Why I despise car shopping

I knew it would be a waste of two hours. The salesman would go through the usual interrogation, asking me for contact information, what colors I liked, how many miles I drive a year, my e-mail address and so forth. That would take 20-30 minutes and alienate me from the get-go. That’s what happened.

This exercise is what IRA Toyota wanted, not want I wanted. I went to the dealer hoping to sit in and possibly test drive a Prius, Avalon hybrid and Camry hybrid.

Post-interrogation, we traipsed outside to the Prius line in the freezing rain (the salesman offered to drive them up to the door, but I knew that would take hours).

I was also interested in used models, but that was at a separate facility next door so I skipped it lest I endure the same unproductive nonsense over again. The salesman told me the used model store would soon moving off-premises. It seems they go out of their way to make car shopping torture.

Fortunately, a Prius V festooned in bird do on the driver’s side window was open so I got to sit in it. Things are looking up. That was until we walked clear across the lot to Camry line. None were open and there were no hybrids. Another waste of time.

Apparently, there were no Avalons outside, either, but one in the showroom would at least get me out of the steady drizzle – perfect for my plunging mood. I sat in it and then asked to drive the Prius V. About 15 minutes later and three “I’ll be right backs,” we marched out to the Prius V. Its battery was dead.

I’d had enough and headed over the Honda North where I relayed my experience and said “I’ll give you my name and number and I want to drive an Accord right now. No interrogation.” The salesman seemed to understand.

Fifteen minutes and two “I’ll be right backs” later, I got to drive one. Nice car.

PS – I sort of felt bad for the IRA salesman. He said he was new and it showed, but he was trying. Apparently, he relayed my bad experience to the sales manager, who called to see what he could do. I said “Sorry, I’m car-shopped out.” My low expectations had been met (I still like Toyotas, though).

I think I’ll hang on my 2006 Acura TSX.

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