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That is an interesting topic! I've bought a bunch of used cars, though most have been sale-by-owner from private citizens. A small handful have been from used car lots, but none of my used cars have come from new car dealers. I've looked at some used cars at new car dealers, but never bit.
Usually, when I was looking, I was looking towards the back of the lot. These were cars they weren't going to put a lot of money into to sell - the cheapo trade-ins that they might just end up selling to the wholesaler. When I did look at the nicer cars, I have usually experienced very clean cars. If they were asking over $4000, it was usually cleaned up very well.
There is a local car dealer who buys car detailing supplies from our parts store. They only want certain products, because they believe in them and get the best results. Their used cars always look great. I've checked out a few when I'm dropping off parts, and since they are one of three dealers right near my home, I see a LOT of cars from them, new and used. They are always very clean and well-prepped.
As a buyer, especially if I were looking to buy a used car from a new-car dealer, bad prep would be a red flag to me. If you are trusted with perhaps millions of dollars in inventory, plus used cars, there should be no excuse but to prepare your inventory. It should wow the people who come to look. Especially if it has a certain price tag. Even if it's a "back lot beauty," it should be clean and presentable, even if you don't waste Armor-all on the cracked dash.
 

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1980 Eldorado, 1974 Talisman, 2004 Volvo C70, 1975 Fleetwood 'd Elegance
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I agree that shoddy prep would worry me about other things ignored.
If it were a car I really was interested in I would drive several other at the lot and see how they are done.
If the problems with prep seemed consistent, I would shop elsewhere.

If not I would mention it to the sales manager and tell him you would like to see it when done.
While most dealer are particular about what it looks like before it hits the lot, everyone's pencils have erasers for a reason. Mistakes happen.

You have to remember that while the dealer spends a couple hundred per car if they professionally detail, the guy doing it is making min. wage.
 

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Alexandra - 96 SDV Clyde - 15 Silvy
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Dealer Prep can mean anything from ZIP to DAYUM :drool2:

I think it helps if you ask. When my dad got his 06 DTS from the GM dealer here in town, he told them to clean it up and fill the tank, he was going to drive 4 hours to get it and he wanted it to be nice.

They did, sure enough. Looked SHARP all cleaned up, and the tank was full.

In the case of a new vehicle for me, I would venture towards the former, as I would probably be that guy who would track his truck into town, be hovering when the truck arrived, and personally unload it :D
 

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2006 STS V8 AWD, '95 Ford Ranger
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I was in a used car lot of a big Cadillac dealer in Beverly Hills California one day and became intrigued watching this old guy going from car to car tinkering up problems. For a tool box he had what looked like an old fishing tackle box but he was pulling miracle after miracle out of it fixing stuff like loose trim and molding, holes or rips in upholstery, loose door handles, flapping door panels,and all the other nagging little things that plague older cars. I asked a salesman walking by about the old guy and he said he was the highest paid guy on the lot and earned every penny. He'd been doing the same thing as long as anybody could remember.
 

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2003 DHS - two-2002 DHS, 2003 SLS, 1995 Sedan DeVille, 1989 Coupe DeVille
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After shopping at big name dealers, for a new to us used car, I am amazed at how little attention dealers give leather car seats! Apparently dirt doesn't have to leave and is acceptable. Is Dealer Prep worth much? What are your car sales insights?
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Is Dealer Prep worth much? What are your car sales insights?
Dealer Prep has absolutely nothing with preparing a car for sale -
it's just a "legal" way to rip-off a little more profit -
 

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White Diamond '03 DHS (with DTS floor shift)
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Much like "Doc fees". That one always torques my jaw. :annoyed:
 

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That's not what he's asking, basscatt/Ranger.

We detail all of our used cars. Every one I've looked at and sat in is clean and very presentable.

Looking at some of the trade ins, though, some of these people LIVE in their cars. It's disgusting. My truck isn't clean, because it's a truck, but.... damn, people. Damn.
 

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Stingroo said:
That's not what he's asking, basscatt/Ranger. We detail all of our used cars. Every one I've looked at and sat in is clean and very presentable. Looking at some of the trade ins, though, some of these people LIVE in their cars. It's disgusting. My truck isn't clean, because it's a truck, but.... damn, people. Damn.
I keep my car spotless with nothing kept inside especially. Some people throw banana peels on the floor with empty soda cans and bags and what have you.

If you have gnats inside your car you have a problem. My god
 

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2002.5 F55 CORSA STS, 2014 Explorer XLT FWD
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When I started looking for a 2002.5 - 2003 F55 STS I did some homework and called a salesman friend at Fitzgerald Cadillac in Annapolis, MD. Six weeks later he found the car on Staten Island - Villa Marin Cadillac. It arrived by truck on 11/17/05 and it was pretty clean. When I picked it up on 11/21/05 there was no way - except the odometer (23147) - to tell it was not showroom new. In question - the leather seating. Completely cleaned and SEM treated. Front and back. The young men and women in the dealership internal detail shop got free pizza and sodas for lunch that afternoon.

Actually, "dealer prep" and used car detailing are 2 different things. Dealer prep used to mean the servicing and cleanup done to a new car after it rolled off the train or truck - everything from a wash/buff to peeling the window sticker and checking tire pressures to opening the plastic/cellophane wrappers and placing the manuals in the glove box. Installing hubcaps (they were shipped in the trunk), unwrapping the seats. Cleaning grease pencil marks - assembly notes - off the windows, other stuff.

Used car detailing is just that - try to make it look as good as possible.
 

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We detail all of our used cars. Every one I've looked at and sat in is clean and very presentable.

Looking at some of the trade ins, though, some of these people LIVE in their cars. It's disgusting. My truck isn't clean, because it's a truck, but.... damn, people. Damn.
I had a friend who did not care the slightest about his car. I followed him when he went to pick up a new car he had ordered because he never discussed trading-in his old car but thought he'd give it a shot.

His current car had a back seat piled up to the windows with crumpled fast food bags, wrappers and cups. The dash and headliner were coated with dried cola from hitting assorted bumps and curbs over its lifespan. There was no way to be sure of the paint color of the car. The clutch was completely worn out and he ran stop signs on the way out of fear he could not get it going again. When he pulled into a parking spot at the dealer, he put it in reverse to see if he could back out and the car wouldn't move. The passenger seat had two full and one empty gallon bottles of antifreeze and several full and empty cans of oil and a set of jumper cables. I didn't want to know why. The dealer had never looked at the car. My friend sat down to do the final paperwork on the new car and told them he wanted to trade in his old car and that he wanted a figure that I'm sure was above used retail, in perfect condition. I'm guessing he was talking to someone new because they said they could only give him well less than half that. I had the impression they threw that out to end any discussion but he immediately said "deal". If that was his plan, I am still impressed.

I wish I knew whatever happened to that car. If they were smart they crushed it on the spot.

Future cars were treated similarly and the dealer that he bought his next car from actually removed their own badging from the car during a warranty visit.
 

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........ the dealer that he bought his next car from actually removed their own badging from the car during a warranty visit.
Now that is really bad!! Whenever I see a car like that I think the owner must really hate cars.
 

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Now that is really bad!! Whenever I see a car like that I think the owner must really hate cars.
Phooey !!! Walk through any high school parking lot. 99% of the cars in student parking look like rolling WM or Dempster dumpsters. (but the orange wheels, black wings, fart can muffler and triple blade wipers are clean ............)
 

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LOL! It's been a looong time since I've been in a high school parking lot so I'll have to take your word. ;)
 

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Heh, heh !!! Kent Island High School straddles part of the Cross Island Trail, 5.5 miles of paved railroad right-of-way. The trail goes past the stoont parking lot - some interesting sights when Karen and I are biking/walking.
 
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