Do you trust a car dealer to be fair? Our poll results

October 11, 2016

Shopping for a new car is often an exercise in frustration. Sure, researching your next ride can be enjoyable--even entertaining--but the fun abruptly stops when you have to schlep to the showroom. 

Much of that unpleasantness is directly related to the arcane car-buying process. When you're shopping for groceries, smartphones, or even auto parts, you know what you're getting into: there's a price for the goods you want, and you pay it, or you go elsewhere.

With car-buying, though, there's always the feeling that you've left money on the table. Could you have gotten a lower rate on your loan? (Our advice: go prepared.) Did you put your heart and soul into haggling, even though you hate it

As if that weren't bad enough, you're never entirely sure you can rely on car salespeople, because when it comes to trustworthiness, they're literally on par with telemarketers and members of Congress. When sales personnel step away from their desks to "check with their supervisors", do you really think they're working to get you a better deal? Or are they just killing time to wear you down, hoping you'll agree to a higher price out of frustration?

Inquiring minds wanted to know your thoughts on such matters, so we went where inquiring minds spend a lot of time these days: to a Twitter poll...

And those results pretty much say it all.

A staggering 87 percent of you have reservations about auto salespeople. Forty percent of you deal with them, even though you're skeptical of their motives, while 14 percent of you get your rides through some other means (e.g. Craiglist, a shady cousin, or perhaps you take a lot of buses).

A mere 13 percent believe that fairness is a universal value and that sales personnel naturally have your interests at heart. That seems either massively naive or massively dependent on a universe powered by karma. But maybe we just haven't had enough coffee this morning.

Missed our poll? Share your own feelings about auto dealers in the comments below. Unless you're Elon Musk. We already know how you feel about that. 

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