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Old 08-28-2015, 11:46 AM   #21
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My first car was a 1998 Mercury Sable. My parents bought it for me for my 16th birthday in 2003. I had to pay the insurance on it and put gas in it. I have lots of great memories from high school and a couple years after with this car. I wrecked it in 2008 and bought a 2005 Dodge Stratus. It was a good, reliable car. My husband wrecked it in 2011 and I bought a 2008 Ford Edge. Again, a good, reliable vehicle with lots of room. Last year, I found out I would be traveling more for my job, so I decided I wanted something with better gas mileage. I sold the Edge and bought a 2012 Ford Focus hatchback. I haven't had it quite a year yet, but so far I haven't had any problems with it. It has excellent gas mileage - I average 39 MPG.

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Old 08-28-2015, 12:06 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by stepford View Post
I had good automotive LBYM habits from an early age. I've only owned 4 cars in my life, and driven each for at least 9 years and 200K miles.
Thank you. Thought I was the only one with such a short list.

1995 Nissan Quest (2007-2009) - Gift from aunt when I was just starting out. Traded in for a new 2009 Rav4 with the Cash for Clunkers program.

1996 Honda Accord (2008-2014) - Dad's old mileage vehicle. Donated to charity since it was starting to need lots of maintenance.

2009 Toyota Rav4 (2009-current)

That said, it's hard only having one vehicle for a family of 4 so now, we're thinking of getting another one. Either a Honda HR-V, Honda Fit or Toyota Prius C.

Planning on using the vehicles for as long as maintenance costs remain reasonable.

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Old 08-28-2015, 12:26 PM   #23
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Mazda 323..paid $1..1988 to 1991
Mazda 626 paid $11k 1991 to 2007
Honda Civic paid $16.5k 2007 to present

All paid for with cash.
“So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.”

Current AA: 75% Equity Funds / 15% Bonds / 5% Stable Value /2% Cash / 3% TIAA Traditional
Retired Mar 2014 at age 52, target WR: 0.0%,
Income from pension and rent
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Old 08-28-2015, 12:31 PM   #24
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65 Plymouth Valiant - silver w/ bucket seats and auto on the floor - my first car $550
67 Plymouth Valiant - white
*73 VW Super Beetle - yellow
72 VW Bus - red and white
72 VW Karman Ghia - candy apple red
72 VW Karman Ghia - red
*83 Toyota Tercel - light blue
70 VW Bus - brown and white
*87 Chevy S10 dark metallic grey
56 Chevy pickup - red
? Fiat Spyder 2000
71 Alfa Romeo Spyder - Nikki Lauda special edition
? Triumph Spitfire - white
81 Alfa Romeo Spyder - red
87 Alfa Romeo Quadrifoglio - red
71 VW Westfalia - red
87 BMW 733i - metallic dark blue
9? Buick Regal - brown
91 Town Car - white
93 Town Car - metallic gold
01 Ford Crown Victoria - silver
? Pontiac Vibe - black
*11 Ford F-150 - red
*12 Ford Escape - metallic dark grey

I think that is everything but not sure. I may have missed one in there somewhere. That's pretty much in order of owning. The * were bought new when I didn't have much of a choice at the time except for the last 2 which were retirement presents for my wife and I (she has the truck).

Then there are the 2 motorcycles I still have. Both are 2006 Suzuki C50 and Kawasaki 1600 Classic.

This was a memory challenge!

I really liked my 65 Valiant and all my VWs especially the Buses. Lots of great memories from the early 70s until 80 while traveling around the country in them. These I would have again if they were in new condition and the price was right.

The next vehicle if everything works out in the next year or so will be a red Elio.

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Old 08-28-2015, 12:42 PM   #25
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Only 4 cars.

1. Old, used, junky Chevy Nova. Thankfully, died after a few months.

2. Nissan Sentra (1985) - Slow. Only had about 66 horse power. Got rid of when would stall frequently. No fun yelled at during a stop light. Convinced me to never get a 2 door again.

3. Plymonth Neon (1996) - Owned for almost 20 years. Fun, peppy death trap of a car. Put on about 165K miles before finally said goodbye. Spent almost as much time in the service garage as at my place. That's an exaggeration, but seemed like every month there was a new repair. Convinced me to never get a sedan again.

4. Honda Fit (2012 model) - Nice utility car once I got used to the hidden blind spots. Love the cargo room, hatchback. Not much pep. Good for going from point A to point B.
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Old 08-28-2015, 01:38 PM   #26
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1. 1956 Plymouth Savoy. This was a "rescue car" i.e., my father bought it at the junkyard for $50 in 1966 and I had to put the transmission ($5 from the same junkyard) in so we could drive it. Oh, the transmission was "three-on-the-tree" and this was the car I learned to drive in.

2. 1966 Yamaha Twin Jet 100 (100 cc) motorcycle bought used, it was one year old. It had a two-cylinder two-stroke engine and would go 70 mph downhill with a tailwind and was so smoky that today the EPA would declare it a rolling air pollution alert. But it sure was fun. I rode it all through the winter and haven't been "quite right in the head" about cold weather since.

3. Having had my fill of toughing it out in winter weather the next year I bought a 1962 Mercury Montego (sp?) mostly because I could afford it, at $500. A neat feature of this car was that it had a Montgomery Ward aftermarket air conditioner that would ice up just a little before the thermostat cut the compressor and little pieces of ice would blow out that looked like snow. Friends thought that was cool. Sadly, the drive shaft was bent and eventually broke the transmission and I didn't feel like fooling with it.

4. Next car was a 1962 Ford Fairlane. It would barely get out of it's own way but it was reliable.

5. 1970 Plymouth Duster. I bought it from my mother when my father passed away in 1973 and paid what the blue book was on it at the time. It had the reliable 225 c.i. "slant six" in it. Despite the only options being an automatic transmission and an AM radio I kept that car for 15 years, replacing it only when the floor started rusting out, the rear axle was making noises, and the transmission was shifting funny so I figured it was time.

6. 1983 Buick Century. This was bought new with my soon-to-be ex (but I didn't know that at the time) and she kept the car and the payments. I think we had it for about six months before the split. I still had the Duster at the time.

7. 1985 Chevy Silverado 4WD pickup truck that I special ordered with the options that I wanted since I figured I'd be driving it for a very long time, which turned out to be 18 years. One of the guys at work asked "You're gonna go out on dates in a pickup truck?" and I said "Yeah. And if some girl doesn't want to go out with me because I drive a pickup that's fine. It'll save us both a lot of bother".

8. 2003 GMC 4WD pickup truck that I also ordered with the options I wanted. I still have that truck and at 94k miles now I expect to keep it quite a while longer.

The picture is of the '56 Plymouth. It needed some TLC from time to time, but it was paid for. Cleaned up it actually looked okay.
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Old 08-28-2015, 02:00 PM   #27
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Love the comments.

1. Old used bright yellow Honda civic. The kind Honda commercials made fun of when the new style Honda civic came out. Sold it to a child actor who came of age, and his parents held his small fortune in a trust fund so he wouldn't spend it all on teenage desires.

2. used Honda Accord. A salvage title. It looked fine when I bought it, but slowly parts became loose and rattled within a few years.

3. bright red Honda Prelude with sunroof. Ooh, I liked this one.

4. brand new Corvette C5. A whole lot of fun. But had some major mechanical issues like UNINTENDED ACCELERATION problem 3 years after I bought it. So GM cars had this too, but managed to keep it under the radar, unlike Toyota. Also, had a recall for the steering wheel would lock up, and it happened to me the day I was bringing it into the service center for this recall.

5. New Lexus SC430, the sport coupe with the hardtop convertible. It's 13 years old now, and so reliable it's become boring. Runs like new.

6. 2014 Tesla Model S. Got tired of waiting for a reason to sell the reliable Lexus, so I just went ahead and bought my first electric car. Incredible car. Love it.
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Old 08-28-2015, 02:09 PM   #28
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I'll play (DW)...
  • 1972 used Plymouth Barracuda - DW brought into the marriage, only a 318 though
  • 1973 used Chevy Vega GT (aluminum block BAD, but Chevy sleeved it for free even though out of warranty)
  • 1974 used Chevy Corvette - during the years the Corvette lost it’s way, sorta fast but cornered on it's door handles
  • 1976 used Ford Granada - what was I thinking, cheap that's it
  • 1978 new Toyota Celica - my first new car, hit-n-run while parked at 1500 miles (prob by a co-worker), my faith in humanity may never recover
    • 1980 Married
  • 1981 new Honda Civic - just over $5K new, WOW, bulletproof reliable
  • 1982 new Honda Prelude - last car with payments, drove it to 164K miles, bulletproof reliable
  • 1986 used BMW 325es - great car, DW drove 9 years
  • 1990 used Chevy Lumina APV - company car, what a POS and ugly too, only had to drive it 9 months thank goodness
  • 1991 new Honda CRX - rollerskate GT, great fun, bulletproof reliable, but if ever in an accident…
  • 1996 new Volvo 850GLT - liked it until AC failed under warranty, and dealer nursed it out of warranty and stuck me with a $1300 repair
  • 1997 new Nissan Maxima - nice enough, very quiet, but emissions systems failed every Sept like clockwork
  • 2001 new Audi TT - fantastic car until first brake job, $1200, replaced all pads and vented rotors by design, sold before next brake job…
  • 2003 new Honda Element - loved it, drove it 9 years, shoulda kept it, bulletproof reliable
  • 2007 new Toyota Camry Hybrid - DW goes eco on me, reliable but Nav system failed $$$
  • 2012 new Toyota Prius - driving appliance, nice car, and I'll keep it a long time, but not sure I’d buy another
My parents have had way too many to mention but the cooler cars included an 60's Austin-Healey 3000, 63 Continental w suicide doors, 64 Mustang, 67 GTO, Mercedes 300, BMW 535, etc. They've had successive Honda's since they got too old to enjoy driving...
No one agrees with other people's opinions; they merely agree with their own opinions -- expressed by somebody else. Sydney Tremayne
Retired Jun 2011 at age 57

Target AA: 45% equity funds / 30% bond funds / 25% cash - radically changed Nov 2018
Target WR: Approx 2.5% Approx 20% SI (secure income, SS only)
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Old 08-28-2015, 02:10 PM   #29
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As best I can recall:

72 CZ 125
63 MG Midget
65 MG Midget
72 MG Midget
63 Dodge Dart
74 F250
74 Custom 500 (Ex-Illinois State Interceptor)
74 Mustang II
74 Dodge Dart
74 HD 350
82 KZ440
74 Torino (The Starsky and Hutch one)
7? VW Rabbit
78 Mustang II
77 Full-size Ford Bronco
7? Ford Station Wagon
80 Mustang II
84 S-10 Blaze (First and LAST GM product ever purchased)
79 Sunbird (Given, not purchased)
80 VW Rabbit GTI
78 Full-size Ford Bronco
94 Ford Escort Wagon
95 Jeep Wrangler
96 Buick LeSabre (Given, not purchased)
98 CB1000
99 Plymouth Voyager
01? Dodge Dakota
05 VW Jetta TDI
09 Suzuki SX-4
13 RAM 1500
15 Toyota Rav 4

Liked most of them. It's the stinkers that stand out. I'll never again by a GM product and the Suzuki SX-4 was nothing but trouble.
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Old 08-28-2015, 02:49 PM   #30
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As best I can remember:

1. 1967 Volkswagen bug (parents car, learned to drive on it, DB and I shared it early in high school)
2. 1969 Mercury station wagon (paid $100, lasted thru high school and 1 year after, had wood panels)
3. 1969 Volkswagen bug (paid $900, got me thru college, very reliable, fun to drive)
4. 1984 Chevrolet Cavalier (used, first car loan, reliable but ugly)
5. 1989 Mitsubishi Mirage (first new car when I started at Megacorp, got 45 MPG, great commuter car)
6. 1993 Ford Ranger (everyone in Texas gets a truck eventually)
7. 1997 Ford Ranger (extended cab so hauling kids was an option, still have it but only use for hauling stuff)
8. 2001 Chevrolet Suburban (DW's soccer-Mom wheels, passed down to me when the Ranger hit 160K)

1. 1981 Toyota Celica (her prized possession after graduating college and starting at Megacorp)
2. 1989 Toyota Camry (said goodbye to the Celica, 1st child, needed 4 doors and a little more room)
3. 1993 Mercury Villager (very nice minivan, but with child #2 needed something bigger)
4. 1997 Dodge Caravan (bigger, but otherwise total cr@p)
5. 2001 Chevrolet Suburban (see #8 in my list, has served us well)
6. 2006 BMW 325i (trophy car turned money pit, hopefully gone soon, but DW likes it)
Retired at 52 in July 2013. On to better things...
AA: 55% stock, 15% real estate, 27% bonds, 3% cash
WR: 2.0% SI: 2 pensions, some rental income, SS later
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Old 08-28-2015, 03:08 PM   #31
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BMW 316: first car, crashed within two weeks
Nissan primera: had that one for three years or so
BMW Z3: owned it four years, got torched by an arsonist

Haven't owned a car since. Did have lease company cars:
* BMW 320 Touring
* VW Touran
* BMW 318

Since five years again completely car free. Did I mention I like driving a BMW
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Old 08-28-2015, 08:13 PM   #32
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The first car I ever drove was a 1960 Ford Falcon "tudor" station wagon. I must have been 12. Dad picked it up cheap, drove it home and only then discovered it needed a ring job. He gave me a wrench and told me to crawl under the car and loosen the oil pan. We made the repairs in the crudest possible way but the little six somehow found a way to run. I’ve been tinkering under the hood ever since.

After I got out of high school and enrolled in the local community college, the folks gave me my choice of two cars for wheels: Grandpa’s sweet little ‘64 Dodge Dart, ivory with red upholstery, 225 slant six and pushbutton automatic, or my uncle’s old car, a ‘65 Ford Custom stripper with three on the tree. Unk was hard on cars, but his Ford had a radio and the Dodge didn’t. I took the Ford. I still use that decision as a guidepost for my potential to do stupid things, but I console myself with the knowledge that I would have killed the lovely, innocent Dart in a year or two.

Next: 1964 Ford Fairlane, another three-on-the-tree stripper, and hand-me-down from Mom and Dad. It got me most of the way through college but eventually blew a head gasket. It was pretty clapped out at that point, a 12-year-old car with over 100K on the clock. Not worth fixing.

The next couple cars came from the federal government’s Interagency Motor Pool auctions, just stopgap wheels. Won’t go into a lot of detail.

Next: my first foreign car, a 1975 Volkswagen Dasher. I kept it alive for seven years despite its best efforts to rest at the side of the road. In the process I learned that VWs have great fundamental engineering but then cheap out on components, leaving you cursing things like broken door handles while the engine just goes and goes.

Bought a new 1985 Mercury Lynx (Ford Escort), manual trans. Reliable basic transportation, easy to work on, but not built to last. I traded it in on an ‘89 Ford Probe (with Mazda 626 engine and manual trans). Lovely car for the price. Liked it so much that my new wife and I got another for her.

DW got a ‘95 Mazda Millenia in ‘97. Lovely car. Great suspension. The automatic transmission was a little unresponsive, but you could disengage the lockup torque converter immediately with a button on the shifter lever.

After my Probe gave up the ghost shortly thereafter, I found myself at a philosophical crossroads. I could drop $20K on another late-model used luxury car like the Millenia or buy a new POS for maybe $12K. But I noticed that there were a lot of well-kept, 10-year-old BMWs and Mercedes-Benzes on the market for a lot less. I got an ‘87 325ic, then went bottom-feeding with an ‘82 Merc 300CD for $2K. Then an ‘82 300TD, which I finally sold last night. My current daily driver is a ‘95 BMW 540i, which I’ve driven for more than nine years and 200K miles.

My one misstep in my European adventure was an ‘87 Audi 4000cs quattro. I had to try VW’s groundbreaking AWD system, and sure enough, the AWD was the only thing that didn’t break. The car was great fun, but not worth the trouble that VW built into it.

My wife went from Mazda to Toyota and is on her second Prius -- first a used 2001 and more recently a used 2007 Touring. Reliable, thrifty cars but not a lot of fun.
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Old 08-28-2015, 09:14 PM   #33
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My list to the best of my recollection:

1948 Cadillac
1959 Olds - Inherited from an Uncle
1958 Jaguar Mk2 (soon realized I did not make enough money to own this)
1962 Rambler Ambassador
1963 VW bus
1968 Volvo 142
1969 Volvo 160
1982 Mercury Topaz
1974 IH Scout
1986 Mustang GT
1993 Ford Explorer
1997 Ford Explorer
2001 Mercury Mountaineer
2004 Ford Explorer
2007 Lincoln MKX
"Don't take life so serious, son. It ain't nohow permanent." Pogo Possum (Walt Kelly)
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Old 08-28-2015, 09:33 PM   #34
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1987 Toyota pickup: Go it when it was used and abused, hood held down by a cotter pin and a bungie cord, headlights would go out when you hit a big bump and go back on with the next bump.
1995 Ford Escort wagon: first reliable car I owned.
1996 Chevy Cavalier: No AC and sold after 18 months.
2003 Subaru Legacy wagon: Ran it for 150k through horrible traffic and all kinds of weather.
2005 Honda Odyssey: the vehicle the most like a washing machine that I have ever owned. Still have it.
2011 F150: capable tow vehicle and mobile command post.
"There are three kinds of men. The one that learns by reading. The few who learn by observation. The rest have to pee on the electric fence for themselves."

- Will Rogers
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Old 08-28-2015, 09:33 PM   #35
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Posts: 484
OK, I'll play!
  1. '55 GMC 3/4 ton pickup truck. My high school wheels, this had a Pontiac V8 under the hood. Got about 2.5 mpg, and it sure could smoke the tires.
  2. '65 Corvair Monza, had a blast with this one and number 2.
  3. '70 Opel Kadett wagon, slid it into the ditch one night, getting a little too cocky being a wannabe rally driver.
  4. '65 Corvair Monza (#2) more fun. Got good at pulling the engine to fix stuff I broke. Had it down to about 45 minutes start to finish.
  5. '75 Triumph TR7 - the shape of things to come! Took a bit of ribbing about building a wedge shaped garage.
  6. '78 Honda Civic - got practical, and bored to tears.
  7. '80 Toyota Celica GT, with a sunroof! Yeah, let the good times roll.
  8. '87 Jeep Comanche pickup, two days after I bought it Chrysler bought Jeep from American Motors. Was a nice little truck, I think it was the longest I ever kept a vehicle.
  9. '89 BMW K100RS/ABS, first production motorcycle to have anti-lock brakes.
  10. '99 Ford Escape '98-'00. First leased vehicle, and it was loaded with options.
  11. '00 Ford F250 'light duty' '00-'02, another lease...
  12. '02 Ford F250 2yr 02-04, and yet another lease; starting to sense this ain't right!
  13. BMW 318 '04-'06 Bought used to get me out of the lease treadmill.
  14. '94 BMW K1100LT Another motorcycle, this one was a rebuilder I put together and sold a year later.
  15. '98 BMW R1100GS, dual sport motorcycle bought new in '98, still own it.
  16. '06 Honda Ridgeline 3yr '06-'09, Tried another lease, when it was up there was nothing new I wanted.
  17. '02 Porsche Boxster Bought used on 7/7/07, DW and I decided to do something fun. Still own it, great on gas and fun for weekend getaways.
  18. '04 BMW X3 '09-'12 Bought used to replace the Honda Ridgeline.
  19. '06 Porsche Cayenne S, Titanium Edition. This replaced the BMW X3, and made it seem sparse and utilitarian in comparison. Right now this is the everyday driver. Buying used and carefully examining condition is the way to go on these, let the original owners take the depreciation hit. Speaking of a hit, about a mile from our driveway 1 month after I bought it a suicidal deer ran out of nowhere and temporarily took it out of commission. Insurance paid to make it good again.
  20. '05 Ford F150 XLT Bought this for my daily driver replacement while the Cayenne was getting put back together. Kind of ratty body, but not the worst. Planned on keeping it, but got T-boned by a guy in a Subaru WRX flying though a roundabout, sent me airborne for over a 100 feet. Both vehicles totaled. I didn't carry collision on it; thinking of a dented fender, big deal. Lesson learned. Still waiting for his insurance to settle on that, of course his adjuster says it was my fault although police report and witnesses beg to differ.
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Old 08-28-2015, 09:38 PM   #36
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Location: The Woodlands, TX
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I may forget a few in this list:

1951 Chev 4 door (first car)
1941 Plymouth 4 door
1948 Plymouth 4 door
1955 Chev 2 dr 190 sedan (race car) - I was 18 at the time
1959 Pontiac Bonneville 4 door
1955 Pontiac Starchief 2 door (2nd race car)
1963 Chev Impala Convertible (sexy car)
1959 Chev Stepside Pick Up (3rd race vehicle)
1968 VW Beetle
1968 Chev Malibu SS (first new car)
1964 Checv Pick Up Truck
Several 1960's VW beetles
1970 VW Bus
1964 Pontiac Bonneville
1965 Corvette Stingray roadster (should have kept this one for the long haul)
1976 Honda Civic (one of the first year's imports)
1968 Chev Malibu SS Convertible
1973 VW Super Beetle
1974 Chev Malibu (rust bucket and all around lousy car)
1978 Chev Blazer
1981 Chev diesel station wagon (what a bad deal)
1984 Olds Delta 88 2 door
1985 Mazda B2000 truck
1986 Ford Aerostar Van
1992 Ford Crown Victoria
1989 Ford Mustang GT Convertible
1995 Chev Silverado Pick Up
1992 Ford Probe
1996 Mercury Cougar
2005 Hyundai XG 350
2001, 2003 & 2006 VW Jetta diesels
2013 Hyundai Santa Fe
2014 VW Passat Diesel

There were about 8 motorcycles along the way, everything from a Bultaco Matador Motocross bike to a Harley Sportster (and in between Jap and British bikes).

There were a few cars bought to re-sell (but we drove for a while) and I didn't count the cars the kids had. Here is a picture of my first car (51 Chev with a 52 Grill):

First Car 1952 Chev.jpg
Wear Italian, Kiss French, Drink Russian, Drive German
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Old 08-28-2015, 09:50 PM   #37
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Graduated from college in 1985 and bought a Chevy Cavalier. Ran it into the ground around 1999, after about 150,000 miles. My wife had a 1992 Camry, so I didn't buy another car. We ran that Camry into the ground in 2012 after 250,000 miles. Bought another Camry. So I'm somewhat proud and embarrassed to say that at age 53, I've only bought two cars!
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Old 08-28-2015, 09:53 PM   #38
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How are you people FIRE-ing after all those cars? I've kept mine for 10 to 25 years and had only 3.
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Old 08-28-2015, 10:04 PM   #39
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Originally Posted by GrayHare View Post
How are you people FIRE-ing after all those cars? I've kept mine for 10 to 25 years and had only 3.
Buy them (most) used and cheap, keep them in good shape, resell for almost (or more) than you paid for them.
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Old 08-29-2015, 01:13 AM   #40
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1992-2006 Mercury Topaz

2000 Pontiac Grand Am

2003 Ford Ranger

My 2¢ is only worth a penny.
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