As a seminarian I pretty much had to take whatever car was available. When you are poor, the pickings are slim to non-existent. One of my favorite cars was a 1979 Ford LTD that I drove (into the ground) in the late 90's. Inside it was luxurious. The front seat was as long as the davenport in your living room. The outside of the car, however, looked as though it was stored in a wet salt mine. Occasionally I would have to pull over and rip off whatever happened to be dragging along the road.
I remember being all excited that it has a cassette player in it and immediately ran in the house to get my tapes to drive around and listen to music. But they didn't fit. So I turned them the other way and they fell in. It was then that I realized that it was a 8 track player. I eventually sold that car for $50 which was twice as much as the junk yard offered.
So when I became a priest and would have some income I thought it would be a blast to go out and buy a car - one that I actually chose. "Not so the wicked not so!" It turned out to be one of the least favorite things I ever did. So in future years I took to a tactic that was much more pain free. I go into a dealer (they really are rather good to me) with a list of what I want in a used car and how much money I have and tell them to call me when they have the car they think I should have. This was this time's list:
So they eventually called me with "the car." It had a lot more gee gaws on it than I wanted. I pointed at the dash and said, "See all this? I don't want this."
"Ah Father," the dealer said back to me, "When you have leathers seats, all this becomes pretty much standard."
"But I don't want leather seats," I protested. "I simply don't want clothes seats because the dog hair weaves its way into the fabric and is impossible to get out."
"Father," he said with an apologetic look, "this isn't the 70s. There IS only clothe and leather."
So I got a car, which is a little more car than I wanted or had bargained for but I count my blessings. And that's how I got a car that I barely even looked at before buying WHICH IS A DANGEROUS THING TO DO. Maybe not for the reason you are thinking. It is for this reason: