New Ride.

We’ve been talking about buying a new car for a couple of weeks. On Friday we decided we’d go look at cars, just look mind you, on Saturday. After considering several crossover SUVs we had narrowed our choices down to two: the 2024 VW Tiguan and the 2023 Nissan Rogue. The closest VW and Nissan dealers are not far from our home.

We had been talking about purchasing an electric vehicle. However, with the number of road trips that we do on a fairly regular basis, and the lack of electric charging station infrastructure in the desert southwest, we decided we weren’t ready to make the leap to an EV. We did consider the MPG on the models we were looking at. Our 2016 Jeep Cherokee averages around 25 MPH on the highway and we definitely wanted something better than that.

Our first stop was the Volkswagen dealership. A friendly chap came out and showed us what they had in stock for both the 2023 and 2024 Tiguans. I was a bit disappointed when I saw the cars in person. They didn’t quite hit home for what I was looking for; the seats were smaller than anticipated, the infotainment screen seemed small, and it just didn’t feel right. Earl didn’t care for the model at all. We made nice talk and departed the lot.

Our next stop was the Nissan dealer. They had a decent selection of the Rogues in various trim levels. We were aiming for the middle of the road with the SV line. The young man showing us the vehicles was fairly low pressure, to the extent that he never offered to unlock a car for us to sit in. We talked numbers a bit and while he was “talking to the boss”, a sales manager came over and asked what number we were looking for. He said his job was to convince us to sign today. We gave him a number, he said “why not” and then disappeared. He never came back. The original man gave us their best number. We said we’d think about it.

One of the reasons we were focusing on the 2023 Nissan Rogue was because we had recently rented one when the Jeep Cherokee was up in Las Vegas with Jamie. We really liked the way the rental drove, the interior, the exterior, and the comfort level we experienced in this car.

I suggested we drive over to the Tucson Auto Mall on the other side of town. There’s a dealership for just about every brand over there, including Nissan. Earl had chatted with a salesperson there online the day before, and we asked for her when we arrived.

This was another low pressure experience. We went through the inventory and sat in a few of the cars. We were settled on one of two colors: “Scarlet Ember Timbercoat” or “Gun Metallic”. Earl’s request was no black, no white, or no silver, as these colors are far old people and we’ve been driving a black 2016 Jeep Cherokee for seven years and before that we had two black Jeep Wranglers (2004 and 2011) and a black Acura RSX (2005). We were leaning toward the Scarlet model, which was out on a test drive with another customer.

They didn’t buy it.

After some financial discussions with our sales person and other nice talk, we decided to buy the car on a day we were out to only look for cars.

One of our tactics for the day was we didn’t bring a downpayment, in fact, we wouldn’t have access to the funds until Monday. The sales person told us if we could a fraction of the downpayment down we could drive the car off the lot that day and then bring the rest of the downpayment within the next 10 days. I suggested putting the rest of the downpayment on the credit card so we could get the airline miles for a trip next year and we were surprised when that strategy was approved by our credit card company. The money comes out of the back on Monday and we will pay off the credit card immediately.

I am married to a very smart man.

So, with Earl following along in our 2016 Jeep Cherokee, I drove our brand new 2023 Nissan Rogue SV home. We’ve decided to keep the Cherokee for as long as practical, because we are always needing a third car for the five of us. Plus, because of the mileage, even though the car is in great shape cosmetically, it’s needing some care here and there and the trade in value isn’t what we could get for it on the street. This Cherokee was purchased in Upstate New York, and has had plates from New York, Illinois, and now Arizona on it. It’s been across the country several times. It deserves to stay with us for as long as practical.

So we are now part of the Nissan family. The technology in this vehicle is amazing, with adaptive cruise control, assisted lane management, and a bunch of other sonar and radar features that I’m just starting to discover.

This is our holiday present to us. I’m looking forward to the new adventures.