Friday, August 22, 2008

Car-less

I sold the Land Cruiser. The car was boring to drive and it was a gas guzzler. But it was solid and I would have probably kept it if it wasn't for the 5000km service interval, which was driving me nuts. I drive about 600 to 800km a week, so this meant that I had to take my car for service every 7 or 8 weeks. That's crazy. Every 8 weeks, I had to go through the inconvenience of taking all my stuff out of the car, arranging for someone to pick me up from the garage, and then arranging for someone to take me back to the garage to pick it up again. It was a huge hassle. I had other issues, which I will write about when I eventually get around to writing the follow-up to my previous post.

In the past two months, I've been getting lots of inquiries out of the blue from people who want to buy the car. People stop me in parking lots to ask me if I want to sell the car. Apparently, the value of good condition used Land Cruisers has gone up since the new shape came out. Lots of people don't like the new shape and the top of the range new one now costs about 25K, so people are willing to pay higher prices for good quality used old ones. After a couple of months of getting lots of unsolicited offers, I finally decided to sell the car while it still had value higher than what I paid for it. I wasn't totally happy with it, so why keep it?

I bought the car for RO. 15K in December with 44,000km on it. Put new tires and V-Kool on it. Had it polished and detailed at ProTech. Drove it 25,000km over 8 month, and sold it for RO. 15.5K. I could have probably sold it for 16K if I looked around for a better deal but I sold it to the first person who offered.

So yeah, I'm car-less now. Driving my wife's old Volvo. So if you see a big guy driving a beat-up Volvo S40, that's me.

Looking to buy a new car. Don't know which direction to go so I'm taking my time. Should I go the "approaching mid-age crises" route and buy a sports car? A sensible executive sedan (BMW 5 series, Audi A6, Infiniti M35)? Or another gas guzzling SUV like maybe the GMC Yukon, which I absolutely love but which I have been hearing nightmares about its dealer? Or maybe, an impractical not really an SUV and not a sports car mash-up like the Infiniti FX? A monster like the Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8?

28 comments:

Suburban said...

Congratulations!!!! Can I come car shopping with you?

What about a Chevy Suburban, or a Chevy Tahoe XL? It's pretty much the same thing as the Yukon, but diferent dealerships and diferent service departments. I have mixed feelings about the Chevy service, but my Chevy was a custom import and a pain in the ass for them.

I really like the newer Jeeps too, and I think the Shanfari service department is fantastic.

Or what about a Mustang? I think you can fit car seats in the back, just.

muscati said...

Suburban - The Yukon itself is a huge car, going for a Yukon XL or Chevy Suburban would be insane. Actually, I'm not even sure if the regular Yukon would fit in my car garage

If OTE has the same 5000KM service interval that Toyota has, then I am not buying a car from them. I need a car that doesn't need to be serviced except every 10 or 15,000KM.

Mustang? No way, not because it's impractical, which it is. But the car just doesn't appeal to me. No Pony cars for me, thank you very much. If I buy a sports car, I'd rather get a coupe like the Infiniti G37, Audi A5, or a roadster like the Porsche Cayman (not that I can afford this last one).

I need to go to Shanfari to look at the Jeep Grand Cherokee.

BTW, I heard Zubair recently increased their service prices by as much as 100%.

Suburban said...

Muscati,

I'll keep thinking.

WHat about a Mitsubishi Evo or Subaru Impreza, but with a full options package to make it more luxurious? They are fantastic cars, and if you can get used to the hard suspension, the handling is sublime.

The Audi A 5 is reeeeally nice. I had a TT in the UK that I loved, my only complaint was that the cupholders sucked. Germans don't do good cupholders.

Go Shanfari. I've had mostly unpleasant experiences with Zubair service and sales.

muscati said...

I test drove the Audi A5 last week. It's such a good looking car, but under powered. It needs more horsepower. It's overpriced too. The sticker price is 27K. You can get a fully loaded Porsche Cayman for around the same price.

My son hated the A5. He couldn't see outside the car when sitting in the back seat :)

Mitsubishi Evo is sold in Oman without a warranty. Zubair will happily sell you one, but will not take the responsibility if anything goes wrong with it.

Suburban said...

No warranty? Amazing. Says a lot about the kind of drivers who buy one.

Please don't get a Porsche. I went to a Porsche track day a while back and it pretty much confirmed everything I already thought about guys who drive them. Sad, Sad, Sad.

I will give the matter some hard thought, and waste more of your time with suggestions later in the week.

Um Faisal said...

Its not a beat up old volvo..
Its a volvo thats's aged not-so-gracefully with time

Angry In Oman said...

VW Taureg?

TI3GIB said...

Fr class, luxury, and enough space to lug a family around, I'd consider looking at the Jaguar XF, or perhaps asking Audi about the S5.

a7MeDiNo said...

Muscati, about the fuel in SUVs like Yukon, I went to the dealership for both the Yukon and Tahoe, so OTE and Moosa Abdul-Rahman, got all their offers.

They told me that the car uses only 4 cylinders when you're driving under 100km/h, and uses all 8 when you drive over 100km/h.

We have a Jeep Wrangler at home and we are more than happy with the service. It drinks petrol much more than our 5.6 Armada, which btw is a BEST BUY at it's price, 19k for a full option.

Or if you can pay 36k, for a Lexus LX570 ..

Or get a Range Rover HSE for 30k..

There are way too many names in the market, you just have to make up your mind and narrow your options down.

muscati said...

I'd buy a Range Rover if I had that kind of dough. I don't, so it's not even an option.

I really like the Touareg, but I don't find its seats comfortable. Plus we already have one so no sense having two of the same car.

Nissan Armada, no way. Way too big. I have no need for a car that big.

Decided against Jeep.

Probably no SUV for me. Except for..

Porsche Cayenne 6 cylinder, mighty tempting now that it has 300hp. But price is over my budget at RO. 25.7K. And they are all sold out. I can either choose one of the colors arriving in October or November, or order my choice and get it late December. Plus it only has a 2 year warranty. What's up with that?

Infiniti FX. I love it. It's weird looking. It's totally not practical. It's got 309hp!! And it's RO. 22K for the 2009 which is 3000 rials than what it was for 2008, which itself was 2000 rials more than it was in 2007.

Jaguar XF. Very nice. I like. Might give MHD a visit tomorrow.

Audi A6 3.2 Quattro the Q7 with that same engine, both around the same price. Both have the maintenance package. Salespeople extremely unresponsive. I guess they have more than enough customers to meet and exceed their quotas.

BMW has some amazing deals right now, including on the outgoing 7 series. I went there to look at the 5 series and they offered me a 7 at the same price because the shape is changing in 4 month's time. Mighty tempting. And they throw in a really good insurance cover as well as the 5 years/100K km all-inclusive maintenance package.

Suburban said...

OK, last intrusion into your car shopping adventure.

1) A chrysler M300. Sexxxayyy. Appropriate for a banker. Downside? Sold by Zubair.
2)A Newish BMW sedan for weekdays, purchased alongside a used Jeep wrangler for the weekends. We've been borrowing a friend's Wrangler this last week, and it's fantastic. THe baby loves riding in the back because she can see everything. IT's such a small cabin, that the AC can cool it down really fast.
3) A Nissan X-trail or X-terra. I can't remember which one is the newer model. We were issued 100+ different cars for the event in Dubai last year, and the Nissan was the one we all fought over. It was fantastic in the Chaos that is Dubai, and even better on the sands of the Rhub AlKhali.
4) a Toyota Tundra King cab. Or a Chevrolet Avalanche. Fun, Usefull, and really rare in these parts. No warranty.

Last thing, I am looking for an Avalanche for myself, if you come across one in your search can you drop a comment on my blog? THey are like gold dust here.

a7MeDiNo said...

Infiniti FX50S .. we bought it for 24k

Service every 10,000km.

At your service with your car hunt.

muscati said...

A7medino - I wanted the FX50S. The sales manager said that the best he can give was RO. 26K. If they had offered it to me for 24K, I'd have bought it. Theirs was the first dealership I went to. I even spoke to him again last week and asked him again if the price can go below 25K and he once again said 26 is the best he can do.

a7MeDiNo said...

You know how they are, every salesman gives a price..Try talking to one of the managers.

muscati said...

ah7medino - it was the top Infiniti guy, Seshan. I think he's the sales manager.

Anyhow, the quest is over. Thank you all for your comments.

I bought a BMW.

Amjad said...

Mabrook!

What BMW did you get? 5-series?

muscati said...

Amjad - I wanted a 530i, but it turned out that there's a special corporate price for my bank which gives a 730i for just 500 rials more than the price of the 530i.

When they first told me to go for a 730i I was totally against it. I thought it would be a big, underpowered car. A big 7 series with a six cylinder engine can't be a good combination. But they gave me a test drive and I was surprised. It's faster than my old 528 which had only 193hp. This one has 258hp, though the sales manager swears that this particular model being the last one produced before the new 7 series comes out actually has 277hp. It doesn't set the road on fire, but it's no slouch either. 0 to 100km in about 7.5 seconds. The size is better for a family than the 5 series. It has most of the gadgets and gizmos that the 740 has like navigation and so forth, it comes with the same 18" wheels as the 740 and it has the comfort interior with higher quality leather and wooden trim than the 730's which they used to bring till last year. The price includes the first year's insurance and a 5 year/100,000km maintenance contract. And they threw in free V-Kool as well. It was too good a deal to refuse.

Amarant said...

Muscati, the sales guy is telling the Truth, the 2008 530i, 330i, X3 3.0, X5 3.0, and 730i has a Tuned version of the N52 engine, producing 272 hp (well here in oman they add few hps, dunno why)

the older N52 used to produce 255 hp (258 in oman)

team said...

Thats all no warranty?? How can be like that?

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Emilee T. Leeper said...

Having a toyota land cruiser in a driveway is like having another child to grow. If you're traveling 700-800km in a way and you're busy as hell, then gas prices will definitely hurt your budget. Thank goodness you've awaken your senses and chose your wife's s40 instead.
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Mike Anderson said...

Wonderful blog buddy. I am in to cars since I was kid. The addiction of speed is in my blood.

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ErikaStone said...

There are people who really into cars. Some of my mates are really addicted into pimping their rides and also boosting their monster engines.

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Mathew Perkins said...

I really prefer the Fairlady z 350 of Nissan. It is a piece of art for me. The small body and slim chassis is really awesome and also the speed too!

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Caroline Knight said...

I'm sure that selling your Land Cruiser was still a pretty good deal for you. Those are the type of vehicles that can be sold for a good price even if they're already second hand just like the used cars in Nottingham that I've sold already.

buckinghamdriveautosau said...

I suggest you that just sell those cars that you never want to use because it's easy for you to buy another one it's normal for those people who are car lovers just follow your heart.

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freyayates said...

We can never tell the exact amount for our old cars. Aren’t you glad that people are trying to convince you? I must say that was a good buy but you should always follow your instinct. I suggest that you should keep that car.

-Ms.Yates