Found – used car for $8,516.58

Keith March 16th, 2008

Exactly one month after posting my request for a replacement car here and on my LinkedIn and Facebook networks, I picked up my new car. 

And I paid exactly $8,516.58!

It is a really nice, low-mileage 1999 Subaru Impreza (no, not a WRX).  It is in most ways a substantially better car that the Hyundai it is replacing.  It even comes with a number of bonuses, like mag wheels, roof bars and towbar.  Here it is, safely ensconced in the front yard:

Impreza

This is a fantastic case study of the power of social networking.  Within minutes of the original posting, I was receiving responses from both of the networks and in blog comments.  There were something like about eight responses all on the first day, with more coming in later.

One of the early responses from one LinkedIn contact (within about two hours) was regarding a friend moving to Dubai to live and work, and thus selling her car.  A few emails and phone calls later, things started to fall into place, and here we are!  I must say that negotiating the price did not require a great deal of effort…

The car met pretty much all of my criteria (in the original post), and exceeded many.  The one thing that was potentially a slight problem was that the car was in Sydney, not Melbourne!  However, we have dealt with this quite easily.  I had a work trip to Sydney for Thursday and Friday last week, and picked up the car on Thursday night.  Marilyn flew up on Frequent Flyer points on Friday night, and we have just spent the weekend on a leisurely drive home.

We stayed last night at The Old Bridge Inn, a really nice B&B in a restored hotel in South Gundagai – highly recommend it!

To everyone who offered various options – thank you so much for getting involved!  All of your offers are much appreciated.  These included:

  • “Will keep my ear to the ground.”
  • An Alfa 33 for sale – an earlier model at a lower price.
  • A slightly older, slightly higher mileage Hyundai Accent.
  • Contact details for a trusted second-hand car dealer with a good history of tracking down cars to specification.
  • “I have passed the details on to a contact in the trade who has found many reliable cars in the past.”
  • “Sorry to read about your car.”
  • “My husband works for a Wholesale Motor Trader – give him a call.”
  • Given the global nature of the networks, geography was an issue: “A 7-8 year old car in Los Angeles with less than 36,000 miles on it would be a rare find indeed.”
  • Another US-based respondent recommended a cool site for good used cars.

Once things started rolling on the Impreza, I left most of these on hold – but again, thanks so much, everyone!

As it turns out, the fact that this car is a bit larger and more robust, and came with a towbar, is going to be more useful than I could have imagined – but more of this in another post…

3 Responses to “Found – used car for $8,516.58”

  1. Cory Bankson 16 Mar 2008 at 11:01 pm

    Well done mate.

    Cory

  2. [...] So we have found our new car.  This certainly demonstrates the power of networks.  It also is an example of the use of a “hook” in a story.  Would the exercise have worked in the same way if I had just written: “Wanted – used car”?  A couple of my correspondents mentioned that it was the use of the precise amount of $8,516.58 in the title that attracted attention.  This is also perhaps reflects the “stickiness” factor discussed by Malcolm Gladwell in The Tipping Point.  (In fact, my use of a number like this was inspired by an old Sci-Fi short story by Larry Niven.) [...]

  3. [...] The new projects I have been working on have mostly come via the network of people that I have had the privilege to meet and work with over the last four years or so.  Much of my contact with these people has been via this site, and via Facebook and LinkedIn.  (Which have also helped me to find a new car!)  So it was very timely that one of my network colleagues has drawn my attention to this NY Times article on LinkedIn’s recent capital raising.  (Thanks, Sharon!)  [...]

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