At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

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soupcxan
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At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by soupcxan » Mon Dec 26, 2016 9:41 am

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Tycoon
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by Tycoon » Mon Dec 26, 2016 9:46 am

The function of the car would have to match the price. Why am I buying it?
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by TheTimeLord » Mon Dec 26, 2016 10:00 am

soupcxan wrote:There's a lot of folks here who would never buy a new car, let alone one for $50k. It's a depreciating asset.

But for those that would consider it, under what financial conditions would you do it? Hypothetically, if you were 35, had household income of $400k, and $2M NW, would you drop $50k on a car? What if you were 45?


Would I , yes. Although my tastes run in the low to mid $40ks. I bought my Lexus 8+ years ago and still appreciate it every time I drive it. Nothing wrong with the cars I had owned before the Lexus but I do appreciate the interior, amenities and the horsepower. That said I would pay cash and have no debt beyond a very reasonable mortgage before doing so. Had a few friends who bought luxury vehicles on the way up in their late 20s and early 30s after a little bad luck the cost of those cars became albatrosses around heir financial necks for years after they were gone.

I am guessing you are looking at a 4 series BMW.
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by sambb » Mon Dec 26, 2016 10:06 am

I think you can afford it, enjoy yourself.
if this is a sports car, you might end up "outgrowing" it in 2-3 years, in which case I would lease it.
Lots of people want to say that they would keep these sports cars forever, but most dont, since it is a "fun item" rather than a functional one
If it is a functional choice that is meant to be long lasting (honda, lexus, toyota to be driven for 5-10 years) then i would buy.
I have had all sorts of cars - and they are fun, so go for it. So nice to reward yourself for the hard work, but just determine if this is a "one off" or if it is going to recur in your life. Recurrent purchases of escalating dollar amounts is another issue.

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by soupcxan » Mon Dec 26, 2016 10:09 am

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by The Wizard » Mon Dec 26, 2016 10:09 am

I bought an upscale F150 for roughly that amount a year ago, at age 65.
It's great for hauling stuff...
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by jebmke » Mon Dec 26, 2016 10:11 am

Probably never. Not a car fan. Eventually want to move back to the city so I can be less dependent on a car. As long as I have a safe, reliable and comfortable vehicle I'm fine. I don't think I need to spend $50K to get that.
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by navyasw02 » Mon Dec 26, 2016 10:12 am

soupcxan wrote:There's a lot of folks here who would never buy a new car, let alone one for $50k. It's a depreciating asset.

But for those that would consider it, under what financial conditions would you do it? Hypothetically, if you were 35, had household income of $400k, and $2M NW, would you drop $50k on a car? What if you were 45?


I never look at it as a NW/salary issue, I look at it as a value proposition between $50k car A and a lower priced car B. If you can afford that price delta without sacrificing future financial goals or quality of life, get it.

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An easy decision

Post by Taylor Larimore » Mon Dec 26, 2016 10:25 am

At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

qsoupcxan:

I am at age 92. If I can buy a "$50K car" or a cheaper car, and give the savings to my family or charity, I'm content driving a cheaper car.

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by livesoft » Mon Dec 26, 2016 10:34 am

When the price of something like a Honda Accord inflates to $50K, then I think that's when I would pay around that much for a car. Not even a decent Lexus costs that much with tax nowadays.
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by mmmodem » Mon Dec 26, 2016 10:41 am

I'm a Boglehead first and a car enthusiast second. Therefore, I drive a low cost own vehicle: Toyota Prius. My sights are set squarely on a Tesla Model S in the future but my budget is at $30k at present for a vehicle. I can commute in a less expensive vehicle but it would defeat the purpose of being a Boglehead. :oops: My budget would be $50k if I had income north of $200k.

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by Danzangdc » Mon Dec 26, 2016 10:49 am

Is 50k a lot? My slightly used Honda minivan was into the $40ks...

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by KyleAAA » Mon Dec 26, 2016 10:51 am

I would look at my financial situation holistically and make a decision based on that. I don't think it's reasonable to set net worth and age limits on purchases because there are too many variables.

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by tim1999 » Mon Dec 26, 2016 10:54 am

soupcxan wrote:There's a lot of folks here who would never buy a new car, let alone one for $50k. It's a depreciating asset.

But for those that would consider it, under what financial conditions would you do it? Hypothetically, if you were 35, had household income of $400k, and $2M NW, would you drop $50k on a car? What if you were 45?


In either of those scenarios I would do it. I'm a car guy though. I'd probably even do it on 200k income and 1 million NW unless I had kids.

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by The Wizard » Mon Dec 26, 2016 10:56 am

It's more of an available cash flow issue.
If you put $1000/month into your new car fund, then five years later where are you?

When you have house and college and kids paid off, it becomes easier to have cash flow available...
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by Dottie57 » Mon Dec 26, 2016 10:59 am

No, I would not. Wait till ypu hit $10m. In investments, not net worth. Then drive what you want.

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by Watty » Mon Dec 26, 2016 11:02 am

If you are married then realistically to be able to afford a $50K car you really need to be able to afford two $50K cars. :beer

You are also setting yourself up to be periodically buying more $50K cars to replace those.

That is not meant to be a snarky comment, the increase in the standard of living will likely be ongoing so buying a $50K car is a lot different than taking a one time $50K trip to Antarctica.

If your numbers look very good and you have a enough discretionary income then there will still be a limit to what you can spend each year. That means that you would need to look at the "opportunity cost" of what you would spend the money on if you did not buy the car. For example you might not be able to afford to take an expensive vacation if you buy the expensive car. Which is a better choice depends on your personal preferences.

With a limited amount of money to spend you may not be getting the most "bang for the buck" in going from a $30K car to a $50K car. Even if it is some sort of performance car you will likely spend 95%+ of the time in traffic where the performance does not matter.

Unless you can afford to retire today then I would be cautious about spending that much on a luxury item. I have seen lots of people that were doing very well run into career, health, and life setbacks where they regretted spending heavily earlier in life.
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by The Wizard » Mon Dec 26, 2016 11:02 am

Dottie57 wrote:No, I would not. Wait till ypu hit $10m. In investments, not net worth. Then drive what you want.

$10M is a lot.
OP could be dead by then...
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by KlangFool » Mon Dec 26, 2016 11:22 am

OP,

1) I would rather spend $2,000 on a dinner as opposed to $50,000 on a car. So, it is not an age, income, and NW based question.

2) I am a Nissan Altima person. I pay whatever amount that a new Nissan Altima costs every 6 to 8 years.

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by Dottie57 » Mon Dec 26, 2016 11:24 am

The Wizard wrote:
Dottie57 wrote:No, I would not. Wait till ypu hit $10m. In investments, not net worth. Then drive what you want.

$10M is a lot.
OP could be dead by then...
:(


I know. See post directly after my first one.

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by Lafder » Mon Dec 26, 2016 12:22 pm

I haven't bought a 50k car yet, so maybe never, or maybe my next car :)

About 5 yrs ago we (spouse and I) went "cheap" and bought more basic cars with cloth seats and not fully loaded, but still not the cheapest available. At 27k and 29k all fees included we felt good about the cars and the mileage and the safety features.

However we both regretted the decision within a few years and were not "loving" our vehicles and not wanting to hold onto them forever as we had with our prior much more expensive cars.

Those cars have been passed onto teen drivers. So we chose our newest cars with a different perspective. We wanted the nicer features, but are still too cheap to go full luxury.

We spent under 40k each all fees included for what are so far cars that we love. Let's see what I think in a few years..............

Would I love a more luxury vehicle more? Perhaps. But I feel some guilt about the extra cost and enjoy seeing the money in savings and investments instead of depreciating in a car.

Some people love their cars more than others. So this is a personal decision more than a purely financial one :)

I could buy a 50k or more car, but I did not. So I can not answer the "would" since I have not :)

It depends on the amount of joy the more expensive car will bring you. It might be worth it :)

YOLO :)

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by White Coat Investor » Mon Dec 26, 2016 12:34 pm

soupcxan wrote:There's a lot of folks here who would never buy a new car, let alone one for $50k. It's a depreciating asset.

But for those that would consider it, under what financial conditions would you do it? Hypothetically, if you were 35, had household income of $400k, and $2M NW, would you drop $50k on a car? What if you were 45?


Yes. I think that's fine. I like the rule of thumb to never buy a new car until you are a millionaire.
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by sambb » Mon Dec 26, 2016 12:46 pm

I always wonder in these threads what someone would say if you wrote the same income and NW but Asked if you could afford donating 25k to 50k to a charity.

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by FrugalInvestor » Mon Dec 26, 2016 12:55 pm

I purchased a $40K car once. It would probably equate to $50K or more today. It was a very nice car but had more mechanical problems than any other car I've ever owned. It was also more expensive to repair and the dealer very resistant to fixing problems under warranty. I'll never purchase another high-end vehicle.
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by TheTimeLord » Mon Dec 26, 2016 1:06 pm

FrugalInvestor wrote:I purchased a $40K car once. It would probably equate to $50K or more today. It was a very nice car but had more mechanical problems than any other car I've ever owned. It was also more expensive to repair and the dealer very resistant to fixing problems under warranty. I'll never purchase another high-end vehicle.


Best dealers in our area are Lexus dealers and the other in that dealer family. Near legendary customer service. On the other hand BMW dealers in particular have low ratings, similar but not quite as bad for the Audi and Mercedes dealers.
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by spectec » Mon Dec 26, 2016 1:13 pm

I have told several friends that if they ever see me driving an expensive car, they should contact my wife to ask when is the last time I visited my doctor. Spending $50K on a car would be a sure-fire sign I'm in some sort of serious cognitive decline. Not saying this is how everybody should be, because somebody has to keep those new and high-end cars in circulation so I can buy them used at a reasonable price, But for me, a car is a reasonably-priced, reliable way of getting from here to there and back. Nothing more, nothing less.
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by ychuck46 » Mon Dec 26, 2016 2:02 pm

Did buy an F-150 Supercrew in 2012; that cost around $40K or so. But since I plan on keeping it for 100s of 1000s of miles, the cost will be less over time than many people pay for a car that does substantially less. For example, we travel for three months or so at a time (we're retired), taking a truckload of stuff with us. Try to do that in a Lexus or BMW.

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by Longdog » Mon Dec 26, 2016 2:21 pm

soupcxan wrote:There's a lot of folks here who would never buy a new car, let alone one for $50k. It's a depreciating asset.

But for those that would consider it, under what financial conditions would you do it? Hypothetically, if you were 35, had household income of $400k, and $2M NW, would you drop $50k on a car? What if you were 45?


It depends on a lot of things, including marital status, child status, home ownership plans and status, plans for retirement, and I'm sure other things as well. Given that many good (and much less expensive) cars are available, I would only do it if I was confident it wouldn't interfere with any of my more important financial goals, including home ownership, funding of children's college, sufficiently funding retirement accounts, etc.
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by jainn » Mon Dec 26, 2016 2:46 pm

I don't think you are consuming $50k on a car if the sales contract with tax says $50k. It's a depreciating asset but not instantly consumed or depreciated.

If you sell it in 4years (50k miles), you'll get back say 35% ($17.5k). In this scenario you spent $32.5k to drive this particular car for 4years ($677/month). The residual selling value in 4 years may result in getting back ~40%, but above was just for worst case planning.
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by MoonOrb » Mon Dec 26, 2016 2:49 pm

soupcxan wrote:There's a lot of folks here who would never buy a new car, let alone one for $50k. It's a depreciating asset.

But for those that would consider it, under what financial conditions would you do it? Hypothetically, if you were 35, had household income of $400k, and $2M NW, would you drop $50k on a car? What if you were 45?


If I would enjoy driving the car: Yes, sure.
If I would enjoy driving a cheaper car about as much: No, and I'd spend $$ on some other thing I valued more, probably travel.

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by leonard » Mon Dec 26, 2016 2:50 pm

Never.
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by Punta Cana DR » Mon Dec 26, 2016 2:53 pm

For me, never...I would buy used with good records. But, one should have hobbies which might include a sailboat, nice car, etc is personal choice and you should enjoy if you really want one!

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by Billionaire » Mon Dec 26, 2016 3:03 pm

Don't listen to any party poopers. Buy the car. NW and yearly income alone makes it a no brainer.

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by Billionaire » Mon Dec 26, 2016 3:07 pm

FrugalInvestor wrote:I purchased a $40K car once. It would probably equate to $50K or more today. It was a very nice car but had more mechanical problems than any other car I've ever owned. It was also more expensive to repair and the dealer very resistant to fixing problems under warranty. I'll never purchase another high-end vehicle.

That's an alarmist reaction. Just because you had a bad experience, doesn't mean everybody does.

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by Spirit Rider » Mon Dec 26, 2016 3:11 pm

Over thirty-two years I bought five new vehicles averaging eight years/vehicle. In all cases I set 20% of income as my limit, which I never exceeded. So I have spent < 2.5% my income/year on vehicles.

I am already past eight years on this vehicle trying to judge what I should budget for vehicles in retirement. If I use 20% of a 4% withdrawal rate, that is 0.8% of NW.

Mostly, it seems really hard to think about spending a big chunk of change on a vehicle in the withdrawal phase, so I'm thinking on keeping this vehicle for another eight years. After all, my mileage is a 1/4 of what it once was.

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by stoptothink » Mon Dec 26, 2016 3:53 pm

Danzangdc wrote:Is 50k a lot? My slightly used Honda minivan was into the $40ks...


It is pretty crazy how quickly the price of a vehicle goes up. We're likely buying a new car next summer (essentially settled on a '17 VW jetta), we've already had OTD offers for <$16k for exactly what we want. We have considered getting something nice, that we really like, so we've driven cars up to around that $50k threshold (which by pretty much any metric is affordable for us), they simply aren't that much nicer than the car we can get for 1/3 the price. I am a major car nut, but I can't imagine paying 3x the price for something which is very marginally "better".

If you have a large family and need a larger car, you are kind of screwed in this regard. Have to admit, not having to get larger cars factored into our decision to stop at 2 kids.

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by reggiesimpson » Mon Dec 26, 2016 3:58 pm

I'm 69yo and just bought a used corvette for $58,000 (new $75,000). My income and net worth could support buying a new vette but like I said at the beginning i'm 69.
And still cheap........er frugal.

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by letsgobobby » Mon Dec 26, 2016 4:15 pm

Spirit Rider wrote:Over thirty-two years I bought five new vehicles averaging eight years/vehicle. In all cases I set 20% of income as my limit, which I never exceeded. So I have spent < 2.5% my income/year on vehicles.

I am already past eight years on this vehicle trying to judge what I should budget for vehicles in retirement. If I use 20% of a 4% withdrawal rate, that is 0.8% of NW.

Mostly, it seems really hard to think about spending a big chunk of change on a vehicle in the withdrawal phase, so I'm thinking on keeping this vehicle for another eight years. After all, my mileage is a 1/4 of what it once was.

Your rule would allow soupxcan to amortize $10k annually on his car purchase. So if he keeps the $50k car five years, he'd be ok.

I don't see myself buying a $50k car (in today's dollars) but soupxcan - you can afford it if you want it.

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Mon Dec 26, 2016 4:21 pm

White Coat Investor wrote:
soupcxan wrote:There's a lot of folks here who would never buy a new car, let alone one for $50k. It's a depreciating asset.

But for those that would consider it, under what financial conditions would you do it? Hypothetically, if you were 35, had household income of $400k, and $2M NW, would you drop $50k on a car? What if you were 45?


Yes. I think that's fine. I like the rule of thumb to never buy a new car until you are a millionaire.


I violated that rule of thumb once, the key is not to repeatedly violate the rule. Don't bank on income, bank on what is actually in the bank.
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by rec7 » Mon Dec 26, 2016 4:37 pm

soupcxan wrote:
Tycoon wrote:The function of the car would have to match the price. Why am I buying it?


Well, the truly useful function would be a self-driving car, but that will start around $100k from Tesla next year, plus little used inventory, so that's out.

TheTimeLord wrote:
I am guessing you are looking at a 4 series BMW.


No, Lexus.


For about 28k they put a Lexus engine in the carmy. Something to think about.
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by catdude » Mon Dec 26, 2016 4:42 pm

rec7 wrote:For about 28k they put a Lexus engine in the carmy. Something to think about.


I have an '07 Camry that's a V6 -- 268 hp. Are you saying that's a Lexus engine?
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by cromwell » Mon Dec 26, 2016 4:44 pm

My answer: Never again. I have bought 50k plus vehicles and the expenses don't stop there eg insurance, registration,maintaince,parts etc etc.One can purchase luxury and safety for considerably less,and many lesser priced vehicles are more reliable. just my 2 cents. :moneybag

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by daveydoo » Mon Dec 26, 2016 5:11 pm

Hate to say it, but too little info. If you were dying, I'd say go for it. If you were dying and leaving a couple of little ones, then of course not.

I would not pay $50K for luxury, but I would for performance (torque, handling, steering feel). That's a world of difference. And you can get a fun car for way less than $50K and you can a miserable car for way more. But in the first category you may end up with a car that won't impress anyone you know. That's been fine for me, but I get a sense that may not be fine for you. About blurring those lines, an acquaintance sold a business and bragged that the first thing he did was buy a "fast" car. Turns out he actually bought a large, prestige-mark SUV that is neither fast nor particularly fun -- by even conventional sedan standards. He bought a "nice" car, not a fast car. Luxury vs. performance.

It seems like you just want a $50K car -- so who knows what those features are worth to you. If you're 6' 4" and have a twitchy back and are only comfortable in a big Lexus, then get it. If the rest of your block has a $50K car and seems to have your income level and standard of living, and you've come to think "so why not us?" -- well, that wouldn't be a good enough reason for me.

And in terms of self-driving cars -- referenced above -- I'd pay about as much for a self-driving car as I would for a self-watching TV or a self-eating meal :happy .

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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by rec7 » Mon Dec 26, 2016 5:12 pm

johnny wrote:
rec7 wrote:For about 28k they put a Lexus engine in the carmy. Something to think about.


I have an '07 Camry that's a V6 -- 268 hp. Are you saying that's a Lexus engine?


Toyota uses the 3.5 V6 in the Camry and Lexus.
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catdude
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by catdude » Mon Dec 26, 2016 5:16 pm

rec7 wrote:
johnny wrote:
rec7 wrote:For about 28k they put a Lexus engine in the carmy. Something to think about.


I have an '07 Camry that's a V6 -- 268 hp. Are you saying that's a Lexus engine?


Toyota uses the 3.5 V6 in the Camry and Lexus.


Hmmm... how 'bout the Avalon? I think that's got a 268 hp engine.
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rec7
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by rec7 » Mon Dec 26, 2016 5:16 pm

johnny wrote:
rec7 wrote:
johnny wrote:
rec7 wrote:For about 28k they put a Lexus engine in the carmy. Something to think about.


I have an '07 Camry that's a V6 -- 268 hp. Are you saying that's a Lexus engine?


Toyota uses the 3.5 V6 in the Camry and Lexus.


Hmmm... how 'bout the Avalon? I think that's got a 268 hp engine.


Same engine they use it in several models.
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by daveydoo » Mon Dec 26, 2016 5:18 pm

rec7 wrote:Toyota uses the 3.5 V6 in the Camry and Lexus.


And the old Lotus Evora used a (tuned) Camry engine (right?), but no one behind the wheel would ever confuse the two driving experiences.

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catdude
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by catdude » Mon Dec 26, 2016 5:21 pm

rec7 wrote:
johnny wrote:
rec7 wrote:
johnny wrote:
rec7 wrote:For about 28k they put a Lexus engine in the carmy. Something to think about.


I have an '07 Camry that's a V6 -- 268 hp. Are you saying that's a Lexus engine?


Toyota uses the 3.5 V6 in the Camry and Lexus.


Hmmm... how 'bout the Avalon? I think that's got a 268 hp engine.


Same engine they use it in several models.


OK, thanks. It's good to know I've got a Lexus engine, if not a Lexus itself. 8-)
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rec7
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by rec7 » Mon Dec 26, 2016 5:22 pm

daveydoo wrote:
rec7 wrote:Toyota uses the 3.5 V6 in the Camry and Lexus.


And the old Lotus Evora used a (tuned) Camry engine (right?), but no one behind the wheel would ever confuse the two driving experiences.


True
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countofmc
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Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Post by countofmc » Mon Dec 26, 2016 5:24 pm

Completely subjective and depends on what you value in life, I would think. If at age 35 I had 400k income with 2M net worth, I would not even hesitate. But we are talking about a car market nowadays where a well-optioned Toyota Highlander or Avalon can come in over $40k, to say nothing of a Lexus.

A well-optioned Lexus ES350 or NX200t can come in at $50k, so I mean doesn't sound too crazy. It's not like for $50k you would be rolling around in an S-Class or something like that.

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