New Car Smell

A little over a week ago - we got a car. It was in the air that day, which is extremely funny to say. With only a month to go before having to return the Corolla Kate and I thought it was time to look for a car. Preferably a used car.

We had originally planned to come out of our car shopping with a pre-owned (the nicer word for used) VW Golf. We had done our research, looked at all the possibilities in the local dealers, and were willing to spend no more then 10,000 on it. Hopefully it would be four door. Hopefully everything was working. Hopefully it would be ok. But none of the 3 non-big dealer Golfs had our attention, and the only close VW dealer was selling them pretty high. We were unsure. But still we tried South Motors. Maybe they would indeed make us a deal to intice us.

VW Golf

We had a nice time at the VW dealership. They let me test drive the only two Golfs they were willing to bring down to level close to what I could afford. One was a two door, the other a four door which also happened to be black and was very styling. They were both still rather new, less 30,000 miles and 2 years, so the factory warranty still stood with the extra certified pre-owned. I really liked the way the Golfs feel driving. And they are nice and low to the ground - probably lower then the Corolla. So even though I still wasn’t sure I would enjoy owning the car I was willing to buy. The dealership wasn’t willing to sell though. Had they brought the price down on the Golf $1,000 more I might have picked it, instead they just showed me everything else but the Golf for $1,000 less.

This turned out to be my car.

Ford Focus ZX3

So Kate and I decided to go North on US1 and stop at each dealer that had cars we might like. Our first stop was Ford - besides the PT Cruiser, Chrysler doesn’t have any Hatchbacks. Even as we were looking at the cars they had in stock, it looked like we would be going to the next dealer. They didn’t have any used Ford Focus ZX3’s (the Ford we were thinking of) or any other hatchback that wasn’t already sold - our saleman was trying hard to get us something. I suppose that’s why we were blindsided when they gave us an offer for a 2005 Focus ZX3. But that doesn’t mean we didn’t stop to think about it.

The one thing I’m still not a big fan of in the car buying experience is that once you decide you want the car, it takes at least another 2 hours for you to walk out of the dealer with the keys. Kate and I must have spend at good 3 hours waiting for all the loan stuff to go through and signing the documents. We also had a good hour on top of that waiting for our car to come in - they had it at their lot in Broward. For first time buyers, we think we got a good rate of 6.9. Though we’ll be paying it off for the rest of eternity.

It was during this time I made one of the few jokes Kate has really liked: You always buy your car at the dealer you are when the sun goes down. It’s from personal experience with my parents, it just also seemed appropriate for us too. I’m still a little freaked out - we got a loan for a car. It feels like such a grown up thing to do.

April 12, 2005 10:07 PM On Life


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