Scary Time Car Shopping

Three years ago my 2014 Hyundai Sonata was totaled. I bought the car five years earlier from Hertz Car Sales, for just a hair under 14K. The Hyundai ,had less than a14,000 on the odometer and came with a warranty from the Hyundai* for six years and I believe 75,000 miles.

I didn’t immediately replace the Hyundai, because at that time I wanted a Tesla, and needed a larger down payment. Sacramento isn’t transit friendly and a car is necessary. Fortunately, I live downtown where transit is plentiful and Uber/Lyft is readily available, in addition to that I could rent a Gig car downtown if need be.

One year turned into the Pandemic. My lust for the Tesla, subsided after leaning the insurance premium was considerable more than what I was prepared for.

The uncertainly of the pandemic put all large purchases on hold. The world shut down, as we quietly panicked as we watched the daily covid deaths increase on the daily basis. The closing of the semi-conductor industry didn’t affect me.

While I don’t need a car, I miss the freedom of driving, getting lost and discovering Northern California while singing alone with the radio or listening to a random talk show on Sirrus XM. I revisited the scene of my success, Hertz Car Sales, except this time the cars were older and had much higher miles and considerably more expensive.

Some brand new cars are less expensive than four year old used cars. There is a shortage of used cars at most new car dealerships. Even though people are buying fewer new cars, its difficult to find one without a dealer mark up…. Especially the hybrids and Electric Cars where some of the dealers proudly marked up the Electric Cars $10,000 over sticker.

2014 Hyundai Sonata

Occasionally, I’ll find myself being driven home or work, in back seat of 2014 Hyundai Sonata and find myself missing the car. Every now and then, I check CarMax now and then. They seem to have every car made, to check price. 2014 Hyundai Sonata SE similar to the one I bought from Hertz, most of them have 70,000 to 85,000 miles on them. Pricing for these eight year old cars range from $14,500 to $16,000.

Here’s hoping the world will return to normal by 2024.


*When purchased new, Hyundai cars have a 10 year 100,000 warranty.

used Hyundai will have whatever is left of the 5-year/60,000 mile-bumper-to-bumper warranty, but the original 10 year/100,000 mile powertrain.