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Old 27th January 2023, 00:51   #1
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Should I buy a Mercedes demo car?

I am in the market for a new car and I have my heart on the Merc GLA Petrol. It is way beyond my budget but no other car has come close to impressing me more than the GLA.

Yesterday, I went to this showroom and there was a demo GLA 200 (petrol) with the following:

1. It's GLA 200 Petrol Registered on 2021 (Warranty already started)

2. It has run 13000 km on the odo and the dealer has told me it has been used as a demo car only.

3. The car has not met with any accident (as informed by the dealer) but he says he has spend INR 2 lakhs to 'refurb' the car and remove all the scratches. When I asked for more details, he is ready to share the invoice of all the fixes made. He will be sending the invoice tomorrow.

4. Orally he has told me that 5 panels have been repainted.

5. Car looks good from inside and outside after taking a glance. No scratches or dent outside and the interiors look good too but Inside there is one problem, the steering wheel (which is leather stitched) cover has cuts on the leather wrap like some animal has scratched it - this is probably the biggest red flag for me because no one driving a merc would be so reckless to cut or scratch the steering cover. The salesperson told me this cannot be fixed.

6. The dealer says he is no longer offering a test drive of this vehicle as he has already spend 2lakhs to refurb it but if I insist then he will take the booking amount and offer a test drive (booking amount is refundable)

7. Upfront he has offered me 7 lakhs of discount which I know is way too less but I have not sat down for negotiation yet.

I wanted to ask everyone, should I go for this car and if yes, what would be a fair good price for this car? Also, what all additional information should I ask the dealer to make sure I am not getting scammed.

All inputs will be appreciated, thank you

Last edited by techspark : 27th January 2023 at 00:59.
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Old 27th January 2023, 01:22   #2
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re: Should I buy a Mercedes demo car?

GLA is a good car, looks good inside and out. Since you're heart is set, there is no need to go into the details.

I use a demo car from Mercedes, apart from initial niggles, all has been well. Earlier I found a panel gap, a non functioning speaker and the ADAS sensor wasnt working, the dealer fixed everything.

Quote:
Originally Posted by techspark View Post
1. It's GLA 200 Petrol Registered on 2021 (Warranty already started)
Extended warranty gets pricier with age of the car, negotiate with price package. This might be useful when shopping German cars.


Quote:
Originally Posted by techspark View Post
2. It has run 13000 km on the odo and the dealer has told me it has been used as a demo car only.
Ask for a TD.

Quote:
Originally Posted by techspark View Post
4. Orally he has told me that 5 panels have been repainted.
5 panels seem like a lot, do all for the paperwork, take no accidents by email or in writing.


Quote:
Originally Posted by techspark View Post
5. ....the steering wheel (which is leather stitched) cover has cuts on the leather wrap like some animal has scratched it - this is probably the biggest red flag for me because no one driving a merc would be so reckless to cut or scratch the steering cover. The salesperson told me this cannot be fixed.
Ouch, cuts do occur with age or poor use care.

Quote:
Originally Posted by techspark View Post
6. The dealer says he is no longer offering a test drive of this vehicle as he has already spend 2lakhs to refurb it but if I insist then he will take the booking amount and offer a test drive (booking amount is refundable)
Sounds crazy, once you negotiate ask for a TD, if you like then only buy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by techspark View Post
7. Upfront he has offered me 7 lakhs of discount which I know is way too less but I have not sat down for negotiation yet.
I think you can park for more. 1.5 years old, you can get easily 15% (about 9 lakh, you may push a bit more) of the ex showroom of an unregistered car, please negotiate extended warranty as well.


Best wishes.
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Old 27th January 2023, 04:39   #3
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re: Should I buy a Mercedes demo car?

I am not sure how you would feel buying a ~ 50 lakh odd " Demo car ".

Red flags I see :

1 - Budget : stretching way beyond your budget only to get a " Demo car " could backfire badly in case of mechanical failures at a later point

2- Refurb : 2 lakhs to refurb screams minor dents / a minor accident may be ?

My humble opinion would be to stay away from it ! You don't want be an example for
" Penny wise, pound foolish "
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Old 27th January 2023, 06:50   #4
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re: Should I buy a Mercedes demo car?

I would stay away given how demo cars are abused in India being test driven by different drivers. Given how they are test driven, the actual age of the car would be thrice the odo mileage.

If you still want to buy it, I would negotiate the price as a used car which has done 39k for which 7 lakh discount is way too less given how bad depreciation is on german cars.
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Old 27th January 2023, 07:29   #5
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re: Should I buy a Mercedes demo car?

13K of driving on a demo car, 2 lakhs spent on refurbishment, car already registered, scuffed steering- these are all red flags and I would walk away from this car.

You will be better off finding a good example in the pre owned market which would also be significantly cheaper.

If your heart is still set on this particular model, I would start by offering the dealer 35 lakhs for this (you will be second owner) and then negotiate my way to close this sub-40. anything more is simply not worth it.

I had shortlisted the GLA in my last round of car purchase, and while the car is a lovely little thing, that petrol engine is quite underwhelming in terms of performance. So I am not sure how the 1.3 L mill will stand up to abuse over 13K kms.
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Old 27th January 2023, 09:17   #6
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Re: Should I buy a Mercedes demo car?

50 lakhs on a 2-year-old demo car that has been so abused that it has 5 repainted panels & 2 lakhs in refurbishment!! Why brother, why? You are being a sucker for punishment. For that kind of money, you can buy a used GLC, C-Class or 3-Series from a single owner who drove it with love & care. Please avoid. You are trying to justify the wrong purchase.

Mumbai has lots of better options for the money.
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Old 27th January 2023, 13:10   #7
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Re: Should I buy a Mercedes demo car?

I would stop at
  • way beyond budget
  • 1.3 (161 HP) engine for 50+ lakhs
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Old 27th January 2023, 23:45   #8
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Re: Should I buy a Mercedes demo car?

Thank you everyone for your valuable inputs. Here is the picture of all repairs shared by the salesperson. I feel this car has met with a small accident otherwise why would the tail light be replaced. I have a final meeting tomorrow and will update the best price I get for it
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Old 29th January 2023, 09:18   #9
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Re: Should I buy a Mercedes demo car?

Quote:
Originally Posted by techspark View Post
Thank you everyone for your valuable inputs. Here is the picture of all repairs shared by the salesperson. I feel this car has met with a small accident otherwise why would the tail light be replaced. I have a final meeting tomorrow and will update the best price I get for it
One Word, Avoid

A Demo car with 13000kms is equivalent to a car than has done over 60k kms. To add, this one in particular has already got glaring red flags.

If you have your heart set on buying a German, look in the used car market and especially the used car market in NCR. Thanks to the NGT guidelines, some exceptionally maintained vehicles are being sold at throwaway prices and even the hassle of procuring a NOC, getting the transfer etc. would be worth it
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Old 29th January 2023, 10:24   #10
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Re: Should I buy a Mercedes demo car?

Move away

Generally people have 2 options, buy a new car and have great peace of mind for first 5-7 years or get a preowned and be prepared if something goes off (goodness in price will compensate if something goes off)

In your case, 13K is decent ODO reading, plus 5 panels repainted and Just 7L discount does not make sense. It is "TC" registered car, will you be first owner or second owner on RC

If second owner, them I would rather look out in the preowned segment, you will be able to find cars with 10-30K on ODO. Please note it will be single person driven and maintained like a personal car compared to this test car which was probably abused by buyers as well as the dealership staff. Also Depreciation in the preowned market will be higher than 7L which your dealer is offering

And if you will be the first owner then also, I would not recommend, driven by multiple drivers, mostly in the sun so paint quality for the untouched panels will not be same as the regular car, plus multiple times ingress / test drive resulting in ageing of interiors faster than the exterior | other similar individual owned cars
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Old 29th January 2023, 11:42   #11
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Re: Should I buy a Mercedes demo car?

Quote:
Originally Posted by techspark View Post
Thank you everyone for your valuable inputs. Here is the picture of all repairs shared by the salesperson. I feel this car has met with a small accident otherwise why would the tail light be replaced. I have a final meeting tomorrow and will update the best price I get for it
That car has been rear ended once and probably t boned once given glove box door damage rather than just a repainting of the door. Avoid.
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Old 29th January 2023, 14:07   #12
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Re: Should I buy a Mercedes demo car?

Dear Friend,
Not just stay away, run away from the scene. It is an abused car. For the asking price, it does not make any sense. Get a well-maintained luxury preowned or a new Tiguan/ Tuscon.

Regards
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Old 29th January 2023, 14:55   #13
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Re: Should I buy a Mercedes demo car?

50 lakhs for a demo potato? 50 lakhs?!
Go buy a single owner 2017+ 530d instead. Might turn out to be a safer deal.

Or else have a look sparingly used A4s.
What you can also do is tell us your requirements so that alternatives can be suggested.

P.S. it's just my experience but drove a 2019 GLA 200 X156 (154hp) back in 2019 and it just felt sad.
I'd much rather take a used C200 over this but then again, this is just my opinion.
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Old 29th January 2023, 15:51   #14
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Re: Should I buy a Mercedes demo car?

IMHO this deal cannot be justified at all.
13000 km short runs for testing will do much harm to a car and this deal is with luxury car which will bring its maintenance much difficult.
With so much work already has been done on this car, it will be pain in keeping this car in top shape as nobody knows how much more maintenance this car will need.

Consider the case as if this was my own car and will have covered 13000 km, it will be 9000 km highway run and 4000 km city run. In those 9000 km highway run, the car may not have much wear and tear and finally making it 8000 km run car.
Inversely, this car being test driven, each drive averaging 25 km, every drive within city limits, the wear and tear may go like 25000 km driven car.

Also the discount of mere 6 lakh in this case is out of my small mind to think what on earth some dealers think. Its not less disturbing than the dealers some states have. Please calculate age and price of this car wisely.
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Old 29th January 2023, 15:53   #15
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Re: Should I buy a Mercedes demo car?

Quote:
Originally Posted by techspark View Post
I am in the market for a new car and I have my heart on the Merc GLA Petrol. It is way beyond my budget but no other car has come close to impressing me more than the GLA.

Yesterday, I went to this showroom and there was a demo GLA 200 (petrol) with the following:

1. It's GLA 200 Petrol Registered on 2021 (Warranty already started)

2. It has run 13000 km on the odo and the dealer has told me it has been used as a demo car only.

3. The car has not met with any accident (as informed by the dealer) but he says he has spend INR 2 lakhs to 'refurb' the car and remove all the scratches. When I asked for more details, he is ready to share the invoice of all the fixes made. He will be sending the invoice tomorrow.

4. Orally he has told me that 5 panels have been repainted.

5. Car looks good from inside and outside after taking a glance. No scratches or dent outside and the interiors look good too but Inside there is one problem, the steering wheel (which is leather stitched) cover has cuts on the leather wrap like some animal has scratched it - this is probably the biggest red flag for me because no one driving a merc would be so reckless to cut or scratch the steering cover. The salesperson told me this cannot be fixed.

6. The dealer says he is no longer offering a test drive of this vehicle as he has already spend 2lakhs to refurb it but if I insist then he will take the booking amount and offer a test drive (booking amount is refundable)

7. Upfront he has offered me 7 lakhs of discount which I know is way too less but I have not sat down for negotiation yet.

I wanted to ask everyone, should I go for this car and if yes, what would be a fair good price for this car? Also, what all additional information should I ask the dealer to make sure I am not getting scammed.

All inputs will be appreciated, thank you
I think you should stay miles away from a Demo car atleast in India. People do not have the highest regard for such vehicles as they're 'not their own'. They're driven rashly (negligently) not just by the potential buyers, but also by the showroom personnel who take and bring the vehicles from the Test Drives.

Also, if he's verbally telling you that he has painted 5 panels, there might be some other hidden information too which he might not be revealing. What if there are hidden issues which are under the hood or not visible to the naked eye. If I were you, I'd stay away from a Demo Car.
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