If you’ve ever purchased an in-demand or limited edition new car, you’re familiar with dealer markups. The extra costs are added onto the MSRP and disguised as a “market adjustment,” “convenience fee,” or any other creative wording the dealer chooses.
Markups above and beyond MSRP are pure profit for a dealer and, for the right car, customers will begrudgingly pay it.
This recently happened with the Dodge Hellcats, which saw dealer markups of up to $25,000 beyond MSRP. Markups are legal and, some say, just a reflection of a vehicle’s true value based on demand. After all, a car is worth whatever someone is willing to pay for it.
The new Dodge Challenger Demon is set to hit dealer floors this summer, and FCA has a fancy way of discouraging dealers from gouging Demon customers.
Typically dealers sell cars after first purchasing them from an automaker. That gives them the freedom to adjust pricing however they see fit. However, limited edition cars like the Demon—which will see only 3,000 copies sold in the United States&mdashare often sold through pre-orders. The customer basically makes the purchase from the automaker but uses the dealer as a middleman.
FCA has found a creative way to encourage pre-orders and discourage conditions that could allow for markups.
Motor Authority said,
You see, each Demon comes with a special serialized plaque on the dashboard that states the original Demon owner’s name. If that buyer opts for the Demon Crate, it too will have a special serialized plaque with their name on it.
These plaques will only be done one time, from the factory, for the original buyer. That’s it.
FCA figures most buyers will want the extra personalization in their cars. If a dealer orders one without it being pre-sold, the plaque will come blank with no option for the factory to fill it in later. Potential buyers may simply bypass that dealer, and the markup, and order from a different dealer.
It’s a great plan, but there’s still nothing to stop a dealership from charging a hefty convenience fee for the privilege of ordering.
The Demon’s supercharged 6.2-liter V8 will make up to 840 horsepower, and 770 pound-feet of torque. That’s enough to launch the Demon from 0 to 60 in a mere 2.3 seconds, making it not only the most powerful V8 ever to roll out of a factory, but also among the fastest production cars in the world.
Even without markups, prepare to pay dearly for the right to own a Demon.
We don’t know how much the Demon will cost yet, but will you be first in line to order one?