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Discussion Starter #1
Hey all, looking to buy a Bolt and have appreciated this forum as a resource for getting to know what to expect. My wife has a Leaf and I'm a first time (prospective) new car buyer – my habit has been to buy low end cars and drive them into the ground. So I'm looking for some advice.

Getting an apples to apples price comparison via dealer website is maddening, as many advertise deals that are essentially unavailable to the public, are lease-only (but falsely applied to the sticker price of a purchased Bolt), or incorporate state (CT) or federal credits into the price in some way – nevermind the equipment differences.

I found a post detailing a clinical approach to getting out-the-door prices, which I'm trying out, but have noticed that discount values on 2017 models are much steeper in other states (including non-incentive states) where the 2018 models are already on dealers' lots. In Connecticut, none have landed so far. Would I do better to just wait for new model inventory to hit to try to find some dealer flexibility?

Truthfully, dealing with dealers that advertise a $38k car for $32k only to discover that the actual price comes to $40k has made me doubt the entire project (even if that dealer is going to give the best price down the line, I'd probably rather stay in a 94 Corolla than to give someone like that any money.) So if readers here, particularly from the northeast, have any advice for what to ask, if who, and when to minimize hose kinds of interactions, I'd definitely appreciate it.
 

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Bought mine at a chevy dealer in Charlotte NC and they discounted the car so that my out the door price was just a few bucks under MSRP. I'll get the $7500 on my taxes when I file.
 

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You're smart to have never purchased new, and to seek out ways to get something you want for the best price available to you.

Why stop exercising your winning formula now? I'd wait for the new Leaf and Model 3 to begin selling and putting pressure on the Bolt. Even better would be to keep an eye out for a used one. EVs have massive depreciation, which is the largest cost of ownership for most vehicles (see my total cost of ownership spreadsheet in my signature).

Do you have $7,000 in federal tax liability to qualify for the full credit? If not, that is money lost.

If buying new is worth more than having many thousands of extra dollars to you, then go for it. Just make sure you have a clear understanding of the opportunity cost before purchasing. For example, when I consider that a powered paraglider (form of ultralight aircraft) can be had for $4k, saving money on a vehicle opens up other hobby possibilities such as flying.

I find driving to be a utilitarian activity, meaning I don't really consider the car I drive to be much of a form of entertainment or status symbol. For that reason I don't value cars very highly. For fun, I ride a cheap Japanese motorcycle. My way of thinking doesn't apply to everyone though. Some people have no interest in flying, and they might highly value a non-polluting vehicle that can go longer distances.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I found a used model, 10k Miles, which was selling for $1,000 more than MSRP minus the tax credits! I thought the dealer might be flexible, but they figured someone from an incentiveless state would just get it.

I did find out that a few dealerships (apparently) get lower prices from the manufacturer because they agreed early in the game to carry a lot of Bolts, so finding one of those dealers may also be a factor. Not like anyone advertises that, though!

Was also astonished that the buyout price post-lease was something like $22k!

Thanks for the tips and kind words, the Bolt makes sense for us (range, got home charging for the Leaf, state/federal incentives) economically, I understand new or gently used is a luxury, and if $34k was the best deal, I'd just go for it. But I guess I'm just really averse to getting ripped off.
 

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I'm just really averse to getting ripped off.
Me too, but beyond that, I want to live as frugally as reasonably possible so that I can live as freely as possible. Getting ripped off is just a matter of perspective, since from the the salesman's perspective, it's earning a good commission. You entirely avoid getting ripped off by the stealership by not purchasing from them. You're not having to pay for the fancy building, slick salesman in expensive suits, and "free coffee" in the lobby.

I've bought a used car once from a dealership (which I said I would never do), but it was a hard to find vehicle on the private market, and I walked away when the salesman failed to come down $400 more to meet my price. 2 weeks later they agreed to my price. Moral of the story; walk away from the sale and let them sit on the car a few days so you can get the best price. The flip side of this is that you have no leverage if the vehicle is in high demand vs supply. In that case, the salesman has no motivation to discount the vehicle.

The bottom line is what do you want to spend your money on, and how does it fit into your financial goals.
 
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