Come December and the car prices in India (click here) plummet, automakers are busy churning out attractive discount and exchange deals that tempt the potential carbuyer to take the ultimate leap. Just as in Diwali, Christmas and New Year’s are very heavy on the selling and buying bandwagon. People are looking to buy things (albeit, attracted by the stupendous offers on the table) while service providers are looking to encourage more footfalls into their brick-and-mortar establishments, or more visits onto their online properties. And particularly, carmakers go to great lengths to keep the audience from picking wares from the competition, by loading their own deals exuberantly and strategically.
The Types of Offers- What must you expect?
Right off the bat, there are heavy discounts. Carmakers usually zero in on a fixed discounted amount, or a specified percentage that is excised from the car’s price in India (click here). The other most common offer is the Exchange Bonus– wherein, the customer is paid a specified sum of money for returning his/her old car and driving away with a new one from the dealership. Note that the car can be of any make or model and not necessarily from the same company as the one offering the bonus.
Then there are the Benefits. These range from the provision of free accessories, additional years on the warranty, additional paid service cycles, provision of such facilities as free on road assistance, etc. Car manufacturers are more readily on-board about dishing out these benefits as compared to discounts on their car models. Thus, keep your eyes open and negotiation skills on the high.
Drawbacks of the December Sales Rush
Upfront, all that discounts and freebies will appear too tempting to resist. However, do pay attention to the following considerations-
1) The year end discounts on cars is a very clever exercise to offload less popular car models, or those that might soon be replaced by a better iteration. This is literally, clearing off non-performing stocks!!
2) Most of the discounts and benefits on offer tend to be on the low-end models of your chosen car.
3) If deciding to go in for an exchange offer, check with a number of dealerships before zeroing in on the most profitable. The trade-in is just a ploy to encourage new business and most dealerships are too eager to let a potential customer slip by. The ball is most definitely in your court here.
Things to do before jumping in…
There are specific things that can do before embarking on your car quest. Like the wise old Scouts motto- Be Prepared!!
1) Research- Spend some time online, explore local publications or pay attention to those radio bulletins. The promotion gets very vocal and ‘difficult to miss’ in December.
2) Read the Fine Print- If some detail looks too good to be true, it probably isn’t. Do read the fine print, including those craftily represented percentages and the terms and conditions segment.
3) Check on an arbitrary Car Discovery Portal- These websites have all the latest news and views, including details customer feedback and comprehensive reviews of the cars that you are interested in. Plus, there are automotive experts that you can readily reach over the channels offered by these websites.
4) Get your Paperwork Ready- There will be loads of paperwork if you are jumping the exchange train, or hooking up with the EMI option. Keep all your paperwork on the ready and handy.
And, that’s it. Initially, the offers and discounts seem very irresistible, but you mustn’t forget that there are strong currents of economics and profitability at play here. Get smart, and enjoy your lovely new car through 2017 and beyond!!