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Harro there.

I just finished purchasing my Fiat! I just wanted to share my experience of my purchase as through the eyes of a 24 year old.

I just bought my Fiat 500 Pop from Fiat of Manhattan and I just wanted to share with you my experience buying this car.

My Fiat (little red riding hood):


Specs:
500 Pop model, Manual Transmission, 15" Alum Wheels, Sport Exhaust, Thule 912 Rear Bike Hitch, Powered Sunroof
Total Out The Door Price: $18,712.44
Vehicle Price: $16,918.44
Tax: $1501.51
Reg Fee: $292.50

Story

So I was in Boston on the weekend of July 31st with the gf, and at the Hyatt of Cambridge parking lot, we parked near a Red Fiat Lounge. I had no idea what brand this was, but it just caught my eye! It was a small sexy car, i saw the Fiat logo, and i quickly snapped a picture on my phone to google later.

On the ride home to NYC from Boston, all I could think about was that little red Fiat. I was already in the market for a small, fuel efficient hatchback and I thought to myself, this is such a perfect little car! So I scheduled a road test on my phone for Thursday August 4th.

On Monday, Angela from Fiat of Manhattan called me to confirm my test drive time and it was on from then on. I started doing research on the car (which brought me to this forum), as well as new car negotiation (which btw...see this page!) As per that car buying guide, I emailed around 8 Fiat Dealers around the Tri-State area and I used the AMEX Auto Buyers Program to use as a reference.

I got a price from AMEX for $16,742 for the Fiat and I used that as my starting point to negotiate the pricing. The price was for a Fiat at Downington, PA dealership. Out of the 8 dealers, only 4 responded for "best Out The Door Price". The Downington, PA dealership gave me same price as the AMEX, and Fiat of Fullerton, NJ sent me a similar price except he was including 6 years of oil change for free (which is negligible, but free stuff is free stuff!). With the price settling around $18,700 ish, i had a feeling I would not get any lower than that for OTD price.

So fast forward to my test drive at Fiat of Manhattan on Thurs, Aug 4th. I arrived and was promptly greeted by Angela (she's a cutie). I was drooling at the 4 Fiat models they had in the showroom and proceeded to sit by Angela's desk. I told her to show me around the showroom (she had a nice booty :) ), and she did just that. Walked me through the different trim levels, etc, and never once pressured me to buy. Afterwards, she stopped me and said, "let's test drive the Pop 500". The only word that came out of me was "yea..".

So I got into a white Pop 500 in automatic, and we rolled down West 51st Street and 11th Ave. My first impressions was that this car is very solidly built, nothing cheap feeling (yet)...unlike the Toyota Yaris (cheap plastic galore!). I really liked how open the cabin felt, it had great road visibility like the Honda Fit (which I was seriously considering too). The ride was smooth, the acceleration was quick, handling was similar to the Mini. all in all, i fell in love. Note, the whole time I was trying to stay cool and uninterested in the features she was showing me, but deep down inside I was jumping for joy!

So after the test drive, I told Angela that I needed to peace out for a party (just to avoid the sales pitch after test drive) I took her card, and was introduced to Caleb Denis the Finance Manager and studio director. I told them we will "talk", felt good saying that :). But before I left for good, Angela showed me the 2nd floor garage where they kept all the new Fiat's. So many!! All of them had plastic wrap all around the body. She showed me a red fiat 500 (with sunroof) and a black one since they were both manuals. She made a comment about the red one "O...it has the alum wheels on it and the sport exhaust..that's not supposed to be there...". I asked her how much? She said, this one is $17,800. I nodded, to avoid showing interest. But deep down, I was already thinking about it... :-D

I went home, and made some decisions. I wanted the Fiat 500 with a powered sunroof, in Manual, and with a rear hitch rack for bikes and snowboard. So I decided to email Angela to tell her that Downington, PA is offering me the same deal for $18,811.45 out the door price. I asked her for her best price. She responded with $19,781. I gagged when I saw that price. I told her, I will have to go to Downington then... She later responded that she will price match along with the 6 years of oil change. I high fived myself at that point :-D

Lo and behold, within a week, I sealed the deal on Saturday Aug 6th.

I was then working with Caleb the financial guy in Fiat ( i have to say, i didn't really like him ). We got the loan and insurance and paper work all done in one day via email. He got me a cheaper APY than Chase did @2.59% after some haggling.

So then yesterday, dropped by the dealership, signed off on everything! I will be picking her up this saturday :-D as they are installing the rear hitch and bike rack!

All in all my experience at Fiat Manhattan was very very good. I didn't feel pressured at all by either Angela or Caleb...although...I wish Caleb was more efficient and better at communicating back with you in regards specific things he needed from insurance etc.. Just keep that in mind!

As a 24 year old, buying his first ever car, my lessons learned was to keep patient, walk away if need be, and stick to the price you have in mind. Everything is negotiable and haggle for everything. Also, email is such a powerful tool, lets you negotiate without any pressure at all.

I will update when I get my baby!
 
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