Posts Tagged ‘Ron Tonkin Dodge’

(alternately titled: Levi could have mentioned the roll-over earlier).

Which story do you want first? The one where Don & I left our 16 year old son Home Alone for the first time while we went on vacation (his sister was only a few miles away in Newberg) and while we were gone, Levi was involved in a single-car roll-over accident in Washington State that put him in the hospital for evaluation? After evaluation, he drove my pick up home (alone) and didn’t tell anyone until hours later (his sister) and us days later (when we got home). Everyone was OK, we opted not to sue the driver (really: a lawyer called to see if we were going to sue Levi’s friend who was driving because she was an inexperienced driver on a gravel road and no one was seriously injured, just scared). Levi never mentioned the make/model of the car. That was in 2002.

That’s story #1.

Story #2.

I had a long list of cars I wanted to test drive and/or look at this morning. Most of them were on the west side, out in Newberg or Beaverton, some 30+ miles from home. Unfortunately, my partner in life was not feeling so good this morning and he didn’t want to go to the west side to look for cars (it’s a mental block Portlanders have: crossing the Willamette River. If you live on the west side, you never come to the east side and visa-versa). He wanted me to look on the east side.

So I looked up a couple car dealers on this side with cars in the price range & make/style I wanted.

Then Donald decided he was going back to bed.

I headed out the door, disgusted. I got about ten steps out and had this thought (I often have thoughts like this): maybe God just wanted me to go it alone today for some reason. Maybe I should not be so angry with my husband for wimping out on an important moment.

(Side Note: before I left the house, a coworker posted on my Facebook status that I should check out Beaverton Honda because her son worked there and if I mentioned her name, he’d give me a deal.)

I had no real plan, but decided to follow Don’s suggestion and check out the east side dealers. The first one I stopped at was a certified used car dealer and I got a pushy young salesman right off the bat. The best he could show me was a stinky Jeep Rav4 for $9,000.00. It had 120,000 miles and smelled like wet dog and cigarettes. I actually laughed. Then the kid wanted my phone number so he could call me with hot leads.

NO. I took his number, but refused to even give him my last name.

I had several hot leads at Ron Tonkin Dodge, so I stopped there next. A very nice salesman named Carl took me around, showed me a lot of station wagons and minivans that I looked into and politely refused to consider. Some had clear visibility issues (blind spots), uncomfortable seats (Honda Element), or just did not appeal to me. Then we crossed the street to look at the one Kia Sportage they had, a 2005 model in white with 71,000 miles. While he arranged for keys and suck (this I wanted to test drive), I made little notes about the condition of the car: some minor dings in the door paint, tires about half-way through their life, no license plate (I’d have to buy the plates), and a not-so clean interior. The former owners had pens & markers inside the armrest that scarred up the upholstery, the plastic was marred in several places – just little things.

It was a 4-cylinder 4×4. We drove it and I LOVED it. It kind of pulled to the left, but it had a lot of get-up-and-go. Didn’t feel like I was going 55 on the freeway. Lots of road noise, but not any more than my 1998 Ford Ranger. The blind spots are about the same as the Ranger, too. The safety features were great: two different side air bags and front air bags. Automatic shifting is on “the floor” which was an adjustment for me (I drive a stick, but the Explorer is an automatic with shift on the column). Hand brake. Really a sweet ride for a used 2005. I took his number & work hours & even gave him my number in case we were to come back.

The only caveat: no warranty unless we purchased one.

It was after lunch and I thought I’d head to Newberg to look at the Rav4. But halfway through Oregon City on Hwy 99, I decided to drive up to the house and see if Donald felt any better. I kind of wondered if he would like to drive out to Beaverton Honda/Kia because I knew they had a comparable Kia Sportage, but in green.

As it happened, Don was felling a little better and  was taking nourishment. So we had lunch together and then headed to Beaverton Kia (only if I was driving, he informed me).

We found the place and met a salesman (Greg) who looked at my notes and didn’t offer to show me anything else, but took us straight to the two Kia’s I wanted to see. Both were 2006 models. Both green. One was an upgrade but had 55,000 miles on it and some interior wear and tear (not much). The other was a little more money but not a ding, dent, scratch, mar and only 32,200 miles. For only $1,000.00 more.

We were treated with respect, Kia got us a better interest rate than our credit union, and it came with a standard 7-year/100,000 mile power train warranty.

My brother advised me to pick out a car and then go to a car rental. Drive it for a day, see what you think. But this was the second Kia Sportage I drove today. Don loved it. I got behind the wheel and was blown away.

V-6. It blew the fenders off the 4-cylinder 2005 Sportage I drove earlier. No pulling to the left, either. You feel the road, but not quite like the ’05 did. 4×4. This baby picks up and goes and it is OMG fun to drive.

The ’05 I drove had leather seats. This does not. Do I care?

Actually, I think I like the dark upholstery better.

I will have to take it through DEQ before May, but that isn’t a big deal. It has brand-new rain tires on it. I gave up the tow package (the ’05 and the other ’06 had tow packages) and the sun roof, but I really like this rig. And only 32,200 miles!

Beaverton Kia, unlike Ron Tonkin and a lot of other car dealers in the business of used cars, will only sell cars that have never been in wrecks, never had bad history, and have never been involved in some recall. Bob Lamphere Honda stands behind his product 100% and we were treated like we were more important than the sale.

It was a really long day, but I have only good feelings about it.

I am worn out from it all. But I am pleased with how I was treated at Ron Tonkin (even though I didn’t buy that car) and especially pleased with how were were treated at Bob Lamphere Beaverton Kia. I would actually recommend Beaverton Kia to someone else.

(Side note to my son: the 2002 and earlier Kias were involved in roll-overs, just like the earlier Explorers. The 2003 Explorer in the back ground is much safer than the Explorer we had before. And the 2006 Kia Sportage in the foreground has more air bags than you can count.)

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