The F&I Prophet-George Angus-has something to say The Return of “Payment Packing” L The first question is, will it work? Well sure, it’s called payment packing. You work a payment that includes the F&I and ancillary products, and if you need to negotiate, you give up products that don’t affect the gross profit on the vehicle. I get it. “Packing” is the deceptive practice of misrepresenting monthly payments to consumers during auto sales and lease negotiations in order to facilitate the sale of automobile related products and services; the key word being “deceptive.” But is it deceptive? Proponents have told me that as long as they tell the customer what is included and the price, they are not violating any rules. Really? My first question is, “Is the deal first closed and “consummated” with a clearly disclosed, bare payment before the products are added?” 13 ately, I have been asked (more often than usual) by dealers, agents, and F&I professionals about a trend in dealerships where the sales department includes F&I and aftermarket products into the payment during the sales negotiation. Some have even tried to eliminate the F&I turn and F&I Manager altogether. Déjà Vu all over again. First, I am amused when this idea is presented to me as a “new” approach. You see, (for those of you lucky enough to be too young to remember), what they are describing is the way we did business in the 1970’s, before F&I became industry standard. When I first started selling cars in 1975, we (salespeople) did the sale from front to rear, including presenting Life, A&H, service contracts, and chemicals. We also did all the paperwork, by hand. But if you had an exceptional sales department, the sales staff would chip in and hire someone to do the deal paperwork and chase down the loose ends for us. Sound familiar?

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