Car salesman changes his accent when a customer asks about the Dodge Charger


Car salesman changes his accent when a customer asks about the Dodge Challenger

'Personality mirroring. The key to winning.'


Beau Paul


Posted on Mar 28, 2024   Updated on Mar 28, 2024, 11:34 am CDT

Can how a salesperson speaks affect how quickly a customer signs on the dotted line? One car dealer seems to make the case that a different way of talking might be a way to make the customer feel at home—and maybe drive off the lot with a new ride.

PJ, who goes by NoVetteBet (@novettebet) on TikTok, is a salesman at Rod Hatfield Chevrolet in Lexington, Kentucky, according to his bio. He’s posted a series of comedic videos describing life on the car lot.

Several of PJ’s videos portray him using a sales technique of adjusting his accent to what he thinks the customer will best respond to. A video posted on March 17 shows him “code-switching” to African American Vernacular English (AAVE) when talking to a customer who expresses interest in buying a Dodge Challenger.

The video has picked up 1.7 million views and counting since it was posted.

The screen text in the video reads, “How the accent changes for a dodge customer.” When PJ is approached by a “customer” and asked about a green Dodge Challenger, his accent changes from a non-descript standard American accent to AAVE.

“Aw, sh*t, you said Challenger?” he asks the person filming. He simultaneously starts the car in question remotely using a keyfob in his pocket. “I need to pull it out for real, ya know what I’m saying? … I heard you was on the way.”

The Dodge Challenger is popular among hip-hop artists and has been called by Pitchfork “Rap’s signature muscle car.” According to a February 2019 Pitchfork article, the car has been name-checked by artists such as Lil Durk, Chief Keef, Maxo Kream, Lil Baby, and Lil Uzi Vert.

According to NPR, people use code-switching—the practice of shifting the accent or expression used in conversations—for a variety of reasons, including wanting to fit in or better express a thought.

In this instance, PJ seems to be using it solely to land a sale by leaning into what he thinks the stereotypical Challenger customer acts and talks like.

PJ has used different accents in other videos, shifting his speech depending on what car he hopes to sell.

@novettebet #dodge #challenger #scatpack #funny #urban #sales #accent ♬ original sound – NoVetteBet

Several viewers applauded PJ’s technique.

Austin Rehbein (@austinrehbein) wrote, “Personality mirroring. The key to winning.”

Another viewer added, “The code-switching was smooth.”

However, PJ stated that he didn’t consider it code-switching per se. Responding to the comment, “Car business code-switching is a real thing lol,” PJ wrote, “Code-switching is a strong way to put it. Let’s call it profiling.”

When viewer sirsqueeze (@sirsqueeze) asked PJ, “So you’re saying if I’m good at this I should consider sales or real estate?” he responded, “That’s exactly what I said.”

The Daily Dot has reached out to PJ via TikTok direct message for further comment.

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*First Published: Mar 28, 2024, 5:00 pm CDT