We find something else to spend it on.
My beloved's Mazda MPV van has done excellent work over the last 8 years - from trailer hauling to moving bunches of people to moving furniture and boxes, it's done well. But lately, it's been getting... expensive.
The radiator split, there's been miscellaneous computer problems (or ignition problems, which couldn't be isolated even after several large monetary IVs to the dealer...) and lately the check engine light comes on when it rains... for a while. We don't need a money pit - we need reliable transportation.
So we went out this weekend to find a new replacement. (Thought about buying used - but even with a fleet vehicle you're really not sure what you're going to be getting maintenance wise.)
Specs were - needs to be able to tow a minimum of 3500 lbs, and be what we considered 'affordable'. 3rd-row seating very desirable, but not essential, given sufficient thought to 'affordability'. No pickup trucks need apply.
Chrysler's Aspen was considered - but the local dealer didn't have much in stock and it was too expensive considering fit and finish. Salesman didn't offer to search for anything in the area that would work. No idea when they'd get something in, didn't seem concerned about it. Wasn't really much of a surprise on the availability, to be sure. When you've got a company about to go under, making product isn't going to be a high priority. Making affordable product will be even less.
And the salesman attitude was odd. We seemed to be an annoyance, not a revenue source. In the midst of a sales downturn, you'd think they'd be at least SLIGHTLY pleased we dropped in.
(Then today we find out GM is going to have their warranties backed by the government. Looks like the GM salesfolk have turned on the "Government Salesman Mode" - "Buy it or not - we don't really care. I get paid the same whether you get a car or not, and it's a lot less hassle for me if you don't."
Saturn VUE? Nope, couldn't haul enough. Saturn Outlook? Didn't feel good, fit and finish weren't there, and too expensive for the perceived value. There weren't ANY GM products available that were within striking distance of our criteria. And at every GM shop, the sales attitude was the same studied indifference.
Nissan? Toyota? "Nothing available, don't know when anything might be coming in." Apparently the lower gas prices have sparked a run on the larger models. Might have been able to swing a good deal for a Hummer H3, but... no third row seating and I'd need a friggin' stepladder to get my aged parents into it. Couldn't see THAT happening... plus the price was more than we wanted to pay - though we could get a slightly used one at CarMax for less.
Ended up looking at a Kia 'Borrego', and it's a heck of a lot more for a lower price than any comparable GM product. (Even beat Honda, Nissan, and Toyota..) AND the salesman wanted to make a sale - that was more than the GM folks seemed to want to do.
We looked, poked, prodded, then came home and I started digging on line.
The Borrego (I call it the Burrito and my wife hits me, so we'll possibly call it the Borg...) is relatively new, but it's been out since last August. Couldn't find sales figures for last year, but there were over 700 sold here in the US in Jan and Feb, total in the US so far seems to be about 10K or so.
I looked HARD on-line for any horror stories, and couldn't find a one. (Which doesn't mean all that much.) Found a LOT of complimentary stuff, reviews, and it was even a Kelly Blue Book 'Deal of the week' - so I'm thinking it'll at least last out the payments. Finally found ONE negative review - in a Detroit paper. (Yeah, no possibility of bias there, right?) Other than that, the worst that was said was that it's a model that's out of its time, and gas mileage isn't great. (16 to 23. Eh. We'll see.)
And to make things even better - there was a $3000 rebate with 0% financing, and since it was near the end of the month, they weren't adverse to haggling. We got the midline EX for the cost of the LX. And the copper color is even one my lovely bride has always wanted.
All in all, it was interesting going car shopping this weekend. It really didn't turn out like I was expecting...