* I want to buy a Chevy Volt
- Actually, I never thought I'd own another american(-brand) car.
- But I like it
- I like it better than the Leaf
- for reasons I've muttered about at length
-(you can't walk to the gas station and bring back a battery)
* They are not available in WA
- Yet. They've finally started saying August.
* Local (to WA, anyway) dealers are buying them from dealers in CA.
- For a $4k mark-up over MSRP.
- So their sticker starts $10k over MSRP, and there's no haggling them below that $4k markup, no matter how many Customer Service Avengers™ I throw at them.
* I could fly to the bay area /this weekend/ for $400, and it drops to $300 and $200 at one and two weeks out.
* Driving back would be between 800 and 900 miles, depending on route
- which is three tanks of gas.
- At $4.50/gal, the gas would cost $135.
* There's a $7,500 tax credit, which starts shrinking after they build a certain number of units.
- And I can't find a reference to where they're at with that number
So. I could fly myself and a spare driver to the bay area, buy the car, and drive back for $1000. Or I could probably fly just myself down and do the same thing, staying somewhere cheap for one or two nights.
Checking my math here, I see that $1000 is less than $4000. Hence, The Oakland Plan.
1) Check with BECU, to see if I /can get/ a loan for an adequate amount at acceptable terms.
2) Go back to the volt "find local inventory" search and see if there are any dealerships with the specific options I want on-hand. If so, call them. If not, pick a few and call them. Find out what the sticker price is. If nobody has the options I want, find out what would be involved in ordering one, when it would be available, etc. Maybe put loree on the phone as needed.
3) Go back to BECU. Get loan.
4) Fly to california
5) Buy car
6) Drive home, probably via 5-hours-longer coastal route.
There is an alternate plan (we'll call this The Boring Plan:
1) Wait until August, saving what I would be paying on the loan to add to a slightly larger down payment.
And, of course, there is the failure state:
1) Discover that nobody will give me enough money at acceptable terms to buy a car.
We'll ignore the last one for now, since there's nothing to be done about it.
Benefits of The Boring Plan:
* Slightly smaller loan
* Don't need to take a day off
Benefits of The Oakland Plan:
* Road trip
* Slightly-more-immediate gratification
* Road trip!
* Unlikely to miss out on the tax credit
* ROAD TRIP!
* I've yet to drive the coast highway, except in WA, where it's mostly dense trees with beach on the other side.
Downsides to The Boring Plan:
* No road trip
* I hate waiting
* No road trip!
Downsides to The Oakland Plan:
* Have to deal with getting the loan /beforehand/
- without a car or a vin or anything in hand.
* "Seriously, are you insane?"
So, I'm still leaning towards The Oakland Plan. I need to move on to step 1 soon.