October 15, 2022
The Focus was getting older. 170,000 miles in seven years served us well.
Seven years ago we were seeing the demise of our Prius. It had exceeded 200,000 miles, burned through a battery pack and electrical problems were presenting. We looked for a new car.
At the Enterprise used rental car lot we were looking for low cost, low milage sedans. I was chatting with the salesman next to a white Chevy Cruze when I realized that Paula was missing. I looked around and over there I saw her sitting in a red Ford Focus. I walked over to her.
Paula said, “This one fits me well and it is about the same price as the Cruze.”
“OK,” I said. “They are very similar cars. Why do you like this one?”
“It’s red,” she said.
And that was it. We traded the Prius in on the spot and paid cash for the balance. We were the proud owners of a two year old lightly used economy car.
At nine years old, every car approaches its end of life. Little things begin to fail; harbingers of bigger things to come. We started looking for a new car.
Because we live in a rural neighborhood we wanted a four wheel/all wheel drive car. Because of high gas prices and for the sake of the environment we wanted a hybrid. Last year I rented a Toyota RAV4 in New York and drove it for 2000 miles through Delaware, Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia. I liked the ride. I like Toyota (my truck is a Tacoma).
The thing we liked most about Enterprise was the no haggle policy. There was no negotiation, the price was fair and the deal took less than two hours. CarMax claims to have the same no haggle policy.
I spent a total of about one hour on the CarMax website finding a car that Paula and I could agree on. A RAV4 hybrid 4WD with Apple CarPlay kept floating to the top of our search. It was one year old with 25K miles. It was in the CarMax lot nearest our home, so I put a hold on it.
A call to our financial advisor came with the recommendation to use CarMax financing and to obtain the best interest rate possible. I made arrangements online to test drive the car.
Paula had not driven the RAV4 in New York, so it was critical that she test drive the car for fit and handling. It fit her small stature and was easy for her to drive.
With some trepidation we entered the sales office.
“Is this the best price?” I asked.
“That is the price,” said the salesman.
After the loan application I asked, “Are these the best rates?”
“Those are the only rates we can offer.”
“Is there someone else here that can give us a better deal?” I asked, glancing over the the sales manager’s office.
“We don’t do that here,” smiled the salesman.
I looked Paula in the eyes, she nodded and we bought the car.
The whole experience, including the test drive was less than 3 hours.
Our new car is just what we need.
“Technically Human” by Ricki T Thues, the iMentor, is now available on Amazon.
It is a compilation of selected episodes from this bLog which tell the story of Humanity through the eyes of the iMentor.
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