Saturday, May 14, 2011

The New Car!!

When Jeff smashed the 2 1/2 year old Toyota Corolla we had to think about another car. With all the driving Jeff does (San German to Aquadilla) everyday, and the way driving is here, it is surprising this didn't happen sooner. Driving plus the location of our activities is the reason we need to move north. Anyway, the Toyota Corolla was toast - the air bags all deployed even though he was only going 15 mph when he rear ended someone(both are ok). The insurance company decided to total it and will be giving us a check for a surprisingly fair amount. Next came the hassle of deciding on a new car.

The Toyota got great mileage but didn't have much trunk room for caving gear. Since we will end up living closer to work and play in the near future I wanted to consider other options. I really wanted a used car but after looking at prices and the lack of warranty and considering that our truck is used I came around to Jeff's idea of buying new. It just didn't make sense to buy a used car unless it was REALLY used. For a main, every-day car that seemed risky. I narrowed the search down to Kias because of the awesome warranties, good safety ratings and low(comparatively speaking) prices. Toyota had a 36,000 mile warranty and for the same price we could get a Kia with more space, slightly less mileage and a 100,000 mile warranty. So here it is! A Kia Forte5! I did all the presearching and decided on a Cocktail Orange Kia Soul until we drove it today. Great car but the visibility was not very good - big blind spot. I'm short enough anyway and this was not good so we looked at the Rio 5 which would have been nice but it was a little small and the seat was low and didn't pump up. I couldn't see anything! Then we looked at a Sonata that had mileage that wasn't good enough and more passenger room than we want (we don't carry people). It was just too big and gas hungry. And then we tried the Forte which was just right. Unfortunately the price was the same as the Sonata. So it was a dilemma - bigger (nice) with higher gas consumption or smaller with better mileage? Bigger was tempting but reason took over. Look at all this space! With the hatch we can get stuff in and out easily and have a little bit of shelter from the hatchback. Our caving equipment bins will fit great without putting seats down. For the first time ever we have electric windows. Not something we care about but it might be nice. The only thing I don't like is the "silver" color (looks like grey to me). We did get the price down more than we thought we could so hey, grey it is. Lowish price, 31 MPG, good cave gear space, great safety, 100,000 mile warranty, 2 years free roadside assistance - what's not to like? (the color)

So now on Monday I will have to deal with car insurance (can't be done on the phone). At least it has plates and marbete already. Best of all - we are done looking, thinking and test driving. Shopping is not fun. Tomorrow we return the rental car and order is semi restored to the Kruse household. Now we just have to think about the house, moving, a future house and our upcoming Mona Island Cave Expedition. Everything always happens at once. With all these hassles I wander the yard and take deep breaths. Ahhhh, a beautiful white hibiscus flower.


Anonymous said...

wait you are moving? What about all those solar panels you guys put in?

Jeff and Katrina Kruse said...

Yes - the solar panels, the fencing,my arboretum. Cement walls and numerous plants and the remodeled bathrooms. It is sad right now but will end up exciting as we move onto the next project. Jeff can't continue to drive 3 hours a day to go to work. It is too hard to drive 2 1/2 hours to a cave, cave for 8 or 10 hours and drive a couple hours back tired and dirty. We need to live closer to those things so that means a move North. We can always recreate the best of what we created here but yeah, right now it is just sad. katrina

Jeff and Katrina Kruse said...

The solar panels will continue to make electricity for the new owner to enjoy. It's quite satisfying to have power when the grid goes down. We are going to transition to Rincon then closer to work, probably Moca.