Should I buy in the U.S. or should I buy in Canada? This would be a no-brainer if we were to just go over the financials. With our dollar at close to 1.06 U.S. today the stats below do not lie.
As you can see, buying in
For a novice car buyer out to purchase their first vehicle this seems like an easy answer. But just let me go over a bit of the background on my buying adventure and review some of the show stoppers and roadblocks that have been set up by the Car Companies to encourage hard working Canadians to pay more than their American cousins.
Over six months ago I decided to buy a new car. My current car, a Dodge Caravan 2002 was still in relatively good working order. I had just recently purchased new tires and wheels in the
At first I ventured to a few local car dealers looking at several different models and was told quite abruptly many times that I would be lucky to get more that $1000 as a trade in, despite the blue book value being over $2200. So I decided to sell the car myself on “LesPac”.
Two weeks ago the car was sold for $3250!
Walking home from the License bureau after selling my van, I ventured into a Lexus/Toyota dealership. Obtaining a salesman’s attention was aggravating; it was almost like they were doing me a favor by being there. Once I was finally granted the audience of a smooth talking salesperson we got down to the nitty-gritty and I was quickly discouraged from buying a new vehicle. The price seemed beyond what I wanted to pay, and when I mentioned that the car was several thousand dollars cheaper in the
Of course the presentation was a lot of false / stretched statements. Some were outright lies.
That evening and the next day I called several dealerships in the
Finally I called several Canadian car brokers, they all gave me the same message: the car companies forbid American dealers from selling new cars to Canadians! Each broker suggested that I buy a used car. One broker indicated that he might be able to find me one, but insisted that it was going to be real tough. He indicated that he was getting at least 4 requests a day, and that my best alternative was to buy a new Cadillac or Ford. He could save me thousands on those, but Lexus, Acura,
I decided to try the local Lexus dealership again. This time I was introduced to a very sharp salesperson. He gave me the keys to a demo and insisted I take a test drive. Then he listened carefully to my needs and was extremely accommodating. I mentioned the difference in the price in
My local salesperson called me yesterday, he found the car I was looking for in
Shorly thereafter I received a call from my broker friend, he has located 2 cars of the type I wanted, but the American dealer is scared to sell it to him for fear of reprisals by head office. I told him to sweeten the pot and try again and hopefully get back to me today.
Decision time! Not sure what to do, but it looks like if I want a new car that I will be forced to buy it in
Buying a car these days is like going to the dentist! But at least I was able to negotiate a further $2000.00 off the Canadian price. Of course if I buy the Car in
So in summary here are a couple of hints to follow when purchasing a car.
- make sure you check the prices in the U.S. for both new or used. Use the CarsWithoutBorders comparison format to understand what you are up against. (always make sure the car is on the acceptable RIV list)
- make sure you understand all the features and differences of the model of car you want. This can take a hour or so of your time but it is worth it. You will be able to readily debate the Canadian sales presentation on why it is better, but more expensive to buy in Canada.
- use your knowledge to negotiate a better discount or maybe obtain more features.
- consider the use of Canadian broker.
- if purchasing a used car in either Canada or the U.S., review the Carfax and consider purchasing an on site inspection.