So I’ve decided to get a new car. Now I consider myself to be quite good at shopping therefore it should be really simple to get a new set of wheels.
Just pick what you want, find it at the best price and hey presto.
But no. It’s much more difficult than that…
I started ever so well looking at Which? What and Why Car websites and choosing the one picked as third best in all the sites. (Not the very best, that’s too expensive, and not the second best, that’s too boring)
Then I go to the car shop where I find lots of very similar cars in different colours and a man in a Marks and Spencer’s washable suit.
“What do you want your car for?”
“Driving about,” I reply baffled.
“Yes but what kind of driving?”
“You know, around. School, shops, meetings sometimes.”
“Why are you buying a new one?” He says eyeing with disdain my rather nice Skoda Octavia which is still shiny despite our best efforts.
“Well,” I draw breath. “I work from home now and my husband’s car is falling to bits and as he drives more than I do we thought it would be better for him to have the Skoda which is good for motorways but not so good just up and down the road and I would get a new one.”
“What about that one?” He points to a foetus of a car, too small to even put my handbag in.
I try to explain to him about ‘clunk’ and how important that is in a car, but he doesn’t seem to get it.
“Oh,” he says, coming to a decision.
He walks me round the locked cars giving them names I’ve never heard of.
Then he points out the one I picked from the WWW Car websites. “That one,” triumphant. But it doesn’t look dinky and cute like it did in the pictures.
“Oh, you don’t want that it’s got seven seats,” he tells me. How does he know I’m not shopping for the dwarfs?
He tells me I want the new shiny one – he even lets me sit in it for a bit. I go away with a sense of unease and a brochure with boring cars in it.