My Review Of CarMax:
Before saying anything bad about the dealership I do want to say three things:
1 - The quality of their cars seem very good
2 - The price is a little bit high, but somewhat reasonable if you have the money and they are non-negotiable.
3 - Their conveyance fees are much lower than other dealers
Carmax is really for people who do not want to do their homework. If you just want a car at a reasonable price with a good history, then go to Carmax. If you spend a little more time and use autotrader.com or a similar site I guarantee you will be able to find the same car of equal or better quality at a lower price from a local, reputable dealer.
Example: I went to Carmax for a 2006 Ford Escape. On their lot, they had a 2006 Ford Escape XLT with 72k miles selling for $13,600, non-negotiable. This was a low-end model that was not loaded (cloth seats, very plain interior, plain dash). They only offered me about half the price my car was worth for a trade-in and they offered me a terrible 6.45% APR since my credit is over 750.
I searched online over the next few days and I found a 2006 Ford Escape Limited (better model with more features). This only had 68k miles and it was selling for $12,850. I test drove it and it had a much smoother ride than the one at Carmax. It was fully loaded (leather seats, factory tinted windows, electronic dash display, etc.) Needless to say, I bought this. This dealer offered me 4.24% APR, which is what I knew I deserved.
On customer service:
Carmax - I spent 1 hour with the salesman to look at the car and take it for a test drive. When we came back in from the test drive he said that he had another appointment at that time with another couple. I understand that you have appointments, but how could you leave a very promising buyer when the next step is to discuss financing! Very poor customer service. I still went to talk to somebody else about financing, but they didn't know anything about me and they did not treat me like they cared. When I told them I could get a much better rate somewhere else, they didn't even offer to compete with that rate. I was only given the option of buying the car immediately and then they would give me 3 days to find other financing. What incentive is that? The only thing I gain is a rushed feeling of being approved for better financing elsewhere within three days. Why not hold out on buying the car and then I would have all the time in the world to find financing (which is what I did).
My biggest problem is that the price was not good enough to be a "no-haggle" sale. Carmax did not work with me at all on financing or on the price and I could not believe that my salesman just walked away right after the test drive.
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