Oh No! Car Dealers Might Have To Deal With Informed Customers! That Must Be Illegal!
from the felony-interference-of-a-business-model dept
However, what's really incredible is how the industry has reacted to this site -- basically freaking out and whining about how consumers actually being informed might put them all out of business. The excuses are typical of what you'll find with an industry that works on a collusion or gatekeeper system when it's finally faced with real competition. They start talking about how real competition is evil and how it will lead to a worse situation with more scams. In fact, TrueCar got hit with claims that what it was doing, in providing consumers with more info, was illegal. They've even had to change their practices in some states -- which really only goes to show just how much car dealers have influenced various state laws in their favor to protect against true competition and an informed consumer.
Others, including Honda, have argued that TrueCar could open the door to unscrupulous dealers trying to sell a more expensive car or more options once they get the customers in the door — which Honda said reflected poorly on the brand. Honda also threatened to cut off marketing dollars to dealers who promoted its cars on the site below the invoice price, a price that is supposed to represent something close to the dealer’s cost (though dealers usually make more money on other manufacturer incentives and programs).Think of just how convoluted and insane this argument is. Honda doesn't want informed consumers because (wait for it...) informed consumers might lead dealers to try to trick buyers. Seriously. Okay, time to cross Honda off any future potential car list.