Monday, May 28, 2012

Cars Flying Off the Shelf

This goes against everything I thought about the state of the economy but apparently the local Honda dealer just had a record Memorial Day. I don't know if this is a blockbuster number but they said that they sold 60 cars today. And in the hour we were in there signing a lease on a 2012 Accord they said they sold 20 of them.

I have to admit, the place was jammed when we got there at 5pm. We also got the last spot in their parking lot.

So, are car buyers back? or was May just one of those "tent sale" months when deals were plentiful? Or does everyone just like Hondas?

The smarmy "business manager," who runs the credit check and then tries to sell you add-on insurance for dents, theft and towing - all of which is covered under my auto insurance, by the way - said that Honda was trying to regain market share after losing it following last year's Japanese quake/tsunami and Thailand floods. Reasonable. Of course he made the earthquake and tsunami two separate events - which they weren't.

He then went on to say our lease was 8 bucks a day. Yeah, we got a good deal but come on, that is how you try to tell us we got a super low price? Just like the food ad that gives you cost per serving vs. cost per pound.  Who buys on cost per serving? And when are the gas stations going to lose the "nine tenths" pricing? It meant something when gas was 29 cents but not at 3.89.

Isn't that worth a dollar a day? (whatever "that" is). How much is peace of mind cost? Isn;t your family worth it?

Smarmy, haughty and with fake banter. He shut up quickly when my wife told him that without the low price we'd be at another dealer. Then he really tried to make nice and sound smart when he found out what I do for a living.  Sorry, pal, no free stock advice. And yes, I understand that low interest rates mean low lease prices. And no, I am not impressed with your hedge fund manager name dropping.

So, was it car salesman wheeling and dealing or is everyone buying a new car these days? I think you know the answer. They were giving them away and in my view to pad what was shaping up to a be a record  breaking month for them. See Honda, we are an awesome dealership! We don't make any money but we sure push product for ya!

I need a shower.


monroe said...

While this comment does not relate to your post, I wonder how your Barron's column today squares with your Barron's column of 5/14 (Gold Miner's Ready to Rock). Can gold and more specifically, gold miner stocks, rise with a rising dollar?


Quick Takes Pro said...

Gold can rally even with a rising dollar. It just looks like less of a rally - until you look at in in terms of euros and other currencies.