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CarBuzz Real or Fake: Waitlists

When it comes to buying a car, the waiting really is the hardest part.

With the exception of Apple, no other company or industry creates demand quite like car companies. However, a dirty side effect of driving demand is the creation of long waitlists. Waiting for a supercar isn’t a shock, but some buyers end up waiting months or years just to get their hands on “normal” cars. Today’s CarBuzz Real or Fake tasks you with spotting the phony waitlist. Remember that three of these waits are legit while one is complete crap. Leave your best guess in the comment section, and feel free to share your waitlist story as well.

Back in 2012, people would likely laugh at you if you told them you were on a waitlist for a Fiat 500. The car just didn’t sell that well back then. However, that’s exactly what happened to buyers who wanted to own a 500 Abarth when it first rolled out in mid-2012. Chrysler had no idea demand would exceed production, leading to buyers being put on a waitlist for the 2013 Abarth only two months after the 2012 model debuted.

Money isn’t the only thing you’ll need if you want to own a BMW i8. Patience is also a requirement, as BMW currently has an 18-month waitlist that awaits prospective owners. Being too popular is never a bad thing, especially when it comes to cars, and it’s likely that a year and a half wait won’t scare off that many buyers.

It may sound insane, but there was actually a waitlist for the Yugo when it first came to America in the 1980s. Demand was driven in part by a low sticker price and consumer naivety. No one knew just how bad the Communist car was, only that it was incredibly cheap. Those on the waitlist quickly learned their lesson as the Yugo established itself as one of the worst production cars of all-time.

Yes, there was once a time when people waited in earnest to purchase a Smart Fortwo. In fact, folks in Kansas City waited up to 10 months to take delivery of their Smarts when the compact city car first hit dealer lots there in 2008. Ten months is a long time to wait for anything, especially when you’re waiting for a car that can be tipped over using minimal effort.

So, which waitlist did you call crap on? If you thought the Fiat story was fake, think again. Yes, the wait for an i8 currently sits at 18 months. That means that either the Fortwo or Yugo waitlist was a lie. If it sounds too good to be true and involves a Yugo, it probably is. That’s right, people actually waited for a Smart but no one sat at home patiently waiting for the day when they could drive home in their Zastava Koral.

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