Thoughts on car payments

lunchmoney

Woodpecker
My father has a 2002 Toyota pickup truck he bought brand new in October 2001. Over 350,000 miles later, the car still runs. He has replaced everything once (at least), but it runs. He has not had a car payment since January 2007. That is 13 years ago. Think about how much money he has at his disposal to grow his business, invest, donate/give, etc with that he otherwise would not had with a car payment.
 

presidentcarter

Ostrich
Gold Member
You can certainly make an argument for auto financing at near 0% interest rates. It makes clear financial sense if you can get a higher return on the rest of that money elsewhere in the time being. Add on top of that a good-value reliable car with reasonable repair costs that is a little ways down the depreciation curve already, and congratulations you've used the system to your advantage.

Most people don't do that though.
 

Batman_

Kingfisher
I've changed my perspective towards cars recently. Cars are a luxury, not a need.

It is true that in the US, the public transportation is abysmal enough to sometimes make car ownership a requirement. However, this is generally only true for commuting to work - in this day and age you can get almost anything delivered to your doorstep.

To me, it seems logical to minimize the need to own a car in the first place. Either work remotely or live in a thriving location that is within walking distance of your workplace, grocery stores, pharmacies. etc.

Cars are not only a depreciating asset, but a huge sunk cost. The amount you spend on gas, insurance, and maintenance is prosperous, regardless of whether you finance or not.

If you want to own a car because you have a huge disposible income and enjoy driving fun, sporty cars for their own sake, that makes a hell of a lot more sense than getting an F250 and driving 60 miles roundtrip five days a week to work because you insisted on getting a massive house in the surburbs.

Last point - I will say that owning a car, for many people, represents personal freedom to go anywhere they want at anytime. And that alone may justify car ownership. But to me that is still a luxury that the average person cannot afford and seldom takes advantage of anyway.
 

Batman_

Kingfisher
JiggyLordJr said:
Driving sucks. I don't think I've met anybody that truly likes it - they just have to. When you live a 10 miles from the nearest anything, your car literally becomes your lifeline. Funny the people that hamster away their cars as a "luxury."

Why do you think most of the wealthiest countries have robust public transit systems? Not just city-wide either, but nation-wide. In Japan, I was able to climb 3 mountains, go on several multi-day hikes, EXCLUSIVELY by using public transit. I didn't step into a car once, and I made it everywhere just fine. Countries with a "driving problem" actually have a "lack of public transit" problem. This could be solved, but, ya know, automotive lobbying.

Again, driving sucks. I'm sorry to hear that a lot of you depend on these monstrosities to get you everywhere. I'll keep using my legs.

I agree with your point, however I think driving is a blast. The only people who say driving isn't fun are people who have only driven boring cars. Have you ever driven a 6speed mazda miata?
 

Bitter End

Woodpecker
There is a big difference between the US or even South America compared to Europe. There are good arguments for keeping the center of historic cities pedestrian in Europe. However, I would like to have a car in a couple of years, just to practice my driving skills (got my license at 27 in a foreign country) and to drive outside of the big city. Ride sharing FB groups are also popular around, one can stumble upon some interesting folk or a future wife.

Talking about Mazdas, RX-8 is a beauty and one of the cheapest above average cars with very nice design and interior. It sold hundreds of thousands units worldwide.

In Central and Eastern Europe the taxes and regulations are lower than the West and one can buy cars with mileage well over 200 000. Not saying it is a good idea, but it shows why in many smaller cities with bad public transportation the cars mean a big deal. Thus a car that is too old in Switzerland can sell as a relatively new one in the Balkans.

The US is also different in the lower fuel price, it seems.
 

Greyman

Sparrow
America Was...and in my life time hopefully will always be, a car culture.

Gangsters, bootleggers, James Dean, the innovation of Henry Ford at the beginning of the second industrial revolution, 70's Iron...

Beyond the fact that in a WROL prepper fantasy, most people need to get at least 150 miles (half tank of gas) away from the city as some alluded to here. And in my mind, other than the Autobaun or Austrialian outback, the Americas are some of the best and diverse driving one can do. My best memories from childhood are road trips with my admittedly troubled family. I have a limited addition Ford Ranger FX4 with a factory twin stick transmission/transfer case, a BMW duel sport motorcycle, a late 90's Toyota camery, a Jeep Cherokee rock crawler, a host of dirtbikes...and a woman who enjoys riding them all with me. Yea I'm partial to slow, mainly dirt sports as fast cars and bikes get me in trouble and alot of tickets....

I pay cash for all my vehicles. I work on all my vehicles. I get the minimalist mindset when it comes to city living and vehicles. But for me, the cost of upkeep is minimal if your able to turn a wrench and like older cars and trucks before 2000's...

YMMV.
 

Hannibal

Ostrich
Gold Member
Buy a used car with cash and use a couple afternoons of free time to provide basic maintenance to your vehicle.

It's not difficult to change oil, check belts and hoses and replace/check fluids. Most cars fail due to negligence
 

Laus Deo

Pigeon
Have a car-related question I was hoping the community could help with but didn’t feel it warranted a new thread:

Do any of you know of a database or a quick way of finding out which new cars are not connected to the internet. I have been looking for a new car and am shocked with how many of them have their own sim cards and things like live traffic/news updates in their infotainment systems. It goes without saying that having my movements constantly recorded is not ideal, let alone the worst case scenario issues with hacking. An online search did not yield a database or list of non-connected cars.

Is my best bet a pre-2015ish used model?
 

presidentcarter

Ostrich
Gold Member
Have a car-related question I was hoping the community could help with but didn’t feel it warranted a new thread:

Do any of you know of a database or a quick way of finding out which new cars are not connected to the internet. I have been looking for a new car and am shocked with how many of them have their own sim cards and things like live traffic/news updates in their infotainment systems. It goes without saying that having my movements constantly recorded is not ideal, let alone the worst case scenario issues with hacking. An online search did not yield a database or list of non-connected cars.

Is my best bet a pre-2015ish used model?

Good question. Some car forums may have some sort of list of makes/models without NAV.

Maybe start with 2005-2010 year models that do not have any sort of screen (navi or just control in general). NAV screens were still an extra option back then.
 

Tytalus

Pelican
Taking the current economic climate aside, speaking with a guy I went to college with last week made me realize how many I know who have exorbitant car payments. In his case, he makes salaried roughly 200k a year, no kids and casually dating with no plans for marriage (36).

His current ride runs 745/mo. His mortgage is 1400, but he also shared he has nearly 70k in student loan debt.

Maybe I am risk adverse, or just plain cheap, but even with a net monthly income of close to 10k, I don't want over 5% going to a depreciating asset.

Thoughts?
Apparently the best thing to do is buy a car 2 years old. A big chunk of the depreciation has already happened, and you still qualify to purchase warranties.
 

get2choppaaa

Pelican
Not really insane because I don't think there are a ton of disaster scenerios that I'm worried about and it doesn't really shape my decisionmaking. The argument someone needs to own a car "just in case the shit hits the fan" is dumb. It's a lot of money to spend for something that will never happen. Fear of cities is very boomer. It's a boomer way to think.



I pretty much know a lot of "greenies" living in Denver and Seattle that would strongly disagree with you. Seattle and Denver happen to have a large number of people who have gone "car free" because those cities make it easier to do so with pretty good bike and pedestrian infrastructure. It's kind of the opposite of what you are saying, because the people who are active and care about the environment hate driving. Most of us car freers use Zipcar or a rental for the off time we need to go out to the country, we don't need to own a car 24/7 for that...
This is a very naive way of thinking. Your mentality of land of continual plenty is not realistic. The last year alone has showed that supply chian issues exist. These will be felt once China/Russia/Saudi Arabia crush the Petrodollar over the next 15 years and the American Empire ends.

I am not a boomer but have live in Houston for the last 2 years. There is zero autonomy in a city. When people lose power you have to rely on your neighbors in such a manner that you would not in the country... and you have little available resources around you to exploit if you cant use power and have to burn wood (good luck chopping a tree down town) this is a simple example but you get the idea.

Owning a car, that you can afford, and that suits your ability to leave a major area, is part of being an adult.
 

lunchmoney

Woodpecker
Taking the current economic climate aside, speaking with a guy I went to college with last week made me realize how many I know who have exorbitant car payments. In his case, he makes salaried roughly 200k a year, no kids and casually dating with no plans for marriage (36).

His current ride runs 745/mo. His mortgage is 1400, but he also shared he has nearly 70k in student loan debt.

Maybe I am risk adverse, or just plain cheap, but even with a net monthly income of close to 10k, I don't want over 5% going to a depreciating asset.

Thoughts?
The one year update to this thread -

My friend got rid of the enormous car payment in December when he accepted a new job in NYC.
 

rainy

Kingfisher
I've changed my perspective towards cars recently. Cars are a luxury, not a need.

It is true that in the US, the public transportation is abysmal enough to sometimes make car ownership a requirement. However, this is generally only true for commuting to work - in this day and age you can get almost anything delivered to your doorstep.

To me, it seems logical to minimize the need to own a car in the first place. Either work remotely or live in a thriving location that is within walking distance of your workplace, grocery stores, pharmacies. etc.

Cars are not only a depreciating asset, but a huge sunk cost. The amount you spend on gas, insurance, and maintenance is prosperous, regardless of whether you finance or not.

If you want to own a car because you have a huge disposible income and enjoy driving fun, sporty cars for their own sake, that makes a hell of a lot more sense than getting an F250 and driving 60 miles roundtrip five days a week to work because you insisted on getting a massive house in the surburbs.

Last point - I will say that owning a car, for many people, represents personal freedom to go anywhere they want at anytime. And that alone may justify car ownership. But to me that is still a luxury that the average person cannot afford and seldom takes advantage of anyway.
In Europe I have zero need for a car.

In the states I have every need for a car. If someone can’t afford a car and routine maintenance they have larger issues to deal with.
 

Cr33pin

Peacock
Gold Member
Car payments don't sound very enticing. I prefer to buy some kind of Japanese turbo 4banger and rice it all up.

But I would make room for car payments for a white c7 Corvette with a manual transmission. Also a new 2 door white Ford Bronco with the turbo 4 cylinder would wet my whistle

181265018_468768174331890_2777988317772670295_n.jpg
 
Car payments don't sound very enticing. I prefer to buy some kind of Japanese turbo 4banger and rice it all up.

But I would make room for car payments for a white c7 Corvette with a manual transmission. Also a new 2 door white Ford Bronco with the turbo 4 cylinder would wet my whistle

View attachment 30683
Patrician's taste, rice or muscle. Have you worked on any of the 4 cylinders in the past? They get a lot of flak from the "no replacement for displacement" boomer crowd, but I have seen some mean S2Ks and Mazdaspeeds blow away Shelbys. Turbo + manual + short wheelbase = recipe for fun.

Pax Christi.
 

nordle

Pigeon
I buy a 10 year old but otherwise perfect car for 4000 euros. I'll spend maybe 1000 more on this over a 5-10 year period. Then I will repeat this with another secondhand car. Here in rural Ireland, it's for sure a necessity. When I lived in cities, or when I was a nomad, I never had a car and it wasn't at all needed. I have money, but I can buy a small apartment for 100k, so would rather buy half an apartment instead of a 50k new car.
 
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