You may remember in a blog post I wrote 13 March 2014 that my 2006 Chevy Cobalt is one of 1.6 million cars recalled by GM.

2013MalibuOn 16 March 2014, I wrote how GM offered to put me in a loaner until my Chevy was repaired.  I took them up on the offer and have been driving a luxurious 2013 Chevrolet Malibu LTZ 2.0T.  The seat warmers are really cool!

GM will also give me a $500 allowance toward a new Chevy.  You may also remember my USBank has cleared me for a $6,500 car loan.

The thing is, I have not dared to drive that rental car very much.  Yesterday (30 March 2014) was the first time I drove it more than 10 miles – most days it just sits.  I’m afraid I’ll hurt the thing, and sure enough – self-fulling prophecy – I scrapped a tire making a wide U-turn.  Yesterday deserved a gamble, however, so I could celebrate my ex’s birthday.

Still, this whole thing about the recall, the loaner, and my Cobalt sitting in a parking lot waiting for repairs has made me very, very nervous.

I test-drove three cars.  Two cars were in worse shape than mine, and cost $10,000.  A third car cost $13,000 and was roughly in the same condition as my Cobalt, but with many more miles.  No deal.  (For fun, I also test-drove a Jaguar, but that is another story.)

So, I went back to talk again to the general manager of my local GM dealership.  He had told me earlier that my Cobalt value on trade-in was something like $3,300 – $,4000.  If I sold it to a private party, I might get as much as $5,000.

Since our first talk,. GM has had even more trouble with recalls, and CEO Mary Teresa Barra is in really hot water.  I think she is being asked to testify before several different hearings.  This makes me very shaky about that projected value of my Cobalt – $3,300 – $5,000?  Really?

I know I for one would never pay $5,000 for a 2006 Chevy Cobalt that had just been recalled because the model had been blamed for 13 deaths!

As we were talking, I also told my local manager about some work I had been planning to do on the car BEFORE all this recall talk started.  I’ve been concerned about the shocks and the alignment, for starters.

“I asked your service manager to give it the once-over,” I told my local manager,  “but I think he misunderstood me.  I wanted him to put my car up on a hoist NOW so we could assess how much more work needs to be done on it.  He must have thought he was going to wait until he started doing the ignition and air-bag repairs.  What do you suggest?  I really don’t know what to do?”

“If that Cobalt needs additional repairs of $1,000 or more – well, I hope you see my dilemma.  Recall.  Repairs.  Zero value.

To make a long story short, the local manager did some calling back to GM headquarters, and it looks like their combined heads have come up with a plan.

Initally, I thoguht we wew going to sign the papers later today (1 April 201), that go something like this:
GM will buy my 2006 Cobalt from me for twice the dealer auction value (they don’t use Kelly Blue Book values any longer).  In other words – $7 – $8.000 dollars.

If I kick in what the bank will loan me, we are now up to $14,000 or so – give or take.

Your quick mind may have already seen the problem,  The 2013 Chevrolet Malibu LTZ 2.0T is worth more that $23,000.  That means I am $9,000 short.  I told the manager, “But I have test driven cars that sell for much less than the Malibu – cars the bank says I can afford – and they just aren’t worth the move.”

“In my mind, ” I went on,” every day my Cobalt sits in your parking lot waiting for repairs, it looses hundreds and hundreds of dollars.”

More conferring with GM headquarters.

End result, it looks like they are going to swap me almost strait=acoss – my Cobalt for there Malibu.  Sort of a good-will measure. With all the bad publicity, they hope to make me a good example of how GM still loves and cares for their customers.  (All this time I was telling myself I would never buy another Chevy)>

So, effective 1 April 2014, and as soon as the paperwork can be figured out, yours truly will continue driving a beautiful 2013 Chevrolet Malibu LTZ 2.0T

A great way to start April!




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