Even when I’m not shopping for a car, I’m shopping for a car.
It probably happens to you, too. For me, I’ll just be going about my normal day-to-day business when suddenly, out of nowhere, I think it’s a good idea to buy a car.
Maybe driving past a dealership and seeing a great price on the window of a perfect car spurs the thought. Maybe it’s an online ad, or maybe it’s just a friend or family member who says something that sparks an interest.
It has happened to me twice in the past week.
I’m in no position to buy a car. I just sold a house and need to concentrate my energy on moving and settling into a new place before I open myself up to car shopping. My son, though, darn him, has this way of manipulating me into serious consideration of an impulse buy.
We were driving this last weekend, and he said, “Dad, I’ve become an expert at finding used Porsches for under $10,000 on CarGurus.”
“I only look for the 911, Dad.”
Sure enough, a few minutes later, he handed over his phone and showed me listings for 911s priced under 10 grand. There was even an ’87 for just under 6 grand. That’s when the thoughts really took hold.
Could I? Should I?
Sure, an old Porsche for under $6,000 will have some issues and some repairs to be made. But heck, my father-in-law used to race Porsches, and my wife rebuilt her own alternator on a ’74 911. We could make it work.
Thankfully my better sense kicked in, and I had my son close the listings before any rash decisions were made.
Then it happened again, on a larger scale, yesterday. I was checking email, not even thinking about cars, when I saw an ad for a 2005 Bentley Continental GT. The price: $39,000.
“Well,” I thought, “new Chryslers can sell for $39,000! I could have a Bentley for that!” The allure of a somewhat affordable 550-horsepower W12 engine was powerful.
The fantasy lasted for a few minutes, then my rational brain kicked in and told me I shouldn’t spend 40 grand on a car that’s 10 years old. Especially when I could get a newer Chrysler that looks more like a Bentley than this old Bentley. You win again, brain.
Someday, though, that perfect 911 will pop up when I least expect it, and there will be no stopping me from taking it home.
What car would you buy on impulse today?