When was the last time you found it pleasurable to be overcharged for anything? Hopefully, never. But in case you’re a masochist, here are some of the most expensive dealer options available for your new ride. Avoid them, unless you’re being blackmailed.
Ridiculously expensive dealer options to avoid No. 1 – Rust-proofing
Nobody likes rust, but do you hate it enough to pay $800 or more for an aerosol spray coat in your new car’s wheel wells? Refuse to pay at that ridiculous price. Most vehicle warranties cover rust damage for several years. Common-sense car care and cleaning will help prevent most rust trouble. If you truly feel that you need rust-proofing, do it yourself.
Ridiculously expensive dealer options to avoid No. 2 – Fabric protection
This is the Scotchguard option for repelling stains to the upholstery of your new vehicle. Again, do it yourself, rather than giving a dealer hundreds to line their pockets.
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Ridiculously expensive dealer options to avoid No. 3 – Paint sealant
Are you gullible enough to purchase this ridiculously overpriced factory option? Wash and wax your car regularly, and go for a professional detailing on occasion. You’ll save cash and do just as good a job as anything the dealer will magically mix into your vehicle’s paint job.
Ridiculously expensive dealer options to avoid No. 4 – Window etching
Etching your vehicle’s VIN number into the window allegedly makes it easier for the vehicle to be tracked if it is stolen. But how does this actually scare thieves away? It doesn’t, necessarily, as they can easily break the window in the process of gaining entry to the car. Instead of paying hundreds to the dealership, get a $20 etching kit from an auto parts store and do it yourself.
Ridiculously expensive dealer options to avoid No. 5 – Car alarm
Modern vehicles typically include coded keys and other security devices. That doesn’t mean car dealers won’t try to sell you on a full bells and whistles alarm package. Consider an after-market system, and have it installed later by a car stereo shop to save cash without sacrificing security. If you must go with the dealer’s option, do your research first to make sure it’s at least a reputable brand of alarm system.
Ridiculously expensive dealer options to avoid No. 6 – Extended warranty
If you’re buying a new car from a reputable dealership – you are, right? – then you’ll receive a warranty that should be more than long enough. Considering how often people replace their vehicles, the thought of whether an extended warranty even makes sense is up for debate. If you know you’ll be hanging onto that car for a long time, an extended warranty is worth it if major repairs are in order. Otherwise, don’t bother – or skip the dealer’s offer and go with a third party like Warranty Direct.
Ridiculously expensive dealer options to avoid No. 7 – CD changer
If you buy this at the dealership, expect to pay twice what you’d pay in a car stereo store. The dealership will likely use proprietary cabling, which makes replacement a more expensive proposition. Rather than going with a CD changer, why not pick a stereo that makes it simple to connect an MP3 player? We are living in the 21st century, you know – a century of iPhones and auto financing credit.
Ridiculously expensive dealer options to avoid No. 8 – Rear-seat video
Do it yourself for less applies here, as well. After-market systems can cost several hundred dollars less. Sure, it’s nice to have a system already wired into your touchscreen infotainment system, but you’ll pay dearly for that level of connectivity. Save by doing it after you drive off the lot. Or don’t do it, if you don’t have kids that will want movies on a long trip.