What do most people dread about the used car buying process? I would say dealing with shady car dealers and haggling over the price. Recently, Cat from Budget Blonde and Matt from Mom and Dad Money wrote that they were thinking about buying a car, and the blogger on the Well Heeled Blog just bought a car. So I figured I would share my no haggle car buying experience at Enterprise. Enterprise? You are probably asking. Don’t they rent cars? Well they also sell cars too.
“But it’s a Rental Car!”
The first response I usually get when I tell people that I bought my car from Enterprise is that they would never buy a rental car. For what it’s worth, I was told that the car was from their corporate fleet, though I don’t know whether that is true or not. Also, when I checked the CarFax of cars from other used car dealers, many sold cars that were rentals too. Sure, there are some out there who will mistreat a car because it’s a rental, but I think most people drive the rental like their own car. One positive of buying from a rental car company is that they make sure to perform routine maintenance and can probably provide you with the records. You can’t get that from other used cars.
“No Haggle means you’re not getting the best price!”
I’m not sure if this true. I think I got a pretty good deal. I bought a 2009 Hyundai Sonata back in the summer of 2010. The no-haggle price at Enterprise was $13,300. I found a 2009 Sonata with similar mileage on Autotrader.com for $9900, so I went to check it out. They told me that $9900 is the amount I would finance which did not include the $3000 downpayment. Shady! I left that dealership quickly.
I continued to search online and called a few places within a 50 mile radius of my house and tried to negotiate over the phone and via e-mail. I was able to get the price down to $13,400 (around the same price as the No-haggle price). However, the salesman assured me that if I came in person to the dealership, he could no doubt give me a better deal. I probably would have gotten the price under $13,000, but there was a matter of the $299 docking fee, destination fee, and various other fees that I can’t remember. At Enterprise, I paid a $149 document processing fee. There was no other fee except for the required governmental fees.
Why I chose to buy at Enterprise
As I explained above, the final cost was pretty comparable whether I bought from a regular dealership or from Enterprise, maybe I would have saved a few hundred dollars if I really negotiated at the dealership…maybe.
One big perk Enterprise was running at the time was that they offered $500 above KBB value for your trade-in (sometimes they offer $1000 above KBB value). I was trading in my ’97 Altima which I had driven for 10 years and it had almost 170,000 miles on it. They gave me a KBB value of $500 for the car and added another $500. I thought it was fair as my car had been in an accident according to the CarFax (the accident was caused by a previous owner as I bought it used). At the used car dealership, after negotiating the price of the vehicle, I’d have to negotiate the value of the trade-in. Haggle-free worked for me.
Other benefits include:
-The car was still under the manufacturer’s warranty
-They will buy it back within 7 days or 1000 miles if you are not happy with it
-The car went through their 109 point inspection (though I’m not that impressed by these alleged inspections)
-They offered a 12,000 mile Power Train Warranty and 12-month roadside assistance.
I was able to pay cash for the car, but if you need to finance, Penfed Credit Union has a partnership with Enterprise and offers interest rates of 0.99% for 48 months and 1.49% for 60 months (at the time this post was written). Those are pretty good rates.
As with buying used cars, always do your due diligence. This is just an account of my buying experience. While I had a good experience and have had no problems with my car, every used car and Enterprise Franchise is different. They also offer a referral if you refer your friends or family and they purchase a car. It was between $100 to $150.
Hertz also sells used cars. They offer a Rent2Buy program where you can rent the car for a 3-day test drive (the rental charge of $49 a day is waived if you buy the car). I have not tried this program, but the prices seem pretty good.
If I needed to buy another car, I wouldn’t hesitate to check out these no-haggle programs. If I didn’t end up buying from them, I would at least use the no-haggle price as a starting point for negotiations at the used car dealerships.
Have you every bought a car from a no-haggle dealer? Would you consider it?