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NEED ADVICE FROM MORE SEASONED THUNDERBIRD ENTHUSIASTS. I ordered my bird Jan 01 and was told to expect delivery near the end of summer. Now they tell me I maybe March 02. I paid 5k over MSRP and gave them a 2k deposit (supposedly non-refundable), but another dealer tells me they cant keep my deposit and that I dont need to tell them why. My question is...I can get a 2003 model White/premium with everything at only 2k over in 1/03 or should I just stick it out with my current offer. The dealer has not been helpful with the FORD Giveaways and I supposedly was signed up (my salesman stated this twice)..Advice needed..thanks..

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not a lot of advice but some information:
1- Delivery depends on your spot in line from your dealer's allotment of Thunderbirds - doesn't depend on when you placed the order.
2- If you have received nothing from Ford, then it's most likely that your dealership signed you up for the Manage the wait program which Ford cancelled early this year.

3- Your dealer should be kind(especially since he's charging 5K over - shame on him if he doesn't) and sign you up for the Thunderbird Collection but sign up for that is just about over. Look for the threads on this forum for more Thunderbird Collection info.

4-2003 models should start being delivered next fall. Doubt if a dealer could say right now, exactly when you'd get a 2003 when most don't even know when their 2002s will come in unless they have a VIN# for it.

You know what they say about a bird in the hand... On the other hand, sounds like you have lost confidence in you current deal - with justification - so if you don't mind waiting two years from your original order... As Dot says, no one knows what the 2003 allocations will be, prices, model changes or options. Seems like a lot of variables. If you decide to wait till next year, see if you can at least line up a deal at MSRP and a better queue position. When Ford opens the order banks in January it will be a whole new game.
Don't have much advice either, but let me know what you decide. I ordered a Premium blue at 1K over MSRP, but am 87 of 88. I'm told I won't see the car till the end of the 2002 production in mid summer. I'm thinking it may be smarter to take an early spot on a 2003. Does anyone know when specs come out? Colors, ect.? I hear from the board that there may be electric fans and heated seats (not hugely useful here in S. Florida). Like most members, I ordered my Tbird to enjoy, not as an investment. That said, 40K is still alot of money. Is it more desirable or collectable to own the first year, or does it matter much? I suspect that minor improvements, and a good chance to purchase without paying any premium suggests holding out a few more months for a 2003 isn't a bad idea. Any thoughts?
If it's not an investment, it really doesn't matter, but, for the record, historically from a collector standpoint it's almost always better to have the first or last year models.

On another subject, what dealer got 88 cars allocated to him. That MUST be the record.

I was told by the South Florida District Zone rep that South Florida has two dealerships with the most allocation in the country. Sawgrass Ford is #1 and Maroone Ford in Margate is #3. I believe Maroone is the dealership getting 88. I had an opportunity to order through them, but all they're ordering is Premium models, and I opted for a Deluxe.

Also, Sawgrass is the ONLY dealership in South Florida that sold their allocation at MSRP.

Yes. I ordered my Premium Blue from Maroone Ford in Margate. Their allottment is 88 cars. They were charging a premium of 2K over MSRP, but agreed to cut that to 1K over MSRP for me. True, they are ordering all their cars premium, with hardtops,($500 fully refundable deposit) but they were willing to order a deluxe - with a $1,000 deposit (non refundable). Maroone in Delray Beach wants 5K over MSRP, they even have a red premium on the lot now for 51K. I moved on down the road ...

Actually, if this were an actual investment, my broker would have called with a great stock tip. Then I would have had the privelege to lose 90% of my money in a month or two. With the Tbird, I have something cool to drive and enjoy, not to mention wash & wax ..
given financial events over the past 2 years, a far smarter investment.
Rory Fielding,
Former .Com, CEO
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