Home » I Ordered Two Identical Trucks From Two Different Dealers. Here’s Why This Turned Out To Be A Genius Move.

I Ordered Two Identical Trucks From Two Different Dealers. Here’s Why This Turned Out To Be A Genius Move.

Truck Flip
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Buying one new car is complicated enough, but buying two at (almost) the same time might be a little ridiculous. However, I found myself in that position not too long ago because of the Ford Maverick. I, like many others, became smitten upon learning of its existence. It’s an affordable family hauler with great fuel efficiency, a bed, and towing capacity.

What more does one need in their late 20s when all you have is a cat and a penchant for camping? The Maverick was the perfect evolution of what I like in my cars and what I hope to do with my future.

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And, because of a quirk in Ford’s ordering system and the popularity of the vehicle, I was able to order two Ford Mavericks and resell one of them, lowering the total price of the truck I actually ended up with. It wasn’t a perfect experience, but I learned a lot about the process and how to use it to your advantage.

The First Meeting

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PS: Outdoor car shows are amazing. Camp Jeep and Bronco Moutain deserve to be under a blue sky.

This journey goes back to 2021. Ford had teased the arrival of an upcoming hybrid truck that could fit in normal parking spots. It sounded wonderful, but I was skeptical about putting money down on a new blue oval product, especially with friends still living with the nightmare that was the Focus’s dual-clutch. Heck, I even went down to Motorbella in Pontiac that September for the chance to look it over in person. A solid first impression but a parked show model can only tell you so much.

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However, my mind was put at ease when the review embargo was lifted on Oct. 5. The consensus among writers who are much more knowledgeable than myself is that it was empirically good!

I was ready to open up my heart and I wanted to take the plunge. But I still wanted to get hands-on with the Mavierick before handing over a check.

Ordering Maverick #1

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Roughly an hour southeast of my then apartment in Lansing,  I located a Lariat Maverick. It was charming in its Hot Pepper Red paint but mated to the wrong engine, a 2.0L Ecoboost. It wasn’t quite what I was looking for, but the dealership was kind enough to let me poke around the vehicle and cruise around their parking lot.

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Compared to being behind the wheel of my grandfather’s early 2000s Dodge Dakota, this “trucklet” handled like a dream, almost no different than my family’s 2008 and 2017 Ford Escape.  Adding this experience to my collection of evidence, I put pen to paper and ordered my very own. Lo-and-behold, the dealership could place an order without a deposit, and there was no obligation to take delivery of the vehicle if I was unhappy with it.

There are many firsts in life: moving out of your parents’ house, going to college, getting a place of your own, and receiving your first mailer from AARP. This was the first time I had ordered a new vehicle. I learned quickly it required even more paperwork than buying used and, because of the pandemic-related supply constraints, a heck of a lot of patience.

When you’re at a grocery store’s meat counter or the DMV, you take a number and patiently wait your turn. Ordering a vehicle felt more like weekly raffle drawings, but the person pulling out your ticket might decide they dislike your hat and suddenly grow an aversion to odd numbers. So there you are, number 24601, and going home empty-handed because your boating hat offends.

For those unfamiliar, Ford’s allocation system is not too different from the above scenario. Your order is submitted to the automaker but when it’s fulfilled, whether it actually gets fulfilled is based on a variety of factors. The bigger the dealership, the more allocations are filled at a time. But those allocations also depend on what parts Ford has on hand at the time.

Dealer 1 Order Sheet Edited

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The more packages, features, and even accessories can create bottlenecks, slowing down your order. But at the time of order, no one knew quite how dire things would get. Blissfully unaware, I crafted the trucklet of my dreams. A Velocity Blue XLT with Co-Pilot 360 and the Luxury Package, a rear sliding window, and a sunroof. It would be the adult version of my long-since totaled 2nd Gen Prius, with the ability to do anything I needed, and just enough tricks to make it the perfect campsite companion for my family and the dog. Upon finishing up the paperwork, the salesman assured me I’d have the Maverick by the Super Bowl. I should have asked which one.

I Order Truck #2

About a week after placing my order, a slightly devious thought crossed my mind. If the Southeast Michigan dealership allowed one to place an order without a deposit, there had to be others. Could I try to improve my odds of getting the Maverick sooner rather than later and minimize the depreciation on my 2018 Hyundai Elantra GT that I’d be trading in?

It was a cute blue hatchback, styled by the former VW Golf designer Peter Schreyer, but its Nu engine was starting to consume oil and didn’t qualify for a mass recall. I quickly repeated the ordering again with my hometown dealership, which for clarity purposes going forward, I’ll refer to dealership #2. They also did not require a deposit or mandate taking delivery.

Dealer 2 Order Sheet Edited

Now came the waiting game. Months went by with next-to-no communication from the dealerships and nary a peep from Ford. The one update came from dealership #1, with the rep saying Ford was facing significant constraints, and, by dropping down to the base XLT, my odds could improve to move up the allocation list. Undeterred, I was willing to wait for what I wanted. And that patience eventually paid off, twice.

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In the spring of 2022, I began to glimpse the faint outlines of when and how my order might be fulfilled. A VIN was generated but nothing more. Then came the joy: the window sticker was finally generated! Under Ford’s system, this is a sign your order has been scheduled for build and should be off the assembly line sometime in the next four weeks. However, something wasn’t quite right… both the Luxury Package and Co-Pilot 360 had been stripped away.

Dealer 2 Window Sticker Edited

Confused, I contacted dealership #2. The sales rep said this was a mandate by Ford and there was nothing to be done. Once a vehicle is scheduled for production, no change can be made. This was only partially true. Dealership #1 said there was never a mandate and multiple Ford customer service reps confirmed as much. One of those agents was quite sympathetic and suggested the path I’d eventually take, take delivery of the truck, but make the dreaded market adjustments work for you.

Join The Club, We Have Discounts

This is where prior planning paid off. As many of you have probably read, or unfortunately even experienced, low car inventories during and post-pandemic lead to possibly historic price gouging. I was able to sidestep this by utilizing the X-Plan. While not as good as the A plan for employees, the X plan is nothing to sneeze at. Per Ford, X-Plan is Dealer Invoice – (0.4% * Dealer Invoice) + $275 Administration Fee. A discount worth approximately $500, plus you get to avoid all haggling at participating dealerships. I got mine with a $30 annual membership to Mustang Club of America, an organization I was already curious about after picking up a beat-up jellybean convertible two years earlier. If you are new car shopping, it’s worth investigating if any of your current subscriptions, or if even your employer, has a partnership that can help with discounts.

So, come fall of 2022, the first Maverick arrives at dealership #2. Still Velocity Blue, but missing all the bells and whistles. Overall, relatively no funny business with the dealership, outside of a $70 charge for the 3M tape they applied to the doors, supposedly to prevent dings when they opening doors on the lot. Based on my research, if you can escape with less than $150 worth of BS, you’re doing good.

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The Elantra GT was now at 60,000 miles and netted roughly $12,000… significantly down from Carvana’s peak pandemic offer of $17,500. However, I acquired the hatchback in the summer of 2019 for $16,500, certified preowned, and 16,000 miles. A net cost of $128/month of ownership isn’t bad. That’s better than leasing and not dissimilar from buying a used car for $7,500 and getting five years of use before it bites the bullet.

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Now was the gamble. How long and how far could I drive this Maverick, and keep its value, before the possibly “perfect order gets fulfilled? Thankfully, I didn’t have to wait long. At the end of December, the window sticker for dealer #1 order was generated… meaning I had just weeks to determine the best course of action.

Dealer 1 Window Sticker Edited

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Always Get Multiple Estimates

After running the VIN through various online retailers, dealership #1, and any dealership I could find online with a ridiculously overpriced Maverick, Kelley Blue Book Instant Cash Offer was the one with the highest offer, $28,700. However, the catch is I wanted to use the money from selling the first truck to go towards the down payment of the next one.

It was a bit of a timing tango. The first Maverick was sold on January 6, 2023 via the Kelley Blue Book’s Instant Cash Offer to the dealership in South Bend, where I had since moved to, and of course, this added another layer of complexity. Not only did the dealership need to pay off the remaining $20,000 balance to Ford Credit, but there was also then the process of getting the title transferred from Michigan to Indiana. Adding to the fun, it was an e-title, meaning Michigan wouldn’t send out a paper copy until everything was squared away, slowing things down even more. But, hey, I had my Mustang convertible (mid-winter) with its all-season tires to tide me over through the slightly less-than-ideal situation.

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I also managed to put off visiting the Southeast Michigan dealership for a couple of weeks while waiting for the South Bend dealership’s money to clear. It was messy, to say the least, but it all worked out. I finally picked up the “new new” Maverick on January 28th.

I Went To School For Sports Communication, Please Don’t Ask Me To Do More Math

Actually, math is ok. Stats is a form of math… so I’m good. Without further ado, let’s add this all up.

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The first Maverick was bought at dealership #2 for $26,756 before tax. A couple of months later, dealership #2 sent me a check for $1,244 check as part of Ford’s price protection plan. This lowers the price of Mavierck #1 to $25,512 (the original order at plan pricing would have been $24,448, subtracting the Luxury Package and Co-Pilot 360). It was then sold for $28,700, resulting in a net profit of $3,188. The second Maverick was bought at $28,980 *but* because that price also crept up from rolling over from the 2022 to 2023 model year, (originally $27,610 when ordered), I was able to apply a $2,750 rebate at the point of sale (an option I wish dealership #2 had given), lowering the price to $26,230.

Account for the profits of the first vehicle sold (and completely ignore tax), one could look at it as buying a 2023 XLT Maverick, fully loaded, for $23,042. All-in-all, thanks to a boatload of waiting (sometimes not so patiently), trucks holding their value, and this particular model being in high demand, I managed to come out on top. This was one of those rare occasions where someone actually scored a deal amidst a dealership nightmare.

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Unfortunately, it wasn’t a completely happy ending. My heart had been set on Velocity Blue, a stunning metallic shade, but they discontinued it for the 2023 model year. Ford replaced it with Atlas Blue, which while nice, just doesn’t have that same wow factor. Yet, my family and significant other seemed to prefer the new color, so it’s a bit of a mixed bag. You win some, you lose some. And hopefully, at the end of the day, you’re wiser for it and have made enough cash to buy even more toys.

All Photos: Author

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Box Rocket
Box Rocket
21 days ago

Ehhhh you can’t blame folks’ orders for your delay, per se: correlation does not definitively mean causation. I’ve heard of a few folks getting their new Mavericks inside of 4 weeks from ordering recently. Does your truck have an unusual or hard-to-source option?

It was 1 additional vehicle from when the truck was first being made, which he did wind up buying. Not like he ordered them with weird specs to just abandon them, or ordered one from every no-deposit dealership that put his order in to gum up the works (or to buy them all to monopolize the local market).

Box Rocket
Box Rocket
20 days ago
Reply to  Box Rocket

Sure, but you didn’t answer my question.

Box Rocket
Box Rocket
21 days ago

I think you did OK.

I suspect the upset commentariat are giving a knee-jerk reaction because someone actually bought something (2 somethings, really) new. Some can’t conceive of the reality that used cars had to be new once.

Maverick is a good truck, a strong value, well-sized, and I’m delighted that it didn’t get cancelled due to the pandemic, as some other things did.

I was sorely tempted to order one myself (same for a Bronco, but wouldn’t have done both), but possible uncertainties about employment due to the pandemic stayed my hand. I’m not sure I’d have been brave enough to actually buy one had I done the order, and if I had been I’m not sure if I’d have kept it given how high over retail they were selling at for a while.

Then they came out with the Tremor package, and ooohhh goodness is that tempting.

Box Rocket
Box Rocket
20 days ago
Reply to  Box Rocket

Follow-up: I think if you (author) hadn’t put the “Genius Move” bit in the title it wouldn’t have wrankled folks so. Compared to, say, “The one time impatience was a virtue: replacing my worrisome daily driver with a speedier second special-order, and how it surprisingly worked out for the better” but shorter and more clever.

My 0.02 Cents
My 0.02 Cents
22 days ago

I bought (leased) 4 Kia E-Niro’s and sold three and made $15k in three months.
So when Kia originally discontinued the E-Niro, there was a chunk of manufacturer money on the car ($5k or so), plus the Fed $7500, plus at the time CA Clean Air point of sale rebate of $2,500. So I had a $40k car that was worth around $31k, that I was in around $25k and change. Carvana bought them all.
With the first one, my wife was looking online to see how much we’d lost when the first payment statement arrived, and to her shock we weren’t upside down, she said we’d got just under $6k in equity. We both looked at each other and I said “shall we sell it and buy another one?”. Umm yes why not. Rinse & Repeat. The second one didn’t so quite so well, the third one did even less well, we kept the fourth one.

Timing was everything.

Lucas K
Lucas K
22 days ago
Reply to  My 0.02 Cents

Has Kia got Robert DeNiro in an E-Niro commercial yet? Seems like a home run.

TDI_FTW
TDI_FTW
22 days ago

Man, tough crowd. The real takeaway I took from this is that Ford sucks with special orders and just gives you whatever they decide is “close enough” to what you order and then counts your order as “completed” even if you don’t agree with their assessment, possibly making you submit another special order later.

Thanks for the insight into the special order game.

Timmy
Timmy
21 days ago
Reply to  TDI_FTW

That’s only true when options were dropped during the pandemic supply issues. They generally don’t change your order without telling you why and you order as desired to delivery. They don’t mind if you don’t buy since they’ll just sell your car as part of their own inventory after delivery

Brockstar
Brockstar
22 days ago

I don’t get all the hate for this article. John played the car-buying game and by the luck of timing, he ended up on top with almost what he ordered. I buy exclusively previously loved vehicles, so I totally understand not getting the color you want, but I also have to thank John for getting a fun color!

Also, there is no need to attack his degree. That’s not something we’re about on this site. The sports industry is complex just like anything else and it takes a ton of talent to provide us with the experiences that we’ve become accustomed to.

DialMforMiata
DialMforMiata
22 days ago

This article didn’t seem like the sort of thing I’d be interested in, so I didn’t read it over the weekend. It started getting mentioned in other posts so I went back and gave it a look. This… is not the sort of content I have come to love on this site. Cute dog, though.

Saul Goodman
Saul Goodman
23 days ago

I feel like this article was meant to throw us readers into a spin to make us feel like the author actually did something (ethically) ok and made a profit. It sure doesn’t seem like it… (shrug emoji here)

JerryLH3
JerryLH3
23 days ago

I hate to pile on, but count me in the camp as people who do not find this article in the spirit of The Autopian. I’m not mad at the author, plenty of people play the flipping game, some are successful, some are not. And flipping something you added value to is always fair. Flipping new cars though, meh.

Box Rocket
Box Rocket
21 days ago
Reply to  JerryLH3

Eh, he ordered two and had to wait. It’s not like he put in an order at each dealership he could find that didn’t require a deposit, preventing others from getting orders, nor trying to monopolize his local market.

He hedged his bet hoping to get out of a suspect Hyundai sooner, which is a wise choice given their numerous issues. I was actually hoping he’d have been able to get top value for it at carvana’s expense, but oh well.

Scott McAfee
Scott McAfee
23 days ago

There is such a thing as a degree in “Sports Communication”? Seems like the real winner is the college that scammed someone into paying for a degree in “Sports Communication”.

Jeep Liberty, MY LEG!
Jeep Liberty, MY LEG!
23 days ago
Reply to  Scott McAfee

Author has the exact temperment for the industry he specialized in: “dumb gambler that gets lucky, selling you on the opportunity to gamble”

Dangerous_Daveo
Dangerous_Daveo
23 days ago

Alternative title. Owner of vehicle sells it at market rate. Does ok out of it.

I get why people are upset, but I think if it was your actual cash and presented with the same situation, 99% of you would do just this.

Does it fit the site? The cheap fix on a driveway for a cheap car article seemed to stack up… I honestly think both should be prob stories for you mates at the pub.

Sivad Nayrb
Sivad Nayrb
23 days ago

I bought a new ’22 Maverick XLT with 2.0T/AWD/tow pkg b+ bells/whistles straight off the lot in April ’22 for sticker/no markup… Easy.

Noflash
Noflash
23 days ago

Learn to be a genius like me with this one simple trick… okay not so simple and it took a long time and I didn’t get what I wanted, but I got lucky and you just need another pandemic and math is hard…

Autopizen
Autopizen
23 days ago

To the complainers: welcome to capitalism.

Noahwayout
Noahwayout
23 days ago
Reply to  Autopizen

The irony of people who celebrate Capitalism while simultaneously complaining about Capitalism will never be lost on me.

I get the sense that many people just don’t like to see a regular person be successful .

Last edited 23 days ago by Noahwayout
DadBod
DadBod
22 days ago
Reply to  Noahwayout

Indeed true, if by “regular person” you mean a soulless amoral meatsack with an insatiable appetite for filthy lucre.

Noahwayout
Noahwayout
22 days ago
Reply to  DadBod

You gotta get a grip. It’s just a car. Nobody is entitled to a Ford Maverick. Even in 2022 there were options for people that wanted to pay MSRP. Heck I paid $500 below MSRP on a Crosstrek in the spring of 2022.

DadBod
DadBod
22 days ago
Reply to  Noahwayout

“I get the sense that many people just don’t like to see a regular person be successful”

Noahwayout
Noahwayout
22 days ago
Reply to  DadBod

Yeah a regular person. We’re all doing what we have to do to pay our bills and try to afford to live. Don’t like it? Perhaps you should consider the implications of capitalism.

DadBod
DadBod
22 days ago
Reply to  Noahwayout

I interpreted your extremely broad statement as a slobbery ball-gargling of billionaires. And no I don’t like it.

Noahwayout
Noahwayout
22 days ago
Reply to  DadBod

You are extremely dense so I will explain it to you.

Regular people aren’t billionaires. In fact we built our society and entire tax structure around subsidizing billionaires at the expense of regular people. And yet when people like you see a regular person like the writer eke out a couple grand in a system stacked against him, y’all come to the comment section and cry foul.

You’d get further if you read what people are saying instead of jumping to name calling. But perhaps that’s asking for too much.

Last edited 22 days ago by Noahwayout
Alex Patrevito
Alex Patrevito
22 days ago
Reply to  Noahwayout

I agree that regular people aren’t billionaires and your point on how we subsidize billionaires with taxes. But I will continue to cry foul here. Yes, the system is stacked against him and everyone else. But what he did in order to eke out a couple grand has costs and consequences that only further funnel money to the billionaires at the expense of regular people. Guys like this that do double orders to flip a supply constrained product drive the prices up even further. Since virtually all new cars are financed, the now larger balance is financed and thus the financial institutions collect more in interest. Also now the vehicle is a used car, which will have an even higher interest rate. Can’t forget about taxes though. The state collects more money in taxes based on the transaction price, which is higher. And we can’t forget about insurance costs skyrocketing due to the ballooning car values. All of those things transfer more money from regular people to the state, banks, and insurance companies.

Of the people to profit from this, the author gets the smallest share and has the least say in how the rigged system works. I am more angry with the scumbag dealers, predatory lenders, dodgy insurance companies, and the ultra wealthy with an insatiable and bottomless need for more money than I am the author. The author is the least offensive of those parties in this situation. But we need to be clear here – this isn’t a feel-good story of how the little guy played the game and stuck it to the big greedy companies. No, it’s a story about how the author played the game and stuck it to the next regular guy. Why would I celebrate that? Why would anyone?

Noahwayout
Noahwayout
22 days ago
Reply to  Alex Patrevito

I appreciate the reasoned response. I don’t believe this is a David vs. Goliath story. This is the little guy finding a way to slightly better his own lot and I think the ire he’s receiving is absurd. There is so much actual cruelty in this world and folks are painting this guy to be a monster even though almost all of them would do the same thing given the opportunity.

Commenters are acting like this guy is getting in the way of their transportation needs. To be very clear, he’s not. This is about car people feeling entitled to whatever vehicle is popular in the moment. Even through the darkest days of pandemic when dealer lots were nearly empty you could still buy a car for MSRP. I know because both me and my wife ended up needing daily new drivers – we had to order them but neither took more than 4 weeks.

Regarding taxes, I don’t actually mind if the state collects more taxes. I’d even put that in the net positive column.

Horizontally Opposed
Horizontally Opposed
18 days ago
Reply to  Autopizen

Hmm just because scalping isn’t illegal in all states doesn’t mean we should all do it / or praise from the sidelines because “capitalism”.
Not equating the car flip here with scalping to be clear, but give me a break with this “capitalism is great” excuse. Especially in 2024 after blatantly public crap going down in white collar crime for like, ever. Now please go ahead and buy some FTX coins to celebrate capitalism.

RayJay
RayJay
23 days ago

Verbose selfish click-bait article scoring high for the ick factor. Come on, Autopian- you can do better than print drivel like this.

Vic Vinegar
Vic Vinegar
24 days ago

I am torn on this. It seems the author didn’t set out to make money off the orders, but just wanted to see if one order came faster than the other.

This is different than the guys who get a place in line for a Corvette and then put the place in line up on EBay for $10k, or take delivery of the car just to turn around and put it on an auction site. There was never any intent to own it, just be a (or another…after the dealer) useless middle man between an actual buyer and the product making it more expensive for zero value added. So lets not treat him like those losers.

The “custom order” failed to provide the truck he actually spec’d, so he had a choice to make. Not really his fault that Ford didn’t deliver. It seems that if order #1 was what he wanted, that would have been the end of story. If he hadn’t placed the second order, he wouldn’t have got what he wanted unless he wanted to get back in at the end of the line. If he refused the first order, you know the dealer would have been happy to have it and mark it up.

By selling the first truck back to a dealer, I’m sure someone saw a marked up blue Maverick for sale, but used instead of new, and I guess the author got a piece of the action after trying to sell it to Maverick forum users for a fairer price.

But then it is also “screw you” for taking two spots in line. Some other person didn’t get a spot in the order banks because this guy took two. Maybe that was a scumbag flipper, or maybe it was just some other person who wanted an affordable vehicle that gets 40 mpg.

Scramblerken
Scramblerken
24 days ago

The article is terrible. The monetization scheme and commercial sponsorships are heavy handed.

These things are lame, however the alphanumeric case sensitive two factor authentication for a car blog is a total dick move.

Dennis
Dennis
24 days ago

I purchased a 2013 GMC Sierra SLT ,quad cab V8 4×4 right before pandemic. Got a deal paid $11,000 for it with 79,890 miles. Year into pandemic CarMax made me a offer I couldn’t refuse. They offered me $19,900 for it with 115,000 miles. Sold it the very next day. Made a huge profit

86-GL
86-GL
24 days ago

Genius move? Let’s see the numbers with taxes and documentation.

This article is a bit icky. I clicked though, so here we are.

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