Why I'm looking to buy a new car: The lease on my Saturn Aura expires in about six weeks. I leased it new in May 2007, and the two-minute test drive sold me. I loved the roominess and the acceleration, and the Aura has been trouble-free.
But I am kicking myself for leasing. I thought I could get more car for my money. But now I have no equity in the vehicle; I'm just paying rent on it. Which is why I'm going to buy next time.
I've been saving my money for 18 months, so I can pay at least 75% cash for a vehicle I can keep for five-plus years. I'm looking forward to being car-payment free.
I am thinking about another Aura, a Chevy Malibu or maybe the Saturn Vue Hybrid. Whatever it is, it will be American.
I'm really looking at the features: comfortable layout, a nice sound system, maybe even leather interior. I'm hoping for a MSRP of $30,000 that will come down considerably with incentives. I don't know if that'll get me the hybrid, but we'll see.
My thoughts on the Big 3 bailout: I was raised believing that it's extremely important to always buy American. I will purchase only from one of the Big 3.
The companies are trying to do the right thing to turn it around. They've been forced into sacrifices. I'm nervous about how involved the government is becoming. It seems that the money comes with strings attached.
NEXT: Daren Fike: 1997 Mercury Cougar