Coffee heat rising

Time to Buy a New Car?

Hmmmm…  The more I think about the kinda mealy-mouthed chatter Toyota’s service guy dispensed yesterday afternoon, the more dubious I become about the Dog Chariot. Using the finest beat-around-the-bush language, what the guy said really was that they couldn’t fix it, because the wiring inside the door is such a mess.

Apparently a previous owner (or their mechanic) dorked around with it, and that’s the source of our problem.

Did I hear the guy right?

If that’s correct, then there’s no functioning airbag on the driver’s side door. And that’s a problem, when you spend most of your driving hours in Phoenix’s homicidal traffic.

So…I’m wondering if maybe it’s time to get a new car.

Financially, this would be an advantageous moment: investments are running amok. There’s plenty of money to pay the difference between a trade-in and a new vehicle in cash.

One of Funny’s perspicacious readers bought a hybrid pickup. He’s beside himself with delight over the thing.

And today’s average gas price here is $5.04 a gallon — down from $5.27. Couple days ago I pumped a third of a tank of gas into the tank and paid $50 for the privilege.

If it’s reasonable to believe these prices will persist — and when have you heard of gasoline prices seriously going down? — then it would make sense to get a hybrid or fully electric vehicle. Soon.

Especially if the one I’m driving has a defect.

4 thoughts on “Time to Buy a New Car?”

  1. I was just talking to my friends last night about how this is a time to keep our existing vehicles in good condition and make them last, because car prices are through the roof – there are no used vehicles to be found, the “0 percent financing” offers of a few years ago are long gone and inventory is tight.

    I get monthly letters from the local Subaru dealership, regular as clockwork, wanting to buy my vehicle – and I drive a Mazda!

    • In general, the longer you can hang onto your vehicle, the better. Especially if you can set money aside during the time you’re clinging to the clunk, so as to have the largest possible down payment. Or even maybe be able to pay for the thing outright.

      That’s why my preference is to buy new cars — so they’ll run longer for me. If you can get three or four more years out of the vehicle than you would with a comparable used vehicle AND you can pay off the loan at the earliest possible moment, then it seems likely that owning it will cost you less over the length of time that you drive it — assuming, of course, that you take good care of it and manage to avoid accidents.

      This is strictly English-major math, though. One should make that calculation for oneself!

      • The whole idea is to keep you in debt to car dealerships permanently. Whence the “planned obsolescence” of the 1950s and 60s…a precursor of the same phenomenon we see today in many electronic devices.

Comments are closed.