Sunday, June 17, 2012

Car Hopping

Recently I have begun to think about getting a new car. It is interesting how your family members all weigh in as if it is a car that they will be driving. Ha! Even the dog is not going in this car if I decide to get one. Jim and I first went out an looked at six or seven cars at the megacarplex in St. Louis County. It is handy to be able to view so many makes all in one location. When we entered the beemer shop not one person greeted us. Apparently we did not pull up in the appropriate vehicle. Or perhaps I forgot to wear my Prada that day. At any rate, while we sat in all the different cars I did not test drive any. I wanted to first be able to wean my list down.

While Andy and Megan were here they went with us to test drive the four vehicles I wanted to take a closer look at. Upon entering same beemer dealer, we were again all ignored. It was definitely a Pretty Woman moment - I had money to spend but they didn't want to help me spend it. That dealership is out should I decide to purchase that kind of car! The two other cars that we took out at the other dealerships were both very nice vehicles. Andy, Megan and I took out a hybrid from a third manufacturer, and while it had a surprisingly decent drive, it does not come with a sunroof or backup camera, so it is off the list.

Jim and I then drive a beemer from a different dealership and yet another make of car. I have the list down to my three favorites, and even completed a spreadsheet of their features because I cannot make up my mind which one I want to get. The spreadsheet did not help, but my mechanic concurred that I had made three excellent choices and proceeded to tell me how he would rank them. That was helpful.

Last Thursday my workout buddy wanted to go test drive an SUV made by the company currently #1 on my list, so we decided to go together so that I could take my possible choice out for a second drive. I also thought it would be fun to get the input of my friend on the car. I had contacted my salesman to let him know that we were coming, and he said he would be available. He had my car ready for us to take out, and confirmed what my friend was looking for so that he would have it ready when we came back from the first test drive.

When I got into the car I immediately noticed that there was a hump coming from the center console into the driver's side, and that it was rubbing up against my right leg. What the heck?!? How had I missed this the last time I took the car out? I was driving the version with reduced horsepower this time, so maybe that was the difference? I really didn't like the feel. Besides that, the drive was as wonderful as I remembered. Following that we took out the SUV, also a nice ride, and then for fun tried out the SUV Hybrid. $67,000!!! It was loaded, as you might imagine. It was a wonderful car, but not worth the price in my opinion.

I had noticed that we did not have the salesman's full attention, which I thought was odd as I had brought him another potential customer. Then my friend made the comment that she wondered if we would be getting the same treatment if our spouses were with us. Sadly, I think she is right. And all my original warm, fuzzy feelings for this salesman disappeared. Why do women continue to be treated this way? After all, both of us were looking at cars for ourselves. Not our families and certainly not our spouses. And for that matter, why do you rarely see female car salespeople? I will probably take a trip to the other dealership in town that also sells this car just to see what the treatment is there. And you can bet that I will be blogging about it.


Linda Austin said...

The Mazda salesmen in Creve Coeur treated me very well when I came in as a woman alone. Their service department guys are really nice, too. Yes, I have a little Mazda 3 now!

Mrs. Wryly said...

MCPs are alive and selling cars.