Edmunds.com's Strategies for Smart Car Buyers Selected for Washington Post Personal Finance Reporter Michelle Singletary's Color of Money Book Club


Edmunds.com's Strategies for Smart Car Buyers Selected for Washington Post Personal Finance Reporter Michelle Singletary's Color of Money Book Club

Online Book Club Discussion Scheduled for Wednesday, May 26, 2004 at 2PM

SANTA MONICA, Calif. - May 14, 2004 - Michelle Singletary, syndicated personal finance columnist for the Washington Post, has named Edmunds.com's Strategies for Smart Car Buyers the May selection for her Color of Money Book Club. Lead author and Edmunds.com Consumer Advice Editor Phil Reed will join Singletary in the Color of Money Book Club online discussion Wednesday, May 26, 2004 at 2PM Eastern.

According to Singletary, "Aside from the usual good car-buying advice -- how to begin your car-buying search, how much should you pay, selling your old car, leasing and insuring your car -- this book has a bonus section called 'Confessions of a Car Salesman,' which was written by Reed, who went undercover to sell cars. The stories Reed recounts should be mandatory reading before anybody walks onto a dealer's lot."

For the project, Reed was sent to work undercover at two different dealerships to give readers an insider's perspective on the training, attitudes and behind-the-scenes maneuvers that dealers use to gain the upper hand. Initial feedback suggests the contents surprise, amuse and educate readers even if they're not in the market to buy a car.

"After you read the confessions section of the book, go back and start at the beginning," suggests Singletary. "I particularly like the short but important sections on 'The 20 Percent Rule' and 'How Much Can You Afford?' The editors suggest that your car payment should be no more than 20 percent of your take-home pay. If you have two cars, the total monthly payment for both should still be 20 percent of your pay."

Such advice from Edmunds.com, the Internet's premier resource for automotive information, has empowered automotive consumers for decades. Edmunds.com published its first book, a used vehicle buyers' guide, in the 1960s as a consumer-oriented alternative to the dealer-centric Kelley Blue Book. Riding on a wave of consumer word-of-mouth, in 1995 Edmunds.com launched its Web site -- which uniquely holds the title "the most useful Web site" according to every J. D. Power and Associates' New Autoshopper.com StudySM. Edmunds.com's new and used vehicle buyers' guides continue to be published annually.

"You can get a lot of the information in this book on the Internet for free, but I recommend it because it's like a workbook. It has checklists and a sample script you can use when negotiating for a car," advises Singletary, who has written the Color of Money column since 1997 and discusses personal finance on WHUR-FM and on National Public Radio's "Day to Day" program.

Those interested in joining the Color of Money Book Club can find more information at http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/business/legacy/bookclubpage.htm. Members are eligible to win free books; Edmunds.com donated a box of books that have already been distributed to randomly selected members.

About Edmunds.com, Inc.
Edmunds.com is the premier online resource for automotive information. Its comprehensive set of data, tools and services, including Edmunds.com True Market Value® pricing, is generated by Edmunds Data Services and is licensed to third parties. For example, the company supplies over 800,000 pages of content for the auto sections of AOL and NYTimes.com, provides weekly data to Automotive News and delivers monthly data reports to Wall Street analysts. Edmunds.com was named "best car research" site by Forbes ASAP, has been selected by consumers as the "most useful Web site" according to every J.D. Power and Associates New Autoshopper.com StudySM and was ranked first in the Survey of Car-Shopping Web Sites as reported by The Wall Street Journal. The company is headquartered in Santa Monica, Calif. and maintains a satellite office outside Detroit.

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