Saturday, January 29, 2011

Car Hunting

So the time has come to introduce a new member into the Amato household... a new pet? A baby? A quirky piece of oddly-named IKEA furniture? Actually we are looking to purchase a new (well, probably used to be precise) car in the next 6 months before we move. Some background:

When we met, Tony had a 1997 Honda Civic with 145,000 miles on it & Robin had a 1997 Honda Civic with 145,000 miles on it. Coincidence? Anyway, we thought it best to sell one of them before one or both of them died and we could actually still get some money for it. Since they had the same amount of miles on them, we figured they'd both die at the same time and wanted to at least have ONE working car come that sad day. As luck would have it, Tony's parents had a 2007 Honda Civic coupe that they were willing to sell us for cheap and we managed to sell Robin's 1997 Civic by coincidence when one of Tony's coworkers overheard him talking about selling the car on the phone. Fast forward a few months of dealing with out-of-state banks for the loan & title and we are the proud new owners of a 2007 Civic that we've completely paid off.

With Tony's car aging (going on 160,000) and appraised at only $775 trade-in value, it still works just fine but again how much longer does it have? Our worst fear is that it will poop out on us while he is at grad school and we only have one income and a need for 2 working cars. We won't bore you with details, but long story short we are looking at buying a replacement while it's not urgent, and here are some of our thoughts:

-MUST have 4 doors (we already have one 2-door car)
-We would like a hatchback for the storage capabilities
-We do not want an SUV (despite increased storage) since we don't have any large pets or kids, and can't afford a gas guzzler for both $ and the environment's sake
-We are also thinking about used cars for the value
-Budget is $15,000
-Want to buy, not lease


So far, frontrunners include the Honda Fit, Kia Soul, and Nissan Versa. We aren't big on domestic cars and we LOVE our Honda. We started our venture into car buying at Carmax, and then crossed the street to the Kia dealership, where the new cars were as affordable as most of the 2007 Honda's at Carmax. We test drove the Versa and Soul among a few others, and are yet to drive our preliminary fav, the Fit. So far, Tony's sold on the Kia Soul, although neither of us is a big fan of it's boxy look.


Does anyone have any insight either with the car buying experience or about a car that you know and love? We have so many questions, with the biggest being new vs. used? Stay tuned as we continue our hunt for the elusive perfect/cheap/functional car!

1 comment :

  1. hey, i went back to this old post because i am in the same boat. Looking to get a car, UNDER 15k...and we are going to try the used route. We've seen the Honda Fit...and it has really great reviews. Did you check it out on your search? I know you've already purchased the soul, but i was wondering how you liked the Fit...and what it was that sold you on the sole.
    Thank you!! :)


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