April 12, 2017

Shopping for a new car without the ability to perceive new car smell.

It's very dull!

I left feeling cured of the interest in buying a new car. Who cares? What's the point!

110 comments:

David said...

The point is that they get safer every year. I'm driving a 2006. It's adequate. But each new safety improvement makes it harder to resist a new one.

Hagar said...

You scare me.

poker1one said...

New cars are for suckers. New to you is the way to go. I'd suggest a pre-computerized truck, maybe a '70 Ford F-100. Smart to get rid of the TT before the Audi Self-Destruct program kicks in.

MadisonMan said...

Why buy a new car that loses value the moment it's yours?

When our last car was totaled (sob) by some Epic Kid who ignored a Stop Sign, we replaced our 2004 with the 2012 version, but this was in 2016. It's been a great car so far.

I'm with a rental right now, a brand new Ford Focus. Cherry Red. When I threw my briefcase in this morning, it hit a switch that turned on the flashers. I had to consult the web to find the switch to shut them off. I'm not yet the age when I drive 45 on the Interstate with my flashers on while I peer through the steering wheel.

The seat in this Ford doesn't fit me right. Result: Hip aches.

Good luck searching. Get something you can step up into, rather than slide down into.

tcrosse said...

Maybe you need a Smelling-Nose Dog to help you navigate the world of odors.

Bob Boyd said...

Get a diesel.
Even if you can't smell the smell, you can see the smell.

Ron said...

I'll tell you what....you get me a new car and I'll smell it for you. "Designated Sniffer"

Hagar said...

If you like your TT and there is nothing wrong with it, keep it, and get Meade a can of "New Car Smell."

Bob Ellison said...

Wait for a bleebity-bleeble car like George Jetson flew.

sinz52 said...

Maybe the Government should add anosmia (loss of sense of smell) to the list of disabilities under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Then Althouse will be able to park in a handicapped parking space.

dreams said...

I'd buy a new car but then I'd have to pay a sales tax and my property tax on my new car would be a lot more every year, plus extra insurance cost and I already owned a Honda Civic which last forever or at least will as long as I'm likely to live.

Laslo Spatula said...

Once you transport your first dead hooker in the trunk the New Car Smell goes away.

I am Laslo.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Get a used car. You should be able to get a good deal on a car formerly owned by a smoker. The smell never goes away, so they sell at a good discount to other used cars. And what do you care if it smells of cigarette smoke?

Ron Winkleheimer said...

I too am in the never buy a new car camp. Let some sucker take the depreciation. Get one three or four years old without too many miles.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Get a used car. You should be able to get a good deal on a car formerly owned by someone who transported dead hookers. The smell never goes away, so they sell at a good discount to other used cars. And what do you care if it smells of dead hooker?

Ann Althouse said...

"The point is that they get safer every year. I'm driving a 2006. It's adequate. But each new safety improvement makes it harder to resist a new one."

I thought about that, but it made me feel that all the technology built into the dashboard is going to make the thing feel obsolete in a couple years. I have an iPhone. Why do I want iPhone type stuff built into the car? All those controls on the wheel... bleh... I want a car not a device.

As for beeping when you drift out of your lane and that sort of crap... I already know how to drive a car, and I do it by paying attention. I'll wait until they market the cars that actually drive themselves. Why do I want to be encouraged to pay less attention?

Is there some other "safety improvement" you think I am missing? We have a 2005 Audi TT and a 2010 Honda CRV. Both work fine, have low mileage, and serve different purposes. We'd considered trading the 2 cars in and getting one car. The trade-in value of the 2 cars is about half the price of the new car. I can't see why 1 new car is worth twice as much as the 2 old cars. The 2 old cars seem BETTER than one new car.

I felt especially hard-core about this in the showrooms — we went to 3 yesterday — and it wasn't that I was more rational and not emotional. Emotionally, the place felt dreary and dull. I think the olfactory component of the showroom experience is a lot more important than you may want to admit.

Ann Althouse said...

"If you like your TT and there is nothing wrong with it, keep it, and get Meade a can of "New Car Smell.""

Meade claims not to like new car smell, the reason being that he knows what it is, materials off-gasing.

TreeJoe said...

Wow, why eat gourmet food if you can't smell/taste it?

I'm a car guy, so let's get that out of the way. I recently bought with my wife a 2017 Subaru Outback. Why buy new? The most current generation has the design, features, safety, and low maintenance I wanted. I could have bought a 2015 model which was the first year of the new generation, but they have such great resale value I'd be buying something only depreciated about 25% - and taking an interest bearing loan - vs. buying new with 0% financing and getting 10% off MSRP.

It actually DID NOT make that much sense for me to buy a 2015 Outback vs. a 2017, from a financial point of view.

Nyamujal said...

Go for a Subaru. You can't go wrong with a Subaru.

Tim Windsor said...

I've had anosmia for about 3-4 years now. Realized last week that it's getting hard to conjure up smell memories. For instance, I get, intellectually, what that new-car smell is, but as I type this trying to wade into an olfactory memory of it, there's nothing.

Most days, it's no big deal (and, such as when cleaning up after the dogs, it's a feature), but there's no doubt that it diminishes how I experience the world.

Fernandinande said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Original Mike said...

"I want a car not a device."

Yep. We need a new car and I'm really dreading shopping for one. Our biggest problem will be we want a manual.

And it will be a new car. Our current car is 19 years old. What the hell do I care about depreciation? It just a number of no consequence.

Fernandinande said...

Nyamujal said...
Go for a Subaru. You can't go wrong with a Subaru.


Sometimes there's too much love in the fuel line and they won't start.

tcrosse said...
Maybe you need a Smelling-Nose Dog to help you navigate the world of odors.


Some LSD induced synesthesia would allow an anosmiac to be unable to smell the color of the dog.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

TreeJoe said...

I recently bought with my wife a 2017 Subaru Outback.

I tried this, but they wouldn't accept her as payment. Said she had too many miles on her.

exiledonmainstreet said...

Ron Winkleheimer said...
I too am in the never buy a new car camp. Let some sucker take the depreciation. Get one three or four years old without too many miles.

4/12/17, 8:19 AM

That's what I do too. Fortunately, there are guys in my family who really know cars and have always given me good advice. I'm driving a 2011 Maxima and am quite happy with it. But then, I've never been a car person. It's reliable, gets decent gas mileage and isn't rusted - that's all I care about.

JHapp said...

New car smell makes me sick. In the past I have bought a new car with the condition that they keep it indoors for two weeks with the windows partly open.

tcrosse said...

Go for a Subaru. You can't go wrong with a Subaru
In some parts of the country a Subaru marks you as a Lesbian, not that there's anything wrong with that.

Hagar said...

Good for you ma'am. Keep paying attention to your driving and you will be all right.

MadisonMan said...

Go for a Subaru. You can't go wrong with a Subaru.

Facebook acquaintance would disagree. Has a 2017 that keeps dying in the middle of nowhere. Then it gets towed to the Dealer's Computer for Diagnostics. "We can detect nothing wrong"

I inherited a Subaru once. It was a real lemon. Sold it to someone who had the same view you did. Was it my fault they didn't have a dealer check it out first? I answered all questions the buyer asked honestly and to the best of my ability.

Tommy Duncan said...

Not all people with a reduced sense of smell develop Parkinson’s, but many people with Parkinson’s do have a reduced sense of smell. The current theory (so-called Braak's hypothesis) is that the earliest signs of Parkinson's are found in various parts of the nervous system and brain, in particular the olfactory bulb, which controls your sense of smell. Under this theory, Parkinson's progresses to the portions of the brain that control motor symptoms later on, so loss of sense of smell can be an early clue for the development of PD.

Original Mike said...

Interesting. I was thinking of a Subaru, though my wife doesn't want one.

rhhardin said...

I keep the car as long as possible and a little longer if I have no need to transport the dog to the vet.

A new car is a nice replacement rather than used because there's no information imbalance about what's wrong with it. They bear the risk of defects, so the car is likely to work when you need it.

That money is for hassle free.

I shop online, don't even test drive it.

Tommy Duncan said...

Go for a Subaru. You can't go wrong with a Subaru.

I have a 2011 Subaru Forester. It has burned a quart of oil every 1500 miles since it was brand new. The dash creaks and buzzes and the brakes grind and squeal. The dealership was useless in addressing the issues. I doubt I will ever buy another Subaru.

I just purchased a Toyota RAV4 to replace it. Much better experience so far.

TosaGuy said...

We looked at a Subaru last weekend and haggled with a couple of dealers. They would not budge off of their price so we will wait until they close out the old model year.

I would love it if Amazon are the car company could sell new cars direct. Dealerships are an outdated concept that only exists because of some stupid law that protects them under the guise of "protecting" us.

In the meantime, we just put a car payment in the bank until we finally buy something.

TosaGuy said...

EDIT: I would love it if Amazon or the car company could sell new cars direct. Dealerships are an outdated concept that only exist because of some stupid law that protects them under the guise of "protecting" us.

tim in vermont said...

Bluetooth is a good enough reason to buy a new car.

3rdGradePB_GoodPerson said...

"Was it my fault they didn't have a dealer check it out first? I answered all questions the buyer asked honestly and to the best of my ability."

The deception by omission is your fault, their not bring it to a dealer is not your fault.

I go out of my way to make sure a counterparty knows all the potential issues re a transaction. Of course I'll also eagerly promote the positive aspects.

IMHO, this extreme honesty is rewarded w/ doing quite well, both long and short term.

But, other folks' mileage may vary.

mockturtle said...

When I think 'Subaru', all I can think of is the nauseating commercials. No, thanks.

My only vehicle is my Tiger TX motorhome which is build on a one-ton Chevy Silverado chassis. Great truck! Had to order it new, as I couldn't find a used one. Scarce as [ready for it?] hens' teeth. But I buy used when I can.

I am also developing anosmia--possibly from years of nasal steriods for allergies. And even though I can no longer smell the flowers, the pollens continue to assault.

3rdGradePB_GoodPerson said...

"I would love it if Amazon or the car company could sell new cars direct."

Buying through Costco is going to result in a better price than 95% of the population can achieve on their own.

This only brings a very good price to the deal. If you need to trade-in or use financing, there's still plenty of opportunity for the dealer to FU.

Ann Althouse said...

"Wow, why eat gourmet food if you can't smell/taste it?"

What "gourmet food" are you talking about?

The challenge is to find the most enjoyable foods under the circumstances. Think about it as analogous to a person with color-blindness going to an art museum. He'd get less overall value, but he'd get some value, and he'd make different choices about what to look at.

With little/no sense of smell, you care about what you can taste and you care about the temperature and texture. Therefore, if Meade and I were having a steak dinner, he might want some cut like ribeye when I'd should pick the filet mignon. The textural annoyances of the more flavorful steaks are really apparent to me, but worth it or not even noticed for him. I also care intensely that the steak is really hot when gets to me and I enjoy a dark crust. Some gentle cooking style that only mildly darkens the outside and merely warms the meat would be all wrong for me.

Joe Dirt said...

2007 Subaru Outlook owner, on my third engine. Dammit, I love the car, but I hate the motor! I have a cubicle dweller near me that had a 2014 Impreza on the second engine because it ate oil like it was candy.

Do not get a new Subaru unless you also get a triple extended warranty

3rdGradePB_GoodPerson said...

"What "gourmet food" are you talking about?"

The Golden Arches stops re the trip to Arches?

MadisonMan said...

The deception by omission is your fault

In my defense, I did alert him to the funkiness. (It was an Engine Light that kept coming on -- the dealer told me why it was happening, which I relayed, and which turned out to be incorrect). So I told him all that I knew. I didn't engage in speculation. That was the omission. Not very deceptive in my opinion.

Re: Steak dinners: I agree with althouse that a big component of the enjoyment is the texture of the meat in your mouth. Hmm. That's sentence came out a little too laslo-ian.

bagoh20 said...

I've had plenty of cars. I want a neat new device filled experience. Actually driving your car as fun is so regulated, and fraught with danger from ticketing and liability that it's virtually prohibited. For fun you need to go motorcycle, hang glider, or cannon launching. All you can really do behind the wheel is sit there holding it and moving at half the car's design limit. I need a bunch of comfort, connectivity, and entertainment, just to stay awake. They need to be self-driving becuase it's become a monotonous dull activity. That's what lawyers do to everything. The only risk in anything anymore are lawsuits and jail, which are not fun kinds of risk.

Ann Althouse said...

If "gourmet food" means restaurants, then I'm very picky about what I'm getting. Often the food in these places is complicated by things I can't even detect and not enough attention is given to the #1 thing I care about: Hot food must be served really hot. And by "hot" I mean temperature, not spices. Spicy food is a big problem for me because good spicy food has a lot of components that don't work on me and I can be left with something that is spicy-hot mostly in the sense of feeling the burn, which isn't pretty. Also these foods can seem terribly over salted, because they are salted to make the salt taste come through to someone who's having a lot of other sense impressions. What I would like is a "gourmet food" place that would specialize in food for people with a smell impairment. There's SO much you could do if you thought about it. I talked to the server at an expensive Madison restaurant where I had bought the "tasting menu" dinner and was asked how I liked it. I probably should have just said it was fine, but I volunteered that it's a problem for me because there are so many things that don't work and I wished they could do something much more reliant on texture and temperature. I was advised to tell them in advance so they could cater to me, but I haven't taken up the offer. I don't want that kind of attention. I'm just saying I'd like a place that would offer something for people like me. I'll bet there are as many people who have this condition as have gluten intolerance. We are a market. But we're a market of unusually picky, annoying, and old people. Why arrange things around us?

The best restaurants for me are ones with great deep fried things. Can't do that well at home, and the texture and heat are great.

bagoh20 said...

Do they make a new car smell cologne? Wouldn't it work on both sexes making you incredibly popular?

dhagood said...

@ignoranceisbliss at 8:41: well played sir

rehajm said...

One benefit to buying new: not like driving around in a Moroccan prison (scroll to 2:55).

exiledonmainstreet said...

Ann, I'm curious as to whether your anosmia has made certain foods you once liked unbearable to you because of their texture. I have a friend who has her sense of taste, but she's very sensitive to texture - can't stand bananas, or rice pudding, or any sort of shellfish because of their texture. Anything mushy or slimy repels her. I like bananas and shellfish and rice pudding but I can understand how someone judging mainly by texture would find those foods disgusting.

Meade said...

I like to drive and I'm an excellent and safe driver. I never drive impaired nor distracted. I've never been in an accident while, over the nearly 50 years, I've avoided dozens. When I go fast, I like to go very fast. When it's time to go slow, I go slower than most other drivers go.

Maybe Volkswagen will build me what I want 5 years from now when the Honda gives up the ghost and the Audi becomes a full time lawn ornament. What I want them to build is an Allroad wagon with a Golf R motor in it. That shouldn't be asking too much.

3rdGradePB_GoodPerson said...

Re fancy food, Althouse is so downhome that she thought it was jabber-worthy to blog re The Burn going to some supposedly aristocratic Madison restaurant. Year 'round she's a gal of the peeps.

bagoh20 said...

Meade, once a powerful and widely feared man due to his perfection of the dutch oven was brought down by a single woman with simple human deficiency.

Michael said...

Meade

The VW TDI is awesome. Should be able to buy cheaply given the diesel fudging. Very quick. Comfortable. I am on my third with zero trouble.

3rdGradePB_GoodPerson said...

Meade,

The hybrid Touareg was a bigger version of sorta-that, (I had one, but it had lots of mechanical issues, now I have a diesel one, but only drive it when I'm where I keep it, which is infrequent.)

I have a friend w/ a Turbo S Cayenne. It does seem to defy physics, but I refuse to roll a phony Porsche, i.e. one w/ more than two doors. Meadehouse could at least give one a look, I'm sure the normal Turbo is also fast, but would be better on the budget.

boycat said...

Why buy a new car that loses value the moment it's yours?

Why buy a car that had so many problems its previous owner got rid of it?

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

I love new cars, with or without the smell. I know its not the best move financially but I prefer to buy new and keep them for at least 12 years. Currently, I'm waiting for the new Volvo XXC60 due out this summer. If it lives up to everything I've read, it will replace my aging Honda.

Original Mike said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Wilbur said...

I use an auto broker to lease a car every three years. I tell her what I want, she shops around, gets me the best deal, the dealer brings the car to my house and they haul away the old one.

My shadow has not darkened the door of a car dealer in 15 years. I have better things to do with my weekends than haggle with liars.

Original Mike said...

Wife and I have had 3 VWs over our lives. Like them. Want to look at the new Alltrack. They have a manual!

Meade said...

Oh, and like Original Mike, I want manual trans. Yes I realize it's less fuel efficient. But 25 MPG is plenty. After all, I drive purely for fun -- not to get from point A to point B.

Meade said...

(Correction: Alltrack not Allroad.)

Ron Winkleheimer said...

Why buy a car that had so many problems its previous owner got rid of it?

Because that's probably not why they got rid of it. Some people want to have a new car and don't mind having a car payment. So they trade in after a couple of years. The quality of cars these days is really high, so a car with 30 or 40 or even 50 thousand miles still has years of service in it, especially if you are diligent about maintenance.

I'm with The Professor about all the gadgets.

Original Mike said...

I want a car that requires a phone to roll down the windows. {/sarc}

Darcy said...

As part of an auto broker team, Wilbur, I thank you! I was a fan of this type of transaction from well before I literally married into the business.

Darcy said...

@Original Mike

Remember actually "rolling" down the windows? (I'm just guessing that you do) How did we manage?!

Big Mike said...

I never bought into the razzmatazz of car buying. You, Professor, are supposedly a person of logic so address your situation logically. There are four alternatives: (1) keep both cars for the rare occasion when you need two cars (but with both of you retired that will be very rare, indeed, and even less so in an urban environment with taxis and -- do the lefty kooks of Madison allow Uber? -- maybe other options); (2) keep the TT and sell the Honda; (3) sell the TT and keep the Honda; and (4) sell both and buy a different car. Option (4) has two parts: buy new or buy used. You can weigh the financial implications of all four (five) options and make a sound financial choice. You can temper the choice with input from Consumer Reports and car magazines like Motor Trend and Road & Track, looking at stopping distance, measurements of leg room and head room, and mpg as measured by the magazine. New car smell? Meade is right -- it's just the plastic components outgassing.

Fernandinande said...

I like cars that let you turn off the ignition while you're moving so you can fill the exhaust system with gas fumes and make a nifty explosion when you turn the ignition back on.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Bluetooth is a good enough reason to buy a new car.

You can add Bluetooth capability to any car. That isn't a good reason.

We are going to add it into my 1972 K5 Blazer next summer (2018) when we upgrade the sound system.

If I want to drive a 'brand new car' with all the bells and whistles, I rent one. We rent cars when we take trips to visit family, generally a 7 to 8 hour drive. Why not? Put those miles, wear and tear on the rental car instead of mine.

The last one we rented was a 2017 Mustang. Really nice car which I realized I would never want to own after driving it for 700 miles :-)

Paco Wové said...

As a co-worker recently said, "I don't want a new car. I want my old car, but new."

Modern cars are ugly vision-impairing gadget-filled tubs.

Big Mike said...

@Meade, how often do you and the missus have to carry passengers in the back seat? If the answer is "absolutely never" then consider a Mustang V6 stick. 300 horsepower ought to be enough even for you.

Bob Boyd said...

Meade said..."I've never been in an accident"
Knock on wood.

Maybe that's why everyone here where I live thinks Wisconsin drivers are terrible, because they're driving safely and we just never see that. We're all like, "What the hell is this a-hole doing? What's wrong with this guy?" Hooonk!

Original Mike said...

@Darcy - Of course! In fact when I bought my current car I tried to avoid motorized windows (just something else to break) but I wasn't able to. The car's going on 19 years so I guess that worked out.

When I bought the car before that (only kept that one 13 years) I ordered one without air conditioning. Bought a solo canoe with the money I saved. Car's gone but I'm still paddling the canoe.

Bob Boyd said...

@ Dust Bunny Queen

You have a '72 K5 Blazer? I am so jealous! A total classic.

tim in vermont said...

You actually can't add Bluetooth to any car, as I have learned. Besides, it's better integrated into the heads up and the steering wheel controls.

Darcy said...

I mostly hate air conditioning in cars. Only on the most humid of days would I use it in Michigan. Here in Colorado, we don't have a humidity problem, so it is windows down, Original Mike!

On a different note, I don't know why anyone would buy a Mustang over a Camaro. Drive and compare. I know people are very brand loyal, but the Mustang is not what it used to be, IMO. Chevy and even Dodge make better muscle cars. But buy the Chevy.

Meade said...

Felicitations and best wishes for a lifetime of love and happiness, Darcy!

Meade said...

Bob Boyd said...
Meade said..."I've never been in an accident"
Knock on wood.
-----------

Yes, but not while driving. 2 hands on the wheel, bro.

urbane legend said...

TreeJoe said...

I'm a car guy, so let's get that out of the way. I recently bought with my wife a 2017 Subaru Outback.

Nope, sorry, you aren't, on the evidence :-). Car guys buy performance cars or cars that give the image of performance. Car guys are into technical, the mechanical side of the vehicle, not the electronics. The image of Subarus is longevity and reliability, which marks you as sensible adult. There are much worse things.

Bob Boyd said...

"2 hands on the wheel, bro."

Unless you're shifting that manual...or commenting.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

@ Bob Boyd

Yup. Flo...as in Cash Flo The repainting will be the last thing to do. We just reupholstered the seats and put on new flo master exhausts. Still working on the final touches on the interior and adding a good sound system to blast out those oldies songs :-)

I love driving this beast!

Original Mike said...

I find driving an automatic transmission car almost as hard as driving on the left side of the road in city traffic. A lifetime of manuals has me constantly reaching for the shifter and pushing in the clutch. Especially bad when stopping. I push in the clutch that's not there and then there's a moment of confusion; a feeling I fear is a peek into my dementia-addled future.

Meade said...

"Unless you're shifting that manual...or commenting."

Ha! Reminds me of the old Monkey and the Car Accident joke.

JW Moore said...

Cars are so much better made today, there's absolutely no reason to buy a new one. You can get a canister of new-car smell at Pep Boys for about 8 bucks, which is about 0.01% of what it costs to drive a new car off the lot.

Original Mike said...

What amazes me about modern cars is how well they start in cold weather. Staring a car in sub-zero weather used to be a skill you had to learn. Now you just push in the clutch and turn the key.

rehajm said...

I want manual trans.

Now that automatics shift into 3rd while still in 2nd there will be fewer and fewer sports models with them. I'd suggest organizing a captive breeding program before they're all extinct...

The closest thing to Meade's dream ride is probably something like the Skoda Suberb Estate 2.0 TSI 280 4x4. (You didn't happen to mention where you wanted to drive, though)...

Bob Boyd said...

I love Flo! She's beautiful!
That was the last year the whole top came off. After that it was just the back half, hardly worth doing since the driver was still under the roof. Do you ever take the top off?

Meade said...

@Big Mike, I like your thinking and I like the new Mustang. But the Alltrack is 300 lbs lighter. And the Golf R is 400 lbs lighter.

Muscle weighs more than fat, as they say.

Bob Boyd said...

"Ha! Reminds me of the old Monkey and the Car Accident joke."

I haven't heard that one.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Meade said...Oh, and like Original Mike, I want manual trans. Yes I realize it's less fuel efficient. But 25 MPG is plenty. After all, I drive purely for fun -- not to get from point A to point B.

Good luck finding a real manual transmission--it's getting tougher. The nicer "sports" cars have paddle shifters now, and I guess theoretically if you get up into the 400+ HP range that'd be a better option (you could burn a clutch out quick with just a little pedal slowness and a huge motor) with a automatic dual clutch setup and/or one of those fancy DSG deals.
I bought a car this weekend. New to me, but it's a 2009 (pretty low miles). First non-Jeep Wrangler I've ever owned and it's definitely an adjustment. First automatic transmission, too. Suddenly I have to care about speedbumps and curbs like some sort of commoner. I haven't figured out all the buttons yet, and it is a bit weird to lower the windows with a finger push instead of a hand crank.
Do kids today get the "roll down your window" mime, the hand cranking motion?

Meade said...

"Skoda Suberb Estate 2.0 TSI 280 4x4."

I like. Thanks.

Original Mike said...

"Skoda Suberb Estate 2.0 TSI 280 4x4.

I like. Thanks."


Ahh, Meade.... It's got a right-side steering wheel.

Meade said...

Oh. Oh well, I'll keep it in mind for when we move to Mozambique.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

@ Bob

Thanks. We think she is beautiful too...for a big girl.

I've been agitating (nagging) my husband to remove the top for the summer. However he doesn't want to because once off it may not seal back up (re-seat) as well if we don't get new rubber/weather stripping and the wind sounds may be too annoying. It would be so fun to drive around in the summer heat with the top off. Maybe next time we go to Hot August Nites.

It came with factory A/C but we haven't redone that system as it seems not essential to the experience of driving it. The sound system is more important ...to me anyway.

Rick Turley said...

Meade -

VW makes an R Sportswagen with 300 hp and sells it just about everywhere but the US.

We just bought the S version and like it very much coming off a 2003 MB E500. Definitely a lot of bang for the bucks and a head above in driving dynamics compared to most of the competition. The new MQB platform makes a big difference. Very stable at 80 mph. Great car for commuting on the weekdays and estate saling on the weekends.

Bob Boyd said...

How many miles does Flo have on her?

Big Mike said...

@Meade, yes, and Democrat brains, if you can find any, are somewhat denser than lead.

Anthony said...

We got a Subaru Forester, one year old that was one of the dealer's loaner vehicles. Practically brand new.

This is the Pacific Northwest so it is not only as common as dirt but also a marked lesbian car.

So I have informally named it Lezzie.

mockturtle said...

In truth, I don't really have 'anosmia' but rather hyposmia--a reduced sense of smell. I just sliced a cucumber and could smell it OK but can't always smell my coffee brewing in the morning.

Ann, is you anosmia complete? Would you be able to detect spoiled food or a gas leak?

Dust Bunny Queen said...

@ Bob

Hard to say how many miles. The odometer only has 5 digits. I'm sure that is must have "turned" over at least once. Currently it reads at about 45K. We haven't reconnected the odometer etc since we put in a new 700R4 transmission, and we have put on less than 15K in the past 8 or so years.....so I'm guessing less than 200K. The original owner, who we bought from, was a fly fishing guide and mainly used it for that purpose and a bit of travel back to the Bay Area where he was originally from.

The motor is the original, born with the truck, motor. Although we have redone the heads and tuned up the motor a bit ;)

rehajm said...

Ahh, Meade.... It's got a right-side steering wheel.

You can get the European version which is left hand drive...

Given all the damage to the VW brand there's a possibility you could see these models in the US.

Bob Boyd said...

Not surprised you needed a tranny. Those shorter automatics in the Blazers didn't last as long for some reason.
Fun truck. And a head-turner too nowadays.

Delayna said...

I have asthma. New car smell makes me wheeze. Had to run my car with the vents open for months to get the volatiles out.

I Have Misplaced My Pants said...

I just purchased a Toyota RAV4 to replace it. Much better experience so far.

Mr. Pants has a 2011 Mercedes C300 4matic and we just bought me a 2015 Sienna, our first Toyota since we were youngsters (he had several MR2s and I had a couple of Celicas). He's so impressed with the quality of the build on the van that he's thinking, after a lifetime of Mercedes love, that he's going to go Lexus the next time he car shops. It is quite delicious. The interior design is great, the instruments are pleasurable to handle, everything is tight and silent and the road noise is practically nonexistent. Fabulous set of wheels.

Unlike Althouse I LOVE all the electronic bells and whistles. I love having my phone integrated into the car; I love having it read my texts to me; I love having a huge touch screen on the dash.

tim in vermont said...

My car does a lot of the driving for me, keeps itself in the lane, maintains separation with cruise control, can get out of its own way as required, and is great for long trips, much less tiring. But for a runabout, I would not mind a car that put me more in touch with the road.

holdfast said...

Wife and I now have a VW and BMW, respectively, each bought "Certified Pre-Owned" after a two-year lease term. Pretty low miles on each, both in great shape. I've had the Bimmer for just over 4 years - so it's six years old, with nothing but scheduled maintenance and a new tire (ripped apart on a sharp pot-hole). Since the Bimmer is a manual shift and has hydraulic (rather than electric) steering, I am going to try to keep this thing forever. They literally don't make them like this any more.

tim in vermont said...

I was driving through the recent heavy snow in Upstate New York, and I turned off the stability control and felt like the car was handling so much better, but after googling it to find out why, it turns out that you have to learn to trust it since what you perceive as loss of control is it handling conditions better than you can.

Darcy said...

Thank you, Meade. I've been incredibly blessed. God is good. :)

Bad Lieutenant said...

My 03 Suburban replaces my 01 Suburban. (same GMT800 generation chassis made 2000-06). Both Silao made. They might have picked up the game in those two years, the new truck is maybe tighter. Electronic enhancements including the trip computer. And it has the double din radio so it should be easy to replace the OnStar with Bluetooth and backup camera and Android and all that. I wonder how good is good enough. Seems you could spend a lot of money if you chose, or rather little.

Just as soon avoid the next gen Suburban. The gmt900 is supposed to be lesser than its gmt800 predecessor. Maybe the new K2XX series is the nuts but I'm certainly not going to splash out anytime soon. I don't like the cargo floor that slopes towards the back, for instance. I think this might just be the best one.

Happier getting any enhancements on this car rather than paying for new. I lost the old one because, due to being on the road, I wasn't willing to replace the transmission and possibly the engine as well. I think I would do that now. My next truck will be bought from some place that doesn't salt the roads, however. Superficial but displeasing.

Kirk Parker said...

I'm with MadMan.

The 2nd worst car my son ever owned was a Subaru. Lemon on steroids... alas is was used enough that no manufacturer's warranty was left.

Oh, what was the worst, you ask? Volkswagon Vanagon.

Dude... just leave off the hippie/hipster mobiles, ok?

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