Take Advantage of Free Extras

Many auto makers have dropped prices and are offering free extras
If the car you want has a poor quality sound system, ask for a free upgrade
Some car safety features are standard and some are offered as extras

One way that new car dealers tempt us to buy a car is by offering attractive rebates, incentives and free extras. Because of the current economy, many automotive manufacturers have dropped their prices and are offering thousands of dollars of free extras to try to stimulate the market.

Free extras can save you money if you were going to buy those extras anyway. Just remember that it’s only a bargain if you really wanted it in the first place. Decide which extras you would want most before going shopping and ask for what you really want. If they don’t automatically offer any extras, don’t be shy about asking. Extras can be negotiated like anything else. Shop around and look for car dealers that are advertising free extras. There is a wide range of free extras to choose from, they can range from upgrades like free navigation systems to seat covers. Some offers can also be redeemed for cash.

Extras are also worth having when you want to sell your car, a fully loaded model may be easier to sell. Things like leather seats, CD players and sun roofs will increase the re-sale value of your vehicle.

Here are some examples of extras that you can ask for:

Free insurance:
Free insurance is always a good deal. Comprehensive coverage is usually the best choice with a new car and without a special deal it can be expensive. Do some research into what is covered before accepting a free insurance offer to make sure it is right for you. It may only provide minimum coverage and have additional restrictions.

GAP protection:
Gap coverage covers the difference between the value of your car and the amount that you still owe on the car if it is wrecked or stolen. It’s a type of debt cancellation agreement.

Upgraded sound system:
There are many different levels of quality when it comes to sound systems, if the vehicle that you want to buy has a poor quality system, ask for a free upgrade.

The OnStar vehicle communications system comes standard on more than 30 vehicles from General Motors. You can retrofit the OnStar FMV (For My Vehicle) rear view mirror and get the same features of the standard system such as Bluetooth, turn by turn navigation, automatic crash response, hands-free calling and emergency roadside assistance. The OnStart FMV is sold separately, but new car dealers may throw this in as a free extra.

Air conditioning:
AC can cost hundreds to thousands extra, if you get offered it for free, it’s a great deal.

Leather seats:
There are advantages and disadvantages to having leather seats, take that into consideration before accepting them.

Sunroofs are fun and can increase the resale value of your car.

Cruise control:
Cruise control can be ice extra to have if you take long trips on a regular basis or just want some help in avoiding a speeding ticket.

Window tinting:
Window tinting doesn’t cost much, but if you wanted to get it anyway, it’s an easy freebie to get.

Seat covers and floor mat:
Small items like these don’t cost much, but if you get several of them thrown in for free, it adds up to a good deal.

Steering wheel lock:
These are a good anti-theft device, if you’ll actually use it.

Safety features:
Some safety features are standard, and some are offered as extras, such as ABS or side and passenger air bags.

Some colors cost extras, such as metallic colors, and may be offered as an extra.

There may be some free extras offered that are scams or just not a good deal. For example, free gas cards have had some controversy because redeeming them can be difficult or even impossible.

Also be careful about adding extras that are not recommended by the manufacturer, it could affect the vehicle’s warranty and/or increase your insurance.

Published on Tuesday, August 14, 2012 - Copyright 2014 BuyingAdvice.com, INC. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, rewritten, or redistributed.


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