• April 19, 2018, 10:53:26 AM

Login with username, password and session length

Author Topic: Need to buy a car in the next week.#20, #25, #39, #41, #46, FINAL #59. New? #63  (Read 10617 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.


  • I'm a nonconformist who doesn't conform to the prevailing standards of nonconformity.
  • Member
  • Posts: 7020
Re: Need to buy a (used) car in the next week. #20, #25, #39, UGH! #41
« Reply #45 on: June 18, 2013, 06:43:57 PM »
They will always try to talk you into a new car. The first time say "Nope, I'm looking for used." If it happens again you say "I can see you aren't interested in helping me find a car. Have a nice day." and walk. They'll call or email you (I prefer to only give them my junk email address) and they won't mess around again.


  • Member
  • Posts: 10409
Need to buy a (used) car in the next week. #20, #25, #39, #41, #46
« Reply #46 on: June 18, 2013, 07:28:35 PM »
I hope you don't mind my continual updates, but your replies, thoughts, and comments have been really helpful.

Today's update . . . Learned Something New . . . it is extremely important to test drive a car before buying.

Today I found out that we were looking at the wrong model of vehicle.

The DDs have only ever driven their "boat" or mine, both being Grand Marquis. Big cars.

Skip to LONG STORY SHORT unless you want to read the long story ;)

They test drove a 2-door Honda Accord, and 2 4-door Toyota Corollas. I would have paid cash and walked out the door with one of the Corollas, but, then again, I didn't drive it. I'm not sure I would be happy in one of those cars. It sounded like a good deal to me.

I pulled the DDs away from the salesman to have a private chat.

DD#1: That last car was okay. I'd be fine with it.

DD#2: I don't like small cars. They scare me.

DD#1: Yeah. I just keep thinking about getting into that accident with a smaller car.

Me: It's a good car at a good price.

DD#1: I guess I could get used to it, but it just wasn't comfortable to me.

Me: Comfortable as in not big and roomy?

DD#1: No! It's not that, I guess it's a mental thing.

DD#2: Oh! I know what you mean! I do not feel safe in BFbob's car.

Blah, blah, blah . . .

Okay, maybe it's sounding like I raised a couple of SSy car snobs with the big luxury car, but I do believe they have a valid point . . . you do need to feel safe and comfortable in whatever car you drive.

Sooooo . . . we went back into the dealership and DD#1 asked the dealer if he had anything in our price range that was larger in size.

He brought out a 2006 VW Touareg with 146K miles, fully (and I mean fully!) loaded with all the accoutrements, I could list everything, but that would make this post waaay to long.

DDs eyes lit up like a Christmas tree. We took it out for a test drive. I could easily tell that the DDs were much more comfortable driving this sized vehicle rather than the Corolla. They settled in and smiled while they were driving.

I don't think it was so much the extras that made them happy, it was the size of the vehicle that gave them comfort.

In the back of my mind I kept thinking all of these extras means so many more things that can go wrong. I wondered about the reliability of VWs (not having done any research on that type of car.) I even asked the dealer about repair costs. He admitted that repair costs would be higher since it's a specialty type of car. blah, blah, blah

I was seriously thinking about making an offer, but I called my mechanic first. He said that he won't even look at a VW. It's not allowed in his shop.

Decision made.


So, since we found out what type/model of car they would feel comfortable in, we are now looking at Toyota RAV4 or similar smaller SUV type cars.

I wish I knew this before we did all of our previous research. ::)

Any suggestions on smaller SUV-type cars?

Again, thanks for listening to my long-winded tale of woe.


  • Member
  • Posts: 1059
Re: Need to buy a (used) car in the next week. #20, #25, #39, #41, #46
« Reply #47 on: June 18, 2013, 07:36:38 PM »
Subarus. Forester or Outbacks.  They can be hard to find used and often have kind of high mileage but that's because they last and people love them.

Had to give ours up for a third carseat.  Good thing DS is cute.


  • Member
  • Posts: 2619
Re: Need to buy a (used) car in the next week. #20, #25, #39, #41, #46
« Reply #48 on: June 18, 2013, 07:44:22 PM »
I'm glad you have a good mechanic to ask about cars you're considering.

A word of warning on the RAV4, a friend of mine has a 2006 that had engine sludge problems despite all routine maintenance being performed on time and had to pay out of pocket to have the engine rebuilt after it blew just out of warranty. He was a devoted Toyota fan, but they have been having reliability issues for the model years you may be considering (mid-2000's).

A Honda Pilot or Ford Escape might be a reasonable choice, the latter probably being a bit less expensive.

I also understand wanting to feel safe in your car, but I transitioned from a very large 1990 Taurus to a tiny early-2000's Focus while only feeling strange for a couple weeks. They may just have to compromise if getting a bigger car means significantly poorer gas mileage and higher price.


  • Member
  • Posts: 843
Re: Need to buy a (used) car in the next week. #20, #25, #39, #41, #46
« Reply #49 on: June 18, 2013, 08:33:26 PM »
how about suzukis?
Whittlesea Victoria

Valentines Mommy

  • Member
  • Posts: 1101
Re: Need to buy a (used) car in the next week. #20, #25, #39, #41, #46
« Reply #50 on: June 18, 2013, 08:49:10 PM »
I own an Element. This relates to the conversation because it shares a platform with a CR-V. I have owned it since 2006 and I love it. It is loaded with safety features and to me, it's a joy to drive. I understand the needing to feel safe; my predecessor car was a 1995 Dodge Neon. In Houston traffic, I felt like it was a matter of time before something bad happened. I never get that feeling in my brave little toaster. Plus, save oil changes, wiper blades, light bulbs, tires and brake pads, she's been very low maintenance.

I did test drive the CR-V for the 06 model year. I liked both. Saber, my basenji mix, cast the deciding vote because she liked the windows. Good luck


  • Member
  • Posts: 6445
Re: Need to buy a (used) car in the next week. #20, #25, #39, #41, #46
« Reply #51 on: June 18, 2013, 08:54:41 PM »
Honda CRV's are good.  The Nissan mini suv's are also good as well.  I would definitely recommend a Subaru, but they are hard to find because people do NOT like to give them up


  • Member
  • Posts: 10801
    • Nerdy Necklaces - my Etsy shop!
Re: Need to buy a (used) car in the next week. #20, #25, #39, #41, #46
« Reply #52 on: June 18, 2013, 09:38:56 PM »
You may actually be surprised at how many cars are the same actual length.  They definitely feel very different, and the interiors vary widely, but I'm guessing the manufacturing equipment is set up for a handful of sizes and all the new models stick to those dimensions.

(I've got a smallish garage, so one of my criteria for when I replace my Saturn Ion is that my new car not be more than an inch or two longer than what I have now.  Turns out coupes, sedans, wagons, and some SUVs are all the exact same length.)

Sheila Take a Bow

  • Member
  • Posts: 785
Re: Need to buy a (used) car in the next week. #20, #25, #39, #41, #46
« Reply #53 on: June 18, 2013, 10:23:39 PM »
I drive a Honda CR-V and I love it. It's comfortable to drive and I feel very safe in it. I was rear-ended a month ago by a guy driving way too fast who didn't notice the red light or my car in front of him - my car had relatively minor damage (though I'm pretty sure the other car was totaled) but I wasn't injured in the slightest.

White Dragon

  • Formerly St Monica
  • Member
  • Posts: 2347
Re: Need to buy a (used) car in the next week. #20, #25, #39, #41, #46
« Reply #54 on: June 18, 2013, 10:38:46 PM »
When we went to look for a new car last year, the Rav4 was one of our top picks. Went with a Sienna and a Highlander instead, but that had nothing to do with the rating on the Rav4.

I still have the Consumer Guide magazine that rates previous model years. If you want to PM me on a specific model and year, I can let you know what it says.

Re larger cars. What about a minivan? Might be a lot of relatively low-mileage ones  around.
"I think her scattergun was only loaded with commas and full-stops, although some of them cuddled together for warmth and produced little baby colons and semi-colons." ~ Margo

Outdoor Girl

  • Member
  • Posts: 16733
Re: Need to buy a (used) car in the next week. #20, #25, #39, #41, #46
« Reply #55 on: June 19, 2013, 08:18:54 AM »
I drive a 2005 Subaru Legacy wagon.  I do like it - and it is the same size as the Outback of similar vintage, just not as high off the ground as the Outback.  They were built on the same platform prior to 2009 (I think).  I'd be ready to go back and buy a new one in a couple of years, except they don't make it any more; they only make the sedan.  I either have to go up in size to the new Outback or down in size to the Imprezza wagon.  I think the new Crossfire is the size of the Imprezza.

VWs have improved in reliability from the old days but if your mechanic still shudders about them, that kind of makes that decision.   :)  At least where I am, Honda parts are expensive.  And some of the aftermarket parts don't fit them.  I have the same problem with my Subaru, although it is improving.

The Toyota Camry is larger than the Corolla and is very similar to my Legacy in size, except that it is a sedan, rather than a wagon.  The one disadvantage to wagons/SUVs is that there is no space that isn't visible from outside.  Which, if you are prone to leaving stuff in the vehicle, makes them more susceptible to break-ins.  At least with a trunk, everything is out of site and most thieves won't break into a car on spec that there is something in the trunk.  It isn't worth the risk to them.  Just something else to consider...   :P

Edited to fix a typo
After cleaning out my Dad's house, I have this advice:  If you haven't used it in a year, throw it out!!!!.


  • I don't know what this is so I am putting random words here
  • Member
  • Posts: 6916
Re: Need to buy a (used) car in the next week. #20, #25, #39, #41, #46
« Reply #56 on: June 19, 2013, 08:27:50 AM »
I have been driving a vw bug for about 10 years and while it has had its moments it isn't bad. I anticipate driving it for at least another 2 - 5 years.


  • Member
  • Posts: 14135
Re: Need to buy a (used) car in the next week. #20, #25, #39, #41, #46
« Reply #57 on: June 19, 2013, 08:27:56 AM »
My daughter started driving lessons on a smaller car.  At home, she then had to driver our SUV. At first she said she didn't like it because it was so big.  But really, it was just different than what she was used to. Now she drives it all the time with no problem.  SO consider if their discomfort is really only a temporary thing.


  • Member
  • Posts: 124
  • 42
Re: Need to buy a (used) car in the next week. #20, #25, #39, #41, #46
« Reply #58 on: June 19, 2013, 10:15:25 AM »
Just to make it a little more confusing- I have a 2001 Rav4- I love it, I will drive it into the ground (and am actively working on it, over 100k miles since I bought it used in 2005) However- I will never buy another Toyota again as long as I live.

I have a Rav4 which had an issue with the card which controls the transmission. This is a well known and documented problem for 2000-2003 models, yet no recall was issued. I was able to take it to Toyota and got it fixed under their warranty, but got it in with less than 24 hours to spare on this. As in, if I had come in the next day, I would have been out over $1000. Never again.

And as a side note- I learned to drive on a Cadillac 2-Door el dorado,  My first car was a Buick Estate Wagon, then a Buick LeSaber. My best friend has a Mercury Grand Marquee. I got used to the size difference quickly- the difference in pick up is super super noticeable, and I still curse at my "little" rav on highways. My sisters have a Honda CRV and a Kia equivalent and they are all much more underpowered. Test drive them all and find out what your DD are comfortable with in power (or lack thereof) The VW has much more power than the Asian models seem to.
"He attacked everything in life with a mix of extraordinary genius and naive incompetence, and it was often difficult to tell which was which." Douglas Adams


  • Member
  • Posts: 10409
Need to buy a car in the next week. #20, #25, #39, #41, #46, FINAL #59
« Reply #59 on: June 20, 2013, 02:46:31 PM »
HUGE SUCCESS! ;D ;D ;D ;D Happy Dance! Woo Hoo!

Yesterday we bought a 2008 Saturn Astra with 38K miles on it.

This car is quite a night/day difference compared to the Corolla's/Civics/Accords, etc. that we looked at which were in the same price range. The other cars had waaaay more mileage on them and were much older, so there was some visible wear and tear on them.

Even though the actual size seems similar, the inside is roomier (more like the inside of the smaller SUVs) than the other cars. The body style seems sturdier than the other cars, too. Maybe this is all psychological, but the DDs were excited about this car before they even sat in it (while the dealer went to get the keys for this and other cars we were looking at.)

I did some wheeling and dealing (thanks to posters advice ;D) and am extremely satisfied with the deal that I got. I paid close to $2k less than Kelly's Blue Book suggested price (going through a dealer) . . . Out The Door!

I asked Dealer about taking the car to my mechanic. He said no problem, he would have to come with. Mechanic wasn't available to look at the car until first thing this morning. Dealer said "Okay. How about this. We sign the deal tonight, I'll give you a signed (by my manager) agreement that states if your mechanic finds anything wrong, we'll either fix it or negate the deal.

My mechanic is very happy with the car and said that he was extremely impressed at the price I paid for it. He asked DD#1 (who brought the car in) if she learned anything about dealing for cars. She said "Yeah! Bring my mother with me!" ;D

So, I'm feeling very cool 8) right now. I think I impressed myself with my backbone during the deal-making process. I even got up and started to walk away once, even though I thought I really wanted that car and probably would have settled for a higher price.

Not only this thread, but e-hell in general, gave me the spine for this type of interaction. (I'm normally introvert, pretty much accepts what people tell me. :-\)

THANK YOU ALL! for holding my hand through this process.

I love e-hell! ;D

Sorry, this topic is locked. Only admins and moderators can reply.