Saturday, February 07, 2009

Jump In! Vamanos!

We bought an Explorer today.

It was a long day of car shopping. Well, maybe 5 whole hours. Maybe 6. But since I kind of hate car shopping, that was long for me.

It started this morning with PH looking on Craigslist for 4x4s, as he has done for the last several weeks. Today we saw some in our price range that were listed by dealers. Since we didn't have enough cash for the full price, a dealer sounded ok to us since we could finance.

We drove some distance, a couple towns over, to where the used cars are. We looked at a couple of used car lots on our way to the dealer, but didn't find anything acceptable. At the dealer, we had to brace ourselves. The sales tactics were high pressure and desperate. The car that we came to see would not start. And they tried their darndest to sell it to us anyway! We test drove a lot of used 4x4s, but the prices were all too high. I was so tired of the situation already, that when they offered us an '02 Blazer that was just below our price ceiling, I said fine, we'll take it, even though PH was sure we could get a better deal if we just kept looking. Luckily, the high pressure sales tactics and their refusal to give a straight answer to any question I had soon annoyed me enough that I was happy to walk away with nothing.

On our way to another dealer, we stopped at another one of those tiny used car lots. I need to give these guys more credit. They didn't roll their eyes when PH told them our ideal spending budget. Just walked us over to this '98 Explorer that was the exact price. We test drove it. PH said it was exactly what he had in mind. They didn't give us a hard time when he said he wanted to continue on to the dealer just to check.

He spent only 15 minutes at the next dealer (I refused to go in and see any more salespeople) before coming out and saying it was all garbage. He called a couple friends who know cars and described the Explorer and the price, and they agreed we should get it. We went back to the little place and told them we'd take the Explorer. We even test drove it again. The whole thing took about 30 minutes.

We're going to pick it up on Tuesday. They are replacing a door handle for us. Then I'll have pictures. It is red. "Red" and "Ford Explorer" are not things that would normally be on my car shopping list, but this one seems to be a good fit for us and our needs. Well, I do wish it wasn't red.

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