Thursday, August 25, 2011

Aarg, the ambivalence is killing me!

So, I don't know know if I can get Justin to actually have Nissan of Chantilly to take the loss on the $850 Destination Charge or the $4xx (dang it, every time someone tells me the exact amount I totally forget it!) Processing Fee.  In fact, I spoke to Justin earlier this week and he was pretty set on the Processing Fee but I decided this is not the time to push.  But with all my other calculations I really am thinking bugger it, it's just not worth it when I could just keep socking away about $1,137 a month in my savings account and finance the rest for a Tesla or 2013 LEAF.  It especially turns me off that I've help so much to attract business for them and I would never, ever feel that a car dealership didn't deserve a profit on a vehicle but given my legwork $1,582 pure profit at my expense seems a bit to much.

My main mark against Tesla apart from its outrageous price and dodgy delivery record is simply that I do believe in efficiency and honestly, if I only need 125 mi (200 km) a day range 95% of the time, what's the point of a 300 mi (483 km) range car.  I know I could get the base model which has 160 mi (257 km) range would therefor save me about $20,000 and better suit my needs, but I've a fast EVSE and I love the idea of using it to go far.  Bad American!  Bad me and my wanderlust instinct!

I often make fun of the difficulty people have getting their $5,000 deposit back from Tesla if they change their mind about the car, but I guess reading the terms of reservation agreement, clause 2 pretty much says you can.

  1. Nature of Agreement; Non-Binding Reservation Payment The Reservation Payment is fully refundable by us to you at any time (for example, if you choose to abandon your reservation, or if we decline to maintain you as a reservation holder). This Agreement does not constitute an agreement for the sale of a Model S and does not lock in pricing, a production slot, or an estimated delivery date. You are under no obligation to purchase a Model S from us, and we are under no obligation to supply you with a Model S or any other vehicle. If and when we notify you of the availability of a Model S and you wish to proceed with the purchase of a Model S, such sale and purchase will be governed by a separate and legally binding Purchase Agreement between you and us or between you and another authorized Tesla dealer (Tesla).

So I won't fault Tesla that though I still have my reservations that the reservation can be easily refunded.

I also seriously consider leasing one of the team 500 Smart EDs.  My main knock there was that I do mostly highway driving and 60 mph (97 kmph) on the capital beltway (I495), not that I ever go over 55 mph (89 kmph), when most traffic is going almost 70 mph (113 kmph), in that pokey, little Smart, is just a traffic hazard in this neighborhood.  But now there's a new Smart on the way that's boasting a 75 mph (120 kmph) top speed (any faster and your facing a Class 1 Misdemeanor her in the Commonwealth of Virginia) and a 87 mi (140 km) range.  Of course, that's cutting it very close given my 37 mile each way commute and doesn't leave much slack for traffic or bad weather and road conditions.  But it's definitely looking up and that spells an EV I really could love.

As for the 2013 LEAF, by the time that comes out, I'd guess the order process could be refined and become more traditional so the dealer can be more involved and negotiations may finally benefit the consumer since there should no longer be this quota system.  On the one hand, this benefits the dealer because he or she now has more control, but it also benefits the savvy consumer such as myself who knows what the car is really worth.

Anyway, I just don't know.  Some days I feel like I may as well allow my dealer that lovely profit and suffer the butt-ugly monster loan despite my avid savings.  And others, I say forget it, no need to keep my current car, trade it in and get a Tesla Model S and finance about 40% of the $77,000 cost.


If only the 2012 was more value-added than the 2011.  If only you could get it in Green or with Leather Seats and especially the coveted 6.6kW Charger.  If only…