Friday, October 26, 2007

Guy Smiley, Car Salesman

For various reasons, Lisa and I have decided it’s time to trade in the tracker for a new set of wheels. Yes, my choices are all SUVs, or “CUVs” as all the cool marketers are calling them today. But don’t worry, environmentalists. I plant trees.

So far, here are the cars I’ve looked into, in no particular order, except now that I’ve written them out I see the first three start with an “E”. Don’t read anything into that:

The Ford Escape
The Honda Element
The Chevrolet Equinox
The Nissan Rogue
The Hyundai Santa Fe

Escape: this has been neatly at the top of my list ever since my-sister-who-does-not-have-a-blog got one. It’s large enough to be comfortable, but not so huge I feel like I’m soccer-momming around in the Titanic. They’re safe, they’re not too expensive, and reliable. Satellite radio is an option.

Element: has the highest cool factor. It’s ugly as sin, but I don’t care. For some reason, my body type isn’t really a huge priority for auto manufacturers. Getting into a car, for me, feels like getting into a) one of those plastic eggs that pop out of vending machines, or b) lying back on a luge sled. The Smellement, though boxy, just looks damn comfortable to me. Satellite radio is an option.

Equinox: do we really want to be that family with two of the same car? We might. It’s a great car. Satellite radio is an option.

Rogue: must... buy... rogue... product placement... so effective... “It’s a billion dollars, you say? That’s fine. I want to drive whatever the cheerleader from Heroes drives.”

Santa Fe: my brother in law has one. I like the size, I like the power, I like the comfort. Does well with two kids in the back. A bit pricier that the above options, but you definitely get what you pay for. And, of course, satellite radio is an option.

Okay, as of this morning, the Rogue is off the list, despite Nissan’s vast, multi-tiered, blitzkrieg marketing campaign. Here’s why (and I swear not a word of this is made up):

ME: (phoning a local dealer) Hi, I’d like to test drive a Rogue.
HIM: A Rogue, huh? Great car. I can’t keep them on the floor long enough, though, since their SO popular.
ME: (beat) Really. Huh. Well, what are the chances I could take a look at an SL with the Premium Package?
HIM: Oh, man, you aren’t going to believe this, but I have one rogue left on the lot, and that’s exactly what it is.
ME: Yes, I’m full of luck.
HIM: But you’d better come in as soon as you can because I have a couple coming in this afternoon to look at it. What’s your number just in case I need to reach you?

Okay, that last line was made up, but the rest actually happened. I mean, really?

But whatever. It didn’t start with an “E” anyway.


Cecilia said...

The cheerleader doesn't drive a rogue anymore was stolen, remember? What about the Honda CR-V instead of the element? It's not quite as ugly... :)

Greg said...

Mike, have you considered a Jeep patriot? Good gas mileage and they start pretty cheap.

goose said...

Garv, as you know full well, one of my passions in life is automobiles. IMHO, if you're considering the Ford Escape, look at the Ford Edge, much better vehicle, reasonably priced. Jeep Patriot and Jeep Compas, aren't bad deals, but the CVT transmission makes so much noice and vibration, I thought I was in an Earthmover. Honda CRV isn't bad, nor is the all-new Saturn VUE. Hyundai makes two nice "SUV/crossovers" and the 10 year 100,000 mile warranty is impossible to top. I only mention SUV/CUV because I took my wife shopping for one last month. Call me with any questions, etc... I did a TON of research, and would be glad to help out in any way possible.

Garvey said...

C - Yeah, but boy, the Rogue hasn't let up on marketing. It's all over the place. I haven't really looked into the CR-V, but I'll check it out.

Gr - Lisa and I did look into the Jeeps, but the family-mobiles are a bit more than we're able to spend. Man, the cool factor is through the roof, though.

Go - Thanks for the input and the offer to help! The Edge is a good time, but having ridden in both, the Escape just fit me better. The long term warranty also isn't as much of a concern since we're only looking for a 3 year lease anyway. Ford's 3/36 covers just about everything, too, so we won't have to be as anal about upkeep as you normally would on a lease.

I'll keep you all updated, though. Like when I buy my porsche. I'll let you know when that happens. Keep your eyes open.

goose said...

Most likely I'll be dead by then.

Garvey said...

Most likely. But if not, you get shotgun on the way to Wacky Land.