It’s amazing how inundated we are with advertising, but we’re not necessarily any clearer on what is the best product for us to buy. I can’t count how many American car commercials and advertisements I see in a week, on TV, on billboards and in the newspaper. Still, there’s not much in these commercials about quality (not enough at least), even less about buying American, and nothing on the importance of supporting the middle class by buying union.
I guess I’m like a lot of people in that advertising can pique my interests, but I put deeper trust into those people (and sources) that aren’t selling me anything. So, I checked Edmunds.com and Consumer Report and checked the overall rankings. There was a lot of buzz in the car columns and blogs about GM in general, but specifically the Chevy Malibu and how surprised people were by the improved quality. I checked multiple sources and it had very high rankings, so I decided to give it a look.
I drove out to a local Chevrolet dealer and walked into the showroom where a Chevy Camaro and a Chevy Corvette were on display. I couldn’t resist. I popped into the Camaro. Wow. I felt like I had just sat myself down inside a giant bullet. It just felt so solid. I don’t know how else to put it except that just sitting in it I felt like I could drive through a brick wall no problem in one of these. Unfortunately, the Camaro is produced by the CAW out of Canada and I have committed to buy an AMERICAN car. Sorry Canada!
I walked over the Corvette. The Corvette is UAW and American made. Talk about sexy! I stepped inside. Sleek and low to the ground, I could feel how this thing would just rule the streets. Ah, to be 25 again! It was an amazing car, but probably not the best fit for a working mom with two daughters.
As I got out of the dream car, I was approached by a polite and friendly young salesman named Tyler who didn’t give me the hard sell (which I liked). After a little discussion, we went outside to test drive a Chevy Malibu LTZ. The look was elegant and the interior classy with leather seats and polished wood. Once again, sitting in the car and starting it up, it just felt solid. Well-built. I wasn’t sitting in some tin can masquerading as an automobile here. This was the real deal.
I was pleasantly surprised to find that the Malibu gets better mileage than the Honda Accord or the Toyota Camry, especially since the car felt so grounded, in a good way. It had a great sound system, a smooth ride, was wonderfully quiet on the road, and is five star crash rating. It’s funny that I bought my Volvo because I thought it was “safer”, driving this Malibu I felt even more protected. Huh.
Tyler said to me as I found myself growing more attached to this baby, “You’re not going to find an American-made car made with American made parts that isn’t well put together. It’s really that simple.” I’m beginning to see what he meant.
After a drive around the block, I was starting to really like the Chevy Malibu. Really like it. But I’m not just going to jump at the first car I see. I need to do some more shopping. There’s a lot more American-made, union-built cars out there. I’ve got to take a look. I think I’ll do my patriotic duty over Labor Day weekend and spend part of it shopping for a union-made car.