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A Deal Too Good To Be True?


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We were given the following lease offer last night. The dealer reduced the MSRP by $2K within the first five minutes of the offer, and without much negotiating on our part. This offer was far better than any other offers we’ve received in the area for the same make, model, and trim.

The vehicle wasn’t on the lot, but rather at a Lexus service garage in the next town over. We scheduled a test drive for tomorrow, but stopped by the garage last night to look at it. It was parked in a back lot behind several other cars, was missing one windshield wiper, and the batteries to the keyless remote were dead. Paperwork indicated the vehicle was delivered in October 2010. Clearly, it has been sitting around for awhile. It had some superficial scratches on the bumper. As evidenced by the tire conditions and the 97 miles, the vehicle has not been driven much. Otherwise, it appears to be in brand new condition.

So the big question is………why is the dealership so motivated to get rid of this vehicle? They’ve had it for over 8 months, it’s been sitting at the garage for quite some time, they easily reduced the MSRP by $2K without any negotiating on our part, and there’s some minor scratches on the bumper.

Do most metro NY Lexus drivers prefer AWD with additional packages, and since this is a FWD base model with only the premium package, it is less appealing to drivers in metro NY? Was it in a fender bender during test driving? There doesn’t appear to be any recalls for the 2011 RX350, so I’m guessing this wasn’t held back for some malfunction.

It just seems like there’s a missing piece to all this. We feel like The Mentalist trying to figure it out! Any deal that seems too good to be true usually is.

If you have any ideas, suggestions, or anything you think we should be on the lookout for when we test drive tomorrow, any and all input would be appreciated!!!

2011 RX350, FWD, Base Model with Premium Pkg

MSRP: $42,584

Dealer lease offer:


$2,500 out the door, including taxes & fees

$549 monthly payment

48 month lease

12K per year

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Make the seller stipulates clearly in the contract that he has verified and the vehicle in question was never involved in any sort of accident. Get him to also add a clause in the contract stipulating that if after taking possesion of the car you find out that it was involved in some sort of incident/accident, then the seller will refund all your monies and take back the car. Good luck.

P.S. You are correct in regards to when something appears to be too good to be true.

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Thx for your quick response RX350lover!

In looking further online, it seems like our deal may not be the fantastic offer we perceive it to be. It seems like quite a few people on other forums have gotten similar or better deals than this (minus the questionable car-at-the-garage thing).

So maybe this deal isn't that great after all? I know deals vary by region, but in general, would you consider this to be a great, average, or not very good lease offer?

Thanks again!!!

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I'm sorry, but I can't help you in regards to the leasing terms. I have never leased a car in my whole life. I always pay cash. I like to buy cars coming off a two-year lease. It gives me two years of warranty and I escape the worst depreciation.

P.S. When I bought my RX350 two months ago, I almost slaughtered the dealer. The vehicle was 'perfect', but I didn't really want it. It was in the nice-to-have category. I had researched the LS460 and RX350 for the two previous months and I knew all the prices and specs. I also test drove both vehicles. The dealer asking price was already at the lowest possible, nevertheless I offered 10% less and when they said no, I was ready to walk away. I ended up paying $600 more than my original offer, but I got used winter tires on rim for free, so in the end, I got the price I wanted. Not really wanting the car you are purchasing can go a long way in saving you thousands of dollars. The price I paid was lower by more than $3,000 than the lowest price listed on all search engines like autotrader, cargurus, etc.

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One quick question.........I thought for the majority of the leases out there, three years was the norm. Is it pretty common to find cars coming off two year leases? Not sure I'm in a position to apply your strategy at this moment, but def gives me something to think about! :)

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Maybe those who lease can help you more than me. Where I live 2 years is pretty common. In the last 30 years, I have bought a dozen cars or so using this procedure. Once it took me a year and a half before finding exactly what I wanted, at the price I wanted and with the mileage I wanted. But usually it only requires a few months. The rx 350 I bought came with 20K miles and saved me ~ $25K. And came with the towing package and other 'free' goodies. Another advantage to buying a two year old car is that when there will will a scratch on it, it will hurt a lot less. ;) Naturally you always take a chance when buying a used car. I guess it is similar to buying shares on the stock market. You take your chances.

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  • 1 month later...

95% of all leases are 3 year. 2 year leases are pretty rare because they can be pretty expensive from a monthly standpoint.

I don't think thats a great deal at all by the way...shoot for $4k off.

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