Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Changing Lanes

For the past few years, I've had to own a van for work reasons. Our shipping group has been comprised of three stores, and no vehicle smaller than a van would have handled the number of boxes we had to pick up on an average week--and since I'm the guy who drives to the FedEx hub to pick up our books, I needed that larger vehicle.

Now, I've got the best van on the market--a Nissan Quest (and I can offer a detailed comparison between that, a Toyota Sienna, and a Honda Odyssey, having owned all three)--but it's still a van. That is, it's adequately comfortable with an above average sound system and car-like performance... but it's still not my vehicle of choice.

We considered the Buick Enclave--twice, in fact--but both times, I've been put off by some of the vehicle's rather unsophisticated technology (kludgy navigation system, mushy sound on anything other than CD/DVD) and its rather awkwardly designed cargo area (lots of room, but poorly configured).

Most of all, I've been put off by the sales people who work for Buick/GM. My problems with Carl Black Kennesaw and Heritage Buick/Cadillac were detailed a year or so ago. I tried Carl Black Alpharetta and Jim Ellis Chamblee in the past few weeks, and after what seemed like auspicious starts, things ground to a halt. Jim Ellis seemed interested, aggressive, and competitive until I looked at the vehicle... then all contact ceased. Finally, after nine days, they contacted me and said they had a vehicle that I would want... only they didn't. Somehow, he had jumbled my list of desired features. colors, etc. with someone else's, and said he'd recalculate. That was six days ago.

Carl Black Alpharetta seemed disinterested. I spoke with a salesperson who seemed eager to meet with me; then, when I showed up, he immediately handed me off to someone else who seemed unfamiliar with the Enclave. He answered what he could, but he seemed more interested in selling me the vehicle he had right then than in selling me the vehicle I wanted. (Makes me wonder why Buick offers a variety of options when no dealer wants to acquire them for the customer.)

The info I've read about the upcoming 2010 Acura MDX sounds intriguing. I enjoyed the Acura when I had it--fun to drive, bold lines, comfortable, great sound for an SUV. And now, for the first time in years, an SUV should be sufficiently large to meet my business needs at least three out of four weeks.

Don't know that I'll get one--but it's nice to know that I can make it work if the vehicle is sufficiently impressive. Guess we'll find out in December, when the 2010 MDX is slated for release.

No comments: