Category Archives: Transportation

Car go vroom vroom (and somtimes it doesn’t … ’cause it it’s a hybrid)

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Hybrid car not withstanding, this is going to be a useful site I think.

Grey Gibbs drives the Grey Ghost

Ok, he’s not THAT grey … just a bit ’round the temples.

Ginny and I went down to my folks house for dinner last weekend.

Of course the first thing he wanted to do when we arrived is take the new Escape Hybrid for a spin around the block.

I think he was impressed … although he admitted to being a bit disconcerted when he put the car in gear without the engine running, and pressed on the accelerator … and it moved. He did like the smooth transition from electric to gas engines.

Although I don’t need my father’s approval … it’s nice to have.

Car Purchase!

Well we did it. We got the
Ford Escape Hybrid.

So far no buyers remorse 🙂 We went in to the Ford dealership, took it
for another test drive (I wanted to see how it behaved on the highway,
I wasn’t disappointed). After the test drive, we told the sales person
that we wanted to work up some numbers on a deal.

Luckily we were able to find a buyer for Ginny’s Corolla, so we didn’t have to deal with a trade in.

We took the vehicle they had in stock … it had a few options that I didn’t really want (running boards & leather interior), but we were able to negotiate a discount that negated their cost. It took a bit of haggling, and a bit of standing firm, but we reached a mutually agreed upon price. Even though I originally didn’t want the “Energy /Audiophile / Navigation” display system, I decided to get it anyway.

Since we were already paying for a hybrid vehicle, might as well get some information on what it’s doing. The “Navigation” part of the package isn’t nearly as good as our Magellan GPS, so we might use that when we really need to get someplace on-time.

So far no buyers remorse … I like the size, I like the handling, I like the color, and I generally liked the experience. Anton at Woodfield Ford was friendly & nice to deal with (even if he was a bit green). His manager, Dan, would do well in community theater for all his over dramatization… but he wasn’t bad either.

There are a few things that still need to be taken care of … I want to get a receiver hitch installed so I can put a bike rack on it (probably not going to tow anything), and the cigarette lighter is missing … not that I smoke, but they can be handy on occasion (I once started a camp fire with one because nobody had remembered to bring matches or a lighter). I’m sure neither of those items will be a problem to get installed.

I only have a few gripes about the car … and their pretty minor, so I can live with them easily…

  1. The cruise control doesn’t have any indication that it’s on. There is an indication when it’s active, but that’s it.
  2. The cruise control’s, which are mounted on the steering wheel, are not illuminated. This means I can’t really see where they are and what to press if it’s dark. I’ll probably get used to this after a while
  3. Ginny isn’t used to the running boards yet, so she’s tripped over them a few times. I’m sure she’ll get used to them also
  4. I can’t make heads or tails of the GPS navigation system … I’ve tried to use it a few times but it’s always guided me in weird directions. As it happens, the navigation data for the GPS is a year old (2004 CD’s) … I’ve asked the dealership to get me current versions.
  5. Cigarette lighter was missing. Turns out the lighter is actually an extra charge item … and the vehicle ships with a plug in that spot. That’s OK, I don’t smoke. The sales person at ford is going to get me a replacement plug.

Obviously I’ll update this as I learn more.

Car Sales

Ginny and I are considering getting a new car in the next few weeks.

We went shopping yesterday and stopped by a few of the local dealerships along Golf road. We had surprisingly varied experiences at the dealerships we stopped at…

  • At the Ford & Chevy dealerships we were greeted immediately upon entering by a sales person, asked if we could be helped. The sales people were generally quite friendly, not pushy, and I had no complaints. The Chevy sales person even let us take the Blazer for a test drive without him along.
  • At the Nissan and Jeep dealerships we were largely ignored. Even after accidentally setting off the car alarm on the Jeep Liberty, nobody came to ask us if we needed any assistance. Needless to say we left without even going on a test drive.
  • At the Toyota dealership we were greeted upon entering, but the sales person seemed like he really wanted to be somewhere else. He looked just about everywhere except at us.

Odd that 3 of the 5 dealerships we went to didn’t really seem to be all that interested in selling cars.

As for the cars (SUV’s specifically) we looked at … here’s the rundown …
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