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car salesperson handing over keys Flickr: Yonkers Honda
Flickr: Yonkers Honda

For those with an automotive passion, considering a career in the car business is only reasonable. In this industry, car dealerships certainly serve as a high-paying job. As a car salesperson, you have potential to make uncapped commission, but it’s not for everyone.

Below, we’ll take a look at what it takes if you plan to go this route, the requirements they look for, and the salary range you can expect to see. There are plenty of job titles within a dealership, but it’s common for them to put you as a salesperson to start out if you’re just jumping into things.

Car Salesperson Requirements

The good thing is that educational requirements for this position are pretty minimal. Most of the time, dealerships will only require a high school diploma or GED. Though, additional experience and having a college degree could help you rise in the ranks to a more specified field a little bit quicker.

These guys understand that you need to start somewhere. Normally, complete training is available for new salespeople. More specifically, what they look for is a good work ethic. Whether you’re selling new cars or used cars, this job typically requires some pretty long hours during the week.

They want someone who isn’t afraid of work, but also have an outgoing personality and an ability to connect with the customers. As a sales representative, most of the day will be spent on your feet at the dealership, with the exception of taking people on the occasional test drive. The job description also includes selling warranties, negotiating trade-ins, assisting customers through the car buying process, and communicating with your sales manager.

Car Salesperson Salary

Now the information you really want to know. Salespeople in the car industry will often see a base salary which normally equates to around minimum wage. Don’t let this scare you away though, because on top of that, you’ll also have the perks of a commission-based pay plan.

The majority of your pay depends on how much you sell. Minimum commission is usually at least around the realm of 20% of the dealers gross profit. That means that if you sell a car for $20,000, the dealer would make $5,000, and you would personally make $1,000 from the sale.

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The national average car salesman salary in the United States has a range from $23,574 to $95,627. For many successful salespeople, it’s not unheard of to break into the six-figure range. It’s a very competitive environment, with monthly quotas, but if you can surpass those, it can pay off quite well for you.

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If you feel like this is the right job for you, I’d highly recommend looking into the large auto groups around you to see who’s hiring. Keep in mind, this is normally a high-turnover job, because while the money can be great, you also need to have the right personality, motivation, and work ethic for the position.

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