ACA discount for subarus?

Having just read about the $3K discount offered by subaru for ACA members, I thought I’d solicit advice from those who may have succesfully used this dicount.

    • Is this “over & above” the price you negotiated with the dealer.

    • How is it delivered. Does the discount come off the top at the dealership, or is it a rebate that you have to apply for.

    • Do I HAVE to accept the subscription to Paddler mag.

    • Anything else.

      As always, your thoughtfull insights, experiences and feedback are most appreciated!

#3… LOL!
That mag does stink. I couldn’t wait for them to stop coming.

ACA and Subaru.

– Last Updated: Dec-07-04 8:57 AM EST –

Are you sure it's $3k under MSRP and not pure invoice pricing? I bought an '05 Outback XT in June and since I'm not an ACA member I used my IMBA (mountain biking) membership and that gives me invoice on the car and accessories and the ext. warrantee. Nothing about $3k under MSRP, but generally, that's probably the ballpark of the discount anyway. And no paddler magazine!

It's not a "rebate" at least in my program. It's simply a discount right at the dealership. Basically my IMBA membership allows me to participate in the Subaru VIP program. That program allows for invoice pricing. There are alot of affiliated memberships too, not just ACA or IMBA.


If you work for a large company, check to see if they have arrangements with an auto mfg. Some do and you get employee pricing on their vehicles if one suits your needs. My son was working for Mercedes and we got our Dodge PU out the door for well under invoice. Other non auto companies have the same arrrangements. On our Subaru, we did not know about ACA and negotiated $100 over invoice with the fleet manager. Dont talk to the salesmen, just ask for the fleet manager and dont deal with anyone else. Credit Union or auto club membership will usually qualify anyone to deal with the fleet dept. Some dealerships have internet specialists that are connected to the fleet dept. Dealerships get rebates or bonuses from the mfg depending on how many units they sell. One extra sale at the end of the month can make a several hundred dollars per vehicle difference in their rebate. If they are desperate, you can get out with a really low under invoice offer. The salesman or the closer (low level manager) cant do the deal. you need to be working with a higher level manager. Just before closing on the last day of the month is the time to hit them. Know your pricing before you go to the dealer.

It is a good deal. I have bought two Subarus this way and saved about $1500 on each vehicle. You can suve UP TO $3000, depending on the car.

Call the ACA, they will ask you which dealer that you want to work with. The dealer will then contact you and tell you to choose any car at invoice cost. The dealer still makes money on something called hold back and the ACA gives them a little. There is no further haggling.

I think you do have to accept the

– Last Updated: Dec-07-04 3:09 PM EST –

magazine, the rest of us are subjected to it, consider it hazing. The irony is that I was turned down for an article there when I did an interview with Chris Duff about his New Zealand trip, like my writing and his trip was going to sully their grand journalistic reputation!

Oh I almost forgot to call you a shameless yuppie for even posting about buying a subaru.

You shameless yuppie.

Hate to break the news to you, but Yuppies have not bought Subys for at least 10 or 15 years.

Subys are too thrifty, too versatile, and not nearly impressive enough to be parked in front of a McMansion.


About 2 years ago
I did the ACA thing with Subaru after having been blown off by the Jeep dealer I’d been having my Jeep, then Durango serviced at for 5 years. Go figure. We saved a couple grand and the dealership has been very easy to deal with for followup maintenance. Oil changes etc are competitive with Jiffy lube type places. If Suby’s fit your bill go for it. The mag isn’t half bad but it’s the ACA membership that gets you the discount.

don’t know about that - on Phila’s Main Line, and in the horse country of Chester County, PA, you can count on two cars being parked at the “McMansion” - a mercedes and an Outback, plus a non descript pickup

forgot to ask -
no one has mentioned how a trade-in figures into all this - - when i had my company, i replaced my car annually and went in with a cash offer i was willing to pay to cover the difference - sometimes they discounted the new car, while other times they stayed at list, and gave me a VG allowance on the trade - - it all seems to tie into their accounting, but they sure make $$ somewhere

Subaru at invoice

– Last Updated: Dec-07-04 8:22 PM EST –

It's hard to believe that a $25 membership in any organization open to the public would enable you get substantial deals not available to everybody. The car business just doesn't work that way (nor any business).

As evidence I know a Subaru dealer that routinely sells at invoice -- no hassle. In fact, I just bought a Legacy Sedan (very nice upgrade in that line this year!) from them, and it was a pleasure.

Actually, I did have a salesman at another dealer chew my ear off for 20 minutes to get me to go for invoice+$250 on the basis of two extra warranty years. But secure in my invoice deal, and knowing I would never keep the car tht long anyway, I resisted. Even happier ending -- he called me back and offered $180 under invoice. I ignored that and took the offer to my original dealer and they split the difference on my word.

Moral -- there are good dealers out there who will treat you well, and finding one is, IMHO, the best "deal". I know, I know, it's not as much fun as "getting" them. I've done that too, but I've also been gotten on occasion. I prefer it this way.

The good dealer, BTW, is Village Subaru in Acton MA, near Boston.


it’s ok to say you have a subaru
I have a minivan, and I coach my son’s soccer team. I’m not ashamed to admit it.

It was a gross generalization regarding subaru’s and if you take issue with this comment as being not funny because you own one and don’t feel like a yuppie, I’m sorry I hurt your feelings.

I suspect
that trades are left to dealer discretion. We did fairly well trading a 60k+, '98 durango for the new '03 outback. We saw them advertise it the next week for only about $2k more than they gave us, which I though was fair. As long as the dealership treats us well we’d do it again there, we may early next year, the wife wants to finally replace her '89 volvo 240 with either a suby or a VW.

I’m only asking because…
I heard Jonathan Winters designed the outback based on the hull of the Qcc700.

But I still havent made up my mind if I’ll get a rudder or a skeg (oops - I meant to say a hood scoop or spoiler)

you’re killing

Hood Scoop!
Get the hood scoop… forget the spoiler!

I have a 2.5XT (2.5l int. turbo) and the thing is a pretty good rocket once the turbo kicks in.

The one modification I did was replace the flimsy stock crossbars with Thule ones and use the Thule mounts so I could mount the bars closer to the front of the car. Even with the longer roofline than a sedan, the crossbars are mounted a lot further in the back making most touring kayaks hang off so far behind the car.


trade in
When I bought my first Subaru I was trading in a Ford Ranger. Subaru offered me $1000 more than the Ford Dealer and $500 more than blue book value. But I’m sure it depends on the dealer.