Car Shopping Saga

by Natalie P.

January 13, 2007 | Filed Under Lifestyles of the Heartlessly Bitchy | No Comments

My car lease is up at the beginning of February. This meant “car shopping time” – something that I view as a necessary evil. Some demented people think this is a fun activity. I just find it frustrating, aggravating and kind of like repeatedly hitting yourself on the foot with a hammer: It feels so good when you stop.

Warning: For those of you not the slightest interested in buying an economy car, you may find this post like hitting yourself on the foot with a hammer. But if you are car-shopping, you may find my experiences useful.

I have to provide some background as to why I am in the market for a new car. You see, I have really bad CARma when it comes to used or off-warranty vehicles. I can guarantee you that the SECOND a car comes off warranty, some part of it will break on me and I’ll be shelling out two grand on a transmission or drive train… The most memorable time I had an off-warranty vehicle die on me, it was midnight, raining, and my kid was barfing all over the floor of the Vancouver International Airport. Then there was the time that my gas-tank decided to rust through at the same moment my transmission died, which resulted in me causing a major rush-hour snarl on a busy city street as the fire department had to be called for the hazardous waste cleanup.

Yep. My CARma sucks, so it must have a warranty, so that at the very least, I’m not stuck footing the bill to get it fixed.

I have spent the last 9 years leasing. I get a new car every three years, and that’s kind of my little treat to ME, considering they are always “economy” cars. I ignore the urging of my (male) children to “get a BMW mom!”. Yeah, Right. And you want to go to university where? Aside from the cost and impracticality, I really don’t need the speeding tickets and fines I’d get if I owned a something like a Z4. I had enough of those from my motorcycle days.

I’ve been with the same car dealer now for those 9 years. My lease always includes all my oil changes. The repair depot is open till midnight most nights. They have a loaner program if major repairs are required (like the time I got rear-ended and the car needed body work), and a shuttle if I just want to drop it off and pick it up later. The dealership is a 7 minute drive from my house. Very often, they can do simple maintenance while I wait. In short, I LIKE my dealer.

So what kind of cars have they been? Hold your laughter….. They’ve all been Ford’s.

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