This post is sponsored, but the opinions are 100% our own.
Buying a new car is like birthing a baby. You can’t know how hard it is until you go through it yourself. People are happy to show off their new bundles of metal when they’re safely tucked into their parking spaces, but they leave out the messy details of how their new cars came into this world. My hunch is that they don’t want to rehash the endless negotiations, the mountain of paperwork, the gauntlet they ran to avoid being up-sold on unnecessary features, and the sheer amount of time the whole process takes.
We clocked in at four hours the last time we leased our car. That is literally the same amount of time I was in active labor with my first baby and doesn’t count the hours we spent shopping around with different dealers. And our real little baby was with us for all of it, as a curious and newly mobile toddler. Her presence made the car buying process even more difficult, and we dreaded going through it again when our lease came due.
I was beginning to think my husband and I were the only ones who hated car shopping this much until his coworker told us about Cartelligent, a car buying and leasing service. Now I feel validated that most people are like us and want to drive away in a new car without the hassle of spending their precious weekends at car dealerships.
Cartelligent made the process of getting a new car so much faster and easier. They did all of the research and negotiations for us, so that we didn’t have to set foot on a dealer’s lot to haggle over the price of our new car. You may have heard of them, too. Google, Facebook, Apple, and many other companies offer Cartelligent’s services as a company benefit. These businesses know their employees’ time is valuable, and they’d rather not have it wasted by a drawn out car shopping experience.
How It Works
To start, we filled out an online form and were contacted right away by an account executive, Dakotah. We set up a phone call for the next day to talk about what cars we were interested in leasing. (They’ll also work with you to buy a car and can even help advise you on which financing option is right for you.)
My husband had been keeping an eye out for SUVs with the features we wanted, so we were ready to tell Dakotah which models and colors we wanted him to research for us: The Kia Sorento (to replace our current lease), the Mazda CX-9, and the Acura MDX. Had we needed more direction in terms of what cars to consider, Dakotah could have helped us with that, too. The call lasted less than thirty minutes, and we resumed our normal lives while Cartelligent did the heavy labor for us.
About two days later, Dakotah got back to us with lease prices for the exact cars we liked. Cartelligent can search the whole state of California for the exact car you’re looking for, and they’re constantly on top of the latest rebates and manufacturer incentives. This gives them an advantage during negotiations and gave us peace of mind that we were getting a better deal than we might achieve on our own. This was a huge relief for my husband. In the past, no matter what we’ve ended up paying for our cars, he’s always walked away feeling like he could have gotten a better deal.
This time, he was pleasantly surprised. Dakotah was able to get us a lease price on the Acura MDX that was only a little higher than leasing a new Kia, and we jumped at the chance to upgrade to a luxury brand.
Over the course of five days, we probably spent forty minutes on the phone with Dakotah and ten minutes completing an online trade-in survey about our current car. With that minimal amount of time, we had a new car reserved and scheduled to be delivered to Cartelligent’s Sausalito office for us to pick up (they have offices south of San Francisco, too).
Even when a last minute change in my husband’s travel schedule threatened to derail our plans, Dakotah quickly worked to have the paperwork changed, so that I could go on my own to pick up the car before the negotiated lease terms expired. As for our old car, Cartelligent handled everything with Kia to make sure our lease was closed out properly.
The process is seamless and so convenient. And while I don’t want to rush away the next three years of my family’s life in our newly leased MDX, I already know we’ll be going back to Cartelligent when we’re due for our next little bundle of metal.