Rich or poor, everyone loves a good deal. This is especially true on big-ticket purchases such as cars. However, determining what a good price on a car is can feel like trying to hit a moving target. Many cars have a variety of options available, which will greatly impact the price of the car. While the dealer is likely to laugh at you if you ask him to tell you what he paid for the car, there are ways that you can get a fairly good idea as to what the invoice price on the car is.
If you want to figure out the approximate invoice on the car, you need to know more than the make and model. For example, let's say that you are considering purchasing a Ford Mustang. Do you want a hard-top, or a convertible? If it's a hard top, do you want a moon roof? Are the seats cloth or leather? What color is the car? What kind of stereo system does it have? What type of engine does it have? Get as specific as possible. If the car you are considering is on a dealer's lot, you may want to pay the dealer a visit after hours and take some notes on the car's fact sheet.
Do The Research.
Once you have pin-pointed the car that you want, use the internet to help you do your research. Websites such as Edmunds and Kelley Blue Book allow you to enter the various options on a particular make and model. The more detailed you can get in the trim options on the car, the more likely it'll be that you'll get an accurate estimate of invoice price. You'll want to go through this process with a couple of different sites, to ensure that you are getting accurate information.
So you've picked out your car. Is it perfect as-is, or do you want to customize it? Adding options on will obviously increase the price of the car. Again, it helps to be specific. For this part of the process you may need to meet with the dealer to find out what options are available, and how much extra they would be.
Although it can take awhile to do the homework involved, it is well worth the effort to get an estimated invoice price on the vehicle. Knowing this one number will put you in a better position to know if you are getting a good deal.