CarsDirect Clarity Pricing... gone downhill

Discussion in 'Clarity' started by NocEdit, Jun 21, 2019.

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  1. NocEdit

    NocEdit Member

    I used CarsDirect to buy a car 5 years ago for my wife... It was a pretty great car buying broker experience. Got the price they quoted and had it delivered to my house and signed the dealership paperwork in my living room. Also had all the power in negotiating my trade in.. because the dealer would have had to Uber it 50 miles back to the dealership if he didn't give me the quoted price for my trade in. I had all the power.

    Fast forward 5 years... And CarsDirect has gone downhill and is a shell of it's former self. They no longer have a broker find a car for you.. they just send your "wishful" Target price quote to a nearby dealership and then you get emailed and called by 5 people at the same dealership. The dealership that contacted me didn't even have the color I requested. Look, i understand their target price of $31520 was a steal.. and they are factoring in the current unadvertised $6K dealer rebate. But, it's basically false advertising, because dealers aren't giving up that much money to sell Clarity's. Best offer i got was $3K off MSRP.. or $34520... and the dealer still said he'd have to run it by his manager.

    Anyone have better luck with Costco's car buying service? I'm not a member, but was thinking of joining if they can get me closer to the full $6k rebate without hassle.
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  3. 2002

    2002 Well-Known Member

    I assume that you live in California or Oregon which are the only states that I know of that currently have the $6,000 dealer (not consumer) incentive. People are reporting that through Costco they are getting the $6,000 discount, in fact it's even listed on the Costco website last time I checked if you specify your location as California or Oregon. And many are getting an additional discount from the dealer on top of that.

    Plus if you get a Costco membership you can get a hot dog and a soda for $1.50.
  4. ab13

    ab13 Active Member

    If the Costco has an outdoor snack bar, then you should be able to buy in cash without a membership. Maybe that's not the policy, but they never asked for membership info when ordering, that I've ever seen.
    bfd likes this.
  5. 2002

    2002 Well-Known Member

    Not all Costco's in California have an outdoor food court, but if the Costco near the OP does then yes the only advantage would be the $6,000 discount :)
  6. Bender

    Bender Active Member

    As an out of state buyer I got a CA quote for a 2019 touring at under $30k. Hardly a steal (from dealer perspective)... they're getting the mfr incentives bringing down the cost and still making a profit. Yes, it IS a very great deal factoring in the 7500 credit.

    I ended up finding one a little closer (250mi away, had to use half a day vacation and then stay overnight. If I'd waited until Saturday instead, i'd have had to stay two additional nights until Monday...) of 2018 Touring variant. $26334+ttl Just drove it into my garage an hour ago. A deal I am very happy with what I received. But still not really a "steal" IMO, the dealer was only losing $4k. Which IMO is not much at all for over a year of depreciation / inventory mismanagement / inability to sell. A steal would be an unreasonable discount from where depreciation takes it in a year from the original costs.

    I am out of the loop on car sales and my purchase was an unplanned vehicle replacement. Honda as well as several other dealer associations have banned dealers from advertising below invoice or they will receive fines or not be shipped cars. This makes it a complete PITA to comparison shop. Should be made illegal to do this with cars, it already has with some other consumer goods. You have to basically call or physically visit every dealership to comparison shop. And calling for prices is still bad, because then you have to agree to a price before seeing condition. And it's a non-binding agreement they can change when you get there after you have already used time (transport, test drive, inspection) and are ready to pay. However, with things as-is, people willing to call around and throw out offers lower than the posted number have a discount advantage paid for by the average buyers.
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2019
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  8. coutinpe

    coutinpe Active Member

    I got $3K down using Costco discount. However, looking at what other people have reported here, I suspect I didn't get too much of a deal for it. Paid 34K for the Touring.
  9. 4sallypat

    4sallypat Active Member

    If Honda is offering the $6,000 incentive, and one wishes to lease, how does the $7500 Federal tax incentive work?
  10. insightman

    insightman Well-Known Member

    Only owners can claim the $7,500 federal tax credit. Supposedly, Honda adjusts lease payments to give lessors a compensatory break.
  11. Kestrel

    Kestrel Member

    I bought mine (in March 2018) through what was then and is now BuySide Auto. They gave me quotes on both the Touring and base, buying and leasing. Their prices were far better than I was getting from my local dealer and I didn't have to wait 2 months for the color I wanted. So I bought my Touring through them. They delivered it and handled all the paperwork including financing through Honda. I was completely satisfied and only wish I'd found them earlier in my search!
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  13. When I bought mine (CPO) in February, as best as I could tell, Honda was only passing the $7500 along on leases in ZEV states. I could go to Honda websites in ZEV states and get monthly lease prices (on new Clarities) significantly below what I was getting from the Honda calculator on the Indiana dealer site I was buying from. It's a buyer beware situation, the lessor can pass the savings from the credit on to the lessee, but they don't have to.
  14. sniwallof

    sniwallof Active Member

    Early this year, in NY, Honda passed on both the full Fed $7,500 and the full NY incentive to those taking a lease, plus you could do a little negotiating on top of that. I haven't seen that deal again, but it's likely to come back when they want to clear out the '19s. It was for the base model only.

    Others here have reported better deals both in buying and leasing, some folks are just better at buying cars at the lowest possible prices.
  15. Vic

    Vic New Member

    I had great experience with Costco in the past (I bought 2 cars) until this time when I shopped for the Clarity. I approached 2 different assigned dealers, 1 was taken out of costco list by the time I was ready to buy and they didn't want to give up the $6k. The 2nd dealer, had 5 clarity 2018 on the lot (this was 2 months ago), they wouldn't take the $6k off until i mentioned it. So I walked out since I had a pending to be confirmed better offer from another dealer for a 2019. I ended up buying from another dealer. I got the same price a business acquaintance of mine who bought 3 weeks before. I got the basic trim with wheel locks, trunk tray and all weather mats included. $8k under msrp. No hassles.If you are still looking for one and the dealer incentive is still active I can provide you his info.
  16. 4sallypat

    4sallypat Active Member

    ^^^ Yes @sniwallof this is correct!

    2018 model Clarity, the deals were spectacular - especially in the north east US ZEV states like NY. They got huge discounts for leasing ($7500 instant cap cost credit + $300 Honda incentive + $1700 NYS tax credit + $3000 ZEV credit). That was what tuned me into the Clarity because the NY residents got leases for $200/month.
    I could not replicate the deal as I am in CA, but came close with $10,800 in total discounts which came out to $285/month lease.
  17. RedBarronDriver

    RedBarronDriver New Member

    After reading Slickdeals posting that some CA and OR dealers were giving the extra $6k off from Honda, we bought 2018 Clarity Touring for $12k off but it did take negotiating. If you do use Costco Auto Program, there is also a coupon for accessories which will offset the membership fees (Executive members save up $200; Basic members save up to $100).

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