Seriously, a survey by Consumer Reports shows 57% of car buyers are very satisfied with the treatment they got at the dealer. Another 31% said they were somewhat satisfied. That means 88% of those surveyed drove away from their car dealer with a smile on their face. If you find that surprising, get this: Of the car buyers surveyed, 96% said they considered the deal they got "fair."
If you're wondering how such a high percentage of the public can be so overjoyed with car dealers, the magazine brings up some more interesting statistics that could help explain this. An overwhelming majority (90%) said they found the staff "informed and helpful," which, from our car-shopping experiences leads us to believe the survey respondents themselves could have benefited from some automotive education. Backing up our suspicion, Consumer Reports says from looking at answers to other questions in the survey, car buyers could have saved themselves some money by gathering more information before going shopping and by learning the tricks negotiating a better deal.

The survey also showed that 18% of customers who received satisfaction surveys from their dealer were offered incentives (like free oil changes) in exchange for a favorable report. Paying for good grades is a no-no, and we recently had a post on that problem. Hopefully, next time this poll is done, it's no longer an issue.

Consumer Reports points out, and we agree, that the bottom line in car buying is, no matter how helpful or informed the sales person is, they will almost never have you as their No. 1 priority. Always, always go in with a plan and as much information as you can gather and stick to your guns.

[Source: Consumer Reports]

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