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TrueCar

TrueCar

 3.7/5 (84 ratings)
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About TrueCar

This profile has not been claimed by the company. See reviews below to learn more or submit your own review.

TrueCar offers fair price reports for vehicles in your area and partners with dealerships to provide pricing without any negotiation. After receiving a TrueCar price report, simply take it to participating dealerships to lock in the price. This quote does not include taxes and can only be used at participating dealerships, but the service is completely free.

Overall Satisfaction Rating

  • 5 stars
  • 4 stars
  • 3 stars
  • 2 stars
  • 1 stars

Pros

  • No haggling
  • Free service
  • Straightforward pricing
  • TrueCar app available

Cons

  • Works only with partner dealerships
  • Not always the lowest price

Bottom Line

TrueCar partners with dealerships to offer specialized price reports to car buyers. The prices aren’t always the cheapest, but it's great for those who want a haggle-free experience.

Top TrueCar Reviews

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Rated with 5 stars
Verified

Found TrueCar to be the most helpful. After checking availabilities on cars, dealers emailed with a quick response and some followed up with a phone call. This was great for my ti...

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Rated with 5 stars
Verified

I used several search engines to find a car, but TrueCar was by far the best. It has great sort features and the best prices. I was able to find the exact vehicle at a below marke...

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What is TrueCar?

TrueCar is an online car buying site for new and used cars. TrueCar partners with dealerships across the country to offer predetermined prices that are meant to be lower than what you would traditionally find at a physical car dealership.

How does TrueCar work?

TrueCar works by offering customers the “true” value of a vehicle — in other words, the TrueCar pricing breakdown includes the MSRP (Manufacturer Suggested Retail Price), savings offered by the dealer, the destination fee and the regional advertising fee. The TrueCar price is what others were offered, not necessarily what others paid, for the same vehicle.

TrueCar charges dealerships when a customer buys a vehicle through its website, so there’s no fee to use the service. The process is nearly identical to buying a car in traditional circumstances; TrueCar even leases vehicles, and it offers both new and used cars.

TrueCar pricing

TrueCar doesn’t charge any fees to use the website, and the TrueCar price report includes the destination fee and the regional advertising fee. The estimate will not include any accessories installed by the dealer, taxes, titles, licensing fees, documentation fees, state fees or dealer-locate fees.

TrueCar prices its vehicles by aggregating data to calculate a fair cost. It gathers data from car dealerships, car loans, dealer’s marketing materials, registration information and insurance data to determine a good price based on what others have paid for similar vehicles.

Does TrueCar really work?

Yes and no. To receive a price certificate, you have to submit specific information to the TrueCar website. The price certificate you receive will lock in a fixed cost at participating TrueCar-certified dealerships.

However, you should be aware that price isn’t necessarily the best deal — it’s usually just the MSRP with additional rebates included that apply to any buyer off the street.

And remember: You might receive more emails and phone calls than you want as a result. If you feel the price presented to you by TrueCar is fair, then there’s no real risk involved, and it does take haggling out of the buying process.

TrueCar FAQ

Does TrueCar ship cars?
TrueCar is able to ship some cars. Customers who want their vehicle delivered should look for the “Buy From Home” badge while shopping.
How does TrueCar make money?
TrueCar charges each participating dealer a fee for every car sold through TrueCar; this is the primary way it makes money. It also makes some money through ads, data and consulting.
Do dealers have to honor TrueCar’s prices?
TrueCar certified dealers must honor the price report. However, there’s no guarantee the vehicle advertised on the website will be on the lot when the customer arrives.
What is a TrueCar certified dealer?
Certified dealers connect with customers by posting their vehicles on the TrueCar website. TrueCar searches include TrueCar certified local dealers as well as online-only dealerships.
Does TrueCar work for used cars?
Yes, users may shop both new and used cars on the website. There are over 870,000 pre-owned vehicles listed on TrueCar.
How does TrueCar get its data?
TrueCar works with data aggregators in the automotive industry. It also collects data from dealers’ marketing materials, loan information, vehicle registration and insurance information.

Is TrueCar legit?

Yes, TrueCar is a legitimate company that works with certified dealerships to provide haggle-free pricing. It provides pricing for used and new vehicles in your area, though it cannot guarantee that the vehicle will still be available when you arrive at the dealership. It requires all certified dealerships to honor its price quotes, though these quotes do not include taxes.

TrueCar is an excellent option for those who want to avoid haggling, though keep in mind that you still might not be getting the lowest possible price.

TrueCar Reviews

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How do I know I can trust these reviews about TrueCar?
How do I know I can trust these reviews about TrueCar?
  • 3,393,443 reviews on ConsumerAffairs are verified.
  • We require contact information to ensure our reviewers are real.
  • We use intelligent software that helps us maintain the integrity of reviews.
  • Our moderators read all reviews to verify quality and helpfulness.

For more information about reviews on ConsumerAffairs.com please visit our FAQ.

Page 1 Reviews 0 - 5
Rated with 5 stars
Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Feb. 14, 2021

I'm the average person doing research on purchasing a used vehicle under a certain dollar amount and used several online searches. Found TrueCar to be the most helpful. After checking availabilities on cars, dealers emailed with a quick response and some followed up with a phone call. This was great for my time management.

Drivertopia was the dealership my 2007 Mini Cooper was purchased. The sales person Stephen **, took the time (very patient) to answer or find the answer to all my questions. He sent close up photos and videos of everything I want to see on the car. I believe in full transparency and this dealership provided a history report that I could do my own research on any inconsistencies. This was my first online and purchase not in my own city. Mr. **, was able to get my paperwork sent overnight and auto transport ready to delivery my vehicle. I'm so grateful for this experience. It gave me confidence to purchase another vehicle using TrueCar and searching again using TrueCar. Great experience!

2 people found this review helpful
Rated with 5 stars
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Dec. 30, 2020

I hate car shopping, particularly dealing with sales talks. TrueCar allowed me to compare several models, select the ones I wanted to explore, and get offers from the dealers without really wasting a lot of time being talked up and assessed by sales people. I got three fairly similar offers, choose the one that looked best and drove it home. I would like to add that I also used Edmund's and the offers through their website were not as good, the dealers seemed to expect to ask a higher price and haggle.

13 people found this review helpful

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    Rated with 5 stars
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Dec. 1, 2020

    There have been a lot of complaints about TrueCar that are quite frankly, unfair. I have used this service twice for purchasing new vehicles. Yes, I received many emails and phone calls, and yes, I had to go to the lot and the price I paid was more than I expected to. But the bottom line price in both cases was very accurate and consistent with Kelly Blue Book and other sites. TrueCar provides helpful bottomline information so you can comparison shop for the best price on a vehicle you are looking for. It is not a buying service. Those services are expensive.

    Car dealers want to call you to make a sale and negotiate a price that is lower than other dealers. They will also want to make money and will always try to add to their profit on your vehicle. It is surprising how many people are shocked by this. What TrueCar gives you is the bottom line sale price for negotiating. That is just the starting place and is helpful for finding a dealer and salesperson that is straightforward and honest in making the sale. If the salesperson is unwilling to give you the vin number, sticker, bottom line price and financing information before you go to the lot, then don't deal with them or direct your call to the Internet sales manager or General Manager. There are plenty of Dealerships and internet salespeople that want to make a fair sale for the vehicle you want. TrueCar helps you to find them.

    18 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 5 stars
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Nov. 12, 2020

    This is my second time using the True Car website through my Progressive policy. I have found the site to be extremely useful in finding a car make, model, year, and price that I was looking for. The first time I used this site I went to Fairway Auto in Phoenix and that was an absolute no haggle process. I was out of there in less than 30 minutes with my car. Unfortunately, I only had that car for a few days and it was in another accident. Back to True Car to find another car. Fairway did not have the cars that I was looking for. Received prices from True Car from Chapman Auto in Tempe (Curtis was very helpful) and Vans Chevrolet in Scottsdale (neutral) and ultimately found my car at Auto Nation. Auto Nation was great to deal with with no hidden fees. Very pleased with the website and ultimately the dealership.

    10 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 5 stars
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    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Oct. 31, 2020

    I recently purchased a QX60 from Nalley Infiniti of Atlanta. I was able to use the TrueCar app in conjunction with my Sam's membership and essentially obtain a no-haggle price match. Great App, easy to use. It was very detailed and I like all the additional benefits that Sam's is providing with the car above what the dealership provided. My car was priced $13,000 below other comparable cars, not bad for a fully loaded QX60 with only 24k miles on it, one previous owner. I negotiated under 30k for the vehicle.

    7 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Sept. 12, 2021

    I went to TrueCar.com to find and negotiate a deal to trade for a new car. I found my deal, got an offer on my trade-in with a net price difference, accepted that deal, got a TrueCar Deal Code and set up an appointment for the next day to finalize the deal and make the trade. All this online at TrueCar.com's website. However, when I contacted the specified dealer to confirm the appointment, I was told they would not honor the deal and raised the price on the new car by about 20%. When I made attempts to get resolution/comment from TrueCar, I got no response whatsoever after a week.

    Be the first one to find this review helpful
    Rated with 2 stars
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Sept. 5, 2021

    I don't think it is working though the intention seems good. The listings are just to make people contact the dealers but at end of the day, people don't get for the price listed or end up buying something else. Dealers most of the time do not respect what was provided by Truecar to its clients.

    3 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Aug. 26, 2021

    So I started looking for a truck to find a decent price truck. In order for me to look at the prices, I had to put I'm my personal information. The next morning I'm getting like 10 calls, text messages, emails from different dealerships. Next time I'll just put a fake phone number, what a waste of time. And like I said I was using this website to get a good price but all of the trucks were over 5k msrp.

    Be the first one to find this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: Aug. 11, 2021

    Got an offer of .80% from my credit union if I use one of their car buying services. One of which was True Car. Filled out all the information and started getting offers. The offers I was receiving were $5000 over MSRP. :-( Why would I need to enlist a car buying service in order to pay $5,000 over MSRP. Now I have all these car dealerships calling me on my cell phone trying to sell me Vehicles 5000 over MSRP. What a mistake this was. Now I have to figure out a way to stop the annoying phone calls... Bad experience.

    3 people found this review helpful
    Rated with 1 star
    Verified Reviewer
    Original review: July 23, 2021

    I received offers from three different Honda dealerships through TrueCar and not one of them honored the pricing once I was in their showroom. I even specifically asked the last dealership if there was any possibility of additional fees or add-ons once I got there and they assured me, through both email and text, that all charges, other than taxes and registration, were disclosed in the TrueCar offer. Then after driving 60 miles to the dealership, I'm told that the specific car I was given pricing for (the Vin Number matched) actually had another $3000 in dealer add ons, plus a $5000 surcharge due to the current car shortage. What?!! Total waste of time and a horrible overall experience! Might be good for initial research, but the dealer offers are just a bait and switch.

    6 people found this review helpful
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    TrueCar Company Information

    Company Name:
    TrueCar
    Website:
    www.truecar.com