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Unbelievable the bull$&!# involved in buying a new car.
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we've found the best deal on cars is to pick something on a lot that is still around from the previous model year, they usually are willing to move those quickly and for some good deals because they need to move them for new inventory. We got our last two vehicles that way and saved about 5k each. You just can't be picky about options, if there's something there you like it works nicely.
It's not that buying a new car is difficult, they are actually very accommodating. Affordability is not the issue, but rather how much I'm spending relative to how much I drive. It's just that when I drive 30 minutes max a day, and sometimes not at all on the weekend, I have a hard time justifying most new car prices and I'm only looking at Hondas of all things. The finance was costing me about 6k a year with 5 down. So then I explored used models, a few years older, which are cheaper, but then the interest rates on those are through the roof and it makes no financial sense to do this. So then I might as well go with a new model.. then you see the loop that occurs here.
Anyway, after exploring all options, I'm getting my Prelude restored. The labor is all free and the engine replacement is cheap enough where it makes sense to do this. It has half the mileage of the engine they are replacing.
@Tortorella's Rant how about no car, and using transit, and taxis?