An easy-to-read guide that attempts to demystify car buying.
Debut author DiFeo, an automotive dealer whose family has been in the business for three generations, bides his time getting to his main topic: how to buy a car. Before that, he detours into the tale of his great-great-grandfather, Saverio DiFeo, who migrated from Italy to New York City in the early 1900s and made a living selling fruit. One of his sons, Joseph, started a bakery in Jersey City and Joseph’s son, Sam, the author’s grandfather, opened a car dealership in the 1940s in the same area. The author himself first tried his hand at organic farming in Asheville, North Carolina, but, frustrated by the long hours, meager wages, and backbreaking work, he began selling cars and now sells Volkswagen with his brother in St. Augustine, Florida. This family history slows the book down a bit, but it also establishes DiFeo as a companionable partner on the car-buying journey. He then begins in earnest by tackling the stereotype of the pushy, aggressive car salesperson, eager to prioritize profit over integrity. This caricature, he says, is based on sales practices that faded long ago. Consumer-friendly laws and the widespread availability of purchase prices and other data have put customers on more equal footing with dealers, he notes. In addition, he says, many dealers have recognized that customers are more likely to return if they think that they received fair treatment. As DiFeo reviews various options, including buying new and used cars and leasing, he takes his readers on a smooth ride, avoiding jargon that could have provided bumps in the road to understanding. He could have possibly strengthened the work, however, by crunching the numbers to show, for example, the savings from buying a used car with cash and driving it as long as possible versus the cost of leasing a new one every few years.
A good starting point for potential car buyers, filled with helpful tips about how to analyze a purchase.