Saturday, January 05, 2008

Big Pimpin, Spendin Cheese

It happened just the way I thought it was going to (only 23 times faster).

Yep, that's right, I'm not above saying "I told you so".

We went for test drives today:

Dodge Nitro R/T
Toyota Highlander
Toyota RAV4 V6

The Highlander is huge. It's like driving a truck full of your grandmothers couch. It has 100hp more than the Subaru but with 1000 extra pounds to haul around it didn't feel very peppy. It drives a lot like the Camry it's based on, but just much much bigger.

Next up was the RAV4. They didn't have a new V6 AWD so we drove a used 07. (They're close enough to the same car for what I wanted to find out.) It's a nice car. I was alot more comfortable driving it from square 1. It has the same powertrain as the Highlander and is 500 lbs lighter. It was also a Sport model so it felt pretty quick.

So after 90 minutes we'd crossed off one from our list and confirmed another. Not bad in my book.

The Nitro feels very substantial. Big, tall, solid. It's the same weight and power as the Highlander but much more responsive. When you put your foot down it goes. And it makes some beautiful music in the process. The more my wife drove the Nitro the more she seemed to like it. (Secretly, she wants to be a truck driver. Or at least a road-bully.)

We expected the price would be about the same. The RAV4 is cheaper but demand is higher so dealers aren't cutting as much off MSRP. The RAV4 was a Sport model without many widgets, the Nitro was the R/T which gives it a lot of interior amenities.

So there it was: on one side the RAV4 with it's better mileage and greater reliability; on the other side the Nitro with it's additional options and in-your-face style. Substance vs style.

The RAV4 was the 'right' choice.

We bought the Nitro.

Now, move that sedan out of the way before I change lanes over you!


Dave said...

I'm not surprised An would delight at being behind the wheel of a massive brick of a vehicle. I *am* surprised you do too. :-)

LL said...

Geez, you guys make fast decisions :) I can't tell. Is the Nitro a lot bigger than your Forester (yes, I have perception problems when it comes to distance and size sometimes)?

On a completely different note, I watched the Seahawks Redskins game yesterday for kicks. Wasn't sure if you were there in the stadium but assume you would be given your tix. I somehow couldn't picture you in a bright green hat and being the type who would jump up and down and holler a lot during those games. But you were right about the complexity of football...on at least 2 plays I had no idea what the rules were and what was going on (one was the catch and TD by the Redskins on their own punt and why/when/why not a touchdown counts) and I already forget the other.

Blabbbering. Congrats on the car. It matches well with Peanut.


TJ said...

The Nitro is larger than the Forester. Particularly height-wise.

While we were test driving it we thought it was a fitting car for Peanut too.

Anandi said...

The Nitro makes me feel tall :)

Anonymous said...

Good luck on the new car,TJ and An !! I am sure TJ is happy with the enginee and other mechanical performace of the car.Your Subaru is in great shape and I am sure you will get a good price.