Mar

10

 After 20 years, my trusty Ford Explorer bit the dust. The Mrs had been on my case for years to get rid of this beater, but I loved it. It was very reliable, and great for hauling stuff as well as scaring patients at the office.

At first I was going to replace it with a used SUV because of the 20% loss you incur driving a new car off the lot. But searching the web I actually found better deals for new SUVs than low mile used.

I wound up with a new 2017 Chevy Tahoe LS. It is about 15% bigger than my departed Explorer, and much more. It is a computer wrapped in a vehicle. Even though it is the low-option model, the Tahoe is loaded with technology. Better safety features include backup video with virtual car position, too close sensor, and braking assist when a too-slow vehicle is detected ahead. The stereo fidelity is excellent, and there are many communication features. Fuel economy is not much worse than the Explorer (the V8 goes V4 with lower load demand, and the big lug gets 23 mpg highway).

The Tahoe has OnStar, with satellite internet and a WiFi hub. This links to your smart phone to allow voice-recognition hands-free calling, navigation, and emergency services. In lieu of OnStar (free period ends in 3mo), I use the "Android Auto" app. The phone links to the console via USB or Bluetooth, and Google maps (with traffic, directions, etc) are projected to the video console. (With both systems you converse with a female robot. Mrs OnStar sounds older and kinder than Ms Google, who seems a bit shrill and abrupt. Right away I could tell spot the liberal)

In 1997 I paid $32,664 including tax and license fees for the Explorer. I plugged this into BLS CPI calculator, and with inflation this becomes $49,420 in 2017.

Remarkably the bigger/better/more advanced Tahoe was $48,088 out the door.

Besides being a beater, the other advantage of the Explorer was that the government (CIA, NSA, KGB, Google, etc) never knew where I was. Initially I took comfort knowing I never do anything that should upset the government, until recalling this was the same though Jews in Zimbabwe had before Mugabe.


Comments

Name

Email

Website

Speak your mind

1 Comment so far

  1. Ed on March 11, 2017 9:16 pm

    Keep a classic on hand for when it is time not to be followed.

Archives

Resources & Links

Search