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I've been shopping for a Forester for about a month now. I've looked at mostly used Forester's, 2003-2005 XS models. So many of these people want to sell them so close to new car prices. With the changes for the 06 models I've decided I'd like to go with a '06. As well, I live in Denver, CO and do some mounting driving so the winter features such as windshield wiper defrosters, heated mirrors, and heated seats are important to me. I'm not as interested in the premium speakers, 6 cd changer, or moonroof though. As well though we want leather seats and definitely the tan/light color, not dark/black. I have tried figuring out how to add this to the X or even the X with Premium System but if I'm right it seems the only way to get this is to go with the LL Bean edition, is that true? I know the advantage with the LL Bean I get the auto leveling feature as well as some other extra features.

Next, what is the absolute lowest price I can get on this? It seems most of the sticker prices are around $28-$28.5K. Yet I looked at www.fitzmall.com. I have seen prices of around $23.5K to $24K for these same vehicles including shipping. Has anyone dealt with fitzmall. Are these brand new cars with the factory Subaru warranty? I'm interested in any opinions on them.

What I'm considering doing is taking the printout from Fitzmall and taking it to my local Subaru dealership and asking if they can beat the price. I'm curious what the lowest price people have seen for this? Maybe I can even get it a bit lower.

One other thing, I know there is a $1000 rebate now and as well the end of the month can be a good time to get a good deal. Will I get better deals in the next couple months though? I know the '07's come out in may or June and prices will go down a lot, maybe before then as they're clearing out '06's.
 

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Just be sure the dealer donsn't try to stick you with more than a $100 documentation fee and a service preperation or some other concocted fee. You must look at out-the-door price!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 

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scarred from battle
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Mark - First, welcome!!!

Below is a reply I posted in another thread where another user had asked a similar question about a forester XT. Hopefully it'll be helpful. Feel free to shoot me a PM if you have questions.

You should not be paying "invoice" for any car right now. That means the dealer is keeping the rebate $, not you. The short answer to your question is that the Fitzmall price is a "good" price, and your local dealer should be able to do just as good, if not better. They are a normal subaru dealer. They just have a no-hassle approach to selling cars. I believe they are fairly well known and respected in maryland, but i'd run a quick search of the forum for more opinions from local members.

Cheers.
(from another Mark)

blitzoid said:
SQC049 said:
fitzmall.com does not have the car I desire in stock. They had an auto FXT listed, but this price beats the one on the fitzmall website. I am just wondering if I should really try to beat them up to go lower, or if this is about as good as I can get. I am going to try to get it lower regardless, but an insight into what I should be looking to pay would be great.
Thanks
Drew
Let me clarify my logic here:

I realize they don't have exactly the same car. That's not the point. What should have become immediately apparent, however, was that the sticker price means squat. Every single one of the fitzmall foresters is below factory invoice. That's INVOICE, not sticker. If you do the math, you'll see that the XT LTD Auto they have is about 5% less. Sticker on the fitzmall car is 29,2. They have it listed at 26,3. Invoice is 27,6

However, at present, at least here on the east coast, there's a $1000 rebate on any new forester XT until the end of the month. If you account for that rebate in the fitzmall pricing, then that 5% is really is Invoice price, minus all applicable rebates, minus another $300 or so.

Consequently, I think the absolute max that you should pay for the XT you're looking at is the same thing - invoice, minus all applicable rebates, minus another $200-300. Fitzmall is great for finding a baseline price that way. If you're paying appreciably more, then you're paying too much. My gut reaction is that the price you have listed is pretty close, if not already there. If the car has any OEM accessories installed (or if you can get them thrown in when you do the buy) all the better.

Also - make sure you're not getting hit with excessive doc fees, vin etching, fancy aftermarket rustproofing, paint protection, etc etc.

One last thing - since you found two of them in the area. Play the dealers off of each other. Go to the more expensive guy and tell him about the cheaper one. Make them work for you, not the other way around. Remind them that whomever you buy from will be getting your service business. You're looking to establish a relationship with a dealer here, not just buy a car.
 

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There's not enough detail to understand your situation. It's a shell game of purchase price, financing, trade-in and others items. I had a trade-in, did financing through the dealer which adds another way for them to make money. I walked in and said "300 under invoice and 7.5k for my trade-in" and when laughed at I left. They called me ten minutes later w/ 7k for my trade-in and I thanked them for the offer and said no. Soon after that they accepted my terms.

Realize "invoice" is not what they pay for the car. Also arn't the mountian states having a March sale? When vacationing around there last week there was a blitz of ads on TV.

Good luck.
 

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scarred from battle
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When i've done this in the past, I've always negotiated trade in value and purchase price separately.

Yes, they make money when you finance, but in this case, that'll negate the rebates, if you take the special subaru financing. If you're financing through whatever bank they have to offer, then expect a lower price beyond what I laid out above. I'm treating this deal as if there's no trade-in, and it's just for cash, since the OP hasn't stated otherwise.
 
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Unfortunately my car was totalled in a accident so there will be no trade-in and will be paid for in cash. If I get a chance today I'm going to stop by and look at what they have in stock and see if I can do any negotiating.
 

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wagn said:
There's not enough detail to understand your situation. It's a shell game of purchase price, financing, trade-in and others items. I had a trade-in, did financing through the dealer which adds another way for them to make money. I walked in and said "300 under invoice and 7.5k for my trade-in" and when laughed at I left. They called me ten minutes later w/ 7k for my trade-in and I thanked them for the offer and said no. Soon after that they accepted my terms.

Realize "invoice" is not what they pay for the car. Also arn't the mountian states having a March sale? When vacationing around there last week there was a blitz of ads on TV.

Good luck.
If I sell under invoice I lose my job. Period. Why don't people think that car sales has a right to make money? I mean, geesh, the salesman made maybe $50-$100 if he's at a good store... think of how many customers like you that person would have to deal with to make his mortgage or car payment. People don't come into your work and tell you you shouldn't get paid for the job you do, do they?[/rant]

To answer Mark's question, the base MSRP is ~$27,520 after delivery and invoice is ~$25,626. I've got $1000 off on Beans right now so $24,7XX is a screaming deal (remember, options/accessories extra ;) ). Persoanlly, the leases Subaru is running right now make them more attractive than rebate/finance incentives... just my 2 cents.
 

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scarred from battle
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BOY said:
If I sell under invoice I lose my job. Period. Why don't people think that car sales has a right to make money? I mean, geesh, the salesman made maybe $50-$100 if he's at a good store... think of how many customers like you that person would have to deal with to make his mortgage or car payment. People don't come into your work and tell you you shouldn't get paid for the job you do, do they?[/rant]
I am assuming, and maybe this is absurd... that the guys at Fitzmall are still making money on each sale at their posted prices. I don't think it's ridiculous to ask for a similar deal. If they were selling each car at a loss, they'd be out of business. If their salesmen weren't making enough $ per month, they'd go to other dealerships, etc, right?

I don't think there's anything wrong with you earning a living as a car salesman, but is it really supposed to be the buyer's duty to hand over as much $ as possible so you can make ends meet? I don't think that's what you're really saying, but it's coming off that way.

Commission income structures are different than salary/hourly income, and so i don't think your comparison is valid for those of us who aren't in sales.

Every salesman i've talked to has claimed that they are making, on average, 15 car sales a month. 30 if it's a great month. If they were really only taking home $50-100/car, then they probably wouldn't be in sales, because their take-home pay wouldn't be all that fantastic, given the hours they keep. If the margins are as you suggest, then you'd need to move what strikes me as an absurd quantity of cars each month to make a "comfortable" salary after taxes. And yet, every car that fitzmall is selling is priced that way. Similar deals seem to be around all the time. I really doubt you'll see any educated car buyer paying MSRP, or even "invoice" these days, unless it's in those rare cases where demand for a paticular model (like the mini cooper right after it came out) far outweighs supply.

And every invoice price i've seen didn't take dealer holdback into account, so the dealer was making at least 5% on the car. Granted, I'm sure a good portion of that 5% goes into costs, but we all know that "invoice" isn't what the dealership paid Subaru of America for the vehicle.

I'll be the first to admit that all of the above is based on my own personal experience, and may not reflect the reality as it is for you, at your dealership, etc. But I know i'm not alone with these experiences. (not that you are either)

oh, and welcome to the board. :-D

Cheers.
 

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Sorry for the rant as my first post... If any of you know me from NABISCO I've been around forever and a day. The guys at Fitzmall are likely selling into holdback and making their money off of volume. Seriously, the markup is so small on Subarus that at stores that only sell Subies you have to push 15-30 to stay alive. A store my size, we're lucky to do 10 total a month! Thank god that my salesmen can sell Acura and used.

Me, personally, I'd go for an X Premium or an XT... the Bean just doesn't do it for me in the bang-for-buck category.
 

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I honestly do not believe there's anything wrong with negotiating. Shooting for the best deal for ones dollar is something I think any of us exercises one time or another. In a sense, many folks here fit into the "customer like you" analogy, I think. If you don't agree with the offer, I would think you'd turn it down and deal with the next customer rather than accepting and loosing your job.

Sales is not easy, so I understand your frustration, but please take in consideration that wagn was just sharing his experience with markw. You may be an honest & hard working salesman, but many of us have dealt with shady dealerships and salespeople before. It's not uncommon to see member sharing experiences & tips on purching new & used vehicles, so don't take it the wrong way.
 

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Markw,

I agree with BOY. For the money, I would seriously consider an FXT. A quick test drive will put a huge grin on your face, trust me.

My 06 FXT Limited came to 28.9K OTD.

Good luck on your search.
 
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I just got back from the dealership. He only had one LL Bean but a bunch of Premiums. of course they were heavily pushing their used cars and two premium demonstrators. From what I saw the LL Bean edition is mostly about the cosmetics and honestly I think I'll get everything in the Premium I need in the LL Bean except for leather. They said they can easily add leather for $1295. It seems I read on here about only being able to add dark leather to Premiums but he said he could add any color including tan. Anyway, with more premiums in stock I'm sure he'd be more motivated to sell those. What I may do is try then to add leather to a premium.
Is that a good price for the leather? I'm considering shopping around at different auto dealers to see if I can beat the $1295 price and I think I'll get a much better deal maybe elsewhere on the leather. I would imagine with far more premiums in stock I'd have more bargaining power as well.
 

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Just FYI,
For a reference: I got my 06 LL Bean in November for $24,900 (including destination, Subwoofer, tweeters, cargo mat, all weather floormats, tailpipe cover and rear bumper cover...this also included $1K cash back applied to the price). With tax it was slightly less than $26K out the door.

I am happy with the Bean. I think the extra cost of it over the X Premium goes into the leather and maybe the rear self-leveling shocks. I compared X Premium to the Bean and decided the Bean was more of what I wanted.
 

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scarred from battle
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markw said:
Is that a good price for the leather? I'm considering shopping around at different auto dealers to see if I can beat the $1295 price and I think I'll get a much better deal maybe elsewhere on the leather. I would imagine with far more premiums in stock I'd have more bargaining power as well.
His "adding leather" is an aftermarket install. There are lots of things to be concered about with that, specifically warranty, material quality, and if the side airbag system will still function properly. $1295 also seems pretty steep for that sort of thing.

Remember, there are plenty of dealers out there. Don't be afraid to travel a little. It's near the end of the month, and they probably want to sell as many cars as possible.

Honestly, it seems, based on the little bit you just said, that it's sort of a high-pressure car sale situation. Sort of a "don't trust anything they say" thing. I've never been a fan of that.
 

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blitzoid said:
Honestly, it seems, based on the little bit you just said, that it's sort of a high-pressure car sale situation. Sort of a "don't trust anything they say" thing. I've never been a fan of that.
I agree with that! If the salesman is pushing a used over new there is only one motivation... greed. Used cars typically have thousands more markup than new. I fight with my sales people all the time to get the customer what they want not what the salesman wants to sell.

Discome, you got a good deal! Really, it all comes down to you. Are you willing to let the dealership make a reasonable profit on the vehicle or are you concerned with only the bottom dollar. I deal with all kinds of customers, the ones that I make the most money on are usually the happiest, the ones that beat me up over the pennies usually also rip me apart on my survey... they are never satisfied.

You also have to take into account that you're not just buying a car, you're also buying a dealership. What ammenities do they offer? We offer a free valet service to service customers (who bought from us) up to 100 miles away! Do you like the salesman you're working with? If you think he/she is blowing smoke than find another associate or find another dealer; you also buy the salesperson. Buying a car isn't hard... don't make it. If you feel you're getting a good deal and you are happy than that's what really counts.
 

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BOY said:
I agree with that! If the salesman is pushing a used over new there is only one motivation... greed. Used cars typically have thousands more markup than new. I fight with my sales people all the time to get the customer what they want not what the salesman wants to sell.

Discome, you got a good deal! Really, it all comes down to you. Are you willing to let the dealership make a reasonable profit on the vehicle or are you concerned with only the bottom dollar. I deal with all kinds of customers, the ones that I make the most money on are usually the happiest, the ones that beat me up over the pennies usually also rip me apart on my survey... they are never satisfied.

You also have to take into account that you're not just buying a car, you're also buying a dealership. What ammenities do they offer? We offer a free valet service to service customers (who bought from us) up to 100 miles away! Do you like the salesman you're working with? If you think he/she is blowing smoke than find another associate or find another dealer; you also buy the salesperson. Buying a car isn't hard... don't make it. If you feel you're getting a good deal and you are happy than that's what really counts.
I couldn't agree with you more. Well said.

If you ever decide to transplant the whole dealership to midtown manhattan, give me a ring. The dealers here are horiffic.
 
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I'm going to check out another dealer sometime this week. he quoted me $23.3K on a Premium over the phone. I am a CostCo member and I saw they have a auto club. I called the 800# and asked for a Subaru Dealer in Denver and they gave this dealer to me as the only one in the area that works with them. Instantly on the phone the guy told me they go by invoice, not MSRP and for CostCo members in addition to that they cut out a lot of the other delivery fees, etc and with rebate that brought him to $23.3K. I may be able to go lower but I was shocked to be quoted this price on the phone without even going. I will see if they have any used vehicles but I may go sometime this week to look at Premiums and Beans. They only have green though in bean, not grey which I prefer. I know often they can get cars from other lots but often it's harder to get a good deal then from what I've heard. i do have a few questions about 2005 beans vs. 2006 beans which Im actually going to post in another msg. to keep it separate from this.
 
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