Corvette Buying: What’s Wrong with Paying Cash?

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What you should know about buying a Corvette with cash

If cash is king, why do some dealerships seem reluctant to take it?

If you’re out trying to buy a new Corvette, you might be overwhelmed by the different financing options to help you make your purchase a reality. One of those methods is walking in and paying cash. But why wouldn’t a dealership want to take a cash payment, or offer a cash discount? It takes a little understanding what is happening behind the scenes.

When we talk about paying cash, we mean showing up with a certified check and handing it to the dealership. We are not talking about walking in with a briefcase full of money. You shouldn’t do that unless you want the FBI to show up at your house.

The Corvette C7 Stingray

When you finance a vehicle through a dealership, they have relationships with various financial institutions. They work with these banks daily and can often offer a competitive interest rate or a monthly payment you want. But they also make money from financing cars.

By referring a customer to a particular bank, the bank receives a commission for the referral. This financial kickback adds to how much the dealership makes and is their incentive to convince you to finance. A cash purchase means a dealership won’t make that extra kickback, and some dealerships might not be willing to sacrifice that to make a sale.

That doesn’t make the dealership inherently evil, either. There are times where even if you have the cash you might still want to finance. For example, if you can get zero-percent interest on your loan, shoving that money you were going to spend into an investment — even a low-interest savings account — means you’ll come out ahead in the money game.

There have also been people who have attempted to purchase a car on a credit card to earn the points, and then pay off the car with the cash. It’s extremely unlikely you’d find a dealership to do that for you. Credit card companies, even American Express, charge the people who process the cards a percentage fee of the transaction. Even a low, two-percent processing fee cuts deeply into the profits of a $75,000 transaction.

Pay cash for your Corvette? Talk about it on the forums.

If you’re looking to pay cash and your local dealership won’t play ball, we recommend doing the same thing we’d recommend doing if a dealership doesn’t want to work with you: walk.

There are plenty of dealerships out there who’d gladly sell you a car for cash. You probably won’t get a discount below the negotiated purchase price of the car, but there are enough dealerships out there that you shouldn’t have to settle on not getting a car if your local shop doesn’t want to make money.

In fact, if a dealership doesn’t seem interested in selling you a car, won’t let you take the car you want to buy for a test drive, or just not take you seriously, you should just walk. There are a lot of excellent dealerships and sales reps out there that’ll work with you to where you both have an enjoyable transaction.

Chad Kirchner is a regular contributor to Corvette Forum and Ford Truck Enthusiasts, among other auto sites.

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