Yesterday we got our updated car insurance policy, listing M as an insured driver. The addition to our premium was a nice way to start the holiday season.

She’s been hassling us about a car for weeks. I believe I already shared that CHS only gives parking passes to sophomores if there are exceptional reasons that require one. She’s told us several times that we need to come up with something and send the email. We just give her a blank look and then suggest she assist us rather than give us orders. She and one of her St P’s buddies who also just got her license cased the junior parking lot this week during their photography class and insist there are at least 20 open spots.

Of course, she doesn’t have a car yet. But we’re working on that.

We’ve kicked around a few ideas on how to give our precious daughter her own vehicle.[1] The original plan was that, since she learned how to drive in S’s Mazda CX–5, we would look for a used version of that. However, S crunched the numbers and weighed the troubles that can come with a used car and decided it made more sense to lease another Mazda. I can’t say I was totally onboard with this, but I’ve also learned in our 17 years of marriage than when S gets a plan in her head regarding finances or cash outlays, it’s best just to go along with her.

I mentioned that if we are going to become a three-car family, that really eliminated the need to drive a Large Vehicle. I drove a Suburban for nearly three years and am into my third year in a Tahoe. While I’ve enjoyed both of those vehicles and they have been tremendously useful, I’m also ready to drive something not so large and unwieldy.

A couple weeks ago S came up with a new plan: pass her Mazda down to M, S takes my Tahoe, and I get something new now. That would give her until July, when the Tahoe lease is up, to figure out what she wants. I told her that idea was stupid since she hates driving the Tahoe. She told me to shut up and look for a new car.

We are both big fans of the the Kia Tellurides. They look great and get fantastic reviews. They are supposed to be an amazing bargain compared to Tahoes and other similar vehicles.

Last week, in between election coverage, I did some scanning of the local Kia dealership inventory. I had a couple picked out I liked and Saturday we went to test drive.

Man, they are awesome! Super nice, ride well, lots of space, while not being nearly as massive as a Tahoe.

One problem, though: apparently they are super popular right now. So popular, in fact, that the dealer added a $12,000 “market adjustment” to the sticker. They literally wrote it on the sticker in Sharpie. They also added the extra pain sealers and coatings that no one ever buys. Apparently you can do this shit when you get a trailer with seven on a Friday and sell four before close that night.[2]

It sure would have been nice if that price had been reflected online. That extra $14+K eliminated the price advantage over my Tahoe. We literally did not know what to say to our salesman who he showed us the updated price. We just stood there, staring at the sticker in silence.

Some Bullshit
Some Bullshit

Fortunately, he was very young and kind of shitty as a salesman, so he didn’t push us at all. Or maybe he’s just smarter than he let on and could read the looks on our faces as those of the unmotivated buyers. And knew there were a few other suckers right behind us who would be just fine with the “market adjustment.”

We hopped in the Tahoe and started to drive home. A thought struck me. I asked S, “You loved your Jeep, right?” When she got her Mazda back in January it came after she had leased two different Jeep Cherokees over a six-year span.

“Yeah, I really did,” she responded.

“OK, let’s get you a new one then. You don’t have to test drive and you know exactly what you want, it will be easy.”

We went home, she pulled up the Jeep dealership’s site, found a couple she liked, and fired off an email. I would imagine she’ll have a new one very soon.

All this car talk got me a little hot and bothered. I spent hours Saturday and Sunday looking at various smaller SUVs. I still need some space and at least all wheel drive, just in a less behemoth-sized package. I have a short list of 3–4 pretty solid cars I’m interested in that are both smaller and cheaper than the Tahoe. The only catch is that lease has seven months left on it. Like most people these days, I’m not very good with delayed gratification: I want that shiny, new car now! Still, this gives me plenty of time to read tons of reviews, casually take test drives, and order exactly what I want when the time comes.

Until S comes up with another one of her plans and tells me to do something different.[3]

  1. Neither S nor I had a vehicle that was our own until our early 20s.  ↩
  2. Or so they claimed.  ↩
  3. I say that with much love!  ↩