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buying from Carmax
Posted by: not again ()
Date: December 16, 2010 09:20AM

I need to buy a decent used vehicle quick. I like to no-haggle pricing of Carmax. Any horror stories out there I should know about before looking at them further? Any particular locations in Fairfax that are better than others?

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Re: buying from Carmax
Date: December 16, 2010 09:23AM

not again Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I need to buy a decent used vehicle quick. I like
> to no-haggle pricing of Carmax. Any horror
> stories out there I should know about before
> looking at them further? Any particular locations
> in Fairfax that are better than others?


There's only one CarMax near Fairfax county and it's not in Fairfax County.

I've purchased a few vehicles from the CarMax in Sterling. No complaints.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
http://bible.cc/1_corinthians/13-11.htm

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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: Ralph Pootawn ()
Date: December 16, 2010 09:43AM

WashingTone-Locian Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> not again Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > I need to buy a decent used vehicle quick. I
> like
> > to no-haggle pricing of Carmax. Any horror
> > stories out there I should know about before
> > looking at them further? Any particular
> locations
> > in Fairfax that are better than others?
>
>
> There's only one CarMax near Fairfax county and
> it's not in Fairfax County.
>
> I've purchased a few vehicles from the CarMax in
> Sterling. No complaints.

Their mechanics are a bunch of monkeys. They suck. I had to take my car in because there was air in the cooling system. They proceeded to replace the water pump, heater core, and break my bumper, before realizing they needed to bleed the air out. Idiots.

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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: JC ()
Date: December 16, 2010 10:15AM

Their pricing model is high (80th percentile). Try Koons toyota in Tysons for the same no, or very little haggle, pricing but at a much lower price point (5th percentile).

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Re: buying from Carmax
Date: December 16, 2010 10:17AM

Ralph Pootawn Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------

>
> Their mechanics are a bunch of monkeys. They
> suck. I had to take my car in because there was
> air in the cooling system. They proceeded to
> replace the water pump, heater core, and break my
> bumper, before realizing they needed to bleed the
> air out. Idiots.


I would never take my car to CarMax for service. I avoid most dealership service depts. as well because they don't give a fuck about doing a good job, just as long as they can charge you exorbitant rates to do basic maintenance.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
http://bible.cc/1_corinthians/13-11.htm

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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: Fully Agree ()
Date: December 16, 2010 10:31AM

JC Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Their pricing model is high (80th percentile). Try
> Koons toyota in Tysons for the same no, or very
> little haggle, pricing but at a much lower price
> point (5th percentile).

I fully agree with that. Their "no haggle" price is a bunch of B.S. However, CarMax has a low "processing fee" - I think it's $99 or $199, and their signs indicate you can opt out of paying that fee if you desire. The other dealerships, will try and charge you about $299 - $389 for "processing fees". In that case, just set your price point about $400 lower when negotiating.

Negotiating is fun. I'm never stressed. I'm patient. I don't need to buy a vehicle on that day - I can wait a week or two for the dealer to beg for me to come back. In fact, this past summer, I picked up a new Ford Edge for $24,022 (out the door - taxes, tags, freight, processing fees, etc.).

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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: james ()
Date: December 16, 2010 12:40PM

my experience was good and bad.

good:
-they held my car while i went home to shop online and get insurance quotes for that VIN.
-they let me pay under the "required minimum" for downpayment.
-they threw in floor mats even though they don't have to.
-they fixed a couple minor things on the car before i drove off with it.
-during the 4 weeks out of the first 6 weeks of owning the car that it was in the shop (see below) they gave me good loaners. and one time upgraded me to a full size SUV since i needed to haul some furniture.

bad:
-they gave me two keys. one was a valet key which only opens the doors and glve box, but won't start the car. (i later got a second reg key for free) turned out they were supposed to give two, but didn't program the chip properly.)
-the remote start would not work. when they fixed it they didn't give me any instructions or show me how to start the car remotely. (sounds easy, but it's not when all you have is a button)
-the gas tank was leaking massively. (turned out it was a recall the manufacturer had but they didn't catch it before selling me the car.
-between the keys, remote start problems, fuel tank leaks, and another issue that i can't remember, the car was in the shop 4 out of the first 6 weeks that i owned the vehicle.

overall:
bad for service. I wouldn't recommend a warranty through them unless you are near a carmax, or have another vehicle and an easy way to get to and from their shop.
good for sales.
great for looking at a wide range of cars all in one place without the pressures of sales people chasing you down.
i was able to sit in a toyota and a nissan side by side.

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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: uhwpd ()
Date: December 17, 2010 07:51AM

JC Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Their pricing model is high (80th percentile). Try
> Koons toyota in Tysons for the same no, or very
> little haggle, pricing but at a much lower price
> point (5th percentile).


What does this mean (80th percentile vs. 5th?) Can you give an example for those of us less skillled?

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Re: buying from Carmax
Date: December 17, 2010 10:59AM

uhwpd Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> JC Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > Their pricing model is high (80th percentile).
> Try
> > Koons toyota in Tysons for the same no, or very
> > little haggle, pricing but at a much lower
> price
> > point (5th percentile).
>
>
> What does this mean (80th percentile vs. 5th?)
> Can you give an example for those of us less
> skillled?

CarMax prices its used cars higher than 80 percent of used car dealerships while Koons Toyota prices them higher than 5 percent of used car dealerships.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
http://bible.cc/1_corinthians/13-11.htm

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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: Spacy ()
Date: December 17, 2010 02:05PM

I bought a new car from CarMax. Got a great price (beat all other dealers), everyone was nice, absolutely no BS and no hassle. I went to the one north of Baltimore.

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Re: buying from Carmax
Date: December 17, 2010 02:22PM

DON'T DO IT !
[I warned you]

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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: Tiddely Winkerbean ()
Date: December 17, 2010 03:51PM

Use a buying service. You'll get a no-haggle price before you walk in the door and most will even look out of state to find you what you're looking for. Check with you credit union. Costco has one too. It would be worth the $50 membership fee just to use their buying service as you'll save at least 10% off the MSRP. Screw Carmax.

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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: CygnusX1 ()
Date: December 17, 2010 10:28PM

I've purchased several new vehicles through them with no problems. If you buy used, don't buy any extended warranty crap from them (this is where they really make extra dough). You have to schlep your broken vehicle all the way to a Carmax for them to do the work. If you buy from them, just buy and drive away. Don't buy any warranties, insurance, maintenance plans, etc.

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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: mistake ()
Date: December 26, 2010 11:48PM

the biggest mistake u can ever make is buy a car from carmax been there dont that dont ever do it

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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: K. Jimi ()
Date: October 22, 2016 10:12PM

Today (10/2016) Carmax wanted $299 for its processing fee in Charlottesville VA. Before the "free transfer" from an adjacent state (60 miles) the processing fee was $199. There might not be any sort of free transfer, only hidden fees.

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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: GdneH ()
Date: October 23, 2016 02:29AM


all used car places lie about their "50 point check guarantee", though a reputable dealer (and car max) will honor if these cheap parts fail before (depends on advertisement - keep that jic). the (dealer) only allows mechanics to insure it passes inspection before sale, period.

don't get a loan. buy what you can afford cash, insure they have the title or report the sale attempt to police.

always take the car (on the complimentary test drive) to a dealer to get it checked over for a head-of-shop mechanic's opinion. it will cost $50 but is worth it. get a "car fax" (ie, says if car is stolen or has been in accident) - though car max will likely give this to you free if your serious about buying.

so Car Max is it ok? yes, it's the same deal as anywhere.


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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: Arlington native ()
Date: October 23, 2016 06:13AM

Carmax marks up their vehicles 200%. A $15,000 car eas purchased for $5000 dollars. They do check them out thoroughly. Just be aware of what you are paying for that service.

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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: phelpsmarc ()
Date: October 23, 2016 11:04AM

I looked at used cars there once. By and large they had very high mileage for the age of the car. I concluded they were selling old rental cars.

High mileage in a short time = a lot of wear and tear = you're gonna have a lot of repair bills = not worth it.

You're better off shopping around and buying one from an old person who hardly drives.

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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: mechanically inclined ()
Date: October 23, 2016 11:11AM

I have never paid a dealer or processing fee and always get cars for less than what any dealer sells them for. For sale by owner on craigslist is the best way to go if you know what to look for.

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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: iulcc ()
Date: October 23, 2016 11:31AM

If you liked Circuit City, you'll love CarMax. Same company.

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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: Nicdoot ()
Date: October 23, 2016 02:06PM

We have bought and sold seven vehicles with Carmax in Dulles and each time it was a great experience with very little hassle. Everything is done there plates title and all. We are very happy with Carmax.

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Re: buying from Carmax
Date: October 23, 2016 02:07PM

Get on Truecar.com - we've bought three cars using this aggregator site over the past several years. It aggregates all the cars at local dealerships - you can set the mileage range. It saves tons of work and the prices at the dealership, we found, were always way lower than Car Max.

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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: Former Salesman ()
Date: October 24, 2016 07:27PM

CarMax is always going to be higher than the comparible car at a dealership. EVEN a Certified Used car will be cheaper! Sooooo, if you wanna shop at CarMax then ok but ONLY sell them yours. They usually DO pay more than a dealer will on a Trade In basis! If your looking for a fairly new car, Certified Used is the way to go... The dealer buys into the program because they share the costs of repairs under warranty AND special financing is available for Certified cars.

For cheap cars, your looking at a crap shoot. Good Luck!

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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: Former Salesman ()
Date: October 24, 2016 07:31PM

A good rule is to buy a used car for $1000 to $1500 less than CarMax.

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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: AMG ()
Date: October 24, 2016 07:57PM

Look on Autotrader.com for pricing of the used car you are interested in buying. Carmax is usually higher and charge for off brand extended warranties. Try name brand dealers first and be patient. You have the upper hand. Remember they want to sell the car more than you want to buy!!!

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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: Nice Guy Eddie ()
Date: October 25, 2016 10:39AM

Bought a couple of cars there and always had a good experience. Also, you can tell them you don't want the CARMAX sticker on the car. You might be able to find similar for a little cheaper but if you are asking the question its probably because you don't have the time or interest in becoming a used car expert.

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Re: buying from Carmax
Posted by: CarHacks ()
Date: October 26, 2016 07:28PM

Went to the carmax in Woodbridge a few weeks ago to get a quote for my Mazdaspeed6 - rare car, low miles, no accidents, $15k+ worth of new and upgraded parts... a desirable car if you know what you are looking at/for. I was offered $1,500 for it. About $3k less than KBB. As I waited for this absurd quote, I walked thru the lot to check out the selection. Decent range of vehicles (lots of Civics, Accords, Camrys, the standard A to B appliances.) However, I must have seen a half dozen cars with flat tires, paintwork in HORRENDOUS shape (sap still left on paint and windows, large scratches, door dings, and the like). Was not impressed and will never buy or sell from one of these places.

Did you know that Carmax's parent company was Circuit City? Have many people who read these forums even ever heard of Circuit City? In theory, Carmax is a good idea, and started off strong. However, try finding a Circuit City today, and you'll see the direction Carmax is headed in...

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