Car Buying Tips

Choosing a Dealership


Want to streamline your car-shopping process? Check out the following guidelines:

Convenient Location

Once you've selected your vehicle, you’ll probably establish a relationship with the dealership's service department. A franchised dealer near your home or workplace will make life a lot easier.

Service Checklist

  • Are the technicians ASE (Automotive Service Excellence) certified?
  • Does the service department have convenient hours? (And, if you know other customers at that dealership, what is the average wait time for a service appointment?)
  • If necessary, will they provide a loaner or a rental at a discounted rate?
  • Does the service department offer coupons, promotions or discounts?


  • How many years has the dealership been in business?
  • Are they a member of a respected trade organization such as GNYADA?
  • Does the dealership receive positive word-of-mouth? (Qualities like dependability, responsiveness and follow-through are good to look for.)

Advantages to Choosing a New Car Dealership

Dealer-financed loans or leases offer advantages including:
  • Convenient one-stop shopping
  • Competitive rates
  • Access to multiple credit sources
  • Incentive programs from manufacturers


Trading in your old vehicle to a franchised dealer can save you time, effort and the expense of advertising. You also save on sales tax. The trade-in is subtracted from the price of the new vehicle before the sales tax is computed.

The ABC's of Buyer Protection

When you purchase a new or used vehicle from a franchised dealer in New York State, you are automatically covered by a number of Federal and State protections unavailable through private sales.

Deals and Incentives

Looking for a great deal on your new car?

Your local dealer can tell you about the latest incentives, rebates, and special offers, which can change quickly. Manufacturer websites are another great place to start your search — but remember that dealers can often offer special incentives or financing.

GNYADA’s dealer locator, in the bottom left corner, can get you started. Just fill in your city, choose a manufacturer, and you’ll find the dealers in your area.

Prefer to research the best deals online before you go? There are several online services available through the automotive websites. Be sure to watch for deadlines and expiration dates — these sites aren’t updated as often as the dealerships’ incentive lists.

New Car Purchase

  • Repairs under warranty will be honored by the selling dealership or any other franchised dealership in that manufacturer’s network. If the selling dealership goes out of business, the manufacturer will honor your warranty.
  • If the vehicle is sold or registered in New York, you are protected by New York State’s New Car Lemon Law, which offers warranty protection for the first two years or 18,000 miles, whichever comes first.

Used Car Purchase

  • The dealer must disclose in writing whether the vehicle was used as a police car, taxicab, rental vehicle, or a driver education vehicle.
Under New York State’s Used Car Lemon Law:
  • If the vehicle has more than 18,001 but less than 36,000 miles you receive a 90-day or 4,000 mile warranty, which ever comes first.
  • If the vehicle has more than 36,000 but less than 80,000 miles you receive a 60-day or 3,000 mile warranty, whichever comes first.
  • If the vehicle has between 80,000 and 100,000 miles you receive a 30-day or 1,000 mile warranty, whichever comes first.
  • Under 18,000 miles, the provisions of the New Car Lemon Law apply. Vehicles that cost less than $1500 or have more than 100,000 are exempt from the Lemon Law.

If you are having trouble resolving a problem with a new or used vehicle from a licensed dealer, government and private agencies can assist you. These include the New York State Office of the Attorney General, regional Departments of Consumer Affairs, the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles and the Automotive Consumer Action Program (AUTOCAP).