Sadly I can not recommend the sales staff highly. The first guy we talked to was really good and nice, but he wasn't around the next time we went in, so we instead got a guy who was so much the stereotypical care salesman that it was funny. When we were picking the van up today Warren actually felt compelled to tell the guy to talk to me because I was the one buying the car. Of course I will never have to deal with this person again, so it doesn't matter, but perhaps if the dealership asks about my experience I will clue his manager into the fact that perhaps this guy needs some remedial help. Also, insulting the way German cars handle to a VW owner is perhaps not the best way to win friends and influence people. I was not giving up the VW because I was displeased at the way it drove, I was replacing it because my needs had very clearly changed.
The new vehicle is very nice in many respects once you get past the minivanness of it. It has the fancy navigation feature, and a DVD player for pacifying the occupants of the rear two rows, and this handy mirror that lets me actually see what Margaret is up to without turning around. Since I expect to be taking car trips to see grandparents and also carting visiting grandparents around town it's a good thing to have. Also, I am hoping the sheer size of the vehicle will cut down on the territorial battles that Warren and I both remember having about the back seat of the family car, though this is mostly likely wishful thinking on my part.
Speaking of size, it occurs to me that I have now surpassed treptoplax in the category of available passenger space in a vehicle parked at work (since harrock takes the T instead of driving his van.) I think I just became the designated person to drive when we eat out as a group.
There is one thing that has not changed: My old car was dark blue with a gray leather interior, and the new van is dark blue with a gray leather interior.