Whenever it’s to do with motoring, men and women think and act differently at car shopping time. And so it is in the recent research findings from MyCarCheck.
Despite being the gender most likely to influence the final car shopping decision (in 80% of all cases in the UK), all too often women feel they are being ignored in manufacturer advertising and then intimidated and even overlooked in showrooms, especially when she takes a man with her during the car shopping experience.
And knowing how dire the female feedback about the car shopping experience has been in recent surveys, such as the ones from Good Housekeeping and DifferentSpin.com I am always on the alert for new found knowledge that I can share with our FOXY Lady Approved car dealers.
Unsurprisingly MyCarCheck confirms that women are uncomfortable with the used car checking process (maybe that’s why she takes a man with her for support?) but it’s good to think she knows she needs to carry out these checks.
Apparently one in four vehicles that MyCarCheck check have serious failings that you might expect a car dealer to have known about and rectified. Think about it – the car could be reclaimed by a finance house and/or not owned by the person who is selling it.
Why a thorough car check matters
This is yet another worrying example of what can happen when you go car shopping for a used car in an unregulated industry where complaints are all too common.
Too many of us are too trusting having been seduced by the shiny look of a gleaming ‘new’ car that’s hiding mechanical problems. That’s mechanical problems usually borne out of neglected car care such as regular servicing and/or maintenance. If an elderly car has been neglected for a long period of its life, especially when it comes to regular oil and filter changes, it will likely have lost its reliability and, chances are, it’s waiting to prove this to you just after you’ve bought it or any warranty expires!
Again, according to MyCarCheck, men are more confident about their driving ability than women although perhaps the declared gender difference here is too slight to be significant, and would be nil if men and women were equally as honest or modest…
Certainly the research from IAM Roadsmart suggested that most motoring Mums were highly confident drivers and if accident statistics were to be the final arbiter in the REAL motoring world then women will surely edge any gender motoring ability debate, influenced mostly by the serious accident reputation that boy racers have earned.
Negotiating the price of a used car
When it comes to finalising the price of a used car, the motor industry is in a league of its own due to so many potential smoke and mirrors tactics designed to confuse the car shopper who is using dealer finance and part exchanging a car. And in many cases of used car sales it’s too confusing by intent.
MyCarCheck suggests that men are less confident shoppers than women here. That may well be because men know they should haggle whereas many women are too trusting that the advertised price is a fair one. Or they’ve picked a car that the salesman (it’s usually a salesman) is happy to discount because he knows it’s a lemon and she’s fooled into thinking this is a great deal. Whereas the man has already become suspicious, and if the discount comes too easy, perhaps he’s starting to smell a rat.
So the point of this blog is to remind all of us to get our cars checked before we buy them. Twice. Once via the likes of MyCarCheck to make sure the car in question is free of finance and hasn’t been in an accident or stolen. And again (a different sort of check) to get a trusted mechanic or a dedicated service to give it the once over. Yes, you should be able to rely on the vehicle checks carried out by a car dealer promoting a well known named ‘Approved Car’ scheme but we know of instances where unscrupulous dealers have ticked all the multiple check boxes, actively disguising a missing car servicing history and MOT advisories that hadn’t been addressed pre sale. Clearly the price you pay is critical here, as is any advertising that suggests the car is in better shape than it turns out to be…
So that’s about it from me. Men and women are different – who’d’ve believed it! And when it comes to buying a car, women shouldn’t need to take a man with them but if they feel less intimidated with than without, then why not.
That’s unless they’re members of FOXY Lady Drivers Club of course because they wouldn’t need to take a man with them then. Because they can either shop at a FOXY Lady Approved dealer that’s signed a promise to ‘never overcharge, patronise or sell women anything they don’t need’ or they can ask us for advice and support before shopping elsewhere. And should things go wrong of course.
For example, if the dealer doesn’t get it right or put it right afterwards (most do), we’d then tell the members about this. That’s the FOXY way – fair and feminine by any name!
So if you’re planning on buying a new ie used car soon I recommend you join The Club BEFORE you need us, because we may well help you buy a better car deal than you’d end up with on your own!