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Dealer testing top price for Demons

by Patrick Rall on

Analysis. A car salesman named Joshua from South County Dodge posted an image on his Instagram account last week advertising six Dodge Challenger SRT Demon allocations, at the price of $250,000 each. (It has been pointed out to us that this price includes tax, title and license fees, which account for roughly 10% of this price, meaning that the car is “only” really marked up to around $225,000.)

This extreme case of price gouging quickly traveled around the internet; and, while the salesman has since removed his post, the internet doesn’t forget. Thanks to a few Allpar readers who grabbed screenshots, we offer you all a look at the ugly side of the dealership world.

Given the laws of supply and demand, it’s easy to see how this happens. Many Dodge dealerships added $5,000-10,000 over the list price of the 2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon; it’s the most extreme American production road car ever, with only 3,300 to be made. There are far more prospective buyers than cars, even with a starting price of roughly $85,000.

Although many readers were able to order a new Demon at list price, others had to settle for paying extra markups. With the starting price of $85,000, an extra $5-10k wasn’t that big of a hit for many buyers.

California dealer South County Dodge’s added dealer markup is more than just a little extra, though. As seen above, their salesman Joshua posted on Instagram that they had six allocations remaining, and they planned to sell each for a quarter of a million dollars.

That means that South County Dodge is applying an markup of roughly $165,000 to each of their Dodge Challenger Demons, effectively tripling the price for each 840-hp Challenger. This does come at a point where the vast majority of Demons have been spoken for; so if you find a Demon, you could indeed spend a quarter of a million dollars for it.

Joshua from South County Dodge disabled comments for the image soon after posting it on Instagram; since his image began receiving negative feedback from social media, the image was removed from his account.

Dodge itself was very clear that it did not want dealerships adding massive markups, which was why it had tiered production, giving priority to those models purchased at list price. Automakers cannot legally mandate prices, though.

There is a difference between working with the laws of supply and demand and price gouging; and this seems to be the latter.

Patrick Rall was raised a Mopar boy, spending years racing a Dodge Mirada while working his way through college. After spending a few years post-college in the tax accounting field, Patrick made the jump to the world of journalism and his work has been published in magazines and websites around the world.

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