Monday, August 3, 2009

Rant #59: I Bought My Car Without a Rebate

This weekend, customers rushed to auto dealerships around the country to buy into the government's rebate plan before the money allotted to this plan ran out.

Well, I didn't take advantage of this rebate because I bought my car more than a year ago.

I lament the fact that I could not hold out for a plan that wasn't even in anyone's consciousness back in late April 2008.

Heck, I just needed a car.

My 13 year old Plymouth (yes, Plymouth) Neon was going down the tubes fast. It had so many problems with it, but I kept on fixing it, because I did not want the burden of the cost of a new car as part of my monthly bills.

Even with all its problems, it routinely passed inspection, so even with the repairs here and there, it was still worth it to me.

Well, during the last repair on the car, the mechanic told me that the car's days were numbered, and that it could die on me any day now.

About a week later it did, and I didn't want to repair it again, so I junked it, gave it to a charity, and did some research on a new car.

I basically went into a dealership with empty pockets, and I bought a car that morning, April 25.

Three days later, I was in the hospital, eventually getting my gall bladder removed--on April 28, my birthday (natch!).

Anyway, I got some dollars off here and there for one thing or another, but I did not get a $4,500 rebate. I remember distinctly that about a week after I bought the car, companies started offering gas discounts when you bought a car.

I got nothing extra, just a new car.

Yes, I am still paying it off, and I should be getting this month's bill any day now. I enjoy the car--a Kia Spectra--and it has taken me back and forth to Florida twice. I have put more than 18,000 miles on it since late April 2008.

But no rebate.

Am I envious of those who received a rebate now? No, but I wish my Neon could have lasted just another year--maybe then, my finances would be better and that rebate would have come in mighty handy.


  1. Yep, that's the thing about timing. On a vastly smaller scale, I'm thinking about the times I've been at reocrd shows, and bought a record for maybe $10, then find a copy in identical condition a couple tables later. If only I had started at the other end of the aisle:)

  2. Yes, timing is everything. I remember when "Some Girls" by the Rolling Stones came out. I bought the album, and right after that, everyone from Lucille Ball to Farrah Fawcett were starting lawsuits because their images were used without permission. To stop these suits, the record company changed the cover, but happily, I still had my original, which I continue to have in my collection today. I think an original, at one time, got $250 or so, but I think the subsequent CD release had the original cover, so the price has since gone way down. I never sold my copy, but compared to what I could have gotten for it when the iron was hot, so to speak, in hindsight, I probably should have sold it. Oh well, I still have the music.



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