Well, if you've read any of my previous posts, you've probably noticed how often I gripe about how bad my car is in the snow. It was pretty much a suicide mission every time I tried to drive up to Snowbird in the snow. So, the original plan was to get snow tires and possibly snow chains as well. But the more I thought about it, it didn't make sense. Even if I had both of those, my car is so low, I would be able to get out of more than 3 inches of snow. Maybe not even that. Pathetic.
So I talked to my parents and they agreed with me. I started looking at used cars online and trying to figure out how much I could afford. (Not much, by the way.) I set the maximum at $4,000, which is hard, but not impossible, I found. After much research, I started calling around and looking more into the 4WD vehicles I was interested in. I looked at Ford Explorer, Nissan Pathfinder, Chevy Blazer, Dodge Durango, Jeep Cherokee, and many others which were in my price range. I also had to inquire at the bank to see if they would even give the money for a car. I was pre-approved. Yay!
Then came the hard, horrible part. Going to dozens of used car dealerships. Luckily my dad was willing to go with me, otherwise, I'm pretty sure I would have been screwed. We went to one dealership when I had seen an ad online for a 98 Blazer and we took it for a drive, but it was just...no good. We drove a white Durango at another place that didn't have a console in between the seats because it was a cop car and they removed it to make room for the computer and all that business. It was okay. Those were the only ones we drove out of all the crappy, scary, shady car lots all along State Street. And, by the way, for the most part, everything you hear about used car salesman is true. Seriously. *shudder* So, after about 2 1/2 hours of misery, we headed home for dinner and to warm up a bit. I had a whole list of other cars to look at, but hardly the energy nor the resolve. My dad and I decided we would look at one more that night because it looked pretty good.
The last place we went to was Smith Family Motors in Draper. I had seen an ad for a 2002 white Chevy Blazer for $3,695. Not bad, eh? I called ahead to make sure it was still there and off we went. Let me tell you, this dealership was a whole other species of dealers. It was clean, the car was clean, the salesman (named Rustyn, by the way) was super nice and helpful. He was nice even though we showed up 15 minutes before they were supposed to close. He let us take it for a drive and told us there was no need to hurry and he explained the repairs that they had done on the Blazer and why they were done. Very upfront about everything. Nothing shady, thank goodness. They specialize in Lexus and Toyota, so the Blazer was a trade-in. No biggie. Rustyn and his brother Corbin had both worked for Larry H. Miller dealerships and then they each opened their own dealerships. Years later they decided to combine the two and make it a family business. They're last name really is Smith (of Smith Family Motors). He told us the whole story while he drew up the paperwork, so obviously I decided to buy the car. It was everything I was looking for and more. I had a really good feeling about it. It's a 2002 Chevy Blazer. White with beige interior. I love it so far. I've had it all of 24 hours, though.
So, besides the blasted sales tax and dealers rip-off fee (required, I find, at even the best of dealers), I'm happy with the result.
And now to pay for it....Grr.