I want to try to get some new laws started about dealer pricing on motorcycles.
When you buy a car, by law, they must have sticker prices on the car. But for motorcycles, there is no law.
Without mentioning names, I can not stand going in to a dealer to look at a bike and it has no pricing information on it. Yes, I research first but it is infuriating that the sales people "have to check" to see the price of the bike.
I want to go about finding a way to have these dealers be treated like car dealers and make them put the price on the bike.
Any thoughts or suggestions to help me? I would really appreciate it. Thanx!
Motorcycles don't fall into the same category as cars, but if check the motorcycle manufacture web site they do have (key word here ) Suggested MSRP listed. I know HD does, but like in the cars business an addeum sticker can be added for additional mark up, It happened when the new Camero came out. Saw one dealer mark one up $6000.00 as market demand profit, perfectly legal. Every HD dealer I've been in has always had pricing tags hanging from the handlebars. Now if you're talking about a used car or bike they don't fall into that pricing category, they can charge what ever they can get for it!! If the dealer isn't hanging the prices on the bikes go find a more reputable dealer I'm sure there are plenty around. This is from 20 year's experience in the automotive business. Besides right now there's a glut of bikes so the dealers are pricing them to move. I can remember a few years ago that the only way to get a new HD was to order one and wait 6 months, today the local HD dealer here in Fayetteville, NC has at least 40 in the show room and some in the warehouse. this is becoming the norm also. Hope this helps, good Luck in your purchase.... Just don't bang your head on the wall over the frustration
Post by rangemaster on Feb 26, 2011 10:16:59 GMT -6
Do you guys want to have a little fun with this situation?
If you and a few other people have the time and are willing to to do it, try this:
When there's no price marked - have you and some other folks go into the dealership over the span of a day or more, browse the bikes, and select your one or more "target" bike(s). Try to have a "variety" of "accomplices" when you do this; female versus male, perhaps a few different races, dressed in biker garb versus poor/casual/sharp-dressed non-biker clothes, etc, etc, etc.
Have each person (or a couple) act somewhat differently - but be sure to ask a salesperson for the price.
Compare notes for any differences - not just in the quoted price, but any additional "deals" "offers", treatment, etc (especially when comparing/contrasting the SAME salespersons).
I've participated in this and similar practices several times - mostly in the military as part of a base investigative team that would go to nearby vehicle dealerships and particularly any place that required a membership or non-published/selective fee or admission practice such as health clubs, shopping clubs, night clubs, etc.
Usually, if you got obvious and seemingly intentional different responses from the business, it was the result of a contrast between when we sent in "salt and pepper teams" (white versus black or other race), or indications of differences in wealth between the folks we sent in.
Some large chains or franchises contract outside businesses or have their own teams - yes, the "secret shoppers" - who do this to "test" their individual locations to ensure adherence to customer service/treatment policies, etc.
Just simply apply that concept to your "friendly" dealership - or anywhere else you may desire - and, as I said, have some fun...
I can remember a few years ago that the only way to get a new HD was to order one and wait 6 months...
I remember those "waiting lists" - and many Harley dealerships also had a waiting list just to be on the waiting list before the individual bikes were projected to reserve/order.
Most of the Harley dealerships abused these lists. They would take the list, and allow people to "sell" their position on either list. The agreement was that the dealership, in turn, would get a "cut" of the re-sale amount.
Many people got on those lists with no intention of even buying a bike. They'd just sell their position - for a profiting higher price - to someone else.
The worst was when someone was on the list after reserving a particular model & features bike once the dealership received the projection of its delivery. It went something like this, for example:
Dealership received a projection of a 19##-year Heritage Softail Classic in #### color and with ##### particular features. MSRP of ##### dollars.
The top person on the list to reserve that particular model may accept it and be projected as the buyer.
However, THAT person would often in turn SELL off the reservation to somebody who actually WANTED to buy a bike - for a thousand or (often) more dollars. The dealership got its "cut" of that thousand or more dollars - and transferred the projected specific bike's reservation to the other person.
Sometimes, the same bike would be re-sold several times while on the projected-delivery list.
If the person who was the current list holder received a higher offer to lose his/her reservation (often being notified by the dealership that someone else was willing to buy it away), then that person would decide whether to take the buy-off or not. IF they did take the buy-off, that person would just remain satisfied with his/her current ride and make the profit. If the current list holder really wanted the new bike regardless of the re-sale profit, that person would often continue with it and take delivery as scheduled.
Many times, the same people would "chrome out" or otherwise accessorize the new bike and then repeat the above process the following year - making decisions along the way if/when to re-sell their place on a waiting list or just "stay pat" and continue with buying the new bike.
They knew that - because the above process made it so hard to get a NEW bike - they could often re-sell their then 1-year old model to someone who wasn't on the lists for about the same, or perhaps MORE, as they paid for it, if they wanted or if necessary.
But that's an entirely different matter - that is currently (and thankfully for many of us) history...
You know the game well,,, I was very lucky ;D the HD here at the time was a friend and I eventually worked for him for a short while so I bought my bike at the time out of the warehouse. being in a military town,, Fayetteville his allotment of bikes was quite high... I was aware of a few dealers who did the list after list, many of those are still in business but they're feeling the glut real bad and hate to say but well deserved I do like your other idea about different people going to the same dealership and seeing what kind of price they got, then compare them. Hell some newspapers ie the UN News in MB that's always looking to report on honest people may do an article on the honest dealer..... OMG did I say that