Go to different dealerships before settling on one. A different dealership might be able to get you a better price on the car you want, and may be running different promotions. Try three or four in your area, and even if you have to travel a bit farther, it may be worth it.
Always ask the seller if they are willing to let you do a test drive. While some private sellers may not offer you the chance to do a test drive, there are many that will. You should try to do your deal with someone who will allow you to see how the car runs.
If you are trading in an automobile, visit your local library and find out the value of your car. You can also look this information up online in several different locations. By having the trade-in value of your car and the retail value of your car you can negotiate better.
Do not allow the salesperson to convince you to buy a car that you cannot realistically afford. Many people are smooth-talked into buying sports cars because the salesman says they would look good in it. Keep in mind that a salesperson is trying their best to make a decent commission, so selling a more expensive car benefits them.
Do not get your heart set on a particular model of car when you are car shopping. You need to leave your options open so that you can get the best deal possible. The exact car you have decided you want may not be the best available option at the time you are ready to buy.
Always bring a mechanic along when shopping for a new vehicle. Car dealers are notorious for selling lemons and you do not want to be their next victim. If you can not get a mechanic to look at cars with you, at least be sure that you have him look at your final choice before you buy it.
Get your car loan online before you even walk into a dealership. Part of the reason it takes so long when you buy a car is that they must check your credit score and secure you a lender. If you walk in with a loan already, the entire process will be quicker.
Never leave your car with the dealership overnight. Many dealerships will offer you the opportunity to take the car that you are considering home in order to test drive it longer. While this is certainly appealing, it essentially means they are given the opportunity to hold the car you own hostage. This makes it more difficult to walk away from a bad deal, and it is not to your advantage.