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Things That Are Taboo For Used Car Salesmen to Say During The Sale

Updated on February 24, 2015
Modern used car lot
Modern used car lot
Classic used car salesman
Classic used car salesman

Be honest

"Would you buy a used car from this man?" This is "the" ultimate phrase that has been used in many political-elections to cause voters to doubt a certain candidate so that he or she will lose voters. I know. I heard it years ago in a mayoral election. Apparently it worked wonders for the candidate who used it against his opponent who was so clean of any shady dealings that he squeaked. But in the end, he lost the election.

Let's be honest. This phrase does not say anything of a derogatory nature. Plus it does not defame the candidate it is used to degrade, but in a legal, express-my-First-Amendment-Rights kind of way. I give the original writer a lot of credit in their devising this question for they never served one day in jail. Nor did they lose any lawsuit filed against them.

Happy car salesman
Happy car salesman
Typical, garden-variety used car lot
Typical, garden-variety used car lot
Salesman sealing the deal with happy customer
Salesman sealing the deal with happy customer

What a powerful phrase

This phrase is so powerful that if Morgan Freeman's voice was used to say it, no matter whom was running for whatever office would lose and lose miserably. That, folks, is powerful.

Selling used cars and radio time in a small market is the toughest things to sell. Bar none. I have experienced the heartache of selling radio time and take my word for it. This job will humble you in two or three days. So will selling used cars. Seemingly, no one trusts a used car salesman due to the early days of selling cars when salesmen did so many illegal things to just make their commissions, that stigma is still around in 2015. What a shame.

Remember when?

Vintage Ford car lot
Vintage Ford car lot
Ad gimmick to help a car dealer sell cars
Ad gimmick to help a car dealer sell cars
It took an expert used car salesman to sell this "beauty," the shame of the Ford Motor Co., an Edsel
It took an expert used car salesman to sell this "beauty," the shame of the Ford Motor Co., an Edsel

Being a good used car salesman is no easy task

But nowadays, a person who desires to be a used car salesman, or salesperson, cannot just walk-up on the car lot and talk to "Honest Dave," the used car salesman so honest, his truth-telling is a curse," and get hired. Today, the major car dealers send their salesmen and saleswomen to stringent training seminars and test them during New Employee Orientation to see if they are qualified to sell used cars before they get their first paycheck. These huge car dealers must live by the old saying, "One disgruntled customer can tear-down a car dealership with just one word." That makes sense.

I am convinced that through experience, most used car salesmen know just what to say to stay clearly inside the legal guidelines to make their customers happy. Otherwise we would have a complete shut-down of all car lots across the country.

I would like to share with you, this list of . . .

Things That Are Taboo For Used Car Salesmen to Say While Making a Sale

Before the sale . . .

Kim Ridley, Oregon used car dealer
Kim Ridley, Oregon used car dealer
The most-recognizable used car sign in the United States
The most-recognizable used car sign in the United States
Super-vintage car lot
Super-vintage car lot
I would wager that it would take one man all-day to buy a car from this woman
I would wager that it would take one man all-day to buy a car from this woman
What man looking to buy a used car would say no to her?
What man looking to buy a used car would say no to her?
  • "Sawdust? That's not sawdust underneath this car, sir."
  • "Did I say 'smoke,' when you fired 'er up? No, ma'am. I said it's cold. Put on your cloak."
  • "No, sir. This car has NOT been wrecked. That dent in the door came from an ambulance carrying Vice-president Joe Biden to a hospital near the White House."
  • "Confidentially. There is not a car like this one within 1000 miles."
  • "The odometer is a bit off. It says 300,000 miles, but this car just has 188,000 'actual' miles."
  • "Are you kidding me? Blood in the backseat? That's a good one. That is actually Heinz catsup that Kid Rock spilled while using it on his cheeseburger before a concert and his bodyguard, I forget his name, chose THIS car to protect Kid Rock for it is so durable."
  • "Did a member of the Mafia own this car? No, sir. Oh, the car's owner's manual said "Tony T. Avalonio," but that was a typo. It should say "Ronnie D. Avalon."
  • "Please, sir. Do not open your mouth about this, but the sales manager is going to fire me if I do not sell THIS car--and I have my alimony and child support for six children to pay."
  • "I will tell you exactly where this car which only looks 12-years old, came from provided that you do not betray me to your wife, kids or neighbors. This car was once on a parking lot across from a club where Hank Williams, Jr. was doing a show. Shhhh. I recognized this car when it was traded in by someoone who obviously was not thinking, so I have kept "this" car locked away in our building over there called "Secret Car Deals for Special People," so I am prepared to give you such a deal, you might pass out. So how does, uhhhh, $40,000 sound? That's right! "only" $40,000." NOTE: Blue Book listed the "heap" around $200.00, but since it sat across the street from a Bocephus concert, you know the rest.
  • "No, sir. My name is not "Dishonest Dennis. That was a prank a "real" shady car salesman, "Drake Dupree," at the lot where you came from, started on me to steal my customers. Since I am a forgiving man, I am letting that go. I do make mistakes, but not to hurt anyone or to sell cars."
  • "Sir, when you said you were coming to look at this car this morning on the phone, I saved you the trouble of signing all of this pesky paperwork, so these are all of your copies. And sir, thank you for your patronage."
  • "These brand-new floor mats are a gift from us for buying this tip-top special. And they are only half-price."

Hub continued below video below . . .

Who can forget this film?

All-American used car image
All-American used car image
A good car salesman always shows the potential customer every detail of the sale
A good car salesman always shows the potential customer every detail of the sale


If you are used car shopping and any salesman who says things to you that are similar to the things at the very top under "Before the sale," get his name and report him to his boss and help to prevent shady used car salesmanship.

After the sale . . .

  • "Ohh, sir. There's a reason that your payment is one-hundred bucks higher. I forgot to include the State First-Time Buyer Tax," and the local property tax increase, but do not worry. "I" personally paid ten-dollars off the top for you . . .this month only, otherwise you would be out $310.00."
  • "That rattling under the hood, well, I will have to have a meeting with the original owner of your car and that will take me about four days to fly to Miami and meet this "Mr. Diaz Gonzlez," and see if the rattling was going on when he had the car."
  • "Hey, I would love to chat why the car I sold you is not getting 45 miles per gallon like you thought I said, but I am in an important high-level meeting. I will holler at you when it is over."
  • "Hello, 'Mr. Smith," what can I do for you? Oh, no. This is "Jack Mandy," the shop boss. The salesman you dealt with is on a two-week vacation. May I have your name and number so "I," I mean "he" can call you when he gets back?"
  • "Ohh, now. 'Mr. Smith,' you know good and well that all new and slightly-used cars use "some" oil. They are made that way in Detroit, Michigan to keep their engines from blowing up."
  • "Lawsuit? You have to be kidding. You asked me if the car was a one-owner, and I said yes. You didn't hear me say "one owner at a time," because you were busy gazing at "Fleeta," our receptionist. Shame. Shame."


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    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      3 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama


      Thank you, kind friend, for your nice words.

      You are Very Appreciated!

    • vkwok profile image

      Victor W. Kwok 

      3 years ago from Hawaii

      This really made my day!

    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      3 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      Hi, old albion,

      You are a genius for that statement you said to a pushy salesman. How novel. I would not the nerve to say this for in my small hometown, I know all of the car dealers on a first-name basis.

      Thank you again for being my friend.

    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      3 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      Hi, Ghaelach,

      Thank you for your kind remarks. I appreciate you for reading this hub for those who do not know when they are being duped.

      And the used car business or someone selling their home, are two places you had best take an expert with you, for in 2015, there are those who ed to see a rube coming.

      Come back and visit me again.

    • profile image


      3 years ago

      Afternoon Kenneth.

      You certainly can turn out a good hub, and not just on one niche.

      I'm one of the lucky ones and I've never bought to many cars and those that I have have lasted me quite a while.

      Good or bad I don't know, but I've been a Toyota fan for the last 20+ years with out any problems.

      I do have a acquaitance that is a car sales man and he's been doing it most of his life. Not sure if he's good or bad as I've never bought a car off him. Probably a good thing to.

      Jimmy...............................aka Ghaelach

    • old albion profile image

      Graham Lee 

      3 years ago from Lancashire. England.

      Hi Kenneth. Another brilliant slice of life from you today. As usual to the point and always interesting. I use a phrase when someone is a bit 'pushy' I say; 'You remind me of a shy and sensitive used car salesman' This usually bring a smile. Well done.



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