Monday, May 28, 2007

Car Shopping--UUUGGGHH!

Fortunately, I have only been shopping for vehicles four times in my life. I keep my auto as long as possible at least 8 or more years. And now the possible is as long as it is going to be on my Safari. For the past several weeks my hubby and I have been talking about what car I should get. He spouts all the rationale from Consumer Reports, and the number one factor-- fuel economy. Keep in mind my aged hippie husband gave away his vehicle and rides either his ten-speed or his motorcycle to work, and everywhere else for that matter. Thus, he feels very good about his contribution to society in saving the air and the world at large.

I, too, want to save the air and the world. Only, I want to be able to pull my tent trailer, go off-roading occasionally, and think color is as important as fuel economy. So, when he asks me what I want in a vehicle, I, of course, say " a jeepy kind of thing, that has a rack, with a tow package and cool school bus yellow would be great!" He usually frowns, mutters something about going green and leaves the room. I don't know how to tell him I could NEVER own a green car!

After his hours of research online, we then have the whole going-to-the-car-lot experience. I tell my hubby who hates to go to car dealerships that I will be the one to handle all of the transactions. I am resolved to remain calm and I am intent on finding a car that I will have a connection with as I will be spending many hours with this vehicle in the upcoming years.

There is a reason why car salesmen have such bad reputations as slime-ball predators. They truly are vultures, just waiting and watching for fresh prey. We drive up and "Jimmy" is the first to pounce on us. He proceeds to tell us how he could never sell a product he didn't believe in because he is a man of integrity. Isn't that super! He wants me to take a car out for a test drive. I want to know the price, will it tow my trailer. He's not sure.

I just want to know the price. But that's not how the game is played. I explain I don't have time and just want to know how much is the car. Jimmy starts in: "Let's go for a drive. Just sit in the car." He continues: "What color would you like Driftwood Pearl, Galatic Gray, VooDoo Blue, Sun Fusion. Let's go to my office and I'll put some numbers together for you." I ask if it can tow my trailer. He's not sure unless we go to his office. The sun is beating down on us and I really, really, really just want to know the price. I have a list of possible cars, I want to make the best comparison of prices and features. But Jimmy just wants to go to his office and play 'Deal or No Deal!"

I refuse to go to his office. I refuse to get in the car. I refuse to drive the car. Just give me the damn price and tell me if it can tow my tent trailer! What's so hard about that? I feel all my zen leaving. All my resolve to remain calm and have a peaceful car buying experience while I try to makle a connection with a car is quickly disappearing. I tell my hubs, "We must go!"

We drive back home in the same old van we drove up in. Back to Consumer Reports. Back to all the stats on fuel economy, side-air bags, brakes, resale predictability......and not one word about anything school-bus yellow. Oh, excuuuuse, me. I mean Sun Fusion!

1 comment:

V-Grrrl said...

I read the tagline on your header and just died. Too, too funny.

And buying a car? I do all the hard scientific research and then make decisions on important factors like: How many cupholders does it have? Where will I store my CDs? Is there a convenient place to put Kleenex? Does it have a good pulldown mirror on the passenger's side?

This past winter we got a car with heated seats. My lower back was never, ever so happy....