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Horrible Experience at Ford Dealer- Is Tesla’s Non-Dealer Model Better?

Brademcee

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Let me start by saying that I really want a MME but after buying a Tesla a few years ago, I really appreciate the anti-dealer model. It is unemotional and straight forward process. I still feel like most dealers are not to be trusted, which is unfortunate.

I live in the Chicago suburbs and have been calling around to dealers in the area to see if any have a FEs on the lot. I totally get the laws of supply and demand where a dealer feels like they can mark up a car over MSRP but do not lie about it.

On Saturday I get a call from a Chicago dealer in the Naperville area that they have (2) First Editions available for sale and to come in right away. I ask her to send me the Window sticker and when she did, it was indeed a FE. I look up the VIN to verify and again, FE. I then check the dealer's website and they are showing the car as available (plus 4 others) but every car is marked up about $10K.

I then email the woman back saying that if they were selling the car for over MSRP, I was not interested. She emails me back and says she will talk to her manager. She emails me later to say the manager says the cars are listed with taxes and other add-ons but the car is available and come in to finalize.

So today I drive the 50 miles to Naperville and sit down with the sales person. He tells me that they can not honor my X-Plan on a stock car on the lot and then asked what I thought was fair topay. I told him that I would pay MSRP and would forgo the X-Plan discount. He comes back with it marked up $5K over MSRP. After a long discussion he drops it to $62,000 and starts showing me the financial numbers.

He first tells me that the Ford Options is a horrible program and all of his buyers are going with this Ford Flex Plan which is basically a 60 or 72 month finance program where in the first 36 months you pay a smaller amount (about 38% of the principal at 3.9% and then about 62% during the last 3 years of the program). The numbers just didn't make sense. With a $62K (with their ADM) and putting down $5K my payments would average around $980 per month.

I then told him he is nuts and to pull up the Ford website so I can show him the Ford Options calculator. So we went through the process.....and sure enough the payment came out to around $780 for the 48 month option. If I added the sales tax I was around $890. He says let me go talk to my manager. About 5 minutes later he comes back and says your right. They were looking at the wrong system! He says the Ford Options gives you 2.25% but the deal still is not as good as "their flex plan". He said the Ford calculator does not add in ANY taxes or other surcharges so when you do its back at $950.

At this point, I was so pissed that I just told him that I did not trust the dealership after they told me to come in and the car would be sold for MSRP and now going through this whole "lesson" just seemed dirty. Am I overreacting here.....? I must admit that I misread the disclaimer on the Ford website and thought it included sales tax......which I reread and realized it does not.

Am I in the wrong here? Should I just expect to be paying $950 per month for a Premium extended range trim (with about $5K down 48-month 10K miles per year)? Is the dealer model better or would we all rather just be dealing with Ford and picking up our vehicles locally at a delivery center?
 
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SteelMach

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My vehicle was ordered back on reveal night in 2019, so I didn't have the issues of tracking the vehicle down, but still had issues with the process.

I had to inform the dealer that Ford Options existed.
Then I had to clarify to the dealer that Ford Options is *not* the same as Flex Buy.
Then I had to clarify to the dealer that Ford Options was 2.25% not like 9%.
Then I had to remind the dealer that there was a $100 rebate on the CoPilot whatever it's called
Then I had to remind the dealer I had already given them a $500 order deposit and that needed to be included as a down payment.

But eventually, after a few hours of phone calls, multiple visits to the showroom, and a final hour sitting there with the finance manager and the salesman, I took the car home.

Once we were all on the same page, it went easy. But I was absolutely their guinea pig, I had to teach them about the car itself.

That said, with Options there is a higher interest rate (2.25%) and unlike a lease, you are paying the sales tax on the entire vehicle's price.

Actual Options residual varies with the mileage chosen, but that should be something they *should* be able to tell you easily.
 

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Let me start by saying that I really want a MME but after buying a Tesla a few years ago, I really appreciate the anti-dealer model. It is unemotional and straight forward process. I still feel like most dealers are not to be trusted, which is unfortunate.

I live in the Chicago suburbs and have been calling around to dealers in the area to see if any have a FEs on the lot. I totally get the laws of supply and demand where a dealer feels like they can mark up a car over MSRP but do not lie about it.

On Saturday I get a call from a Chicago dealer in the Naperville area that they have (2) First Editions available for sale and to come in right away. I ask her to send me the Window sticker and when she did, it was indeed a FE. I look up the VIN to verify and again, FE. I then check the dealer's website and they are showing the car as available (plus 4 others) but every car is marked up about $10K.

I then email the woman back saying that if they were selling the car for over MSRP, I was not interested. She emails me back and says she will talk to her manager. She emails me later to say the manager says the cars are listed with taxes and other add-ons but the car is available and come in to finalize.

So today I drive the 50 miles to Naperville and sit down with the sales person. He tells me that they can not honor my X-Plan on a stock car on the lot and then asked what I thought was fair topay. I told him that I would pay MSRP and would forgo the X-Plan discount. He comes back with it marked up $5K over MSRP. After a long discussion he drops it to $62,000 and starts showing me the financial numbers.

He first tells me that the Ford Options is a horrible program and all of his buyers are going with this Ford Flex Plan which is basically a 60 or 72 month finance program where in the first 36 months you pay a smaller amount (about 38% of the principal at 3.9% and then about 62% during the last 3 years of the program). The numbers just didn't make sense. With a $62K (with their ADM) and putting down $5K my payments would average around $980 per month.

I then told him he is nuts and to pull up the Ford website so I can show him the Ford Options calculator. So we went through the process.....and sure enough the payment came out to around $780 for the 48 month option. If I added the sales tax I was around $890. He says let me go talk to my manager. About 5 minutes later he comes back and says your right. They were looking at the wrong system! He says the Ford Options gives you 2.25% but the deal still is not as good as "their flex plan". He said the Ford calculator does not add in ANY taxes or other surcharges so when you do its back at $950.

At this point, I was so pissed that I just told him that I did not trust the dealership after they told me to come in and the car would be sold for MSRP and now going through this whole "lesson" just seemed dirty. Am I overreacting here.....? I must admit that I misread the disclaimer on the Ford website and thought it included sales tax......which I reread and realized it does not.

Am I in the wrong here? Should I just expect to be paying $950 per month for a Premium extended range trim (with about $5K down 48-month 10K miles per year)?
Take a hike and order one with the X plan. Do not pay more than MSRP.
 

0CO2

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I didn't have quite that horrible experience, but I wasn't entirely unscathed either. Last week I took delivery of my MME FE. I got my order in very early (I put my $500 in for a pre-reservation in November 2019, and the formal order wnwentent in last June), so I ended up with the first one delivered in Oregon. So far, so good.

My dealer did honor the X-Plan pricing. Even better. It was a cash sale though, so didn't have to deal with financing. There was no markup either. So even better.

I just discovered last night that the dealer neglected to credit me for the $1000 downpayment all Mach-e buyers have to put down - which is what I paid back in June. So now I'm waiting for confirmation that they'll refund the $1000. I mention this so other Mach-e customers with orders and deposits in are careful to check the sales documents so they are properly credited at time of sale.

I don't think it was intentional - just a dealer selling their first EV and dropping the ball on one of the details. At least that's how it is if I don't return to this thread later in case there are any problems getting my refund

As an aside, it is a royal pain that I can't order Ford accessories online though - I have to go through the dealer, and the dealer doesn't know how to credit my FordPass points against a parts/accessories purchase. So there are some serious disadvantages to the dealer network approach to selling vs. Tesla's. The only positive in my estimation is that I am a 2-hour drive to the nearest Tesla service center, and I'm a 15 minute drive to the local Ford dealer - so for servicing I expect this to be a significant advantage.

Good luck with your attempts to buy a Mach-e. Too bad buyers in your area are getting taken advantage of by local dealers.
 
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Brademcee

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Take a hike and order one with the X plan. Do not pay more than MSRP.
I do have one on order with a May build date. Thanks....just seems crazy to pay over MSRP for ANY car.
 

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As an aside, it is a royal pain that I can't order Ford accessories online though - I have to go through the dealer, and the dealer doesn't know how to credit my FordPass points against a parts/accessories purchase.
What baffles me is that Ford does have a pretty good online parts website - Fordparts.com - but Fordparts.com can't interact with FordPass Rewards neither to use points or earn points, even though all FordParts.com transactions still go "through" a dealer.
 

Mach-E VLOG

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I'm not a fan of having to work with dealers to buy a car, but it's not that big of a deal to me. I've never really had an issue in the past either. Have they tried upselling me on stuff or quoting a hire interest rate than the advertised deal, yep. Each time, I just stated what I wanted and expected. If you are willing to walk away, they have zero power. And I'm always willing to walk away.

Is Tesla's method better? Maybe for selling the car, if you live close enough to a sales room so you can do a test drive. I also consider that I have to deal with a salesman once in the life of the car. But it is nice having a dealership close if there are any service issues. Plus, on road trips, its nice to have thousands of dealerships available as well. Last week I was watching a YouTube road trip vlog of someone in a Performance Model 3. They had a flat tire and a damaged wheel a few hours south east of Colorado Springs. Not only did they have an expensive tow all the way to Colorado Springs. And then the Service Center didn't have their wheel. They ended up having to buy a whole new set of wheels to continue their trip (they could have also waite a couple weeks for a replacement wheel).
 

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You can use the Ford.com website to find the First Editions in your area ... no need to call the dealers.

  1. Go to Ford.com
  2. Scroll to the bottom of the page and look for "Search Inventory" (in the dark gray box ... under the heading "Shopping tools")
  3. It'll display a list of car models, pick the Mach-E
  4. On the next page it will offer Find it at your dealer with another "Search Inventory" button ... click it.
  5. Enter your zip code. It will default to a 20 mile search radius but you can increase it up to 100 miles (or just enter another zip code farther away)
It'll display the matching cars -- but only 12 at a time -- you can scroll to the bottom and click "View more results".

First editions are easy to spot in the profile view because the fender skirts are painted body color. On Premium Edition they are painted gloss black. On the Select Edition they are a dull black (I think they are unpainted).

First Editions will have an MSRP in the $59,000-60,000 range.

The base price of the Premium is $49,700
The First Edition package adds: $8,600
The destination/delivery is: $1,100

This means you can think of the bottom price of a First Edition as being: $59,400

If the car has Rapid Red paint, then add $400
If the car had the Interior Protection Package (winter floor maps in addition to the carpet mats) then add $240

I'm in the Detroit area where everyone either works for the auto-industry or has a relative who works in the auto-industry. So there's basically no such thing as a dealer in this area that doesn't take the employee or supplier discount plans (e.g. A/Z/X for Ford). But in other cities where refusing to honor those plans wouldn't necessarily result in the loss of many car sales ... they don't have to honor the plan (I have heard there are rules around dealers who accept vs. deny the plan pricing. I thought I was told that it was sort of an all-or-nothing thing in that they either have to honor it on all vehicles where it is offered ... or not take it on any car. They can't accept it on cars they have a hard time moving ... and then reject it on hot-sellers where they want to mark up the car. But I'm not an authority on those rules ... that's just what I've heard.)

You are not likely to find a dealer that will sell a First Edition at less than MSRP. Finding a dealer who will honor X-Plan ... or even one that just sells at straight-up MSRP without a markup is a victory.
 

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Then I had to remind the dealer I had already given them a $500 order deposit and that needed to be included as a down payment.
Oh! Thank you! I just realized now that my dealer still holds the $500 deposit. I contacted the salesperson just now, and got a promise that I'll get it back in a week or so.
 
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Brademcee

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You can use the Ford.com website to find the First Editions in your area ... no need to call the dealers.

  1. Go to Ford.com
  2. Scroll to the bottom of the page and look for "Search Inventory" (in the dark gray box ... under the heading "Shopping tools")
  3. It'll display a list of car models, pick the Mach-E
  4. On the next page it will offer Find it at your dealer with another "Search Inventory" button ... click it.
  5. Enter your zip code. It will default to a 20 mile search radius but you can increase it up to 100 miles (or just enter another zip code farther away)
It'll display the matching cars -- but only 12 at a time -- you can scroll to the bottom and click "View more results".

First editions are easy to spot in the profile view because the fender skirts are painted body color. On Premium Edition they are painted gloss black. On the Select Edition they are a dull black (I think they are unpainted).

First Editions will have an MSRP in the $59,000-60,000 range.

The base price of the Premium is $49,700
The First Edition package adds: $8,600
The destination/delivery is: $1,100

This means you can think of the bottom price of a First Edition as being: $59,400

If the car has Rapid Red paint, then add $400
If the car had the Interior Protection Package (winter floor maps in addition to the carpet mats) then add $240

I'm in the Detroit area where everyone either works for the auto-industry or has a relative who works in the auto-industry. So there's basically no such thing as a dealer in this area that doesn't take the employee or supplier discount plans (e.g. A/Z/X for Ford). But in other cities where refusing to honor those plans wouldn't necessarily result in the loss of many car sales ... they don't have to honor the plan (I have heard there are rules around dealers who accept vs. deny the plan pricing. I thought I was told that it was sort of an all-or-nothing thing in that they either have to honor it on all vehicles where it is offered ... or not take it on any car. They can't accept it on cars they have a hard time moving ... and then reject it on hot-sellers where they want to mark up the car. But I'm not an authority on those rules ... that's just what I've heard.)

You are not likely to find a dealer that will sell a First Edition at less than MSRP. Finding a dealer who will honor X-Plan ... or even one that just sells at straight-up MSRP without a markup is a victory.
The problem with the search is it shows FACP and customer cars too. You have to click on each one and go to the dealer website. Many times the cars are not posted on the dealer website or if they are, they are for customers. Thus, you still need to call. I would be willing to pay MSRP but just no ADM (and honor my X-Plan).
 

TheVirtualTim

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The problem with the search is it shows FACP and customer cars too. You have to click on each one and go to the dealer website. Many times the cars are not posted on the dealer website or if they are, they are for customers. Thus, you still need to call. I would be willing to pay MSRP but just no ADM (and honor my X-Plan).
It will show the FCTP cars (but none of those are First Editions).
It does not show customer cars unless the customer abandoned their order. At least... I was monitoring my own dealer's website and I could see their demo car listed, but no other customer cars and my own car was never listed.
 

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I imagine most responses here will be individual stories of horrible dealer experiences. The said, I've had more decent experiences then poor experiences with dealers. Taken as a whole, I've had roughly the same negative experiences with dealers versus good experiences as I have with any retail purchase.

The sales industry in general rewards pushy or deceptive salespeople. This does not change just because you deal with a dealer or a manufacturer.

One real advantage to a dealer model is, if one dealer is awful you can usually just go to another. If you are stuck buying from a manufacturer they can try to force you to take delivery of a sub-par product or threaten to prevent you from buying one in the future.

Take it for what it's worth, my experience buying my FE was seamless. I told them what I wanted, they did their best to meet my expectations. Hope you can find what you are looking for and find a trustworthy salesperson.
 

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Let me start by saying that I really want a MME but after buying a Tesla a few years ago, I really appreciate the anti-dealer model. It is unemotional and straight forward process. I still feel like most dealers are not to be trusted, which is unfortunate.

I live in the Chicago suburbs and have been calling around to dealers in the area to see if any have a FEs on the lot. I totally get the laws of supply and demand where a dealer feels like they can mark up a car over MSRP but do not lie about it.

On Saturday I get a call from a Chicago dealer in the Naperville area that they have (2) First Editions available for sale and to come in right away. I ask her to send me the Window sticker and when she did, it was indeed a FE. I look up the VIN to verify and again, FE. I then check the dealer's website and they are showing the car as available (plus 4 others) but every car is marked up about $10K.

I then email the woman back saying that if they were selling the car for over MSRP, I was not interested. She emails me back and says she will talk to her manager. She emails me later to say the manager says the cars are listed with taxes and other add-ons but the car is available and come in to finalize.

So today I drive the 50 miles to Naperville and sit down with the sales person. He tells me that they can not honor my X-Plan on a stock car on the lot and then asked what I thought was fair topay. I told him that I would pay MSRP and would forgo the X-Plan discount. He comes back with it marked up $5K over MSRP. After a long discussion he drops it to $62,000 and starts showing me the financial numbers.

He first tells me that the Ford Options is a horrible program and all of his buyers are going with this Ford Flex Plan which is basically a 60 or 72 month finance program where in the first 36 months you pay a smaller amount (about 38% of the principal at 3.9% and then about 62% during the last 3 years of the program). The numbers just didn't make sense. With a $62K (with their ADM) and putting down $5K my payments would average around $980 per month.

I then told him he is nuts and to pull up the Ford website so I can show him the Ford Options calculator. So we went through the process.....and sure enough the payment came out to around $780 for the 48 month option. If I added the sales tax I was around $890. He says let me go talk to my manager. About 5 minutes later he comes back and says your right. They were looking at the wrong system! He says the Ford Options gives you 2.25% but the deal still is not as good as "their flex plan". He said the Ford calculator does not add in ANY taxes or other surcharges so when you do its back at $950.

At this point, I was so pissed that I just told him that I did not trust the dealership after they told me to come in and the car would be sold for MSRP and now going through this whole "lesson" just seemed dirty. Am I overreacting here.....? I must admit that I misread the disclaimer on the Ford website and thought it included sales tax......which I reread and realized it does not.

Am I in the wrong here? Should I just expect to be paying $950 per month for a Premium extended range trim (with about $5K down 48-month 10K miles per year)? Is the dealer model better or would we all rather just be dealing with Ford and picking up our vehicles locally at a delivery center?
I had same issue. went to evergreen ford and they had FE. at the time i probably would pay the 60k. but when he told me 7500 over msrp. i said you really think this is 67k car? he called me next day to see if i was still interested. today in seattle there are several FE at msrp and all the other trims listed at msrp. Went to another dealer they were not charging a mark up, but he went on and on about how he was selling the car at a loss so could not honor any discounts. REally? you expect me to believe that at msrp you are losing money? i said just the hold back would make you money, and at msrp make you even more. Oh but that goes to the dealer? Hmmm... so you are not making money cause the profit goes to the dealer? they also did not know about the options plan, kept trying to explain it as the flex plan. Said there was no options plan as i explained. Until i said hmmm... trying looking on the web site? seems i was right. lol
 

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I don’t mean to be unsympathetic, but I don’t understand why anyone would drive 50 miles to a dealership before the price was committed in writing.

Yea the dealerships suck. Yes the Tesla model is better. But dealerships don’t suck as bad if you keep them at arm’s length until you get a commitment in writing.

Come on, nobody’s selling a FE at xplan.
 
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Brademcee

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I had same issue. went to evergreen ford and they had FE. at the time i probably would pay the 60k. but when he told me 7500 over msrp. i said you really think this is 67k car? he called me next day to see if i was still interested. today in seattle there are several FE at msrp and all the other trims listed at msrp. Went to another dealer they were not charging a mark up, but he went on and on about how he was selling the car at a loss so could not honor any discounts. REally? you expect me to believe that at msrp you are losing money? i said just the hold back would make you money, and at msrp make you even more. Oh but that goes to the dealer? Hmmm... so you are not making money cause the profit goes to the dealer? they also did not know about the options plan, kept trying to explain it as the flex plan. Said there was no options plan as i explained. Until i said hmmm... trying looking on the web site? seems i was right. lol
OMG. Totally my same experience but a different dealer (I am guessing they make more money off their Flex Plan). I just posted a negative review on their Facebook page. I hate doing that but that is the only way to hold businesses accountable. Again, my issue isn’t a dealer selling it over MSRP. If someone will pay for it, then more power to the dealer. However, my issue is they led me into the dealership with the understanding I would be paying MSRP. I was even willing to give up the X-Plan too!
 



 









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