In our little outfit, we think about cars kind of the way we are ourselves: P is the big solid one and I’m the smaller scrappier one.


That’s pretty much where we fall when it comes to the cars we’re looking at as we are considering picking up a few new rides in the near future. Since we’ve just signed on to another full year here in North Carolina, we’re thinking about picking up a few new cars that we can keep and pay off and own for the next 5-10 years. Up until now, we’ve had cars that were chosen because they were practical (our TDi VW) or budget friendly (and CAAAUTE! my tiny Yaris).  What we’re looking for this go ’round is an affordable payment on vehicles that we love enough to be happy to drive until the wheels fall off.


We’re trying to be both practical and choosey, we want vehicles we love but ones that are good investments that will stand up to a good long life with us. As we go about our shopping there are a few things we’re considering when we think about these prospects: Are these vehicles sturdy enough to make it for awhile and are repairs/maintenance/warranties affordable? Are these cars that will fit our family as we add a little one in the future, are they safe and will they fit all the accoutrements of a kid and a dog or two? Do they have the bits and bobs that we want and can we see ourselves sticking with it?


For both vehicles we’re giving ourselves the gift of really choosing something we want, here’s what we’re thinking:


P moved to Charleston a few years ago with a Jetta he leased right out of college, he loved the service that VW presented him every time he required service, he also had each bit of maintenance taken care of by his warranty. However, he really had wanted a Jeep for a long time, when his lease period came up he looked at the SUVs that VW offered and wasn’t happy with what he test drove, what he did love was a pre-owned Jeep they had on the lot. He wanted to stick with VW but the Jeep love moved him too much, so he went with the Jeep. We stuck with the Jeep for around two years until we moved here to NC and our drives increased quite a bit (we walked to work in Charleston, so gas was never an issue), since the gas bill rose and rose, we took a look at a vehicle with long range fuel mileage and ended up heading back to VW for the TDi. We honestly love the VW, it’s got all the fancy trimmings and we can drive home to see my parents and back for less than a tank of gas and we were able to save a ton. Now that P works just a few miles from where we live, he’s been looking at Jeeps again. He loved his Wrangler and is looking at that again, of course, however, I’m not convinced. When I drove his Jeep in Charleston, it was terrifying. The thing was a beast and since the one he had was a soft-top, it scares the bajezus out of me to think of driving a baby in the backseat. I know it’s a totally unnecessary fear, but really, it was a little harrowing riding in the thing for the two years we had it and the thought of something so precious riding open air is a bit unnerving. P promises to look at something with a hard-top this time and I promised to lay off the worry and enjoy the extra space for IKEA trips and thrift shopping. Here’s what he’s got so far:


He wants something like this:

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but will settle for something like this:

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As for me, my first car was a vintage Ford Thunderbird that I ADORED until it finally gave up the ghost just before I went to college. After that I drove a beat up old Jeep Cherokee that I loved and loved all the way through 4 and a half years of college and a year in Charleston with trips up and down the East Coast several times a year all throughout that time. She was a dependable old mare and she lasted WAY longer than we ever dreamed she would, she’s actually still going, she just has a shot transmission and cant drive in reverse, which means my dad uses her now for various functions around our farm. She’ll go until she drops and I love that I got a chance to drive such a great car that didn’t need too much maintenance and was paid off right away. When she died in Charleston, I had to pick up a ride fast, I spent the day on a lot to see what I could pick up for the best price. Turns out that tiny cars are the cheapest and it was a bit strange to drive such small cars and I really didn’t think I’d like it, but it was available that day and I got a great price so I went with a Toyota Yaris. Honestly, I adore my car, like TRULY adore it. It was strange to drive for about a week and then it became the funnest thing I’ve ever driven. It was the perfect size, it took less than $30 to fill it up and when you pressed the gas you sped off right away. Now I cant image driving anything larger than what I drive now. Driving Ps VW feel like I’m driving a boat, so as it stands I’m looking for something tiny and with all the fancy bits and bobs that my little Yaris doesn’t have. Since this last car was a budget drive, I’m looking for something that fits my style and a design and environmental record I can get behind (since obviously I’ll have to make up for P and his big vehicle to feel comfortable).


Here’s what I’m thinking:

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As it stands, I’m sticking with a tiny car that’s big on luxury. P wants a bigger car that he can enjoy driving. Both of these cars fit our needs and both of these fit within our guidelines and desires. I’m not a Mom car kind of gal and I’ve been inside both of these vehicles and these will work in tandem with our future little families needs. Whatever the case, I’m enjoying the dreaming and shopping part and when it comes time to test drive and decide I’m sure there will be a ton of questions and lots of giggles. As it stands, we’re excited to enter a new season in our lives and we’re excited to enjoy cars that fit our personalities so well. I can see roadtrips in my car and hauling trips and camping in Ps car. Welcome to exciting!

Jamie CrouthamelComment