making owls cool since 1986

We moved to Arizona to see burrow owls. Where the hell are all the burrow owls?

Friday, April 04, 2008

Buying a Used Truck Part Three - The Silver Tacoma

Marv called me while I was at school and left a message saying that they had a 2002 Toyota Tacoma with only 90,000 miles on it with the "good rubber on it that you (I) like." That's his way of saying that the tires aren't bald. It was priced at $9500. Later that day, Erin and I went to check out this Tacoma.

When we arrived at Tempe Honda Marv wasn't around. He was off somewhere smoking a cigarette. We saw Robert and Marv was paged. As Marv approached, one of his crazy coworkers said, "Here he comes. You can tell it's him. He's the bald guy with the gut." I felt sorry for Marv.

After Marv arrived, we hopped on the golf cart and headed over to the shop where the Tacoma allegedly was being "gone over." It was not there when we arrived, so we stood around outside and had a very nice talk with Marv about his RV and the vacations he and his wife take with it. Erin and I have always wanted an RV, so we enjoyed this conversation.

When the truck returned it looked mint. It wasn't extended cab or TRD, but it was still really nice looking. Marv went over and talked to the mechanic driving the truck. Erin and I got the impression that he looked unconvinced. We went inside and Marv talked to the mechanic for a minute before we took the truck out for a ride.

This part was sketchy as we were unsure whether or not the truck had been check out by a mechanic yet. It seemed to us that the mechanic was taking a preliminary test drive when we got there and his demeanor suggested all had not gone well. We decided to try it anyways.

We had to test drive it separately, as it was only a single cab and Marv had to go along. I decided to go first. I pulled the truck out and it felt OK until I tried to accelerate to about 40mph, at which point it really started shaking. When I got on Route 10 and tried to go above 60mph, it really shook like crazy. Something was clearly very wrong with the truck. Marv said he thought it was a U-joint, which is part of the drive train.

Upon returning to the shop, it was determined that the truck was messed up and there was no need for Erin to drive it. I suggested to Marv that they give us the gold Tacoma, which was still there, for the price of the silver Tacoma and throw in the silver Tacoma's nice wheels. He asked Robert, but Robert said no. They tried to pressure us into buying something, as it was the end of the month and it would boost their numbers, but we said no.

We decided it was time to leave. We were kind of pissed of that they made us drive all the way down there without checking out the truck first. Marv apologized for the inconvenience. As we were trying to pull out of the parking spot, Robert was gesticulating emphatically around the wheel of the silver truck. I rolled down the window and he told me that he had seen a wheel weight fall off and that it was no big deal and probably the cause of the shaking. They said that they would call us about the wheel weight.

Later that evening, Marv called and said it had not been the wheel weight and it was, not surprisingly, something more serious with the drive train. He then told me that, because it was the end of the month, Robert had agreed to come down on the price of the gold Tacoma and set a "rock bottom" price of $9999. I was at school at the time, so I thanked Marv and said I would speak to Erin. Of course, the price drop from $10,250 to $9999 is only $256. I was a bit insulted that they thought I would fall for that silly trick. I later called Marv and informed him that the negligible drop in price was not enough to change out minds. Our monthly payment would still be over $175. I tried to get the price down one more time by citing the fact that they had never adequately addressed the issue of the body damage. As property damage adjuster know, something that looks like a small dent (not that the dent was that small...) can be a costly repair. Marv asked, but to no avail. He said he'd keep looking for a vehicle for us.

You'll notice how frequently I use some incarnation of the word "ridiculous." You haven't heard anything yet. Wait until next time when I write about Right Toyota in Scottsdale!

Labels: , , , , , , , , , ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home