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Thursday, June 23, 2005

Reverse Is On The Left

First I'm jealous in so many ways. CAG said she knew she should have walked away, but she ended up buying it. She got a new VW Jetta. She wanted me to be with her because of the sexist stupid car salesmen. She wanted the dorks to deal with me so she could swoop in at the last second with her checkbook and see the look on their faces. Hey I would have been helping test drive cars so it would be very fun for me. The high end of her range was Acuras, BMWs and other sports sedans. I don't get in Acuras and BMWs very often. She reneged on her promise. Damnit this is supposed to be about me, me, me!!! A Jetta, I see CAG's pragmatic side got to her.

I don't know why women get screwed in the car buying process. Why does the typical car salesman treat women like idiots? Sometimes women even have letters after their name meaning they have an education and maybe even a brain! Sometimes women car shoppers buy a Consumer Reports magazine to see how cars rate. (CR isn't my first choice of guide, but I respect them to a point.)

The Mitsubishi dealer tried to steer CAG towards an Eclipse. Mitsubishi had some quality control problems lately so their long term reliability is below industry average. CAG's opinion of Mitsubishi is, "Aren't they around to make girls look pretty?" I never thought of it that way before, but yes sometimes a Mitsubishi is a pretty car with little substance (at least with some models). Told ya The CAG had a brain. Salesman asked what else she was shopping for. After hearing her reply the salesman said, "You don't want to buy a 4-cylinder car. They fall apart at 70 to 90 thousand miles!" The CAG told me she thought about this reply but didn't actually say it (oh don't start holding back now dear), "Well maybe your cars do." Dumbass Salesman obviously didn't see her driving up in a Honda Civic, one of the most reliable cars on the planet!

Still she did test drive the Mazda 3 based on my recommendation. She liked the 3, but says it doesn't compare to the Jetta. Well duh! The Jetta is a full step up-market from a 3 and isn't a fair comparison. Yes, the Jetta interior is very, very nice. VW/Audi are industry leaders in interior design for a reason. The CAG finds the straight-line acceleration okay, but not thrilling (extra 35 horsepower has been offset by 300lb gain), but handles nicely and is very quiet according to her. She did note the 3's shifter is definitely more sporty than the Jetta's. Mazda seems the have the best front drive manual tranny out there. VW's is still good though.

I get to drive the Jetta next time I see her. She treats me well despite the grief I give her sometimes. I know I'll fall in love (with the car) and desire it. I suspect the Jetta will be my upper range of auto when I eventually go shopping. At least I'll have someone familiar with the vehicle to bounce questions off of. Oh, when I drive her's I'll already know reverse is on the left, unlike some people who forgot to look. F.Y.I. on many European cars to hit the Reverse gear you push the shifter vertically DOWN, then LEFT and FORWARD. It isn't just RIGHT, then BACKWARD like on Asian and American cars.

PS: If you ever want to take a guy along just to screen you from the salesman let me know. Just let me dismantle poke and prod the vehicles of choice. This wouldn't be a job for me, but a public service.

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