Consumer Reports' Build & Buy Car Buying Service adds to our suite of auto ratings, reviews, and buying advice. Once you've used our information to decide which is the best car for your needs, subscribers can use our Build & Buy service to get competitive prices from local dealers who are held accountable for high customer satisfaction.
Developed with TrueCar, Inc., Consumer Reports' Build & Buy service is available as an extra benefit to ConsumerReports.org, Shop Smart, Consumer Reports, on Health, and Money Advisor newsletter subscribers and to purchasers of Consumer Reports New Car Price Reports. To access the service, visit our Build & Buy Car Buying Service home page.
Advantages of the Build & Buy service
- Low subscriber prices. Participating dealers have agreed to sell their vehicles at competitive prices that are typically well below the manufacturer's suggested retail price and sometimes below the dealer-invoice price.
- Pre-screened dealers. The program includes more than 5,500 participating dealers nationwide who have agreed to follow strict guidelines of conduct in order to help provide an easier, more transparent, and consumer-friendly car-buying experience.
- Easy-to-use tools. The program allows you to quickly configure a vehicle with the trim, color, and options you want and then get a Consumer Reports Build & Buy Report that includes an Estimated Price, provided by participating dealers in your area, as well Minimum Savings off MSRP when you purchase through the program (shoppers in AR, CO, KS, MD, NE, OK, OR, TX, VA, and WA zip codes are presented a Target Price and Potential Savings off MSRP.).
- Free and anonymous. This service is free to subscribers who can use it as much as they want without revealing their identity to any dealers unless they choose to. Your identity will be concealed from dealers, and theirs from you, when the price estimate and savings off MSRP (or Target Price and Potential Savings off MSRP in applicable states) are initially given. You may then choose to send your identity to none, any, or all of the dealers, and in return their identities will be revealed to you. The service also guarantees that consumers' contact information is never sold through the program.
- No obligation. Even after you get your Build & Buy Report, there's no obligation to buy. You can always change your mind about the vehicle, price, or dealership, or whether you want to buy a car at all.
- You receive all applicable incentives. Participating dealers have agreed to pass along to you any discounts provided by any applicable manufacturer incentives for the vehicle you're buying. This includes unadvertised manufacturer-to-dealer incentives, for which it's typically up to the dealer whether to keep the savings or pass them on to the customer.
While Consumer Reports has long provided unbiased ratings and in-depth car-buying advice, subscribers have been on their own in finding dealerships that they want to work with and in doing their own price negotiations. The Consumer Reports Build & Buy service is intended to help make car buying easier, with less hassle and anxiety.
The program also helps Consumer Reports further its mission and ongoing work. TrueCar pays Consumer Reports a fee for each vehicle sold through the program, regardless of what makes or models are bought, who buys them, or which dealers they are bought from. Consumer Reports has no direct contact or any financial relationship with any dealerships. For more details on the service, see the Build & Buy FAQs.