Car companies and car dealers can get pretty desperate when it comes to getting you to buy a car. How desperate? Jalopnik readers know ten ploys that will have you shaking your head.

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Car dealerships leave nothing on the table when it comes to getting you into the showroom, which is why we see dealers strapped to planes upside down and playing with tigers.


Car companies aren't much better, making pitifully narrow-market special editions to move old models and even making up new brands just to entice buyers.

The sad part? These ploys often work. Maybe we should blame ourselves for hitting up any dealership with an inflatable 50-foot-tall gorilla, or any zero percent financing deal.

Are there any horrible attempts to get car buyers that we forgot about? Let us know in Kinja below.


Photo Credit: SkyDancerEurope/YouTube

10.) Buy A Truck, Get A Free Gun


We covered the story of an Idaho truck dealer giving away free guns with the purchase of a truck last year. The dealer reportedly gave away over $60,000 in guns in 2012. Desperate? Yeah, but also clever. This guy knows his market.

Suggested By: SnapUndersteer, Jay_Hoff, and JJ_Cool_Bean, Photo Credit: Facebook


9.) Free iPad With Your Hyundai

Hyundai's plan to get people to buy their top-of-the-range Equus luxury sedan was less successful. Hyundai put the owner's manual on an iPad, which they gave to you for free with purchase. It didn't exactly work and they phased it out.


Suggested By: Viperfan1, Photo Credit: Hyundai

8.) Christmas Sale Ribbons


Lexus is famous for thinking that putting a big red ribbon on top of a Camry in a party dress Lexus ES will get buyers in the showroom. Sadly, they're probably right.

Suggested By: One Quick Turbo Brick, Photo Credit: Lexus


7.) Video Game Special Editions

You've really run out of target markets when you're advertising to Call of Duty players


Suggested By: frogberg, Photo Credit: Jeep

6.) The Entire Scion Brand


Toyota realized that their cars were so boring, that the only way they'd sell to young people was to make an entirely new brand. Then Toyota realized that nothing's stopping them from just making regular Toyotas look good and drive well, but they still call those cars Scion for some reason.

Suggested By: Takuro Spirit, Photo Credit: Scion


5.) Drive It 30 Days Bring It Back

It's like when your mom told you to 'just try it, you'll like it' before you found out, once again, that brussel sprouts taste like ass.


Suggested By: mattp123, Photo Credit: Town Fair Tire

4.) Giant Inflatable Animals At The Dealer

Reader AGirlsBestFriendIsHerSTi puts the absurdity of these dealership draws best. "Oh hey, I wasn't planning on buying a used Volvo but you have a 50' tall purple gorilla wearing a hula skirt in front of your dealership so now I must purchase one with all due haste" said no car buyer, ever.


Suggested By: AGirlsBestFriendIsHerSTi, Photo Credit: Family Guy

3.) Lisa Catera


Pretty much all automotive product placement on TV feels pretty desperate, but the very worst was when Cadillac put a character on Chicago Hope named Lisa Catera. As in 'lease a Catera,' Cadillac's new car at the time. Shameful.

Suggested By: StreetsideStig, Photo Credit: Cadillac, CBS


2.) Cash For Clunkers

It might have sold new cars while the US struggled in the recession, but Cash For Clunkers also delivered a huge blow to the country's used market. Many a fine car was destroyed in this program.


Suggested By: Highball!, Photo Credit: Tony Fischer Photography

1.) Buy 1 Get 1 Free


Hyundai and Kia tried this a few years back, but our readers have seen 'buy an F150, get a free Focus,' 'buy a Plymouth K-Car, get a second one free,' and 'buy any Volkswagen, get a free Routan, seriously, we'll do anything to get rid of these Routans' too.

These deals only happen when a dealership really, really needs to move some showroom poison.

Suggested By: POD and HammerheadFistpunch, Photo Credit: Summit Place Kia