A $43k Mistake

But it was on sale!

2015 Ram 1500 Rebel Final (retouched)

By Gursh Nijjar

When you’re making big-ticket buying decisions such as a house or a car, the last thing you want is to have your emotions dictate your purchases or you may get stuck with a vehicle you realize you can’t afford or didn’t really want to buy in the first place.

I had a client who came into my auto dealership to buy a Dodge Ram. She was a petite 20-something young woman who was adamant that she buy this giant truck. Her eyes lit up when she saw it and I knew right then that she was sold hook, line, and sinker – regardless of the price and features of the truck. Four months later, her mom called me to tell me that her daughter couldn’t afford the payments and needed to get rid of it.

Unlike something you buy from the shopping mall, big ticket items can’t be returned or exchanged – especially if they are leased or financed – so buyers need to be aware of these key things to help them choose a car that is right for them:


Make a list of things you want, and things you need in a vehicle. Look into different makes and models, car-trend awards, mileage and fuel efficiency, visibility, features, warranty, service packages, technology and more details to narrow down your list. You should also know how much you are willing to spend either in lump sum or monthly payment limits including gas and insurance. This will prepare you before you step onto a lot and take out the emotion out of a purchase.  


Adding to the overwhelm of car-buying is the sheer psychology that men know more about cars than women, and therefore are the decision makers. The auto industry is a male-dominated arena; it is rare to see a female sales rep. It may not be correct but in my opinion, this is the reason why when it comes to negotiating, your rep will turn to the man first if he is there.


When a client tries to walk off the lot without buying, reps turn on the pressure to complete the sale. A $51k Dodge Ram for the “sale price” of $43k is a deal which is too good to be true and not to be missed. Women are generally easier to upsell, buying more than they need if a rep appeals to their emotional side or if the buyer is iffy on bottom line spending.

I have been seeing an influx of women purchasing vehicles and from experience I can say that they are creatures of emotion. Before committing to buying, talk to friends who have cars, ask how much they spend on gas or financing, and test drive it a couple of times so that you can be sure about your buy. My advice is to never close the same day or you may regret spending $43,000 every time you drive.


BIO: Gursh Nijjar has been passionate about cars since he was 11 years old, having worked in the auto industry in England and Canada for 30 years. He is also the co-owner of Canadian Motors.

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