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View Poll Results: How long to keep a car ?
till it drops 65 69.15%
At 100,000 miles 7 7.45%
I trade in my car frequently 2 2.13%
none of above 20 21.28%
Voters: 94. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 01-05-2009, 12:47 PM   #21
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I am thinking about it. My probable ER location has a personal property tax on cars based on their value, and it would come to an extra $400 a year or so on a new car. So, that would be another advantage to keeping my car. But also I came into some money last year, so I could afford a new car. After reading that Moemg is having car trouble, I am thinking that my car is only a year older so I might be next!

Maybe the smart thing to do would be to retire for a year or two, figure out what my ER expenses really are "in the real world" so to speak, and then buy a new car if that seems sensible at that time.
I would think the drive-it-til-it-dies approach is probably best for those still in the accumulation phase. If I recall correctly, you will be retiring at a somewhat older age(for this forum) with good retiree benefits so you can probably afford to trade-up more frequently than many. It's a tough choice but with only 37,000 miles on it it seems a little early to trade in regardless of what year it is.
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Old 01-05-2009, 01:21 PM   #22
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Since I had 2 free cars from work all my life I don't really know how long I'll keep the current car. Although at this point I plan on keeping it till it doesn't run. I drive a 98 ford taurus and so far so good.
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Old 01-05-2009, 01:30 PM   #23
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I would think the drive-it-til-it-dies approach is probably best for those still in the accumulation phase. If I recall correctly, you will be retiring at a somewhat older age(for this forum) with good retiree benefits so you can probably afford to trade-up more frequently than many. It's a tough choice but with only 37,000 miles on it it seems a little early to trade in regardless of what year it is.
I see your point. I am figuring that by the time I retire and move north, probably it will have about 45K - 50K miles on it. That still isn't much, but the car will be 10 years old.

I will be able to afford it. Or, I can afford to wait. I'd love to get a good deal on a new Toyota of some kind, since this one has been so reliable. Headlines are that Toyota sales were down 37% last year. Yet, I don't really know that prices for something like a Camry, Solara, or Highlander have dropped to any great extent.
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Old 01-05-2009, 02:06 PM   #24
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I see your point. I am figuring that by the time I retire and move north, probably it will have about 45K - 50K miles on it. That still isn't much, but the car will be 10 years old.

I will be able to afford it. Or, I can afford to wait. I'd love to get a good deal on a new Toyota of some kind, since this one has been so reliable. Headlines are that Toyota sales were down 37% last year. Yet, I don't really know that prices for something like a Camry, Solara, or Highlander have dropped to any great extent.
Just out of curiosity why would you be interested in a Highlander instead of say a Rav4. I figured a Highlander was just for those who needed a third row.
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Old 01-05-2009, 02:10 PM   #25
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My wife and I kept our previous vehicles for 17 and 16 years respectively. Both had >150K miles, and both were still in fair working order when we sold them.

We plan to keep our current vehicles for as long as they remain reliable. Once they start nickel and diming us with repairs, it'll be time to replace them. Our current vehicles are seven and three years old, so I'm hoping to get at least another eight to ten years from each.
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Old 01-05-2009, 02:17 PM   #26
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We have 105k on the 2002 Grand Cherokee, and we are still in love with it. Perfect sized SUV for a growing family. We hope to get 200k on it and then buy a Honda Odyssey.

I've noticed a lot of comments about "nickle and diming" and "not worth the repairs" i.e. the car is worth less than the mechanic work. I'm not sure I follow the logic. Sure, you could only get a couple grand for the car, but a $2,000 repair bill is nothing compared to the price of a new car. A $400 a month car payment covers a lot of repairs per year! As long as you don't have a lemon and get routine maintenance, you likely won't be able to rationalize the new car expense from a cost perspective.

I somewhat agree with the notion of worrying about breaking down in the 'hood at midnight, but how likely is that, really? Most likely you'll have a flat, and that can happen with any new car just as easily.
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Old 01-05-2009, 02:21 PM   #27
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We have 105k on the 2002 Grand Cherokee, and we are still in love with it. Perfect sized SUV for a growing family. We hope to get 200k on it and then buy a Honda Odyssey.

I've noticed a lot of comments about "nickle and diming" and "not worth the repairs" i.e. the car is worth less than the mechanic work. I'm not sure I follow the logic. Sure, you could only get a couple grand for the car, but a $2,000 repair bill is nothing compared to the price of a new car. A $400 a month car payment covers a lot of repairs per year! As long as you don't have a lemon and get routine maintenance, you likely won't be able to rationalize the new car expense from a cost perspective.

I somewhat agree with the notion of worrying about breaking down in the 'hood at midnight, but how likely is that, really? Most likely you'll have a flat, and that can happen with any new car just as easily.
Well, "not worth the repairs" could definitely come into play if you had a $2000 repair on a $2000 car. After all, the only parts that would be new would be the repaired part. The "other parts" would still be 10 years old or whatever........
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Old 01-05-2009, 02:26 PM   #28
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We're a drive it till it drops family. We had our first car for so long we ended up repainting it 3 times.

Right now we are in the market for a new vehicle and have been visiting a few lots.

Any recommendations?

I always indulge my fancy by sitting in a Cadillac and inhaling it's new car smell. There is nothing that smells quite like a new Cadillac. I refuse to cough up the bucks for one though. We want something that will last at least a decade & is good in snow.
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Old 01-05-2009, 02:33 PM   #29
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We're a drive it till it drops family. We had our first car for so long we ended up repainting it 3 times.

Right now we are in the market for a new vehicle and have been visiting a few lots.

Any recommendations?

I always indulge my fancy by sitting in a Cadillac and inhaling it's new car smell. There is nothing that smells quite like a new Cadillac. I refuse to cough up the bucks for one though. We want something that will last at least a decade & is good in snow.
Toyota Rav4 or Subaru Forester.
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Old 01-05-2009, 02:33 PM   #30
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Well, "not worth the repairs" could definitely come into play if you had a $2000 repair on a $2000 car. After all, the only parts that would be new would be the repaired part. The "other parts" would still be 10 years old or whatever........
Sure, so next year you have to outlay another $2000....but what car can you get for $180/month? Now if we mean "new" as in 2-3 year old then the formula starts looking a lot more favorable to me. We'll never buy new again, just one year knocks so much off the price tag.
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Old 01-05-2009, 02:40 PM   #31
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I've noticed a lot of comments about "nickle and diming" and "not worth the repairs" i.e. the car is worth less than the mechanic work. I'm not sure I follow the logic. Sure, you could only get a couple grand for the car, but a $2,000 repair bill is nothing compared to the price of a new car. A $400 a month car payment covers a lot of repairs per year! As long as you don't have a lemon and get routine maintenance, you likely won't be able to rationalize the new car expense from a cost perspective.

I somewhat agree with the notion of worrying about breaking down in the 'hood at midnight, but how likely is that, really? Most likely you'll have a flat, and that can happen with any new car just as easily.
By "nickel and diming" I mean repairs that I can't perform myself. I don't mind repairs such as water pump or alternator replacement. But, for example, I find electrical system problems to be a major pain. After 16 years, my last vehicle started having problems with the electric door locks, electric windows, and electronic instrumentation. It was still drivable, but it was annoying and the repairs would have been relatively expensive.
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Old 01-05-2009, 02:41 PM   #32
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Sure, so next year you have to outlay another $2000....but what car can you get for $180/month? Now if we mean "new" as in 2-3 year old then the formula starts looking a lot more favorable to me. We'll never buy new again, just one year knocks so much off the price tag.
Always 2-3 years old, always..........
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Old 01-05-2009, 02:55 PM   #33
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How long do I usually keep a car?....

....as long as I'm not aggravated with it. When it starts giving me trouble and I find myself calling it a piece of crap...it's gone!
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Old 01-05-2009, 03:32 PM   #34
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When I buy a car, I'm in for the long haul. Whichever dies first.

Generally I assume that I will keep the buggy at least 10 years, but it seems to be getting longer as I get older (wiser?). I'm driving a used "95 Camry now that I have driven since 1997 and it's got plenty of miles left before it is ready for the scrap heap.
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Old 01-05-2009, 04:01 PM   #35
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I drove a Volvo for 10 years. A VW water-cooled for 16 years. My wife drove a Taurus 8 years or so. I drove an Acura 5 years and it wsa totaled. My current car is 3 years old.

If my portfolio comes back well I don't plan to drive real old cars again. It took a lot of work, and I don't have a private garage where I live now. I see that you can get a 3 year lease on a 2009 Subaru Impreza, an excellent car, for $179/mo. If you don't drive a lot, and don't have kids or pets tearing up the interior, this deal sounds close to unbeatable for what will be a brand new car at purchase, and pretty new when you turn it in.

Ha
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Old 01-05-2009, 04:02 PM   #36
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how many miles were on that car when you finally retired it ?
72000
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Old 01-05-2009, 04:35 PM   #37
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Had my last one (Toyota) 16 years. Bought it new in 1992, and it had 252,000 miles when I sold it a few months ago. Someone offered me way more than the book value so I took it ($5,000). I had already purchased the replacement (Honda) and really did not need both. I hope the Honda lasts as long......
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Old 01-05-2009, 04:43 PM   #38
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7 to 10 years or 100,000 miles, or when new car bug hits!
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Old 01-05-2009, 05:03 PM   #39
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By "nickel and diming" I mean repairs that I can't perform myself. I don't mind repairs such as water pump or alternator replacement. But, for example, I find electrical system problems to be a major pain. After 16 years, my last vehicle started having problems with the electric door locks, electric windows, and electronic instrumentation. It was still drivable, but it was annoying and the repairs would have been relatively expensive.
That makes sense to me. Being miserable with tricky electrical issues is worth paying money to get rid of. My Jeep is only 7 years old and I suspect it won't make 16, probably closer to 12.
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Old 01-05-2009, 05:08 PM   #40
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When I was w*rking, I got a subsidized lease on new car every year as part of my compensation, but now that I'm retired, I plan to keep a car at least 10 years.
I'll bet you often forgot which car you were looking for in the parking lot!
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