I desperately need a car. I went with my dad to test drive cars today.
I test-drove a used Honda Civic at a Nissan Dealership, and as I was pulling in and trying to park, I scraped it against the curb. Oops! I backed up, then scraped it again. My bad. The salesman got out immediately and examined the car. Luckily, there were no visible marks!
Next, we test drove a Scion tC. I like that car because if you look at it from the side and you squint real hard, it almost looks like a BMW. But…I decided, if I am going to pay $22K, I’d rather get a Mini Cooper.
I had test-driven a Mini with my sister last week. Also, it just so happens that Rosemary, my co-blogger at Smitten and author of Ro Ro Ro Your Blog, just got a Mini. She named her car, “Winnie.” How cute is that??
My dad even likes Minis. When he was a kid, his BFF’s dad owned an original Austin Mini Cooper. He said the man was some kind of heir and could have had a Bentley, but instead he loved that Mini and would always drive the boys to the beach or yacht club in it. It’s a car to love. So he was interested in me buying one, too, and getting the stripes on the bonnet.
Poor, Peter the Mini salesman. He spent forever with us.
I wish I could drive stick-shift, because that would be cheaper. The only extras I wanted to pay for were a cute color, bonnet stripes, blue tooth/iPod, and automatic transmission.
Of course they didn’t have a single basic model. This dealership only stocked the ones with the turbo engines, premium packages, and awesome stereos. I wondered if all dealers were this lame. “They don’t even make plain, standard cars without the options!” I complained. “Yes, they do,” my dad insisted. “Or they wouldn’t be called ‘options.’”
I fell in love with a souped-up 2011 blue one. But I was hesitant because it had so many pricey extras, that it was ultimately not what I wanted. Peter got us to come inside. I put on my poker face.
We sat down with him. It was $28,700. To me, if I have to pay 28 Gs, I’d rather get a 1-series BMW. We went back and forth with Peter. He kept going to see his manager. He asked us what we were willing to do, what would make us happy. We said $22. The guy said if he could come close, could he shake our hands? My dad was like, “Well, you could shake our hands goodbye.” OMG. Parents are so embarrassing. In fact, the whole thing—talking about money—was so excruciating and uncomfortable for me. But why do I feel bad? It’s my money. Still! I feel so bad.
Finally he came down to $24,700, which is good for that particular car, but still too much to me. Moreover, I didn’t ask for a Harmon Kardon sound system, or a sunroof for that matter, as much as I would like them. I was being browbeaten (albeit very nicely!) into buying something I was never looking for. So we walked.
Now I’m back at square one. I’m going to get a used Mini. And I won’t care what color it is. You get too tempted when you’re looking at new cars. The smell is intoxicating. And the thought of customization—you start to taste the power. But I mean, with a new Mini, you have to pay $500 just to get black or blue. Okay, that, I would pay, but I mean, this dude in SoCal tried to sell me a “cold-weather package.” What the eff is that? Heated seats? If you park a car outside, the seats automatically heat up, even in the dead of winter. That’s my cold-weather package.