This blog is going to document the process of a technical adult moving in with another technical adult (my boyfriend) and living together as grown ups. It will mostly be a running log of our consistent surprise at the rest of the world not quite meeting expectations.

Friday, June 10, 2011

I'm Not As Dumb As You Look

I went back to the dealership I bought my car from yesterday to see if I could manage an upgrade to a better car without being slapped with a higher monthly payment. I had done a wide-spread survey before making the trip. It was about 50/50; half of everyone I spoke too was adamant the dealership would be able to finagle a deal and get me a monthly payment less than what I pay now, and the other half of the people I questioned reluctantly told me that probably wasn't going to happen.

I don't know jack about cars. I wasn't going to pretend to, nor was I going to cram a study session in before Thursday when my singular goal was "better car, smaller bill." Slick (as we shall now call him) understood this, and took advantage of my supposed ignorance to give me a few "key facts," many of which I highly doubt the validity of. Things like:

  • a "car build" and a "truck build" are different; four wheel drive is not so important in a vehicle with a "car build"
  • front wheel drive SUVs handle better than front wheel drive cars
  • there are absolutely no penalties to lease holders who get into accidents; you simply return the car and go on your way
  • all cars get stuck in the snow
He was really pushing for me to lease the Hyundai Tucson (I came in with a Hyundai Elantra), stressing that that was how I was going to get a lower monthly payment. It doesn't change the fact that I am leasing. He went so far as to jeer at people who finance cars:

"I know some people say 'Ooooh, but I wanna finnnnance, so I ooooown it,'" and then he hugged his chest, mimicking the insecure emotional folk who understand the value of keeping what you pay for.

When I told him that "after six years, you're done making payments, though, and the car is good for a good while after that," he responded:

"No, you pay for a car for its maintenance."

I'm not really sure how Slick does his math, but cars don't really cost hundreds of dollars a month in maintenance. Boyfriend's car is eight years years old and going, and he's put maybe $2000 in "major" maintenance into it since he paid it off. Which is actually more bad luck than anything.

$2000/3 (years paid off) = appx $55/month in maintenance.
Leasing a Tucson would be at least $250/month.

Did he think I just couldn't do the math?

So then he lets it slip that he has no 4 wheel drive Tucsons left on the lot, which explains why he's pushing the front wheel drive one directly in front of us with arguments like "it handles better than your car, even if they are both front wheel drive."

Me: "Right, but if the front tires are stuck in the snow, be it my car, or a front wheel drive Tucson, I'm stuck in the damned snow."
Him: "...No..." And he smiled. He was smiling a lot. I am still not sure why.
Me: "No?"
Him: "No, because an SUV handles differently than a car. It will handle differently in the snow."
That was his only answer. I stress that going from a front wheel drive to another front wheel drive sounds pointless; I wanted an ALL WHEEL DRIVE CAR because they do, by default, handle better in rough weather.

I tell him I really want a 4 wheel drive car, and that I honestly love the Honda CR-V and the Toyota Rav-4 and lo and behold! he has two on the lot. They're used.

Me: "Why would I trade in my 3 year old car for an 8 year old one?"
Him: "But you said you want lower payments."
Me: "Yeah.......for a better car."

Uhm, bwuh? He didn't want to tell me no. I get it. It's their job to not turn me down outright.

Then Slick delivers this little gem:

"Look, in bad weather we stay home. All cars get stuck in the snow. Last winter we had trouble driving ALL these cars around."

To which I responded:

"Oh, well, if all cars get stuck in the snow, and I can't get a lower payment, I might as well stay with the car I can afford now and get stuck."

He smiled again, and at this point I realized he was smiling whenever I made him look like an idiot by not being an idiot myself.

Why do car salesmen think they're so damned smart? They're just following a formula, same as everyone else on this planet. I don't know why I am so surprised at Slick being a little thick headed; my ex was a car salesman (a bad one) briefly. It doesn't take a diabolical genius.

Needless to say, I didn't come away with a car. Every time I threw his own arguments back at him, twisted and reshaped to argue for my point, he would smile, and I'd think about how douchey his mohawk looked.

Adulthood Points For Me: 2
For Slick: 0

1 comment:

  1. Newly Domesticated in OzJune 10, 2011 at 6:57 PM

    What the sh*t?! I like how you commpletely outmaneuvered Slick.
    "All cars get stuck in the snow." Really? Well you're not doing that great of a job selling your product then are you?