Pros and Cons: Buying Calgary Used Cars From Franchised Dealerships vs. Independent Dealerships
Pros and Cons: Buying Calgary Used Cars From Franchised Dealerships vs. Independent Dealerships

Pros and Cons: Buying Calgary Used Cars From Franchised Dealerships vs. Independent Dealerships

October 25, 2023

Navigating the used car market, though exciting, can be complex. Among the key choices to make is the decision between turning to franchised dealerships or independent dealerships. Each brings a unique set of pros and cons to the table. With Calgary’s diverse used car market, understanding the advantages and drawbacks can help you make the most of your buying experience.

Franchised Dealerships

A franchised dealership is a car dealer authorized by a specific automotive manufacturer to sell their new and used vehicles. They often provide various services, including sales, service, parts, and financing.

Pros:

  • Strong Assurance of Quality: At franchised dealerships, many used cars are manufacturer-certified, meaning they have undergone rigorous quality checks and refurbishment and even come with additional warranty protection.
  • Superior Financing Options: Franchised dealerships typically have strong working relationships with multiple financial institutions, allowing them to offer various competitive financing options.
  • Comprehensive After-sales Service: These dealerships excel in providing after-sales services, including maintenance and repairs, often including parts from the original manufacturer.

Cons:

  • Potentially Higher Prices: Offering manufacturer-backed products and professional services often leads to higher prices compared to independent dealerships.
  • Limited Car Brand Variety: Car brand variety limitations are one drawback of buying from a franchised dealership. You are mostly restricted to cars that belong to the franchised brand(s) at such dealerships.

Independent Dealerships

Unlike franchised dealerships, independent dealerships don’t have a direct affiliation with car manufacturers. Often smaller in scale, they trade in a wide variety of Calgary used cars from multiple brands.

Pros:

  • Competitive Pricing: Independent dealerships often have lower overhead costs. Combined with the intense competition in the used car sector, these dealerships can afford to price their vehicles more economically, potentially offering better deals for buyers.
  • A Greater Variety of Choices: As they are not bound to a specific manufacturer, independent dealers usually provide a vast selection of makes and models. Buyers can judge several cars side by side in one go, making direct comparisons more straightforward.

Cons:

  • Inconsistent Quality: As these dealers tap into various sources to obtain their vehicles, the quality of cars can vary significantly.
  • Limited Financing and Warranty Options: Independent dealers may not have the same range of financing options, and their warranties may not be as comprehensive as those offered by franchised dealerships.
  • Absence of OEM Parts and Specialized Services: Independents often don’t have access to Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) parts and brand-specific technicians for repairs or maintenance.

The Verdict

Both franchised and independent dealerships have unique pros and cons when buying used cars in Calgary. Franchised dealerships provide a sense of security and comprehensive services at a premium. In contrast, independent dealerships offer competitive pricing and a wider range of vehicles but may come with a higher risk due to the variable quality and support services.

However, neither is universally better than the other. The decision comes down to your specific needs, preferences, and comfort level. We recommend conducting thorough research, including a pre-purchase inspection and a CarProof report, regardless of the dealership type. A well-informed consumer is always in the best position to make the right choice.

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About us

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Our dealership has been Serving Calgary Alberta since 2013.

We specialize in used cars and always try to get the best deals for our customers.

Award-winning, family owned car dealership of pre-owned vehicles with several locations across the city. Lowest prices and the best customer service guaranteed.

Feel free to contact us and test drive one of our cars today. We value your business. Referrals are welcome and remember we pay cash for referrals.

Award-winning, family owned car dealership of pre-owned vehicles with several locations across the city. Lowest prices and the best customer service guaranteed.

Business hours:

Monday to Friday: 9a.m. – 8p.m. Saturday: 9a.m. – 6p.m. Sunday: Closed
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