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Stopped in at SF MINI last week. All I can say is that I am quite glad to have found the friendly folks at East Bay MINI. The sales guy at SF did take the time to talk to me but basically told me that while they haven't made any final decisions on how they are going to sell the cars they have 1300 people on their interest list and they are, after all, in the business to make money. Wink wink.. nudge nudge if you are planning on buying your new MINI from them - be prepared to pay. A lot. They have no plans to contact anyone on their interest list until they have cars and then it will be a first person with the most money drives away situation. And to add insult to injury - your new MINI will be heavy with dealer fitted "options" like lowjack and paint "sealant".

These dealers aren't selling us fabulous little cars for their health - I understand they want to make some money. We are talking about the same dealership group that marks up an M3 $25,000... go figure. It is their right - but if you are waiting patiently on their "list", you may want to make other plans.
 

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So, sounds like in the Bay Area it's very much a clear-cut case of good vs. evil MINI dealers? :p
 

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I've spoken to two NorCal MINI dealers (Sacramento and Concord) and both said they're going to sell on a first come, first served basis. When they have cars they'll e-mail their contact list and the first people to get there get the cars. The dealer in Sacramento said that demand was so high that they wouldn't be taking orders for options, you would only be able to purchase what they had available. Notice the difference here between California and what we've been reading from the rest of the country. No waiting lists, orders or advance deposits. I'm not sure whether this is going to work out better or worse for us.
 

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Bay Area dealers

I spoke to the salesman for MINI at SF-BMW & had a very
similar experience. They seem to be leaving the waiting list situation very open to take advantage of the demand for Minis. A friend of mine suggested East Bay BMW. They
have been very staightforward & a pleasure to deal with.
 

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Hello to all,

Thanks for the vote of confidence. I try and keep everyone as informed as possible. This entire project has been a blast and I am glad I can keep things fun. I am going to the Ride and Drive on Tuesday and will have a full report.
LET'S MOTOR!!

Jarid Perry
Director of MINI Sales
East Bay MINI
 
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