Hey, I started a thread a couple weeks ago when I was looking at R/Ts everyone on these forums have been fantastic with all their assistance. Unfortunately with my 11 month old starting day care, I'm a bit short of cash right now. I'll be crying in the corner for the next couple months while I save some bread. Thanks again to everyone who helped me out. But I digress...
To your question, listen to what SRTOCHO say, Costco is the way to go. The wrinkle is that the Costco discount does not typically apple to the SRT8s, but it does to the R/Ts. I met with a great guy named Ralph Lawler at Carl Burger Dodge in La Mesa (probably too far of a hike for you) who is their internet sales director. Great guy, no sales BS and gave me the price immediately when I asked. The R/Ts at the time had a Costco price of $200 above invoice, mind you that Escondido Dodge had a Costco price for R/Ts of $500 above invoice, so truth be told the different dealerships negotiate different prices with Costco, so check a few.
Given that SRT8s are generally not (in my experience anyway, maybe someone else has a different experience) covered in the Costco plan, I figured it would be the usual car sales crap when talking price. Ralph at Carl Burger Dodge however was so cool about it and said he would give me an SRT8 for ~$500 over invoice (don't quote me as I'm not positive on this, it may have been $600 or $400). The SRT8 they had there was purple and had a price of $20k dealer markup over sticker!!!! I didn't ask Ralph about that specific car, but I bet he would have given it to me for only ~$500 over invoice (my guess at least) cause that is what he quoted me for the black SRT8 they had.
The morale of the story is, NEVER walk onto the lot and talk with the sales guys walking the lots. They make only commission so it is their best interest to always sell at the highest possible price. Mind you the internet/costco guy pobably wants the highest price too, but if you get a good one (like Ralph), they'll just give you an over invoice price and you go from there. ALWAYS start with the Costco program connection if possible and go from there.
Carmax has a Dodge Dealership next to LAX. That's right, they sell new Dodges with factory warranties and all the rest. They often have prices which will undercut the competition. Only ting is (I called them to find this out) all they have is what is at the dealership, they don't trade with other dealers. Currently they have no SRT8s, but if you're in no rush, this may be a good way to save some dough.
Also, check out the thread that I started a couple weeks ago below. Some really good info.
Again, my advice would be to ALWAYS start with a dealers internet/costco manager. I did this at two dealerships and those guys didn't play the games that the floor guys do. Costco follows up a few days later with a satisfaction survey and if a dealership scores low, they can be put on probation or dropped from the costco program. Yet another incentive for the costco sales managers to not screw around with the sales.
Sorry for the really really really long post. Hope this helps. Let me know if you would like any more detail as I've done days of research on this topic already.
Get in touch with the internet managers from the local dodge dealers in the riverside area. I'm closer to temecula but I had dealers in riverside, hemet, corona and even Capastano looking for what i wanted and then bargaining with me before i went there. I got my Torred srt8 for invoice which was $3400 under sticker... if you can believe those invoices they show you. I was pleased though and It was an easy negotiation. I ended up getting mine at DCH in temecula. They had one with every option including VES. very happy with the car.
How far are you willing to travel? Button Dodge, Kokomo Indiana. Sticker on my car was 43,850 and they sold it to me for 36,300. Brand New, all options except rear DVD and side air bags. She only had 19 miles on her when I picked her up.
It was worth the road trip to me. Your quite a bit farther away. Could be worth you time if you don't have a trade and get a good air fare.