They want you to freak out about the numbers
Here's another mind trick. The goal is that you'll freak out at the first number, where the new car is too high, your trade-in is stupid low, and the monthly payment rivals your rent or mortgage. Then you calm down and start to lower your expectations; you accept that the end total won't be as rosy as you had hoped. All the while the numbers are being massaged. You'll feel much better when you see that "new" number. You're still getting screwed, but it's not as bad by comparison. And just like that, you've lost.
There's a saying: "Give 'em lips and go for the bump"
Which essentially means, confuse them so they give up and accept the lesser deal. If you see what's called a "four-corner worksheet," that's your giant red flag to be on ultra-high alert. It's not a scam, per say, but the person you're negotiating with will try to wear you out by moving the numbers around in a deliberately confusing way. For example, your $1,000 trade-in? Now it's a $500 trade-in. You can clearly see a $500 trade-in credit off the price of the car, and you can clearly see "Trade-in Value: $500," so it looks like $500 is on there twice, equalling the original $1,000. It's not, and you've just been bumped. Watch this video to see how it works, and try not to strangle your monitor.
After you agree, they don't want you to think about what you're doing
Even after you've agreed on a price, and financing, and trade-in value, and visitation rights of your second born, it's still not over. Because you haven't signed anything binding. While the finance manager gets everything in order, the salesman's goal now is to talk to you about the weather, your kids, Ronda Rousey's next fight, basically anything and everything that might distract you from thinking about the major decision you're in the process of making.
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Aaron Miller is the Cars editor for Thrillist, and can be found on Twitter. He absolutely refuses to negotiate with someone that isn't the sales manager.