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This is a discussion on any inconvenient Subaru dealers? within the New Member Hangout forums, part of the Community - Meet other Enthusiasts category; The first rule to sales of anything is "know the product". I don't care how smarmy a salesman is, or ...

  1. #16
    Registered User VVVV's Avatar
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    The first rule to sales of anything is "know the product". I don't care how smarmy a salesman is, or how good he is at closing, etc., if I catch him lying or making something up, I both call him on it and don't buy from him. Sales may be a revolving door, but I went to the same dealership to buy my STi only a year after buying my wife's WRX. The reason we returned was because we had a great salesman who both knew the car, and who was willing to stand back and let the product sell itself. The dealership profited from a good salesman, despite them definitely not deserving it.

    I was in sales for less than a year, but within the first week I learned all about the product and it's competitors. A salesman has only a few duties, especially when you have a showroom where the customers are coming to you (I went door-to-door, so I have no sympathy for car salesmen). They have to be able to answer questions, and they have to be able to elicit information from the customer. Car salesmen even have someone else doing the closing. How hard can it be? Whomever is telling them they have to blurt out where the extra cup holders are while sitting forward in the rear seat during a test drive is a bigger idiot than they are. And anyone encouraging them to lie must be competing for the sale, because it never works (short of being lucky to find a rube).

    No offense to Grayson, which seems to be the exception to the rule, but Subaru dealerships are obviously poorly managed, partially because Subaru of America has no interest in how the customer is treated, and partly due to either greed or a lack of significant profits. Hiring decent people, or even training the new hires to know the product should be a minimum requirement for any business. Obviously, whether it's service, sales, parts, or management, there's clearly no experience necessary. It actually seems preferred. The product sells itself and the dealership's there to be sure you never come back.

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  3. #17
    Registered User cavallino333's Avatar
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    I only had 2 oil changes/service appointments before I sold the WRX but the first time I went to Steven Creek subaru (the mother of all bad dealers) because I didn't know any better, and they knew as much about Subaru's a Merced dealer would. On top of that they were EXTEMELY over priced. The second time I went Carlsen Subaru and they were really nice, very knowledable and helpful.

    Overall I think most Subaru dealers are really really bad. Its not all the dealers fault though. I think most of Subaru buyers don't care. I mean Subaru bread an beutter has been outback wagons and foresters, how many people buying those want to know all the technical stuff?
    Last edited by cavallino333; 09-01-2006 at 12:49 PM.
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  4. #18
    GraysonSubaru's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by VVVV
    The first rule to sales of anything is "know the product". I don't care how smarmy a salesman is, or how good he is at closing, etc., if I catch him lying or making something up, I both call him on it and don't buy from him. Sales may be a revolving door, but I went to the same dealership to buy my STi only a year after buying my wife's WRX. The reason we returned was because we had a great salesman who both knew the car, and who was willing to stand back and let the product sell itself. The dealership profited from a good salesman, despite them definitely not deserving it.

    I was in sales for less than a year, but within the first week I learned all about the product and it's competitors. A salesman has only a few duties, especially when you have a showroom where the customers are coming to you (I went door-to-door, so I have no sympathy for car salesmen). They have to be able to answer questions, and they have to be able to elicit information from the customer. Car salesmen even have someone else doing the closing. How hard can it be? Whomever is telling them they have to blurt out where the extra cup holders are while sitting forward in the rear seat during a test drive is a bigger idiot than they are. And anyone encouraging them to lie must be competing for the sale, because it never works (short of being lucky to find a rube).

    No offense to Grayson, which seems to be the exception to the rule, but Subaru dealerships are obviously poorly managed, partially because Subaru of America has no interest in how the customer is treated, and partly due to either greed or a lack of significant profits. Hiring decent people, or even training the new hires to know the product should be a minimum requirement for any business. Obviously, whether it's service, sales, parts, or management, there's clearly no experience necessary. It actually seems preferred. The product sells itself and the dealership's there to be sure you never come back.

    Hiring decent people has nothing to do with the product. Some businesses (not only car dealers) are just wanting bodies in a position for whatever reason. it is on the quality to qualify possible employees by those making the hiring decision.

    as for the part about knowing the product in and out, etc..a lot of time it depends on the customer. Some customers dont want to hear all of the technical stuff about a car, they may only want to know safety features and then see how they fit in in and how it drives before making a decision. Obviously the more you know, the better off you are as a salesperson, but a lot of it depends on the type of customer. We all know on here that most of us are more interested in the technical product knowledge guy, rather than a smooth talker, but there are cases where the opposite is true..when the customer is looking for a salesperson that is willing to sell them the car...most subaru owners know the product inside and out already since they do so much research and most have owned a Subaru previously.

    We do great in repeat business, but every sales business has unhappy customers. We all know you cant make everyone happy, but most businesses will try..especially if it is a new vehicle they sold because of CSI...bad CSI hurts the wallet for dealers...bad. We have great sales CSI nearly every month.

    I have a customer in the savannah GA area that comes all the way up here to buy Subarus. He has bought an STI and TR from me and says we are just easier to deal with than the dealers down there. i have ticked off the occasional customer too...one just recently, but he wanted a price where we would have lost $800..and that is already giving him holdback and market support. I wouldnt do it and he thought i was holding back. he left mad, call me back a few days later to see if i changed my mind because it was the end of the month and I still said no. he is less than happy and since he has this number in his head from somewhere, wont look at an invoice or consider anything other than what he has decided is fair.

    ok..tired of typing for the moment.. i will shut up for now.
    Last edited by GraysonSubaru; 09-01-2006 at 12:50 PM.
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  5. #19
    Registered User VVVV's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GraysonSubaru
    Some customers dont want to hear all of the technical stuff about a car, they may only want to know safety features and then see how they fit in in and how it drives before making a decision.

    I have a customer in the savannah GA area that comes all the way up here to buy Subarus.
    I don't appreciate any sales person spouting anything without being asked. Just because a sales person knows, doesn't mean they have to tell everyone everything. Some customers want to hear a pitch, and that's fine, hit the high points and leave it at that. But every customer has the potential to ask questions, and every sales person needs to be ready to answer them. If you don't know the product - things like what differentiates a 2.5 RS from an STI (the important things, not "the STi comes with wings <dee, dee, dee>"), you'll never sell cars. Knowing it inside and out isn't necessary, but there is a bare minimum of knowledge that is, yet they still seem to be lacking that.

    I've said before, I've had such bad experiences that if I ever consider buying a Subaru again, I'm driving the 2000 miles to Grayson just so I don't have to deal with the horrible excuses for dealerships we have here. Though with each unwarrantied failure, that likelihood keeps getting slimmer.

  6. #20
    GraysonSubaru's Avatar
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    hehe i had a guy come from Arizona because he was fed up with shopping his local dealers. Bought a white 2006 STi - same with that guy from GA, a guy from NJ and a few others from other places -- the ESX guy is another prime example. I think he has bought 5 subaru's from me -- and he lives 300+ miles away.

    i agree on knowing a bare minimum for nearly any dealership. on the same token, i dont think i have ever had a case where someone was asking differences between an RS/2.5i and an STI. lots of people ask diff. between wrx and sti, forester vs outback, and submodel differences and the average salesperson should know their way through those things. The longer they have sold that brand of vehicle, the more detailed and polished they should be at pointed out those differences and relating them to real world use for the customers.
    Quote Originally Posted by RayfieldsWRX View Post
    Hey, being the forum car ADD guy is better than being the forum OG.
    Quote Originally Posted by Mikie13 View Post
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  7. #21
    Registered User D0WNxSH1FT's Avatar
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    I think it also has to do with time, as people have said. The dealers who know their products well and can sell will be successful at the job and will stay at the dealer for longer period. Those who dont know the product or dont know how to sell are there for a short time. I am sure the turnover in dealerships are high as they are commission based and dependant on customers shelling out large sums of money.

    I dont think ive ever seen a bad dealer at the same dealership for a long time, or else the dealer will eventually go under for hiring incompetant people. ie, a Mitsu dealer i worked at as a Swap drive. Nice people, but the dealers were too shady, too young, and the products didnt match the area (i love you evo! but the rest were poo).
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  8. #22
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    yeah after the sale on mine, the salesman i bought from took me over to his computer to look at some super sweet $50 blow off valves i can buy off ebay. i duno about the other dealerships, but all the ones in arizona are sh!tty.

  9. #23
    Registered User ly_br25's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AWDPirate
    yeah after the sale on mine, the salesman i bought from took me over to his computer to look at some super sweet $50 blow off valves i can buy off ebay. i duno about the other dealerships, but all the ones in arizona are sh!tty.
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  10. #24
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    dude they are horrible. one of the first salesman (being the one that got to me first the second i stepped out of the car) kept telling me how nice those damn sti's were. i'd be like, well yes sir, this one has the cloth seats, and one disk cd player but why is it more expensive than the regular WRX? ...that sti is a nice car. sir im not even talking about that, it seems your prices are more expensive than camelback's inventory...the sti's have blue interior, for racing.
    i think aftre that i went in for a cup of water and left
    i even called the subaru in palm springs, cali (about 5 hours away) to see what they had.

  11. #25
    Registered User mortimer's Avatar
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    When we bought our STi from Tom Wood in Indy the dealer said he would repaint the front lip where one of the sales guys had drove into a parking block or something. We made the appt. and drove the hour back home. I called 2 days before we were to get the paint fixed and they said everything was a go. Show up at noon and we'll get it fixed. So 2 days later we show up and they look at us like we've never been there. They tell us we don't have you down and our paint guy leaves at 10am. Tey don't know who I spoke to even though I wrote the guys name down I wanted to strangle them. Even asked us why we traded my wife's Si in for the Sti instead of my bugeye. The dealer seemed pissed because he didn't even know we owned the 02. Like we cheated him out of a better trade. Our salesman was cool. He gave us 2 free tanks of gas and a hat and mug for driving down . They have since fired him. Anyways we got the lip fixed the next week and we have not been back since. Oh yeah they never sent out the paperwork for our title for a month either. I had to speak to the general manager at their Nissan dealership to get that fixed. They are the worst.
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  12. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by mortimer
    When we bought our STi from Tom Wood in Indy the dealer said he would repaint the front lip where one of the sales guys had drove into a parking block or something. We made the appt. and drove the hour back home. I called 2 days before we were to get the paint fixed and they said everything was a go. Show up at noon and we'll get it fixed. So 2 days later we show up and they look at us like we've never been there. They tell us we don't have you down and our paint guy leaves at 10am. Tey don't know who I spoke to even though I wrote the guys name down I wanted to strangle them. Even asked us why we traded my wife's Si in for the Sti instead of my bugeye. The dealer seemed pissed because he didn't even know we owned the 02. Like we cheated him out of a better trade. Our salesman was cool. He gave us 2 free tanks of gas and a hat and mug for driving down . They have since fired him. Anyways we got the lip fixed the next week and we have not been back since. Oh yeah they never sent out the paperwork for our title for a month either. I had to speak to the general manager at their Nissan dealership to get that fixed. They are the worst.

    Well, at least you got a mug and hat. Two birds and one stone right there

  13. #27
    Registered User dragonwrx1's Avatar
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    REZA at Santa Monica subaru in CA is really great. He very knowledable on subarus and he is the fleet/internet sale maneger.! he gave a great deal on my 06 wagon and he has a awesome wagon on his own (modded LOl even though he encourge me not to mod my wagon) ^_^ which i wont yet... hehe
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  14. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by dragonwrx1
    REZA at Santa Monica subaru in CA is really great. He very knowledable on subarus and he is the fleet/internet sale maneger.! he gave a great deal on my 06 wagon and he has a awesome wagon on his own (modded LOl even though he encourge me not to mod my wagon) ^_^ which i wont yet... hehe
    haha he probably wants all the attention to himself bro!

  15. #29
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    Subaru of Santa Monica - same o same o

    a year and a half ago i went into SSM to BUY a wrx regular... the salesman was a joke. had no clue of most of the features of the car. i had to sell it to myself. then when i wanted to buy right now, they couldn't get me into one. something about not having the car on the lot and they would have to get one in. So, i left and bought a chrysler 300 (i know - puke). 10 months later i sold the 300 on ebay. the guy came in from Las Vegas to buy it. after we signed the deal, i had him drop me off at SSM. Ready to BUY. no car, good credit and motivated to buy. the didn't have a silver 06 STI on the lot. they knew me from a year back, and offered to get one from down south (san diego) and run it up to my house the next day. the next day came and went - no call. a few more days came and went - no call. i can't believe these guys! I'm a buyer - sell me a freaking car, or at least call me and SELL me a different color. so after a week or so, i hoped on Ebay, got some $$ from my bank (at a cheaper rate than SSM offered me) and bought an 05 STI from a ford dealer in MO - ba da bing. one week later the transport droped it off at my house and i was reborn.

    Don't go to SSM if you want to be sold. they don't know how to sell.

    dealers suck.

  16. #30
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    I don't know, guys. I bought my 02 used from the Subaru dealership. I dealt with the owner. I test drove it a few times, drove a couple of new ones, talked to a few of their sales guys, ect... When it was time to do the deal, they called the owner of the dealership in. We haggled for about 15 minutes. Then we visited for a while. Then we haggled for a few more minutes. Did another test drive, haggled some more. We spent the whole morning (December 31) at the dealership. I would call it a good experience. There were a few snags, but they did everything they agreed to do.

    As far as the service department goes, I don't know. I do my own service and there's not much I need to do in the near future because the engine is brand new. I do know that this dealership also does a heck of a job restoring cars. They have a Porsche Carrera on the rotisserie right now. I've seen their work on other cars and it's fantastic. I wouldn't hesitate to have them do anything to mine. And the owner is a huge car guy. He knows his stuff.
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