When I graduated from college and started teaching, I bought my first new car. A green Ford Thunderbird. I looked at the purchase as a sign of growing up. Flash forward 18 years, and I’ve bought more than a few new Fords.
Ford F-150, Ford F-250, Explorer and the Focus.
Most of the vehicles from the same dealership in my hometown.
I’m a Ford girl.
At least I have been.
The Focus, an ’06 I chose over the Mazda and Toyota after test driving all three, had alternator problems 14 months ago, with barely over 50,000 miles on the car.
This week, 13,000 more miles, and the alternator fizzled again.
We didn’t spend the $1000 to have the dealership fix the problem the first time. And we didn’t sped the $1000 to have the problem fixed this time either. 63,000 miles, 3 alternators. That’s some lousy math.
My daughter drives a ‘94 Toyota Camry with well over 100k miles on it. The only engine problems she’s had came about because of the crazy heat this summer and the anti-freeze container. The cost to fix her car was time and about $50.
I’m test driving new cars again. I’ve tried the Fusion. I like it alright. But I don’t know. I shouldn’t have to be looking at cars because I’m worried about whether or not I’ll be facing alternator issues again in 14 months. I’m not making any rush decisions. But this time, when I look at the Mazda and Toyota, I’ll be a lot more interested in what those salesmen have to say.