Are Car Dealers . . . Evil?

By Eric Peters  |  Eric Peters Autos

Is the place where you go to buy a new car a kind of Dark Church where very bad things happen?

Not necessarily – and if it turns out to be so, it’s probably because you were forced to “worship” there.

There should be at least two ways to buy a new car – via a dealership or directly from the manufacturer. But in most states, you can only buy them one way – through a dealer. A pick-up at the factory is possible (for example, Chevy offers this with Corvette – so you can actually see the line and maybe even see your car roll off the line) but the transaction has to go through a dealer.

Because that’s the law.

It shouldn’t be, for reasons that don’t require much elaboration. But free trade became a crime decades ago – along with free association. Both have been replaced by the bayonet – nudging you toward associations you’d rather not have.

And paying for them, too.

The tragic thing is dealers – not all of whom support your being forced to do business with them if you want a new car – do provide services most people would probably freely pay for.

But what, exactly, do you get for your money at a car store?

The car, for openers.

If it weren’t for dealers, you’d either have to go to the factory to collect your car – or make your own arrangements to have it shipped to where you are. Dealerships are local – and convenient. The factories where new cars are put together are usually neither. Often, they aren’t even in your state.

How to get the car?

If you don’t pay to have it shipped to your town you’ll be driving another car to wherever the new car is being assembled and then you’ll have to make arrangements for someone else to drive the vehicle you got there in back. Or you could fly to the factory and drive home in the new car. Neither plane tickets nor gas for a 2-3 day trip are free.

And in addition to money, you’re also spending time. Have you got several days to deal with all of this?

Or you could let the dealer handle it.

It’s not free, either – of course. A “destination and delivery” charge is added to the car’s purchase price. It’s generally in the vicinity of $800 (the price varies, in part, according to how far the car has to be shipped from A to B).

But it’s not an unreasonable fee – as such.

Only that you have no choice.

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