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  #1  
Old February 16th, 2012, 12:58 AM
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Default Honda dealer reviews

I'm finally giving up on my '97 Geo. It's only got 60K but it's getting rusty; the body needs work. Anyone interested?

I'm kinda sold on the Honda Fit hatchback because of the cargo capacity together with the good mileage; I need to fit a wheelchair into the back of whatever I get and I'm tired of lifting it way up and over a trunk lip and then laying it down sideways and being unable to close the lid. I've had to bungee-cord the Geo's trunk lid down to keep the chair in place. That's not good for either the chair or the lid. With the Fit it looks like I could stand the chair upright and tie/bungee it down.

So there's Tony Honda, Pflueger and Windward. Has anyone had good, bad or indifferent sales experiences with any of those dealers?
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Old February 16th, 2012, 01:57 AM
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Default Re: Honda dealer reviews

pflueger honda ---ok with haggling...they want to be the dealer that always brags about selling the most...so they will come down in price (bought a '10 crv new back in '10)---but i hate their service department...(see my review on yelp.com)....their service dept was just not caring/didn't care about workmanship plus they LIED about doing a software update on the '10 crv hesitation problem...oh sure their service department's waiting room...looks nice and all, but their service really sucks! have taken our cr-v to dealer below...

honda windward ---may not go down as much as pflueger, but enough that you'd go home happy...plus their service is A+ !!! have used them since '03...
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  #3  
Old February 16th, 2012, 02:01 AM
Leo Lakio Leo Lakio is offline
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Default Re: Honda dealer reviews

I believe pzarquon just bought from Windward and was very pleased; maybe drop him a note?
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Old February 16th, 2012, 02:58 AM
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Default Re: Honda dealer reviews

Another vote for Pflueger! I had a bad experience with Honda Windward and the Tony salesman was always slow to respond. Initially, of the 3, Pflueger was the last on my list but they ended up coming in first! Thx for the heads up on the service dept., Hawaiiguy. I don't put many miles on a car so in the past 19 months I've had only one service and one small warranty repair that seems to have caused another problem! Hmmm!!!
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Old February 16th, 2012, 03:38 AM
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Default Re: Honda dealer reviews

Was that were he got his new car? I couldn't remember the details. Thanks, I'll do that.

Interesting. One vote for Pflueger with a no for Windward, one exactly the opposite. What am I to make of that?

I'm tempted to try Windward if only because I haven't been on H-3 in 20 years. Grins. Maybe I'll test drive at Tony Honda Waipio and then buy from one of the others.
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  #6  
Old February 16th, 2012, 11:07 AM
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Default Re: Honda dealer reviews

I've bought two cars from Honda Windward and have them do all my service. Perfectly happy with them!
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Old February 16th, 2012, 12:44 PM
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Default Re: Honda dealer reviews

My bad experience with Windward involved the internet dept. That salesman should not be dealing with people or, maybe, just females. Perhaps he doesn't work the floor and physically visiting the dealership would've yielded a totally different impression.
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Old February 16th, 2012, 12:49 PM
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Default Re: Honda dealer reviews

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Originally Posted by Linkmeister View Post
Was that were he got his new car? I couldn't remember the details. Thanks, I'll do that.

Interesting. One vote for Pflueger with a no for Windward, one exactly the opposite. What am I to make of that?

I'm tempted to try Windward if only because I haven't been on H-3 in 20 years. Grins. Maybe I'll test drive at Tony Honda Waipio and then buy from one of the others.
If you have the time and patience, figure out the specific trim level you want and simply ask for quotes from all three dealers. Often times, ratings for a dealer's sales dept, service dept, and parts dept can vary widely so you can always do ala carte. Buy from one and get it serviced at another.

If you're planning on financing a purchase, it would help if you secure an auto loan outside such as a credit union to protect yourself from another round of haggling with the respective dealer's finance dept.
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Old February 16th, 2012, 01:47 PM
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Default Re: Honda dealer reviews

The outside loan idea is a good one, that's for sure. I'd never make it in places where haggling is considered all good fun.
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Old February 16th, 2012, 02:45 PM
Leo Lakio Leo Lakio is offline
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Default Re: Honda dealer reviews

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Originally Posted by joshuatree View Post
If you're planning on financing a purchase, it would help if you secure an auto loan outside such as a credit union to protect yourself from another round of haggling with the respective dealer's finance dept.
As the hip kids say: +1

Dealers are much more accommodating if you already have financing; it's as though you walked into the dealership waving a wad of cash, and it's their desire to get you to give it to them. YOU hold the power - to walk away and leave them whimpering if you are not pleased.
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Old February 16th, 2012, 05:20 PM
joshuatree joshuatree is offline
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Originally Posted by Leo Lakio View Post
As the hip kids say: +1

Dealers are much more accommodating if you already have financing; it's as though you walked into the dealership waving a wad of cash, and it's their desire to get you to give it to them. YOU hold the power - to walk away and leave them whimpering if you are not pleased.
Spot on, in many ways, its even more powerful than a wad of cash because chances are, the dealer's gonna look at your cash with suspicion (fake bills?) whereas an auto loan check from a well known bank or CU, they know it's good. Heck, they've probably processed a few of them and know the procedure all too well. So that definitely gives the buyer leverage in negotiation.
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Old February 17th, 2012, 01:50 PM
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Default Re: Honda dealer reviews

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Originally Posted by joshuatree View Post
If you have the time and patience, figure out the specific trim level you want and simply ask for quotes from all three dealers.[...]
Good advice. This is what I did. I did so much homework before contacting the dealerships. I knew exactly what I wanted and why. I was, however, flexible on color.

Linkmeister...I was hooked on an Insight but my friend got a Fit and she loves it. Good choice. BTW...you might also throw HT's Craig Watanabe into the mix. He works at Hilo Honda and it might be worthwhile to see how he compares. Really.
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Old February 17th, 2012, 02:03 PM
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Linkmeister...I was hooked on an Insight but my friend got a Fit and she loves it. Good choice. BTW...you might also throw HT's Craig Watanabe into the mix. He works at Hilo Honda and it might be worthwhile to see how he compares. Really.
Now THOSE would be some serious shipping and destination fees!

Craig, if you're out there . . .
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  #14  
Old February 21st, 2012, 11:14 PM
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Default Re: Honda dealer reviews

The 2012 Fit is an excellent choice for those who need small size but humongous interior passenger/cargo space. It's also a very safe vehicle, how safe? My mom drives one. Nuff said.

Regarding financing, there are three ways to purchase a Honda. 1) Standard financing, 2) Lease and 3) Cash purchase.

All three represent great ways of getting into a vehicle. With standard financing, if you have tier one credit (720 to 900) you can get exceptional finance rates thru American Honda Finance Corporation (In-House Financing) at rates as low as 0.9% APR. Some Honda Dealerships buy down the rate (such as Hilo Honda) to 0% for up to 60 months. Do we pass that cost to our customers? No. We eat that cost.

Second is the lease option. If you are a driver that gets in and out of their vehicles every three to four years and you finance, you are technically leasing your vehicle. In most cases lease payments are based on depreciated value of that vehicle. For example if your vehicle after three years has a residual value of 40%, you would take that amount and divide it into 36-monthly payments. Basically you would lease that car for that time period. At the end of 36-months you have three options available to you: 1) buy the vehicle (balloon payment), 2) extend the lease another year (if you aren't financially ready to make that refinance or cash buy out), or 3) walk away from it and owe nothing. One of the reasons why buyers don't like leasing is they say, "I want to own my car". Fine own it. After three years you have that option. If you want to buy the car earlier you can opt for an early buy in.

Third is the Cash payment. Cash on the Barrel as we all know it. And here's the rub, there's no price difference if you offer cash or finance. As a matter of fact most dealerships don't like cash buyers. If the dealership is offering in-house financing, the finance leg of that company gives dealerships incentives for papering more deals thru them. Incentives such as better buy-down incentives, and dealership awards. These incentives cannot transfer to buyers just as the Christmas Bonus you get at your company party doesn't benefit your customers as well. If the dealership doesn't participate with in-house financing (such as Big Island Toyota) all papering is done thru third party lenders such as Bank of Hawaii, FHB, your friendly neighborhood Credit union, or even sub-prime lenders such as Chase and Citibank.

When a salesperson gives you a First Pencil, they are showing you full price with trade considerations, Sales tax, documentation fees, registration fees and trade loan buy outs (what you owe on your existing trade that still has a loan on it). It may also include monthly payments, down payments and term conditions (APR and loan duration 36/48/60 months)

This first pencil is used to identify where both seller and buyer need to compromise on. If the price of the vehicle is the most important, we work with that down to MSRP. If the down payment is critical, we work on adjusting the down to meet what the customer can afford (and yes it affects the selling price of the vehicle). If it's the trade value of the vehicle then it's up to the dealership to offer more or defend it's trade value. Or if its the APR, the dealership may be able to buy that rate down.

Whatever the case may be, the first pencil determines where the objections are and how to meet to an equitable finance figures. Also in ALL Pencils is the cash amount if you want to simply write a check for it. All of this information must be presented to the customer: Selling price, Trade amount, Sales tax, Registration fees, Documentation Fees, Dealership mark up, and final "Out The Door" price. This is called Full Disclosure and all dealerships must present this to their customers.

Upon finding out where the customer wants to be, the salesperson then goes to the "Desk" where all finance adjustments are made. For customers this where the perceived "game" is played where the salesperson goes back and forth with each consecutive pencil. There is no game. At that point the salesperson is fighting for a deal, the Desk is fighting to hold as much profit. The salesperson is trying to convince the Desk to work a deal by offering some movement towards what the customer wants. The Desk meets halfway. Then the salesperson has to meet the Desk's offer half way from the customer's offer. There is no game, the salesperson is negotiating for you. Typically by the third or forth pencil, their is absolutely no profit margin at all in that car. Basically the buyer has won and the vehicle is sold at virtually invoice cost. The customer has won but it comes at cost. And that cost is the salesperson has made absolutely nothing and will not want to facilitate that customer's needs down the road. Would you? A saleseperson's income is solely commission and working three or four hours for nothing can be frustrating. How do you tell that to your family at the end of the day.

The art of buying and selling must allow for a fair compromise and that is to give the customer a fair deal and allow the dealership to make a small profit.

Some dealerships mark up 20% just to give the impression that they are dropping the price of the vehicle 15% to get you to where most dealerships sell their vehicles at their regular price. Some offer their vehicles at MSRP because they have a huge inventory that they overstocked.

Then you have Big Island Honda Hilo, where we mark up our vehicles 10% expecting the buyer to meet us somewhere in the middle. Yes we high ball, but then customers low ball us too. Case in point, a customer yesterday wanted to purchase a 2012 Honda Civic EX. Full sticker price was $23,999. MSRP was around $21,350. He wanted the full extended warranty at $1800 thrown in for free. He wanted to pay $20,000 out the door. Included in that price was the $1800 extended warranty and the sales tax, registration and doc fees. With those additional fees the selling price of the vehicle would have been under $18,000. Basically we would have sold him the car below cost. No deal. He didn't want to compromise, we offered the vehicle at MSRP plus extended warranty plus taxes, reg and doc fees. We literally gave him a roughly $2,000 discount. He refused to budge accusing us of not negotiating fairly. We dropped our price he didn't offer to come up.

What's the difference between invoice and MSRP? Not a whole much when you consider the cost of living here in Paradise is roughly 20% higher than on the mainland. MSRP doesn't cut it here in paradise. But we were willing to negotiate down to MSRP

The extended warranty however isn't given away freely. There is a cost to this and it's in the form of guaranteeing for 7-years or 100,000 miles, to repair your vehicle for stated coverages without any deductable. Try asking your mechanic if they will cover all parts, labor and diagnostic fees for 7-years for only $1800. No mechanic in their right minds will agree to that. But we do.

Also at Big Island Honda Hilo, we have been rated #4 in the West Coast region for customer satisfaction in both sales and service. We were the only Honda dealership in the state of hawaii to have placed in the top 5 and that includes Big Island Honda Kona.

And to answer Linkmeister's concerns about shipping. I sold a brand new CRV LX to the owners of Okuhara Saimin in Honolulu from our dealership in Hilo. We sold the vehicle at MSRP and absorbed the shipping fees. I even was flown down at our company's expense and delivered the vehicle to the new owners from our Mercedes Benz sister dealership on Kapiolani BLVD in person. This is how we roll at Big Island Honda Hilo. Red carpet and all.
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Last edited by craigwatanabe; February 21st, 2012 at 11:29 PM.
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Old February 21st, 2012, 11:39 PM
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I sold a brand new CRV LX to the owners of Okuhara Saimin in Honolulu from our dealership in Hilo. We sold the vehicle at MSRP and absorbed the shipping fees. I even was flown down at our company's expense and delivered the vehicle to the new owners from our Mercedes Benz sister dealership on Kapiolani BLVD in person. This is how we roll at Big Island Honda Hilo. Red carpet and all.
Damn, Craig. Wanna sell me a 2011 or 2012 Fit, red, manual transmission? None of the three dealers here have one.

That's a ton of info there, and it's far more than I ever knew about buying from a dealer, even though I've done it three times in my life (I keep cars a while). I'm gonna copy that and print it for future reference when somebody gripes to me about the process. Thanks a lot!
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Old February 22nd, 2012, 12:21 AM
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Default Re: Honda dealer reviews

The red Fit you mentioned is a Milano Red in 5-speed stick. That is not a common model and probably needs to be special ordered. If it's already on the production line delivery time is 8-10 weeks. If it's not even being built, it can take up to 3-months.

The Fit comes in two trims, the Base model and the Sport model with about an $1800 difference in price.

One problem with special order vehicles is there is not much room for negotiating as this vehicle has not landed. We can work best prices on models that are in our lot because we have already spent money on acquiring them.

The best way we can get you a good deal is to get a quote from the dealerships on Oahu, email or fax it to me and we will work hard to meet or beat that price. One nice thing about shopping here on the Big Island is the Sales tax is a half percent less as we don't have to fund the rail.

I can start the process by checking our delivery orders and see what's in the pipeline and arrival dates.
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Old February 22nd, 2012, 12:37 AM
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Originally Posted by craigwatanabe View Post
The red Fit you mentioned is a Milano Red in 5-speed stick. That is not a common model and probably needs to be special ordered. If it's already on the production line delivery time is 8-10 weeks. If it's not even being built, it can take up to 3-months.

The Fit comes in two trims, the Base model and the Sport model with about an $1800 difference in price.

One problem with special order vehicles is there is not much room for negotiating as this vehicle has not landed. We can work best prices on models that are in our lot because we have already spent money on acquiring them.

The best way we can get you a good deal is to get a quote from the dealerships on Oahu, email or fax it to me and we will work hard to meet or beat that price. One nice thing about shopping here on the Big Island is the Sales tax is a half percent less as we don't have to fund the rail.

I can start the process by checking our delivery orders and see what's in the pipeline and arrival dates.
I'm fine with the Base model, and I can live without stick. But dammit, I want a red car! The last one I had was an MG Midget back in 1978-80. Then I got a Triumph Spitfire in British Racing Green, then a silver T-Bird. Drove my dad's LeBaron after he passed away and then bought the white '97 Geo in spring of '98.

If you could check the pipeline I'd appreciate it. I've got e-quotes from Pflueger and the Internet prices from Windward and Tony Honda's websites, but I haven't seriously spoken live to a salesperson yet. I went to Tony Honda Waipio to look and spoke to someone who was willing to talk but had some other customer fiddling around with something, so he had to leave before the pitch really started.
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Old February 22nd, 2012, 04:19 AM
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Default Re: Honda dealer reviews

e-quotes are simply rough estimates. Online pricing will only uncover MSRP pricing and if you look carefully it doesn't include the hidden charges such as dealer mark up, sales tax, reg and doc fees. All websites will only show MSRP as it's the only consistant pricing nationwide.

If you can get a hard written quote and send it to me, I can probably work my boss to match it. But it has to be on a car that has landed. I'll check the inbound and see if a red Base model is coming in.
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Old February 22nd, 2012, 11:26 AM
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Default Re: Honda dealer reviews

Craig, any advance information as to when the Fit is coming out in a hybrid version?
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Old February 22nd, 2012, 11:31 AM
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Nothing on the horizon but overseas the hybrid Fit does exist. There's rumor that later this year we will be bringing in an all-electric Fit or the EV-Fit.
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Old February 22nd, 2012, 06:29 PM
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Default Re: Honda dealer reviews

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Nothing on the horizon but overseas the hybrid Fit does exist. There's rumor that later this year we will be bringing in an all-electric Fit or the EV-Fit.
I'll have to call my Super Bowl party host. He has a Fit, which was what got me interested. But he told me it was a hybrid. From what I've read they're not sold here yet, but they are in Japan.
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Old February 22nd, 2012, 08:47 PM
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I'll have to call my Super Bowl party host. He has a Fit, which was what got me interested. But he told me it was a hybrid. From what I've read they're not sold here yet, but they are in Japan.
I just spoke with him, and he misspoke. His new Civic is a hybrid, but the Fit is not.

It's actually his wife's car, and she loves it. That's two or three excellent testimonials I've gotten from owners.
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Old February 22nd, 2012, 10:26 PM
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That's two or three excellent testimonials I've gotten from owners.
My neighbor downstairs from me here in Mexico lives part time in SoCal and part time in Mexico. He has a Fit that he leaves here in Mexico all the time and he will not part with it!
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Old February 23rd, 2012, 11:51 AM
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Nothing on the horizon but overseas the hybrid Fit does exist. There's rumor that later this year we will be bringing in an all-electric Fit or the EV-Fit.
What is the difference in all electric and EV?
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