Dealers - Colin
Following the thread about dealers' integrity, I have to say I am singularly unimpressed by their competence (sorry, HJ).

Looking to buy a new or demo car I have encountered certain guys who (it turns out after studying the glossy bumph) don't seem to know the product they are actually punting. Also, after religiously taking down contact detail, some never ring me back to check on my thoughts! OK I'm trying to do a deal on one motor not a fleet, but all the same ...

I don't actually mind a bit of gentle pressure (i.e. salesmanship). Perhaps these guys have had it easy for so many years, being able to sell cars without even getting out of bed, that they haven't caught up with the changing market. Is there actually any formal sales training for these people?
Re: Dealers - David Pearson
I swear this is true.
In an Audi dealers I asked a "salesman" about the engine size in a certain car and got the reply "I don't know about that, I only sell 'em". Needless to say he didn't, to me anyway.
Sales Execs general incompetance - David Lacey
This trait you have found David is all to prevelant in UK dealerships. You have to go a long way to find a good one these days.

Audi/VW showrooms tend to be too clinical and 'up-their-own-a**es'

I've got an answer top this common 'I don't know' syndrome:-

Perhaps all salesmen (sorry Sales Executives!) should have a mandatory 3 month period in the Service Dept/Workshops to increase their vehicle knowledge and also to see where the REAL work goes on.

Just a thought

Re: Sales Execs general incompetance - T lucas
most new car buyers/user choosers are not intrested in the tec side of their chosen car,more likely colour combination and or alloy wheel choice.Why do you think Merc and BMW sell so many cars in the UK with small engines?As for the sales people in the dealerships,if you pay peanuts......Remember most people just want to pay the least amount of cash for their new car and then maybe whinge about the dealership afterwards.As a nation we are always on about the price,rarely the quality,thats why we end up with crap package holidays,cramped economy class planes, the NHS,constant soap on tv,and all the other poor services and products that we endure- we wont pay for quality.
Re: Sales Execs general incompetance - Colin
Two recent instances:
A Citroen main dealer who undertook to come back to me with an answer to a ,really non-technical, question. Still waiting.
A Renault ditto who I thought would be keen to come on and pressure me to close a sale. Still waiting.
Needless to say in both cases have gone elsewhere.
Think the idea of having to serve an apprenticeship in the spares dept is priobably a good one, but what about some elementary sales training?
Re: Sales Execs general incompetance - honest john
Most car showroom salespeople these days are employed to sell finance, extended warranties, paint treatments and other add-ons because that's where the profits and the serious commissions are to be made.

Re: Sales Execs general incompetance - J Todd
The Sales Execs make a judgement about your genuine intentions within 1 or 2 minutes of your starting your conversation with them. If they decide you are a time waster, then they will carry on in a pleasant, inoffensive but unhelpful manner. They have basically decided that even if your custom came their way, you are likely to be a troublesome aftersales time waster. Prefer you to go elasewhere and give someone else grief.
Re: women buying cars - Carole Adams
For a really surreal experience you ought to try buying a car as a woman (I could lend you the gear), especially if you've got a bloke in tow. And that goes for the techie bits, the paperwork bits and the money bits. To the bloke - "Does 0-60 in 8.2 seconds you know". To the woman - "It's a nice colour isn't it? - and look - lovely velour seats."

Then just wait till it starts to go wrong and the fun really starts. Do they really think we'll fall for that "it's meant to do that" line?
Re: women buying cars - John Slaughter

A few years back a friend had an Escort coming up to the end of the warranty. She asked me to check it over for any defects. Well, there were a few, oil leaks, a leaking damper etc etc (it was a good few years back). So, I wrote this lot down, and it was duly presented by her to the service dept. First question - did you prepare this list? Answer, No I got an Engineer to check the car over (true). Ok, madam we'll fix it. They did - but it wasn't the right attitude was it?


Re: women buying cars - Ash Phillips
Since my wife left her business card one time at the service desk, rather than wait for the YTS to take her details, she's had a lot more respect (she's a Chartered Engineer). When something goes wrong they just sort it, rather than being all patronising, especially since she corrected the service dept guru on a point. Never realised how patronising blokes can sometimes be to women, but you should hear some of the stories she tells of meetings and the like.
Re: women buying cars - John Slaughter

Not only the women - I was once asked by Service Reception why I thought I knew better than one of the oiks in the workshop. When I said 'Because I happened to be a Chartered Mechanical Engineer, and I'd be only too happy to discuss it with your Workshop foreman' things went quiet. Must say though I haven't had similar problems for years, but I can well imagine it happening.


Dealers - Dave Etchells
There may be something in the "sales exec." sniffing out bogus buyers.

I went to a Ford dealer in South Manchester with the intention of trying a test drive on a new Mondeo. I was never intending to buy from a main dealer but as they were so new and Motorpoint and Tradesales don't do test drives I had no alternative. I was suited up as I had come out of work and the exec. pushed to see if it was a company sale, when I said it was private he cooled a few degrees. I think I blew it completely when I mentioned the internet. The promise of an afternoons use never materialised.

Better still a couple of weeks later a similar scenario at another Ford dealer in the Macclesfield area. A similar conversation ensued about company/private sales. The exec. prattled on about rumours they were stopping test drives to potential private buyers but not at this dealership, eh? Although he did say they had no Mondeo in for test drive purposes but he would ring me back.

As it happened Fords of Winsford had just taken a delivery and I got my test drive there. I subsequently bought one from Motorpoint.

The exec. from Macclesfield did in fact ring me back about a month after I had visited his showroom and I had only had the Mondeo a week, the crying shame was I was out so I couldn't gloat.

Value my car