Friday, August 22, 2008

Statistically, I Have a Great Man!

I have to brag about (and poke fun at) my husband a little bit. First of all, he just got his grade for his first class of his MBA program, which was a statistics class. He got an A!!! May the rest of his classes go so well.

He has also put his new knowledge to work in doing research for buying us a new car. His hot pink (OK, maroon with a pinkish hue) Altima has died, after we put over $700 into this summer trying to keep it alive. (Harrison has said several things like, "I'm sad about daddy's car. That it died.") Anyway, in true Nate fashion, a numbers man through and through, he has come up with quite a system including an Excel spreadsheet with links to each car to help us decide on a new car. Here it is in his own words, which I will make purple, in honor of his favorite color (this is from an e-mail he sent to my mom). I don't expect anyone to read the whole thing, the first few lines will give you the gist and the length will give you the scope of the thoroughness:

"My calculations are as follows and I apologize if it's a little convoluted:I'm expecting the Pilot to reach 200,000 miles, so I subtract the current miles of each Pilot from 200,000 to see how many more miles the vehicle will go. Then I divide that by 13,000 miles because that's our driving average per year on the Civic over the last 7 years. The resulting number tells me how many years it will take to get to 200,000miles. Then I divide the current price of the Pilot by the number of years it has left and end up with the price per year. I did this calculation for every Pilot under $15,000 on yahoo autos in Denver and Salt Lake/Utah County (see tab 'Pilots in CO' and 'Pilots in UT'). The sorted results are in the 'Results' tab. There are 3 types of Pilots;the LX (fewest bells and whistles), the EX, and the EX-L (same as EX but with leather. I think yours is an EX-L). As you can see from the Results tab, the cheapest Pilot in dollars per year is an LX in Utah at $1053 per year. The next cheapest was an LX in CO at $1090, but I called in on that one yesterday, and it was sold that morning. The ones I'm interested in are ones under $1200 dollars per year. Utah offers 22 under $1200, and CO only offers 7. I also ran some stats (since I just completed a stat class), and here are the results:
Type # avail Average Minimum Median Maximum
EX-L 14 1451.2 1257.9 1425.7 1910.9
EX 14 1426.0 1154.2 1410.3 1865.2
LX 10 1249.9 1090.3 1200.5 1457.4
Type # avail Average Minimum Median Maximum
EX-L 13 1291.2 1169.7 1273.3 1536.8
EX 28 1205.3 1102.3 1195.7 1516.1
LX 4 1129.4 1053.2 1115.1 1234.1

So on average, if I buy a Pilot in Utah, I'm saving myself at least $100 per year over 10+ years which means well over $1000. If I can save myself over $1000 by buying in Utah, then it's worth it for me to go there. However, if I can find another deal like the LX in Denver that was already sold, then I'd just buy it here. Hopefully I can find that type of deal in the next couple days before Andrew gets here. As far as gas mileage goes, the Toyota Sienna AWD gets 16 to 22 mpg (as opposed to the 2WD version that gets 17 to 24). The Pilot gets 15 to20. A savings of 2mpg over 150,000 miles at $4 per gallon of gas will be a savings of $3332. The cheapest AWD Sienna in Utah is about $4000 more than its Pilot equivalent (same features, same miles). And I can't seem to find any AWD Siennas in Denver that are under $20,000. So that's my analysis so far. The guy who had the cheap Pilot in Denver said he's getting more on Friday. So he told me to call back Friday afternoon to see what kind of deal he can get me. If that doesn't pan out, then I'll probably jump in with Andrew and go to 2 dealers in Utah on Saturday (Rand's and Forrest Motors). Oh, there are links to each car that I'm interested in on the 'Results' tab as well as the dealership that has it. Hopefully this all makes sense. "

That man cracks me up! I'm just glad his looks and style don't reflect his inner nerdiness! I love that he knows how to quantify it all and make a well-informed and rational decision. I just keep saying, "Get me a reliable, safe car that's not white." No offense, but I don't like white cars. By the end of this weekend, there should be a post about our new car.


Koenig Family Blog said...

Haha, you guys will be true "highlands ranchers" if you buy a pilot!!! That is the first thing Dave and I noticed when we moved here, EVERYONE has one!!! (Not that we are much better with our sequoia) Here's to a great deal! Nathan sounds like Dave- it took us almost two years before we found the great deal we did on our sequoia. He sold cars for 4 years while in school... which explains a lot... He ended up driving out to Missouri of all places to get it! (after finding the deal on ebay?!?!) Can't wait to see your non-white pilot!

Megan B said...

Justin and Nate would get along VERY well. I actually was able to follow his reasoning, LOL :)

Melissa said...

That is so funny. Jacob does spreadsheets for everything, too. Now I know he's not as nerdy as I thought. Or maybe there are more nerdy guys out there than I thought....

Nash said...

Wait, we have an odyssey, how come he's not looking at those? What makes him like the Sequoia over Odyssey? Aren't they cheaper than a pilot?
That is so funny. paul is bad, but not to the extent of a stat sheet. Is he also taking into account the travel to Utah?

Brillig said...

First of all, hi! I tracked you down! It was so fun talking with you last night.

Secondly, yay for an A! I figure if y'all can get the car you want and save money, then... well... why not? Hahaha. I've never seen the spreadsheet approach though. :-D

John & Shauna said...

Oh my goodness. Doesn't edmunds break down all that nonsense? I did have two questions for Nate. What about the difference in tax rates? Isn't it cheaper here? Also, you have to figure the price of gas from Utah will be an added expense. Wow. Impressive though. Good luck. Glad you guys are home.

John & Shauna said...

One more thing.... the dvd in the pilot is worth the $1400. Every single dime. Did he take that into account?

Katie said...

I love my pilot! I'm for Honda all the way! I hope that he finds you the best deal. I haven't commented a lot lately but I am really enjoying your blog. I makes me feel like we are having a conversation. I was at target yesterday and If you haven't been there lately the dollar section has tons of sipderman stuff! Just FYI. Love and Miss you!

Koenig Family Blog said...

- Dave has said you can put in an after factory DVD player for A LOT cheaper than if you get them to do it FYI money savers ;)

Jenna said...

I loved this. (And read the entire thing.) It's EXACTLY what Chris would do!! Hooray for hubby's with lots of inner nerdiness.