I actually wanted to call this post Tuesday Travails, but negativity is usually not good for readership numbers. On a totally unrelated topic, I might have to re-connect the keyboard from my previous computer to my new one. The keyboard that came with the Acer Windows 10 machine is too small with not enough spacing between keys.
A tweet from Bill James:
“I generally like resistance to the government, because governments like to take over people’s lives and tell people what to do when it isn’t necessary. I just encourage you to get vaccinated first. Fight the government some other way.”
Very well said and I agree 100 percent.
That is a picture of the first item I ever purchased online, which would have been in 1998 or 1999. I don’t think I bought the book from Amazon, but I have been buying things from/through them since 1999.
In 2020, online spending accounted for 19.6% of total retail sales for the year in the US. That number has grown steadily for years. What has not grown is Amazon’s share of online commerce. In 2020, the company accounted for about a third of e-commerce. In the middle of the last decade that proportion had reached almost half.
I’m not asking you to shed a tear for Amazon, but the move by some to break up the company is misguided. On the other hand, Guck Foogle and Fack Fucebook account for more than half of all digital ad spending in the US, which itself accounts for more than half of all advertising expenditures. In my opinion, those companies should be broken up, but almost certainly never will.
Of course, people can now buy (and sell) cars completely online through companies like Carvana. By the way, their ad that states “we’ll come to your home, pick up your car and bring you a check” is misleading. You have to live within 50 miles of a Carvana “center.”
Anyway…while this is not typical of Carvana inventory, here is a picture of a currently available vehicle (I hope the picture link doesn’t break too soon):
It is a 2013 Bentley with 53,000 miles and a price of $86,988. With Carvana, the price you see is the price you pay unless you have to pay extra for delivery. If the vehicle is more than x miles from your location Carvana charges for delivery.
I think many potential customers like the no-haggle price almost as much as the fact that the car is delivered to your residence. Here is a picture of a car currently available through Carvana that has more relevance to us than a Bentley:
This is a 2015 Maserati Ghibli with about 47,000 miles that would cost $32,480 including delivery. Oh, our 2015 Cadillac ATS has been painted and is waiting the arrival of non-painted parts like the muffler before its re-assembly is complete. We may have the car back before the end of the month/year. Still, in case the ride seems to have been compromised…
I would have no problem buying a car online, as witness the purchase of my current car. I bought my 2016 Corvette Z06 without ever laying eyes on it or taking it for a test drive. So far, so good and, in all honesty, if anything goes wrong now I can’t blame the dealership that sold me the car since that was almost 33 months ago.
I know Dirty Dingus McGee has purchased cars via online auction. What about the rest of you? Would you buy a car from Carvana or from Bring A Trailer?
The only constant in the world is change.
If you like this blog please tell your friends and share the blog URL (https://disaffectedmusings.com). Thanks.
6 thoughts on “Tuesday Travels”
I’m not yet ready to buy a car without at least looking at it, and if I can see it up close, I can drive it. But then again, I am a dinosaur.
I’d like the money back from the items I purchased when I saw how neat they were in the video, then when the product arrived, it was nowhere near as capable as the video showed.
On the other hand, I seldom shop at Target anymore. I go online, buy our essentials and drive up to have someone put them in the trunk.
Thanks, JS. Different strokes for different folks. Who knows? At some point in the future 3-D printing and similar technologies may be so ubiquitous that people make many of the things they need/want.
LikeLiked by 1 person
Many thanks for sharing your experience and valuable advice, DDM.
The first couple times I bought a vehicle online, I was a bit hesitant. Not sure if I was buying a “pig in a poke” or getting burnt one way or another. As time has passed I’ve become more knowledgeable about HOW to do it correctly;
1) If the deal sounds too good to be true, it is.
2) Engage with the seller. Ask questions, ask for other pictures. If the seller is not willing to answer questions, walk away.
3) If possible, get a knowledgeable third party to look at the car, even if it costs you a few hundred dollars. Better to spend that money than lose much more on a polished turd.
4) There will usually be another one for sale somewhere down the road, unless you’re buying a Duesenberg or perhaps an early racing Ferrari.
5) Doesn’t matter the site, eBay, BaT, Craigslist, there are less than reputable sellers on there. Do you own due diligence and always remember rule #1.
So far I haven’t been burned badly buying online. A couple were not quite as advertised condition wise, but not bad enough to contest the sale.And in a couple cases, I got what I felt was a screamingly good deal. In one case it was due to a poor listing by the seller and the car was a higher price model than what was listed; a 1971 Dart Swinger 340, that was just listed as a Dart. Limited pictures, next to no information and a seller that really had no idea what the car actually was. I saw the VIN and knew immediately what it actually was. Bought it for about 1/3 of actual market value.
Some days you’re the windshield, some days you’re the bug.
The closest I came to the buying online experience is my 76 Grand Prix. Went to see it, spoke to the owner, had a friend with me to look it over, and heard it started and run. I did not test drive it though.
Frankly, can’t see myself ever buying online. I don’t even like the idea of auctions because you can’t really check the cars out. I’m jaded by the horrible ads on classifieds. I realize it’s different with a Carvana, they have procedures. But I could go on a rant about how bad people are at trying to sell cars.
I understand your reluctance to buying a car online. It does open the marketplace for a potential buyer (and seller), though.
LikeLiked by 1 person
Comments are closed.