The kids with keys to the new truck.
It was finally time to buy a new truck. After exhaustive research I decided on a 2016 Toyota Tundra 5.7L CrewMax 4x4.
The last time I owned a truck was around 1992 when I was in the Air Force.
After visiting dealers for a few days, looking at everything we decided we needed certain things in a truck.
1. I needed more legroom than a double cab would offer. Montana is already tall, and Eddie will be as well. Since I don’t buy cars that often I have to plan for the future.
2. I need a 4x4 since we drive on the beach often and plan on visiting the mountains soon.
3. It needed decent tow capabilities. Although were not in the market for a trailer now, I didn’t want to be limited on what it could pull. Fifth wheels were not in consideration, so there was no need for a larger truck.
4. I also wanted a navigation system.
The awesome sign they made for us! Montana and Eddie loved it.
Eddie outside the truck the following day in Avila Beach
My research concluded the following.
1. Fords are over priced – For what they want I promise they should be made of solid gold. My initial web search showed that they were not in my budget; especially if I wanted the features I was looking for. The first time I visited a dealer; I had sticker shock. I did find one used 2014 Ford with everything I wanted but it was 2k more and had 20k + miles the Tundra.
2. Chevy – Just wow, they are cheaper than Fords for the same features but not by much. The one dealer I visited had some great sales prices in the window of a double cab, 2x2 but even after discounts it was more than my Toyota. The closest vehicle I found to what I wanted turned out to be 9k more. It did have leather seats though. Those are certainly worth 9k… Not.
3. Dodge – They were expensive as well. Plus I’ve always hated their front end, it just looks strange, but that’s a personal preference. I did test drive a used truck with 40k miles, and it was loaded. The issue I had was that out of all the trucks I looked at, Dodges seemed to hold their value the least. With Toyota Tacoma’s and Tundra’s holding their value most and costing far less than equally equipped trucks.
I finally purchased at Toyota Scion of Santa Maria. I will not get into techniques for getting a great deal, since there are numerous websites that cover this, but I will say
1. DO YOUR RESEARCH. Get comparison costs for everything even extended warranties.
2. Check Yelp and Google for dealer reviews. More than likely you’ll have to visit the dealer you purchase from during your warranty period. If they get horrible reviews for service, do you really want to purchase from them?
3. Have financing prior to showing up.
4. Don’t buy immediately, and be set to walk if you don’t like the deal.
The buying process went smooth once I decided on a truck and price. Jonathan (our sales person) never pressured us and was fun to talk to. He answered all my phone calls and e-mails as fast as I sent them. If I were in the market again, I’d definitely look for him and shop there.
* Ed the finance manager and fellow Air Force Vet was great as well. While signing docs, we were telling “war stories”. Pretty cool.
See you on the beach