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Negotiating a new car deal doesn't have to be such a shell game if you take some time to educate yourself before you go to the dealership. Don't just consider the pricing and vehicle options when doing your research. Spend a couple of hours online or at your local library boning up on things like:
• Safety ratings
• Crash test results
• Quality and customer satisfaction
• Cost of ownership
• Expert opinions (such as the National Highway Transportation Safety Agency)
• Side-by-side comparisons of your top three or four picks
Many Web sites, such as Edmunds and Intellichoice, offer information and tools to enable you to collect and study all of this information efficiently.