Women either buy or influence the purchase of 85% of all new cars and trucks sold in the U.S. So why are the majority of women still intimidated and uncomfortable going to a dealership and negotiating the price of a vehicle?
Because the automotive industry is notorious for putting women in the back seat, says Mary Lou Quinlan, CEO of Just Ask a Woman, a market-research firm that interviews women about what they buy and why.
Quinlan says studies indicate women consistently are quoted higher prices than men when shopping for cars. Many women also report feeling put off by sales people who patronize them in the selling process. It's no wonder many women have a hate affair with car dealers, she says.
She urges dealerships to rethink the entire process of how they sell cars to women. Dealerships need to learn to appeal to who a woman is as a person.
Some luxury car makers are just starting to understand that women want their own mid-life crisis car. It's not necessarily a Chevrolet Corvette. It's more like a Lexus, Jaguar or Mercedes-Benz.
“For her, it's about comfort, luxurious feel and amenities,” says Quinlan.