The 2005 Nissan Altima - August 25, 2008
After less than a year of a less than wonderful experience with our 1999 BMW 323i, we decided to part ways with it in August 2008. After spending quite a bit to apply a couple significant fixes, and seeing more coming down the road in the near future, we decided to cut our losses on it and look for something else.
We've had outstanding experiences with our Nissans - a 1997 Altima with 140,000+ miles that just keeps on going, and our 1998 Maxima that unfortunately got totaled in 2007. So we decided to look specifically for a late-model Altima. We found what we were looking for at Texas Nissan of Grapevine: a 2005 Altima 2.5S. We spent the extra money for something newer with fewer miles rather than older with more fancy stuff - the 2.5S Special Edition has power seats and stereo controls on the steering wheel - don't need them. The 2.5SL has leather seats - don't need them. The 2.5SE is the Sport Edition with alloy wheels, premium Bose sound system, rear spoiler, and sun roof - don't need them. The 3.5SE has the 3.5 litre 6-cylinder engine - don't need it. Our 2.5S has a cloth interior, no power seats, no sun roof, no alloy wheels, no premium sound system, no leather, no spoiler, no steering wheel radio controls... and no higher price tag to go along with it!
Of course, the dealership said it cost too much and offered us too little for our trade in. But, of course, when we were leaving and telling them we'd keep looking around, thousands of dollars started dropping off. We ended up arriving at the deal we were aiming for, and decided we'd get it if it checked out OK with our own mechanics. We took it to Firestone to have them do an inspection (free for us with coupon!), and it checked out "great" - new brakes, new tires, no leaks, no loose belts or hoses, no alignment or suspension problems - everything in great working order. So we paid the balance and traded titles on Monday, August 25 and it’s ours! WooHoo!