Suppose I sell my vehicle to AutoNation. Can I go to one of AutoNation’s new car dealers and get the tax savings?
Example: sell for 20K at AutoNation then go to Unbranded AutoNation Ford to purchase a new vehicle for 40K and only pay the 6.25% in tax on the other 20K?
For anyone who is looking AutoNation Ford has an F-150 Lightning Lariat for Sale. Just letting you know in case you are looking. I had wanted one badly but the $88,000 price tag has unfortunately made this a non-purchase for me.
Just passed on delivery of my Maverick at Autonation Ford, they’re awesome and honor MSRP no matter who you are. Best of luck!
Specs XLT, Cactus, FX4, 400w inverter.
Here are all of the new US CCS (Level 3 fast-charging) stations that rolled out in January 2023,
according to the Department of Energy. These chargers are suitable for most new EVs on the market, except for:
- Tesla drivers who haven't bought the official CCS adapter yet. Certain older Teslas need additional work done to accept the adapter.
- Leaf owners like me, and some owners of older cars that also use CHAdeMO. If you drive a Leaf, or an older CHAdeMO car, see my matching post in leaf.
There were 173 CCS charge points added in January 2023. That shows continued growth month after month. For comparison, there were only 106 new CCS charge points in January 2022.
If you'd like to know about new chargers along your routes right away, or just prefer not to check this list monthly when new openings are rare in your area, I've set up a free service that provides email notifications as soon as they open. You can sign up at evpov.com
. Or not! I don't really have a business plan here, I built it to help EV owners like myself.
I also have some nice EVPOV bumper stickers. If you'd like one drop me a line.
➡ AL SERRA HYUNDAI HYUNDAICPE250 1 1503 Gadsden Hwy Birmingham, AL 35235 SERRA HYUNDAI HYUNDAICPE250 2 1503 Gadsden Hwy Birmingham, AL 35235 HYUNDAI BRISTOL STATION 3 7680 Airport Blvd Mobile, AL 36608 TANGMART OXFORD TANG MART 1 600 Quintard Drive Oxford, AL 36203 TANGMART OXFORD TANG MART 2 600 Quintard Drive Oxford, AL 36203 JULIO JONES KIA KIA SALES 4301 Greensboro Ave Tuscaloosa, AL 35405 ➡ AR CRAINHYUNDAICON SOUTHEAST 1003 N Museum Rd Conway, AR 72032 CHENAL WASH SPLASH-CHENAL 15800 Chenal Pkwy Little Rock, AR 72223 ➡ AZ APS - Globe, AZ 902 E Ash Street Globe, AZ 85501 The Groves Shopping Center North 1230 W Elliot Rd Tempe, AZ 85284 ➡ CA Loop - Blue Jay Cinema 27315 N Bay Rd Blue Jay, CA 92317 Calabasas Cadillac 24400 Calabasas Rd. Calabasas, CA 91302 Chevron 940 E Belmont Ave Fresno, CA 93701 5310 W. Spruce, Fresno, CA 5310 W. Spruce Fresno, CA 93722 NEIGHBORS76 DC1 952 Simmerhorn Rd Galt, CA 95632 NEIGHBORS76 DC2 952 Simmerhorn Rd Galt, CA 95632 CSTMR FCNG CUSTOMER FACING 79025 CA-111 La Quinta, CA 92253 Quality Inn & Suites Lathrop 16855 S Harlan Rd Lathrop, CA 95330 City of Los Angeles - Lot 628 2418 Daly St Los Angeles, CA 90031 Cal State Los Angeles - Parking Structure B 5151 State University Dr Los Angeles, CA 90032 280 Lifestyle Street (US-A5S-4SV-1A) 280 Lifestyle Street Manteca, CA 95337 280 Lifestyle Street (US-A5S-4SV-1B) 280 Lifestyle Street Manteca, CA 95337 280 Lifestyle Street (US-A5S-4SV-1C) 280 Lifestyle Street Manteca, CA 95337 280 Lifestyle Street (US-A5S-4SV-2B) 280 Lifestyle Street Manteca, CA 95337 280 Lifestyle Street (US-A5S-4SV-2A) 280 Lifestyle Street Manteca, CA 95337 280 Lifestyle Street (US-A5S-4SV-2C) 280 Lifestyle Street Manteca, CA 95337 2315 River Oaks Blvd 2315 River Oaks Blvd Plumas Lake, CA 95961 3991 E Commerce Way Sacramento, CA 95834 3991 E Commerce Way Sacramento, CA 95834 TRUCK.NET TRUCK.NET #4 8490 Avenida de la Fuente San Diego, CA 92154 TRUCK.NET TRUCK.NET #2 8490 Avenida de la Fuente San Diego, CA 92154 TRUCK.NET TRUCK.NET #3 8490 Avenida de la Fuente San Diego, CA 92154 TRUCK.NET TRUCK.NET #1 8490 Avenida de La Fuente San Diego, CA 92154 City of Santa Monica - Civic Auditorium Solar Port 1855 Main St Santa Monica, CA 90401 BUBBLE WASH II 2921 Whitson St Selma, CA 93662 BUBBLE WASH I 2921 Whitson St Selma, CA 93662 TEMECULA LEXUS DELIVERY ABB 42081 Dlr Dr Temecula, CA 92591 Conejo Gateway Plaza 737 N Wendy Dr Thousand Oaks, CA 91320 Housing Authority The County 311 W St Tracy, CA 95376 ➡ CO Bristol Village 700 S Buckley Rd Aurora, CO 80017 HION LAMAR DC2 109 E Beech St Lamar, CO 81052 HION LAMAR DC1 109 E Beech St Lamar, CO 81052 STERLING EV ST1 PL1 130 North 4th Street Sterling, CO 80751 STERLING EV ST1 PL2 130 North 4th Street Sterling, CO 80751 ➡ CT PARK CITY FORD PARKCITY01 65 Sylvan Ave Bridgeport, CT 06606 PARK CITY FORD PARKCITY02 65 Sylvan Ave Bridgeport, CT 06606 STEPHEN CAD SHOWROOM 62.5KW 1097 Farmington Ave Bristol, CT 06010 Waterbury Plaza 152 Chase Avenue Waterbury, CT 06704 ➡ FL LEE COUNTY GOV AE RAPID CHARGE 2201 Second St Fort Myers, FL 33901 PARKS HYUNDAI STATION 1 3111 N Main St Gainesville, FL 32609 PARKS HYUNDAI STATION 2 3111 N Main St Gainesville, FL 32609 Orlando Porsche 9590 Hwy 17 Maitland, FL 32751 UNIVERSAL IONIQ STATION 1 12801 S Orange Blossom Trl Orlando, FL 32837 UNIVERSAL IONIQ CHARGER 1 12801 S Orange Blossom Trl Orlando, FL 32837 ChargeUP - Canoe Creek Service Plaza Mile Post 229 Florida's Turnpike Saint Cloud, FL 34769 BRANDON DCFAST HOG 9841 E Adamo Dr Tampa, FL 33619 HYUNDAIOFVENICE LEVEL 3 #2 200 Jacaranda Blvd Venice, FL 34292 HYUNDAIOFVENICE LEVEL 3 #1 200 Jacaranda Blvd Venice, FL 34292 ➡ GA MERCEDES-EQ OF COLUMBUS 1 7470 Veterans Pkwy Columbus, GA 31909 DOUGLAS SQUARE PETERSON CPE250 1307 Peterson Ave S Douglas, GA 31533 GEORGIA POWER RINGGOLD DC1 150 Tennessee St Ringgold, GA 30736 GEORGIA POWER RINGGOLD DC2 150 Tennessee St Ringgold, GA 30736 ➡ HI Waikiki-Kapahulu Public Library 400 Kapahulu Ave Honolulu, HI 96815 HELCO - Waimea KTA 65-1158 Mamalahoa Highway Waimea, HI 96743 ➡ IA Casey's General 1010 SE National Dr Ankeny, IA 50021 Cherokee Hy-vee 1300 N 2nd Street Cherokee, IA 51012 Waukee 155 West Hickman Rd Waukee, IA 50263 RecPlex 6500 Grand Ave West Des Moines, IA 50266 ➡ ID BSU1 R2D2 1606 N Mumbarto Ave Boise, ID 83713 VOLVO CAR USA TWIN FALLS DC2 1951 Bridgeview Blvd Twin Falls, ID 83301 ➡ IL JLRB ELECTRIC DC CUSTOMER PRK 3040 Piedmont Rd NE Atlanta, IL 30305 Diepholz Cadillac 631 W LINCOLN AVE CHARLESTON, IL 61920 PUGI HYUNDAI 1 WEST 1866 Ogden Ave Downers Grove, IL 60515 PUGI HYUNDAI 1 EAST 1866 Ogden Ave Downers Grove, IL 60515 Mclaughlin Cadillac 4101 41ST STREET MOLINE, IL 61265 ➡ IN GM - ROMAIN BUICK INC 7600 E Division St. Evansville, IN 47715 ➡ MA IRA LEXUS CPE250 105 Andover St Danvers, MA 01923 WMGLD QUANNAPOWITT #2 0 Quannapowitt parkway Wakefield, MA 01880 2416 Cranberry Hwy. 2416 Cranberry Hwy. Wareham, MA 02571 719 Southbridge St. 719 Southbridge St. Worcester, MA 01610 ➡ MD BGE-Whitmore Garage 37 Clay St Annapolis, MD 21401 BGE MUD E-ZPASS DCFC 2 850 Revell Highway Annapolis, MD 21409 BGE MUD E-ZPASS DCFC 1 850 Revell Highway Annapolis, MD 21409 BGE-Bowie State 14000 Jericho Park Rd Bowie, MD 20715 DPL - Stevensville Park and Ride 111 Thompson Creek Rd. Stevensville, MD 21666 Marlboro Crossroads 5700 Crain Hwy Upper Marlboro, MD 20772 ➡ ME Pratt 143 RIVER ROAD CALAIS, ME 04619 IRVINGOIL ME-NWPT-L3-0001 18 Moosehead Trail Newport, ME 04953 IRVINGOIL ME-NWPT-L3-0002 18 Moosehead Trail Newport, ME 04953 ➡ MI HYAA MAIN GW 4001 Jackson Rd Ann Arbor, MI 48103 HYAA STATION 1 4001 Jackson Rd Ann Arbor, MI 48103 Bishop GMC Cadillac 400 Mackinaw Avenue Cheboygen, MI 49721 HOUGHTON HOUGHTON 1 WEST 609 Shelden Ave Houghton, MI 49931 HOUGHTON HOUGHTON 2 EAST 609 Shelden Ave Houghton, MI 49931 ELDER AUTO CUST PARKING 19077 Hall Rd Macomb, MI 48044 ➡ MN JIM LUPIENT BUICK GMC 7100 Wayzata Blvd Golden Valley, MN 55426 CIVICEV COMMUNITY CTR1 14600 Minnetonka Blvd Minnetonka, MN 55345 ➡ MS George Carr Buick Cadillac GMC 2950 South Frontage Road Vicksburg, MS 39180 ➡ MT Target T1333 (Billings, MT) 403 Main St Billings, MT 59102 ➡ NC Shops at Erwin Mill 737 9th St Durham, NC 27705 MB FAYETTEVILLE MERCEDES BENZ 420 Glensford Dr Fayetteville, NC 28314 TICO MFG MOBILE 1 1477 Harrison Rd Salisbury, NC 28147 ➡ NH Circle K - Dover, NH 28 Dover Point Rd Dover, NH 03820 ➡ NJ Mcguire Buick GMC 7027 KENNEDY BLVD NORTH BERGEN, NJ 07047 ➡ NM GO-STATION Winrock Town Center 2100 Louisiana Blvd NE Albuquerque, NM 87110 Sisbarro Buick-GMC 425 W Boutz Rd Las Cruces, NM 88005 Melloy Chevrolet 377 Emilio Lopez Rd Los Lunas, NM 87031 ➡ NV AutoNation Buick GMC West Sahara 6400 W SAHARA LAS VEGAS, NV 89146 ➡ NY HYUNDAI 1221 NORTH 1221 E Jericho Turnpike Huntington, NY 11743 HYUNDAI 1221 SOUTH 1221 E Jericho Turnpike Huntington, NY 11743 MB MANHATTAN MB MANHATTANDC1 770 11th Ave New York, NY 10019 MB MANHATTAN MB MANHATTANDC2 770 11th Ave New York, NY 10019 MILLER HYUNDAI WEST 4445 NY-434 Vestal, NY 13850 MILLER HYUNDAI EAST R DK 4445 NY-434 Vestal, NY 13850 ➡ OH VOSS STATION VOSS 2 676 Miamisburg Centerville Rd Dayton, OH 45459 VOSS STATION VOSS 1 676 Miamisburg Centerville Rd Dayton, OH 45459 MATHEWS EAST MATHEWS EAST 2 1793 Marion-Mt Gilead Rd Marion, OH 43302 MATHEWS EAST MATHEWS EAST 1 1769 Marion-Mt Gilead Rd Marion, OH 43302 ➡ OK EDMOND HYUNDAI EDMOND 3 14137 N Broadway Ext Edmond, OK 73013 ➡ OR 1300 North Bayshore Drive (US-QMV-L58-1A) 1300 North Bayshore Drive Coos Bay, OR 97420 1300 North Bayshore Drive (US-QMV-L58-1B) 1300 North Bayshore Drive Coos Bay, OR 97420 1300 North Bayshore Drive (US-QMV-L58-1C) 1300 North Bayshore Drive Coos Bay, OR 97420 1300 North Bayshore Drive (US-QMV-L58-2B) 1300 North Bayshore Drive Coos Bay, OR 97420 1300 North Bayshore Drive (US-QMV-L58-2C) 1300 North Bayshore Drive Coos Bay, OR 97420 1300 North Bayshore Drive (US-QMV-L58-2A) 1300 North Bayshore Drive Coos Bay, OR 97420 136590 The Dalles-California Hwy US-97 (US-J8A-82Z-1A) 136590 The Dalles-California Hwy US-97 Crescent, OR 97733 136590 The Dalles-California Hwy US-97 (US-J8A-82Z-1B) 136590 The Dalles-California Hwy US-97 Crescent, OR 97733 136590 The Dalles-California Hwy US-97 (US-J8A-82Z-1C) 136590 The Dalles-California Hwy US-97 Crescent, OR 97733 136590 The Dalles-California Hwy US-97 (US-J8A-82Z-2A) 136590 The Dalles-California Hwy US-97 Crescent, OR 97733 136590 The Dalles-California Hwy US-97 (US-J8A-82Z-2B) 136590 The Dalles-California Hwy US-97 Crescent, OR 97733 136590 The Dalles-California Hwy US-97 (US-J8A-82Z-2C) 136590 The Dalles-California Hwy US-97 Crescent, OR 97733 Auto Town Buick GMC 19495 SE MCLOUGHLIN BLVD GLADSTONE, OR 97027 1500 Southeast East Devils Lake Road (US-VZA-TS4-2B) 1500 Southeast East Devils Lake Road Lincoln City, OR 97367 1500 Southeast East Devils Lake Road (US-VZA-TS4-2C) 1500 Southeast East Devils Lake Road Lincoln City, OR 97367 1500 Southeast East Devils Lake Road (US-VZA-TS4-1C) 1500 Southeast East Devils Lake Road Lincoln City, OR 97367 1500 Southeast East Devils Lake Road (US-VZA-TS4-1B) 1500 Southeast East Devils Lake Road Lincoln City, OR 97367 1500 Southeast East Devils Lake Road (US-VZA-TS4-1A) 1500 Southeast East Devils Lake Road Lincoln City, OR 97367 215 North West Cherry Lane (US-NZG-RRV-1B) 215 North West Cherry Lane Madras, OR 97741 215 North West Cherry Lane (US-NZG-RRV-1C) 215 North West Cherry Lane Madras, OR 97741 215 North West Cherry Lane (US-NZG-RRV-2A) 215 North West Cherry Lane Madras, OR 97741 215 North West Cherry Lane (US-NZG-RRV-2B) 215 North West Cherry Lane Madras, OR 97741 215 North West Cherry Lane (US-NZG-RRV-2C) 215 North West Cherry Lane Madras, OR 97741 215 North West Cherry Lane (US-NZG-RRV-1A) 215 North West Cherry Lane Madras, OR 97741 ➡ PA DH HYUNDAI PARKING LT EAST 2110 State St Erie, PA 16503 DH HYUNDAI PARKING LT WEST 2110 State St Erie, PA 16503 FREYSINGER HY OUT FACING HY 6115 Carlisle Pike Mechanicsburg, PA 17050 ➡ SC Coastal Chevrolet Cadillac 8559 Ocean Hwy Pawleys Island, SC 29585 ➡ SD Brookings Activity Center 320 5th Ave Brookings, SD 57006 PROSTROLLO PROSTROLLO1 500 4th St NE Huron, SD 57350 Pioneer Country Mart - Murdo 602 5th St Murdo, SD 57559 Rapid Wash Car Wash North 1735 Haines Ave Rapid City, SD 57701 Fresh Start Convenience Store 2728 1st Ave Spearfish, SD 57783 ➡ TN HYUNDAI BRISTOL STATION 4 2638 W State St Bristol, TN 37620 FRIENDSHIPJCHYU FRONT SHOWROOM 3408 N Roan St Johnson City, TN 37601 FRIENDSHIPJCHYU SOUTH PARKING 3408 N Roan St Johnson City, TN 37601 ➡ TX AutoNation Chevrolet West Amarillo 7300 I-40 W Amarillo, TX 79106 Cuero Creamery 507 E. Broadway St. Cuero, TX 77954 SLUMBER PASS EX BIG'S 210 #1 25580 Blanco Rd San Antonio, TX 78260 SLUMBER PASS EX BIG'S 210 #2 25580 Blanco Rd San Antonio, TX 78260 ➡ VA Crossroads Center 5831 Columbia Pike & Leesburg Pike Falls Church, VA 22041 ➡ VT Enel X - Quechee Mall 15 Quechee Gorge Village Dr Quechee, VT 05059 ➡ WA 415 West Heron Street (US-3HE-7VZ-1A) 415 West Heron Street Aberdeen, WA 98520 415 West Heron Street (US-3HE-7VZ-1B) 415 West Heron Street Aberdeen, WA 98520 415 West Heron Street (US-3HE-7VZ-2A) 415 West Heron Street Aberdeen, WA 98520 415 West Heron Street (US-3HE-7VZ-2B) 415 West Heron Street Aberdeen, WA 98520 415 West Heron Street (US-3HE-7VZ-2C) 415 West Heron Street Aberdeen, WA 98520 415 West Heron Street (US-3HE-7VZ-1C) 415 West Heron Street Aberdeen, WA 98520 JEEP EV DICKHANNAHJEEP1 3517 NE Auto Mall Dr Vancouver, WA 98662 JEEP EV DICKHANNAJEEP3 3517 NE Auto Mall Dr Vancouver, WA 98662 JEEP EV DICKHANNAHJEEP2 3517 NE Auto Mall Dr Vancouver, WA 98662 ➡ WI MGE MGE CANOPY DCFC 602 Railroad St Madison, WI 53703 MGE KELLEY E DCFC 3859 E Washington Ave Madison, WI 53704 ➡ WV BARBOURSVILLE DUTCH MILLER 6400 U.S. 60 Barboursville, WV 25504 ➡ WY Vista Nissan 111 SE Wyoming Blvd Casper, WY 82609
If you've ever bought a car, you know the feeling when you've signed all the paperwork, driven off the lot, and think, "Wow, this is my car now."
"I was excited," says Courtney Johnson. "I felt like I'd made a good decision as a mother."
Johnson had just had a baby when she and her husband, Darren, decided to buy a newer, safer car for the family. They live in a rural area outside Orlando, Fla. He's a fire sprinkler inspector; she's stopped working to raise the kids. And they bought a little used Hyundai SUV.
"It had the backup camera," she says, "and passenger and kid's airbags in the back."
But a full three weeks after they bought the car and took it home, they got what's called "yo-yo'd."
"I received a phone call from the finance manager of the dealership," Darren Johnson says. The manager told them the financing for the car had fallen through and if the couple wanted to keep it, they had to come back and sign a contract with different terms. Sponsor Message
"I was kind of confused," Johnson says. "I thought this was a legally binding contract. ... We've had this vehicle at home. What do you mean it's not financed?"
Most of us would be confused too. But odds are good that in the paperwork you signed when you bought your own car, there was some legal language saying the sale may not really be final. It often asserts that if the car dealer has trouble with the financing on its end after the sale, it can later cancel the deal, try to get you to agree to different terms, and take the car back if you refuse. "It does happen all too frequently"
NPR has found that this happens regularly around the country — sometimes with painful consequences, such as losing your car or even getting arrested — and that tougher rules for car dealers can make a difference. All this is especially relevant right now, as the Federal Trade Commission is in the midst of drafting new rules for dealers.
In the Johnsons' case, the new deal raised the price of the car, paid less for their trade-in vehicle, and removed an insurance policy they had in the first deal.
The Johnsons signed the new deal because they wanted to keep the car. But then a week later, they say the dealership told them they had to sign yet another deal. Sponsor Message
"At that point, it just all seemed really fishy," says Darren. The couple refused to return and sign it.
The dealer, Greenway Hyundai Orlando, sent a tow truck and repossessed the car. Buying A Car With Confidence Life Kit Buying A Car With Confidence
Meanwhile, documents show that Greenway had already sold their trade-in vehicle and didn't give it back.
"We both were just kind of like mind blown at the whole entire situation," Courtney says. "Like, how is this even possible?"
Documents from a later arbitration case show that the dealership wouldn't return their calls. And it didn't pay off the loan on their trade-in vehicle. So the Johnsons were stuck paying the loan, with no car, for nearly a year. They eventually used a chunk of their small retirement savings to pay the loan back.
"I just remember being like ... embarrassed, confused," Courtney says. Without a car, she had to ask friends to drive her and the baby to doctor visits. "I was, like, counting out change, trying to give friends money for gas to get places."
Greenway Hyundai Orlando declined an interview but said in a statement that "Greenway's goal is always to match customers with the financing they need to purchase the automobile of their choice ... it is a lose-lose scenario to have any customer's financing fall through."
The company also said "the communication in this situation around the trade-in ... was hindered by the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic." The dealership did not explain how the pandemic stopped it from returning the Johnsons' car, which the dealership sold in October of 2019.
The Johnsons bought a car from Greenway Hyundai Orlando in Orlando, Fla. The dealership told them they needed to sign two other deals after their initial purchase. After the Johnsons refused to sign the third contract, the dealership repossessed the car. Octavio Jones for NPR
To get a sense of how often yo-yo sales happen, NPR sent a survey to consumer attorneys who work on auto cases. Forty of them responded. Together, those few dozen lawyers said they've gotten calls from nearly 900 car buyers in just the past year who say they felt victimized by a yo-yo car sale. Sponsor Message
They said that often the terms are worse for the customer under the new deal. And they said that about half the time the dealer tells the customer it's too late to get their trade-in vehicle back.
So what happened to the Johnsons is not just a bizarre one-off situation.
"It does happen all too frequently," says John Van Alst, an attorney with the nonprofit National Consumer Law Center.
Usually, when you finance a car through the dealer, technically you owe the dealership the money for the car. But the dealer wants to quickly sell the credit contract you signed to, for example, the credit arm of Ford or Toyota or some other auto lender.
That's why car dealers often put in the fine print that if they have trouble doing that, they can cancel the sale.
"They want you to feel bound by the contract," says Van Alst. "But they want to be able to walk away."
Many car dealers want you to buy a car the day you walk into the dealership, he says, because if you leave, you'll keep shopping around.
And to get you to buy the car, the sales person might agree to a monthly payment that's too low. Or for whatever reason, they can't find an auto lender willing to essentially buy your car loan, at least at a price the dealer is willing to take.
The Federal Trade Commission is in the midst of drafting new rules for car dealers. Octavio Jones for NPR
Sometimes the car dealer made a mistake and thought they'd be able to find a lender.
But other times, Van Alst says, "it's used as a technique by dealers to try to force consumers into a worse deal."
In those instances, he says, the salesperson knows the deal is too good to be true, but lets you think you've bought the car anyway. So you take it home, show it to your friends and family. Then a few days or weeks later you get the phone call yanking you back like a yo-yo. Sponsor Message
"'Oh, no,'" Van Alst says the dealer tells you. "'You're going to have to accept an 8% higher interest rate.'" And at that point, he says, "It's a whole lot more difficult for the consumer to walk away. The dealer might have already sold their trade-in."
That's called "unhorsing" the car buyer. "They are then sort of at the mercy of the car dealer," he says.
As it drafts a new set of proposed rules for car dealers, the FTC has requested public comment. And the agency is asking directly — should something more be done to specifically address the problem of yo-yo car sales?
Eighteen state attorneys general say yes. "The FTC can and should go farther to prevent this unfair and deceptive practice," the attorneys general wrote together in a letter to the agency. They urge the FTC to consider "an outright ban on the practice of allowing consumers to leave the dealership with a vehicle before the transaction's financing is finalized." Laws can make a difference
NPR has found that tougher rules for car dealers can make a difference.
In 2015, a new state law in Maryland went into effect. It says dealers have just four days to cancel a sale or it becomes final. And dealers are banned from selling trade-in vehicles until the sale is final. So if need be, the car buyer can get their trade-in back.
NPR obtained and analyzed data made up of complaints to the Maryland attorney general's office. In the three years prior to the new law, there were 122 complaints related to yo-yo car sales, or "spot-delivery" sales as the industry calls them. But now, in the three years ending in 2022, complaints have fallen by more than half.
"Absolutely the law has made a difference," says Karen Straughn, an assistant attorney general with the Maryland attorney general's Consumer Protection Division. She says it took a few years for some car dealers to change their practices. But now, she says, most have. Sponsor Message
She says yo-yo sale cases are also more easily resolved now. She says some dealers used to argue that they didn't do anything wrong. Now the rules are clear.
"We advise the consumer and the dealership of exactly what the law requires," Straughn says. "We find that most times dealerships and consumers are able to work together and resolve it amicably."
But Paul Metrey with the National Automobile Dealers Association says the FTC doesn't need to change the rules at the federal level. He says the vast majority of car sales go through with no incident. "You have tens of millions of transactions where this happens all the time," Metrey says, even when the sales contract gives the dealer the right to cancel it later.
So he says there's nothing wrong with contracts that give dealers the right to cancel after the fact. He says he doesn't have data on problems with yo-yo sales but that it seems to him that it's rare that the original terms don't work and a car buyer needs to be called back.
"That's a situation that you want to avoid," he says, because if the buyer walks away, the dealer gets stuck with a car with more mileage on it making it worth less. It's a headache for everybody involved.
"Perhaps most significantly, you have an unhappy customer," Metrey says. "The reputation of the dealership is key."
The dealer association says car buyers like the current system and changing the rules would create unnecessary delays. Dealers call these contracts spot deliveries because they allow buyers to take the keys and drive off right away, on the spot, even if the dealer hasn't finalized the financing.
Metrey says there are always going to be bad actors at some dealerships, but "to the extent there is an issue, it's something that can be addressed under current federal and state law." Sponsor Message "Nobody should have to go through something like that"
Still, the FTC says in its rulemaking that current laws in general don't appear to be working well enough to protect car buyers. And with yo-yo sales there definitely can be bad outcomes.
NPR spoke to two different car buyers where the dealer reported the car stolen after the buyer resisted agreeing to different terms or returning the car.
Kaitlyn Arland is an Army service member stationed at Fort Riley in Kansas. When she bought a car two years ago, she says the salesman didn't say anything about the sale not being final as she drove away. But then she received a call from the dealership. Arin Yoon for NPR
Kaitlyn Arland is an Army service member stationed at Fort Riley in Kansas. The summer before last she was 19 years old and bought a new Kia sedan with a $325 monthly payment.
"I was so excited," says Arland. "I remember asking the gentleman, like, 'I'm good to go?' And he was, like, 'you're good to go.'"
She says the salesman didn't say anything about the sale not being final as she drove away. But then, eight days later, came the yo-yo phone call. She says the dealer told her the financing didn't work out, she had to come back, sign a different contract, and make a $2,000 down payment.
"I straight up told him, 'I'm sorry. I don't have $2,000,'" Arland says. "He proceeded to ask me if I had a credit card that I could pay it on. And I said ... financially I can't do it, I'm sorry."
Left: Kaitlyn Arland's car keys hang next to her dog tags at her home in Junction City, Kansas. Right: When Arland pushed back on the dealer's new terms and a higher down payment, the finance manager told her they would report the car as stolen. Arin Yoon for NPR
Arland had never bought a car before. But this didn't seem fair. She had a good credit score.
But when she pushed back on the car dealer, she says the finance manager told her if she didn't bring the car back immediately they were going to report it stolen. And apparently they did.
"So the brigade commander reached out to my commander and said that the dealership said that I had stolen this car and I wouldn't return it," Arland says. "I was already new to the unit, and I just found out I was pregnant, so I was already super worried about what everyone was thinking about me." Sponsor Message
Arland was worried this was going to wreck her young career in the military. "I was bawling my eyes out in front of my entire unit."
And after all that, the dealership took the car back.
For Andre Flynt, a car buyer in Cleveland, things ended badly too.
"One night I'm just driving and next thing you know, I get pulled over by the police," Flynt says. "I got my girlfriend in the car, my little brother."
This was about a year ago. Flynt had bought a used Chevrolet Camaro from an AutoNation dealership outside Cleveland. But then he says he got tangled up in a yo-yo sale situation. The dealer was trying to get him to bring the car back. Flynt said he would, but then he didn't. And the dealer reported the car stolen. Flynt says when he got pulled over he showed the police the paperwork indicating he had bought the car legally.
"They got me at the back of the car, one officer was talking about why was he pulling me over when all the paperwork and everything is in my name," Flynt says. "I'm like, there's so many cop cars behind me, it looked like I robbed a bank."
Flynt says it was scary.
"I'm black, too, so it's like any slight movement, anything man, it could have been just all downhill," Flynt says. "It was terrifying. It shook my girl up, 'cause we didn't know what was gonna happen."
The officers arrested him and he spent two nights in jail before he managed to get released.
"Nobody should have to go through something like that when you actually didn't do anything," says Flynt.
The police returned the car to the dealership. AutoNation said in a statement to NPR that the sale had a "stipulation" that Flynt would provide a copy of his Social Security card the next day and that he did not. Flynt and his attorney both say that's not true, that there was no stipulation about a Social Security card and that it's not mentioned in the sales contract Flynt signed.
Flynt says it wasn't until several days later that the dealership contacted him saying it needed more documentation for the loan financing, which he had trouble providing. Emails show that an AutoNation manager repeatedly, over several weeks, told Flynt that if he didn't return the car he would report it stolen.
Consumer attorneys say these are the sorts of messy situations that result when dealers sell someone a car, hand them the keys, shake their hand, and then later try to yo-yo them back.
And there are plenty of successful car dealerships that say they don't engage in the practice of canceling a sale and renegotiating after the customer has already driven off the lot.
"Once the customer signs the paperwork and we sign the paperwork, that's a contract ... it's done," says Scott Addison, the head of sales at Fitzgerald Auto Mall, which operates 23 dealership locations in Maryland, Pennsylvania and Florida.
"We sell 27,000 cars a year," Addison says. "At no point are we going to bring somebody back in and renegotiate."
He says they run into an issue with the financing with maybe 15 or 20 of those sales every year. But the dealership just absorbs any cost related to that and it's rare.
Addison says with technology today it doesn't take very long for his dealership to get a customer's financing approved. "We usually have an approval within seconds of submitting the deal."
For their part, Courtney and Darren Johnson in Florida managed to find a lawyer who took their case, which ended up in arbitration as is required in many sales contracts. But it turns out suing a car dealership can be perilous.
"These are risky cases to bring," says their attorney, David Abrams. "The dealership counterclaimed against them," he says. "They actually went after Darren and Courtney and sued them."
Greenway Hyundai sought to recover its attorney fees and even "storage fees" for the trade-in car that it never returned to the Johnsons. So Abrams says if they lost the case the couple would likely have owed tens of thousands of dollars in legal bills. "They would have had to have declared bankruptcy." Sponsor Message
Abrams says most state laws around deceptive practices don't spell out where the line is that car dealers can't cross. "It's very vague," he says.
That's a big reason he'd like to see the FTC craft a rule that directly addresses spot-delivery and yo-yo sales. "Having some bright line rules," he says, would make the buying process more transparent for buyers and "would make the law much easier to understand and interpret and enforce."
The facts in the Johnsons' case were striking enough, though, that the arbitrator ruled emphatically in their favor, saying the dealership's actions bordered on "criminal conduct" and were "precisely the type of wanton and willful disregard for the rights of others that evinces gross negligence and warrants punitive damages."
Last month, the couple was awarded more than $225,000 in damages.
"I was excited," says Courtney Johnson.
"I'm glad the dealership got punished," says Darren.
The couple says they're thinking they might use the money to start their own fire sprinkler installation business.
I made my initial reservation in June 2021. When the order banks opened mid last year, I got an email saying that I had to place my order by Nov. 21, 2022 or lose it. So on Oct. 21, 2022, I went to AutoNation Ford in Fort Worth, TX, and placed my order.
Out of an abundance of caution, I emailed the sales rep two weeks later to confirm that the order had been placed. This was for 23MY Wildtrak with MIC, Lux package, Sasquatch, in Azure grey.
About a week ago, when most people received the email for a $2500 order change offer for those specs, I did not. I assumed this meant I made it, and that I’d be getting an email that my Bronco was being produced soon.
To my dismay and shock, I received an email from Ford yesterday that my reservation was being refunded and my place in line forfeited, because I never placed an order. So I called the dealership and they confirmed that my order was placed on Oct. 21, 2022. They gave me and order number (#1021) and a dealership #.
I called Ford back and they said they have no order placed under my reservation number, and that my account says that my reservation was canceled by the customer. Of course, I told them that the dealership has confirmed that they placed my order and given me an order number they said that there’s nothing in their system and nothing they can do, that my reservation has been canceled. They said the only thing I can do is wait for order banks to re-open and place my order again (but now at the end of the line, because again, my reservation number is lost).
I let my dealership know that they said this and I got a text this morning that they would re-place my order on March 27.
I feel like someone’s not being honest with me, but I’m not sure how to prove it. I’ve now been waiting almost 3 years for my bronco. It is the first nice car I will ever own and I planned for it to be my graduation gift to myself for graduating law school. I am pretty devastated. Has this happened to anyone else and what did you do?
I ordered from Autonation Ford in Marietta on 9/20/22 but I never got official confirmation of my order from Ford through email and zero updates until today I got a voicemail from the manager saying my Maverick build is ready. I figured it was never coming so I just financed a 17 Acura ILX for 16.5k after adding taxes and fees minus my down payment. And I have no clue what to do now… Thoughts?
I called into a Florida AutoNation to purchase a specific type of F150 with certain features for a business. The salesman assured me it was “Available” and told me to come in. I show up and he starts showing me photos of the vehicle. Apparently the car was on the other side of the state and need to be delivered to them. Whatever, I’m in no rush. They discuss a $1k transport fee with me.
We sit down with the finance manager to get me approved. He was very kind and helpful. Since it is a new business they say my rate is going to be high. Later that night they called and said ford offered 12.49% apr for 72 months. Told me to come in the next morning and sign the paperwork. This is my first ever real car buying experience on my own. But I know I have amazing credit so it didn’t make any sense to me.
Next morning I shop around and was able to get 6.29% for 60 months from BofA. I come into the dealership a little before noon with my approval letter in hand. And all of a sudden Ford’s offer was magically able to drop to 6.29 for 72 months and I would be able to get all their pretty little warranties.
I explained to the gentleman that I respectfully decline and would like to proceed with my BofA offer and did want any of the extras. That’s we’re everything turned. He kept pushing them on me after saying no many times. I thought this was going to be a 15 minute process since I had the approval and insurance already set up. He start to stall me to the point I was late for a meeting.
I had to leave and come back. Then they have me wait in the lobby for hours. Come back around 6. Wife is waiting in the car and getting irate with me. So finally after complaining to the manager they were able to fit me in just before closing at 9pm.
We fly through the paperwork and I sign. We are still waiting on the vehicle to be delivered. The following morning, the finance manager calls to tell me he forgot to add the $1k transport fee to the loan amount and needs me to resign the paperwork. And increase my monthly payment. Makes sense, he made a mistake in not going to be a jerk about it like they were to me for not getting true it BS warranties. Told him I’d come in when the vehicle arrived to do everything at once. He says I need to do it immediately or else they would cancel the transport. So I say fine I’ll come in the next morning. He follows up with a text then saying I need to pay another $537 down to “make the draft amount equal.”
This thing has been weird from the jump. The truck is a good deal and has exactly what I’m looking for, only one I could find. So they are kind of in a position of power here.
Can they refuse to sell me the truck if I don’t agree to signing the new paperwork? Are there any ramifications if either side backs out of the deal? Do I already technically own the vehicle?
TLDR: Finance manager tried to screw me with 12.49 apr. I come in next day with a 6.29 I got from BofA. Declined all warranties so they started to treat me like shit and have me wait for hours. Finally signed paperwork. He forgot to add a 1k transport. Can I screw them back?