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New Car Buying Tips: How Much Should a New Car Cost?

How much should a new car cost?How much should a new car cost? While there’s no single answer to this question, dealers should be able to sell you a new car for 1-2% over the invoice price and still make a fair and acceptable profit.

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There are quite a few websites you can visit to find out what the invoice price of a car should be. Our personal favorite here at is, but you can also find out invoice price on,, Yahoo! Autos, and believe it or not, a lot of the manufacturers are starting to put this information on their websites too.

Once you have the invoice price in your hand, request a few quotes from different places before you approach a dealer. You never know, you might hit upon a special offer when you do that and end up with a price that’s even less than invoice. Try Edmunds, and at least three other places, to make sure you don’t miss anything.

What happens when a dealer doesn’t want to sell you a car for 1-2% over invoice? Sometimes when a new vehicle is in high demand, it’s almost impossible to get a discount. If you’re not willing to pay full price, then your best strategy is to wait for demand to die down.

There are times when a dealership refuses to budge on price because of “principle.” They don’t want to discount their car because it’s a luxury vehicle, because they say it’s scarce, or because they know they’re the only dealer in the area with that particular car.

When a dealer refuses to budge on price, there are a few things you can try:

  • Get back online, but widen your search to different states and metropolitan areas. For instance, you might be able to go to a different city or state and save a couple thousand dollars. If you’re saving that much money, it would make sense to fly or drive there to pick up your car. The really cool part is that a lot of big dealers in large cities are willing to deliver the car to you, even if you’re out of state.
  • Buy on the last day of the month. Dealers always have quotas that they have to meet, or contests that they’re taking part in, or they have incentives to sell a certain amount of cars, etc. These all stop at the end of the month, and if selling you a car will help the dealer meet their sales goal, they might stretch quite a bit to get your business.
  • Try calling the dealership in the middle of a storm. Dealers are expected to sell a certain amount of cars every day, regardless of the weather. If you make them an offer in the middle of a storm, you might be pleasantly surprised. The only catch is, you have to be willing to go to the dealership during the storm to pick up your new car! :-)

As always, take your time when buying a new car. Do your new car research, get multiple new car financing quotes, and feel free to contact us with your questions.

4 Comments Post a comment
  1. Mike T #

    Purchasing a new car can be an overwhelming experience for anyone but especially for those who have never bought a car before. Simple price negotiations can turn into tactical encounters, resulting in anxiety for new car buyers.
    you can save your money by looking into any current sales on the car in which you are interested.

    January 26, 2014
  2. Will #

    Ensuring that your potential vehicle drives well is just as important as any other consideration.
    Any car that you are thinking about buying should pass your initial test-drive before you make any final decisions.

    January 26, 2014
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    April 30, 2016

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