Last weekend Dave and I bought a new car. In about an hour. Without any research. Or haggling with the dealer. Or fighting with each other. And remarkably, even though this car is for Dave to drive, I was permitted to pick the color, and the make, and the model. I’m not quite sure how that occurred… some talk about me making the car payments or something. I can’t be certain. Regardless, the perfect storm of circumstances which led us to this efficient purchase was almost better than the new car smell which we are all now enjoying. Here’s how it went down:
The Noise – Within the last two weeks, Dave’s car had begun making a strange noise upon starting. It wasn’t a pleasing sound, although none ever are. But this noise was a combination of a grind and a flutter as if metal pinwheel was stuck in the engine. I knew we were in trouble when Dave asked if he could drive the mini-van. Noises like that don’t go away for under $1000. The gauntlet was thrown.
The Deal – If you drive down our lane you might notice that there is a high prevalence of Subarus parked in the driveways. While it was once suggested by Jennifer on these pages that Subarus are driven by Democrats and lesbians, our neighborhood demographic does not support this notion. The real reason behind this phenomenon is the fact that our neighbor works for Subaru and is able to arrange a no haggle price for friends and family. No haggle? No question. The mere thought of not having to go through the charade of negotiations was worth the brutal elimination of any other cars to consider. In my estimate, we saved months of running around test driving and negotiating. I truly wish everyone could buy a car this way. It diluted the stress entirely.
The Test – While we knew we were getting a Subaru, we didn’t know which model. Dave thought we wanted to downsize and decrease our carbon footprint. But that would have required us to purchase an Outback which (to me) resembled a small station wagon, which (to me) was even more emasculating for Dave then driving my mini-van. Hell – a station wagon is emasculating for me. (No offense to our neighbors who are driving the Outback.) So, upon entering the show room, my eye immediately went to the Tribeca which was higher off the ground, roomier and had an optional third row of jump seats adding utility to our ride. How Dave didn’t see this too was beyond me but after whispering in his ear as we were test driving both cars, Dave was sold on my the Tribeca. And he even let me pick out the color. As long as it wasn’t white. Or blue. Or grey. We went with red. And a black interior. Leather – for her my pleasure.
The Time – When we left to visit the car dealership, we dropped Chase at a friend’s house with a promise to pick him up in 2 ½ hours. I recommend this strategy for all tasks that take as much time as you allow them to take. While we didn’t quite make the deadline, we were motivated to come close, and conducted the entire transaction, included trading in the Murano and financing, in about 3 hours total.
The Hitch – Of course there was a hitch. And I mean literally a hitch. For the last few years, Dave has wanted to buy a bike hitch for our car. The high cost of a good hitch always had me shaking my head no; it was too expensive and we can just put the bikes in the back of the mini-van. But a hitch on the back of your car around here sends a message that Dave has long wanted to send. And that message is, “I have lots of bikes.” So in return for buying this car in one day, I agreed to let Dave add the hitch to the package — so there would be no hitch. Dave can now tell everyone that he bought a hitch…. with a car attached to it.
The Future – The good news for me is that I am still driving Ye Olde Min-Van which is actually older than the car we just traded in. This means the next car purchase is mine – ALL MINE — and I’m feeling the need to balance the practicality of our recent purchase with the reckless abandon of a 43 year old woman on the verge of a mid-life crisis. I’m thinking Porsche. I’ll let Dave pick the color.