The Big Announcement*

21 Oct

*As in car-sized, people.

Hey there! For all who’ve been on pins and needles since my cryptic reference to a “big Peters’ family announcement” last week, you can let out a big sigh of relief. The time has finally come for the big reveal. You ready?

Ike and I are the proud owners of a brand new (to us) Toyato Yaris! Just FYI, I like to make Yaris rhyme with how French people say Paris. Try it. Sounds classy, right?

Cute, peppy and surprisingly roomy.

The WHY

About a month ago, we decided that Norman, our ’92 Honda Accord, had seen better days. As in days when it would actually start. When we realized he was dying, we toyed with the idea of being a one-car family. But we soon realized that our ’02 Jetta has also seen better, pre-over-130,000 miles days. So like the responsible adults that we are most of the time, Ike and I decided to re-order our life goals. Bottom line? No house this year. But I think we made the right choice. We love the car, and by the end of next year we will have an even healthier down payment for a house. Yay for being grown-ups! And just for all your Dave lovers out there – WE’RE STILL DEBT FREE!!

The HOW

Just in case you’re in the market, here’s how we got our car. We bought a gently used car from Hertz. So our Yaris is a 2010 with just over 22,000 miles. The no-haggle price was right on Kelley Bluebook’s recommendation, and we didn’t have to deal with a single car salesman. The only cumbersome part about the situation was living in Little Rock. My amazing, delightful and wonderful parents actually had to buy the car from the Texas branch of Hertz, and then we paid them back. But if you live in a major city, odds are, you can find a car from Hertz. So check there first if you like the idea of a basically new car at a great price.

The Yaris Report Card

Passes the test with flying colors!

The EXTERIOR: A

When we started car shopping online, I suddenly decided that I wanted a hatchback. I thought they were cute, hip and young-ish. Maybe I’m trying stay relevant as I swiftly march through my 20s? No telling. Anyway, with the Hertz possibility in mind we were driven toward the 4-door Yaris hatchback. And at least to my eyes it’s very cute. We picked this particular car because it had the lowest mileage. Red would not have been my first choice, but now I wouldn’t have it any other color. Every time I see the cute little silhouette decked out in cherry red, I get excited.

Minimalist in the best way.

The INTERIOR: Mostly A

News Flash: a Toyota Yaris is not a luxury car. If you’re looking for fancy navigation systems, leather seats or even lights for the vanity mirrors – keep looking. I wouldn’t say the inside is bare bones; I’d go more with minimalist. It has what we need, though, like plenty of cup holders, CD/MP3 player and an AUX port to connect our iPods to the sound system. And even though it looks like a clown car, it actually has room for 5 adults, 4 comfortably. As far as storage, even without an official trunk, we’re able to pile a sizable grocery haul in the area behind the back seat. The only thing I’ve really had to get used to on the inside is the central display. All the gauges are placed right in the middle. After a few drives, it’s really not so bad.

The DRIVE: A

Peppy. Fun. Cheerful. No, I’m not just describing myself (fake laughs and slaps knee), but what the Yaris feels like to drive. And the biggest plus of the whole car is actually the gas mileage. We got 32 miles per gallon on our way home from Houston. And Ike and I have driven to work all week on half a tank. Can I have my green star now? Thanks.

I bet that is really more than enough info for you for now. Stay tuned for next week!

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