Slasher Sale Car Dealer Advertising Scam

The Slasher Sale car dealer scam is a great manipulation game.

A car dealership will hire an outside third party to promote a highly energetic Slasher Sales Event.

These events can last anywhere from three to five days or more and are typically held over a long holiday weekend and staffed with highly trained professional car salespeople.

What is a Used Car Slasher Sale?

A Slasher Sale is one of the most exciting car dealership used vehicle sales events. This type of event may go by Government Liquidation Sale, Slasher, Repo Joe, etc. Some of these sales consist of free food, door prizes, DJs, loud music, giveaways, and sometimes an actual vehicle sold for a meager price ($88).

These sales events are usually held on a weekend and towards the end of the month. A dealer typically finds and pays an outside company to host the event at their dealership. These companies employ seasoned professionals highly trained in the art of retail used car sales, negotiation, and manipulation.

The problem with a lot of these sales is the people running them do not always tell the truth. They will tell you whatever you want to hear to get you to buy the car when they’re on site.

They may bend the truth to sell you a car because they’re typically paid a flat fee and a percentage of any profit made during the event.

If you have a problem a few days later, they’ll be packed up and gone to the next sale while you’re left behind to deal with the dealer if anything goes wrong with the vehicle or the financing.

How Does a Dealership Slasher Sale Event Work

The company hosting the slasher sale will do an all-out, in-your-face advertising blitz on radio, TV, direct mail, and newspaper in the days leading up to the event. The advertisements will offer cars being sold at meager prices, including a vehicle that will be sold for $88 or less.

These companies will have a disc jockey set up at the dealership to play music and sometimes have free food or even door prizes.

The price will be inscribed on the windshields with a grease pencil by an outside business that will visit the dealership the previous evening. The secret is when they price the vehicles, they will be marked up $4,000 to $8,000 or more over the actual cost of the car.

When they start slashing the price on the windshield in front of you, it gives you the impression you’re receiving thousands of dollars off the vehicle’s retail price. Pretty simple gimmick, but you’d be surprised how well it works.

I’ve personally hosted Slasher Sale Events at my dealerships; the company put an actual fence around my dealership the night before the event. This creates curiosity and excitement as the line of people starts to grow at the front gate.

We hosted a Repo Joe sale at one of my dealerships, and as you came through the gate, you had to “register.” When you registered, you had to give your social security number (you would be amazed how many people would tell you their social security number without question). We would pull their credit right there on the spot, hand them a specific color balloon, and tell them they must keep it with them.

The dealership staff knew you had horrible credit if you had a red balloon. If you had a blue balloon, your credit was in the middle. If you had a green balloon, you had GREAT credit. If you were walking around with a green balloon, you had salespeople all over you.

Slasher Sales Event Advertisement Example

The idea behind the Slasher Sale ad is to get people excited about buying a car below what they usually buy it for.

Don’t get caught up in all the excitement around you on the lot. The whole idea behind this event is to get people excited, impulse buy, and make uneducated car-buying decisions.


100’s of Used Cars for as Low as $88*
*Only one at this price

Hundreds of high-quality cars will be sacrificed at special prices!


Local dealer conducting a huge “Slasher Sale”
vehicles will be sold starting at $88!*

Attention Customers, (No Wholesalers or Dealers, please)

All vehicles will be displayed in a secured area at ABC Motor Central, 5698 Free Auto Drive, Zuma, CA. Public access will begin on Friday at 10:00 am, and the event will continue through Saturday and Sunday close-of-business or until we run out of cars.

All vehicles will be unlocked and opened so you may view and inspect the cars for one hour. The regular selling price of each vehicle will be marked on the windshield.

The sale will begin promptly at 11:00 am; this sale is first-come-first-served. Whoever is sitting behind the wheel of a vehicle while the retail price is slashed will have the first right to purchase the car at the slashed price. Prices will be slashed one time to their rock-bottom-price.

We will also be selling a used car for only $88!*

You win, and the dealer wins, the dealer has to move their overstocked inventory, and you get the best price without haggling or wasting time.

This Event is for Three Days Only

First Come, First Served!

Friday, July. 17, 10 am – 8 pm

Saturday, July. 18, 10 am – 8 pm

Sunday, July. 19, 10 am – 7 pm

This “Slasher Sale Event” is a used car sales event offered by ABC Motor Central on its current overstocked used car inventory. This event will provide the public with great deals on used cars before being forced to liquidate their inventory to local wholesalers and auctions.

$88* is not a down payment; it’s the actual price we’re selling a car for!

Prior bank assets | Overstocked | Hundreds of used cars to choose from

Cheap used cars | Affordable | Financing Available

Visit our website to preview our inventory: (companies web site)

*One $88 vehicle will be sold at 6:00 pm on Saturday via raffle to guests in attendance. Saturday raffle vehicle: ’91 Honda Civic, STK#C65891s, VIN# M2895461. Price does not include government fees, TT&L, finance, dealer documentation, preparation, and emission testing charges.

These sales events bring in a lot of used car sales and profits for car dealerships across the country. Some good companies may sell up to 80 cars or more, making the car dealership $150,000.00+ in earnings in only three days.

The company that staffs the event typically gets a percentage of the total profit from the cars sold. Another reason you should be very cautious when attending one of these events.

How to Avoid the Slasher Sale Scam

  • Avoid attending a used car slasher sale or any other dealer event sale that promises deals or pricing too good to be true.
  • There are so many variables when it comes to used cars. It is almost impossible to determine the actual cost a dealer paid for a used car. To protect yourself, the best thing you can do is estimate a dealer’s used car cost to get a good idea of what the dealer may have paid for the vehicle you’re interested in.
  • The best way to shop for a used car is to request used car price quotes from local dealers in the area.
  • Remember, if the advertised offer is too good to be true, it most likely is.
  • The first key to not being ripped off when buying a new or used car is to take your time and do your homework before contacting a car dealership.
  • Take someone with you before car shopping. This will help keep you from making the wrong car buying decision.
  • Before buying a used car, protect yourself by having the vehicle inspected by an independent mechanic and also obtain a used vehicle history report.

About the author
Carlton Wolf is the author and founder of Auto Cheat Sheet.My name is Carlton Wolf, and I’ve been in the car business since 1994, both retail and wholesale. I created the Auto Cheat Sheet to better educate buyers about the deceptive sales practices many dealerships use nationwide. Please understand that not all car dealers are dishonest. However, you never know who you’ll be dealing with, though. I’m willing to share my knowledge and experience with anyone who listens. Keep in mind that I’m a car guy, not a writer.