My wife got tired of me carting around our daughter in my 22yr old bucket of bolts with no A/C. So we tallied up what it would take to make the CRX a decent dependable daily, and realized that would be half the price of a decent used car. So we went used car shopping and found out most folks were pretty proud of anything with less than 50K miles, which was what we were looking for if it wasn't in cash buy range.
We had pretty well settled on a nice 30K mile Mazda3 at our local dealership (owned by a really cool car nut) for $12K and wondering how we'd ended up at that kind of monthly. As we're standing in the showroom my wife asks what the little car she's next to is, and the salesman says he can get the payments on one of those close to what we were looking for.
We had to track down the only base base model 5spd in Houston, but we found one. A just over $14K Mazda2. They had added some fog lights and tint, which we told them we weren't paying for. We also talked them down another $1100, basically getting TT+L for free...and then got another $500 dealer cash knocked off for already owning a Mazda. We qualified for 0% interest no sweat, so I don't really feel bad about the deal. We basically stole it, and aren't losing our asses on a car loan. It's like a monthly installment plan for reliable transportation.
Yes, I'm in an mt.net shirt. And yeah, it's really my daughter's car. First music to play in it was her mix CD. She loves the thing. Easier entry for her too. I plan to take car of it and eventually give it to her.
At home with it's brother:
The car is great. First *new* car I've ever had, and it's nice to have a tight, comfortable car where everything works.
Handles surprisingly well. Overnight I had read a lot of reviews and these are definitely the sportiest of the econoboxes. Mazda made a point of cutting weight out of these to make the car weigh exactly as much as the original Miata...and it's evident in the way it drives. It's still fail wheel drive, but I can throw it into turns just like the Miata and actually enjoy driving again, even in something that's a responsible commuter.
A/C is ******* NICE! Having never had it in my personal cars I'm glad I did it...especially now that I got another nice office job where I need to arrive on time and presentable.
Still hard to believe that a 4door, steel roof car with h beam side pillars, dynamic stability control, 6 airbags and all can weigh as much as a pre-safetynanny-age two door convertible sports car.
All in all I'm really liking it. Glad I finally just did it for myself, or let my wife do it for me. I'd never spent more than $2K on a car in my life...and got tired of putting up with CL surprises and constantly working on them. I hated the idea of buying new...but I gotta admit it's nice knowing I'm the sole person responsible for the care of this car and that it hasn't been abused.
Oh yeah...35mph on the first tank...the way I drive...