Originally Posted by davyk31
Not applicable to the OP as he is visiting the dealer but if you buy a car over the phone from a far away dealer you are covered by distance selling regs, these let you return the car if not as described etc. Means the dealers will try hard to ensure the car is in top condition before you get it.
In addition to what you say, I also think you get a sense of who you are dealing with in the way they communicate. I know in my case, when I talked about my car as a trade-in it was clear the sales manager was straight forward, that gave some confidence as well.
My car had an issue with the engine, which they found after I'd put a deposit on the car and agreed when to pick it up. The garage were 100% up front with me, welcomed my opinion, kept me updated as it developed with BMW. When I requested to see the engine, (as it could have been a deal breaker), no issues, were in fact very eager for me to see the car and explain the issue in full, around the bench.
It is good to know that some dealers really fly the flag for BMW.