Why buy expensive cars

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
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stemikger
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Why buy expensive cars

Post by stemikger » Sun Jan 30, 2011 10:13 am

I am probably odd when it comes to this, but I was just thinking as I was walking my dog this morning. Why do people buy anything other than entry level cars.

Here is what I did and still continue to do. I buy that brands most inexpensive vehicle in their lineup. I keep it for ten years and by the time I need another car, I can buy it for cash. The way they make cars these days, all brand new vehicles drive great and are safe. In my experience, my brand new Nissan Versa drives better than my sister's 10 year old Volvo.

I have done this all my life and never once regretted it.

However, for a man my age (46) I sometimes feel odd as most other guys my age are all driving higher end cars and I think they look at my car and associate it with something they would buy their kid for their first car.

Are there other boggleheads who do this or am I really just an odd ball.
P.S. I am not a high income earner, but I also know others who don’t have the cash to spend but still continue to lease their $40,000 cars. My father-in-law is a perfect example of this. Although he is 76, he definitely does not have the depression era mentality and I at 46 am much more frugal than he. I rather max out my 401K than drive a higher end car.

Chuck
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Post by Chuck » Sun Jan 30, 2011 10:25 am

They are more fun.
They are more comfortable.
They demonstrate how much money one can spend. (Google up "costly signal.")

Valuethinker
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Re: Why buy expensive cars

Post by Valuethinker » Sun Jan 30, 2011 10:25 am

stemikger wrote:I am probably odd when it comes to this, but I was just thinking as I was walking my dog this morning. Why do people buy anything other than entry level cars.

Here is what I did and still continue to do. I buy that brands most inexpensive vehicle in their lineup. I keep it for ten years and by the time I need another car, I can buy it for cash. The way they make cars these days, all brand new vehicles drive great and are safe. In my experience, my brand new Nissan Versa drives better than my sister's 10 year old Volvo.

I have done this all my life and never once regretted it.

However, for a man my age (46) I sometimes feel odd as most other guys my age are all driving higher end cars and I think they look at my car and associate it with something they would buy their kid for their first car.

Are there other boggleheads who do this or am I really just an odd ball.
P.S. I am not a high income earner, but I also know others who don’t have the cash to spend but still continue to lease their $40,000 cars. My father-in-law is a perfect example of this. Although he is 76, he definitely does not have the depression era mentality and I at 46 am much more frugal than he. I rather max out my 401K than drive a higher end car.
Almost by definition a BH is someone who worries about cash outflows that do not go into investment. ie inward/ intrinsic directed rather than extrinsically so.

Let's set aside the real car afficionados. I bet 5-10% of us really can tell the difference between a good car, and a great one. For the rest of us, it's about brand and self perception.

The real afficionados, to my mind, own cars which are unique. The 1980 Porsche rather than the 2010 one. The old Saabs, etc. Cars which are often a nightmare by conventional criteria, but are distinctive and different.

You make an important point, that the *average* car now looks pretty good compared to, say, a 1990 Mercedes, in terms of safety equipment and comfort.

Human beings have a need to compete via status ie to rank themselves against other people- -they cannot see your 401k balance. A car is a very visible status good. Avner Offer 'The Challenge of Affluence' has a neat couple of chapters about US cars during the 50s, and European ones in the 60s.

Also they have 'frames'. If you live in a certain class of neighbourhood, you tend to have a certain class of car. I suspect there is probably some 'rule' about what percentage of your house price your car price is (I would guess around 5%). That's particularly true if you have kids-- so you have interactions with other parents.

If you want to lose a sales force, downgrade their cars. Salesmen are, generally, highly extrinsically motivated (this is also true of saleswomen). That car is a tangible sign of success, and a signal of success to family, neighbours and most importantly, peers. People with higher extrinsic motivations (ie things other people can see about you) tend to want nicer cars.

Some other factors:

- we don't rate quantitative factors very well -- man is an impressionistic thinker. Yes a more expensive car 'feels safer' but is it and by how much probabilistically? The reality is greater car performance also tempts us to worse behaviour-- and we are the primary safety weakness of any vehicle-- how and when we drive.

edge
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Post by edge » Sun Jan 30, 2011 10:51 am

Expensive is relative. If it seems expensive to you - you probably are making the right choice in not buying it. Maybe these other guys make more money than you or they are saving less.

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Post by Valuethinker » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:02 am

edge wrote:Expensive is relative. If it seems expensive to you - you probably are making the right choice in not buying it. Maybe these other guys make more money than you or they are saving less.
Around here, it's a framing effect.

If your house costs as much as they do in London (say, for sake of argument, £300-£1000 per square foot-- in Knightsbridge, that would be £1500, in the commuter suburbs might be £200-250) then on, say, a £1m house of 1500 square feet, a £40k car is easy to justify.

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Post by Ron » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:03 am

When I was young, I bought low-cost cars in an effort to prepare for the future.

Now that the future is here (age 63 - retired), I buy luxury cars ((main ride is a Cadillac (traditional "old man's car), with a Mustang GT vert (traditional young man's car) for those sunny days as a backup)) since I sacrificed in the past.

I prepared for the future (sow) and now I'm getting the benefits (reap) of those earlier years.

I guess it all depends on your time of life, and the sacrifices you are willing to make. I could have had a "better ride" in my younger years, but chose not to.

I can't argue with those that took a different path. That is their option.

- Ron
Last edited by Ron on Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:06 am, edited 1 time in total.

hsv_climber
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Post by hsv_climber » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:06 am

Size does matter :wink:

The more kids you have (and the younger they are) the bigger car you'd need.

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Post by Valuethinker » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:07 am

edge wrote:Expensive is relative. If it seems expensive to you - you probably are making the right choice in not buying it. Maybe these other guys make more money than you or they are saving less.
It's key.

We know humans overdiscount. They require 30-40% rate of return on energy savings, for example.

They discount retirement savings at 10-20% say, when the correct rate would be closer to 3-4%. Their implicit expected return on retirement savings is double digit, in other words.

So unless they practice 'pre commitment' they are very likely to spend an extra 10k on a car, say, rather than lobbing that into a retirement fund (which might pay 20k out at retirement say).

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Post by Triple digit golfer » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:07 am

My dad is 52 and he drives a compact car. He's happy if his car is bought new, has power windows and locks, and A/C. That's it. He's proud that he's never spent more than $20,000 for a car and he says he never plans on it. If your car's only purpose is to get from Point A to Point B, then there's no reason to buy an expensive car. Buy what suits you and forget what others say or think.

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Post by Valuethinker » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:08 am

hsv_climber wrote:Size does matter :wink:

The more kids you have (and the younger they are) the bigger car you'd need.
Yes but then you'd buy a minivan ;-).

But instead we buy expensive SUVs. Minivans are OK for soccer moms, but for us guys? ;-).

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Post by KyleAAA » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:14 am

Cause fast cars are fun to drive

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Post by sscritic » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:20 am

I buy expensive furniture (once every 30 years). Others buy expensive camping, climbing, or fishing equipment. What was the question again?

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tludwig23
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Post by tludwig23 » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:28 am

The expensive car demonstrates the male's resource capability, which is a signal to potential female mates that this male has the resources to provide for her offspring.

Obviously there are other factors.

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Post by staythecourse » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:35 am

Buying a nice car could be a problem or not depending on the individual's financial circumstances.

If he/ she has enough expendable income after investing for their future and possible emergencies no problem. If the person is buying a car instead of funding for emergencies and future retirement there is the problem. Most people fall into the 2nd category and that is why so many have problems in this country.

People confuse having material objects (houses and cars) as part of there net worth and they aren't.
"The stock market [fluctuation], therefore, is noise. A giant distraction from the business of investing.” | -Jack Bogle

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burgrat
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Post by burgrat » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:37 am

tludwig23 wrote:The expensive car demonstrates the male's resource capability, which is a signal to potential female mates that this male has the resources to provide for her offspring.
I'm reading this with an English accent, narrative-style, as if in a documentary. Well done, sir!

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Post by Ron » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:40 am

tludwig23 wrote:The expensive car demonstrates the male's resource capability, which is a signal to potential female mates that this male has the resources to provide for her offspring.
Dangerous assumption; you can always lease more than you can afford.

BTW, I didn't buy my first car until the age of 21 (two weeks after I returned from Nam, and two weeks before I got married).

Don't have the car; still have the wife :lol: (40+ years later).

I'm glad my wife didn't base her decision on the car I was driving...

- Ron

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Post by hsv_climber » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:42 am

The expensive car demonstrates the male's resource capability, which is a signal to potential female mates that this male has the resources to attract multiple female mates.

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tludwig23
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Post by tludwig23 » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:51 am

hsv_climber wrote:The expensive car demonstrates the male's resource capability, which is a signal to potential female mates that this male has the resources to attract multiple female mates.
Perhaps, but this of no evolutionary benefit to the individual female. Her biological interest is in having her offspring survive.

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Post by JupiterJones » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:52 am

People buy expensive cars for the same reason they buy expensive anything else: They attach value (or, at least, anticipated value) to whatever it is the expensive thing has that the inexpensive thing doesn't. That value is enough to justify the added expense.

And other people don't "get" the expensive thing for a similar reason: They attach little to no value to whatever the extra money is buying.

For example, I buy a Mac instead of an el-cheapo Dell because the extra cost is worth it for the added value of running Mac OS X. If you don't like or care about OS X, then you'll perceive me as overpaying.

But at the same time, I don't care if my car can go fast, or if it has heated leather seats, or if it's "fun" to drive, or if it tells the world that I'm wealthy... These are things that expensive cars offer, but I attach no value to them. Other people do. Nothin' wrong with that.

If you try to judge someone else's purchase based on your wants, needs, and perceptions, you're going to run into trouble.

JJ
Last edited by JupiterJones on Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:55 am, edited 1 time in total.
Stay on target...

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HomerJ
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Post by HomerJ » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:54 am

Triple digit golfer wrote:My dad is 52 and he drives a compact car. He's happy if his car is bought new, has power windows and locks, and A/C. That's it. He's proud that he's never spent more than $20,000 for a car and he says he never plans on it. If your car's only purpose is to get from Point A to Point B, then there's no reason to buy an expensive car. Buy what suits you and forget what others say or think.
I'm only 41... but I'm just like your old man...

All I want is a car that is dependable... So far, the most I've ever spent on a car is $14,000 (the 2009 Civic I bought this year)...

My first new car (Hyundai Excel) didn't even have AC, or power windows or locks. I was living in New Hampshire at the time, and bought one without any of those amenities to save money (I even declined the dashboard clock to save another $100)

That turned out to be a non-optimal choice, since I moved to Missouri a couple of years later... I really missed not having AC then :) But I did enjoy not having car payments after only 2 years (since then bought all cars with cash)

A weird side personal note: Whenever I drive with the windows down (my wife hates that, so only when I'm alone), I feel like I'm in my 20s again, especially with classic rock on the radio... Association with all those years I HAD to drive with the windows down, because I didn't have AC.

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Post by tludwig23 » Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:59 am

Ron wrote:
tludwig23 wrote:The expensive car demonstrates the male's resource capability, which is a signal to potential female mates that this male has the resources to provide for her offspring.
Dangerous assumption; you can always lease more than you can afford.


- Ron
Yes, but that is the way biological advertising works. It is advertising. It doesn't have to reflect the true biological condition.
Last edited by tludwig23 on Sun Jan 30, 2011 12:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Mister Whale
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Post by Mister Whale » Sun Jan 30, 2011 12:02 pm

JupiterJones wrote:If you try to judge someone else's purchase based on your wants, needs, and perceptions, you're going to run into trouble.

JJ
Why do people buy anything other than gruel to eat?

Why do people dress themselves in anything other than second-hand clothing, or rags?

Why do people live in anything other than simple 500-square-foot homes?

Why do people spend money on entertainment or travel?

:D
" ... advice is most useful and at its best, not when it is telling you what to do, but when it is illuminating aspects of the situation you hadn't thought about." --nisiprius

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Re: Why buy expensive cars

Post by gabylon » Sun Jan 30, 2011 12:13 pm

stemikger wrote:.. In my experience, my brand new Nissan Versa drives better than my sister's 10 year old Volvo.
Does your sister's 10 year old Volvo sell for more than a new Nissan Versa? :D

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Post by hsv_climber » Sun Jan 30, 2011 12:20 pm

tludwig23 wrote:
hsv_climber wrote:The expensive car demonstrates the male's resource capability, which is a signal to potential female mates that this male has the resources to attract multiple female mates.
Perhaps, but this of no evolutionary benefit to the individual female. Her biological interest is in having her offspring survive.
You are missing the point of competition and attractiveness of a prohibited fruit. Don't forget that it all started with Eve and the apple.

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Post by speedbump101 » Sun Jan 30, 2011 12:28 pm

Valuethinker wrote:
hsv_climber wrote:Size does matter :wink:

The more kids you have (and the younger they are) the bigger car you'd need.
Yes but then you'd buy a minivan ;-).

But instead we buy expensive SUVs. Minivans are OK for soccer moms, but for us guys? ;-).
Hey, I drive a minivan, did I win something? :-)

SB...
"Man is not a rational animal, he is a rationalizing animal" -Robert A. Heinlein

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tludwig23
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Post by tludwig23 » Sun Jan 30, 2011 12:31 pm

hsv_climber wrote:
tludwig23 wrote:
hsv_climber wrote:The expensive car demonstrates the male's resource capability, which is a signal to potential female mates that this male has the resources to attract multiple female mates.
Perhaps, but this of no evolutionary benefit to the individual female. Her biological interest is in having her offspring survive.
You are missing the point of competition and attractiveness of a prohibited fruit. Don't forget that it all started with Eve and the apple.
Not sure I follow you. What is the "prohibited fruit" is this case? And how is the Eve allegory relevant to driving an expensive car?

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Post by Sam I Am » Sun Jan 30, 2011 12:32 pm

Message deleted.
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stemikger
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Post by stemikger » Sun Jan 30, 2011 12:36 pm

Does your sister's 10 year old Volvo sell for more than a new Nissan Versa? [/quote]

Probably not. The last few years, she has had more problems with it. Unfortunately she is trying to keep it alive because she just got divorced and can't afford a new car. I had better luck with my $14,000 cars at 12 years old that she is having with that Volvo.

After reading all the replies, I am glad I am the way I am. I never needed to prove to the world that I had money or was important because I had an expensive car or a big house.

I have been very fortunate to be blessed with a great sense of humor and although I use it to hide my shyness it always made me popular with very attractive girls.

I met my wife 21 years ago and quite frankly I never thought I would be able to date someone who looked like her. I felt like she was unattainable. She was 4 months away from marring a very, very wealthy guy who drove the best of the best and was in the process of having an expensive house built for her. I met her at work and we fell in love and she knew she could not marry this man.

She left that lifestyle to marry me (I was so poor at the time) I could not even afford a cup of coffee. We have been married 19 years and live in a very modest home and drive a subcompact car and I know show loves me for me, not for anything else. I am a very fortunate guy.
Sorry to get so far off the subject, but if I was someone who acted rich by buying cars I could not afford and spending money I should not be spending, I would not know someone like my wife.

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tludwig23
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Post by tludwig23 » Sun Jan 30, 2011 12:46 pm

stemikger wrote:
I have been very fortunate to be blessed with a great sense of humor and although I use it to hide my shyness it always made me popular with very attractive girls...
Perhaps your personality traits demonstrated that you were a mate who was likely to stick around. (My point is proven, of course, by the fact that you have stuck around).

Perhaps human sexual selection is somewhat complicated?

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Post by pete82 » Sun Jan 30, 2011 12:48 pm

what do you mean by "expensive"?

a 1991 Honda Civic can be had for as little as $900. it runs and will sometimes get you where you want to go and sometimes it won't. is anything more than $900 "expensive"?

hsv_climber
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Post by hsv_climber » Sun Jan 30, 2011 12:52 pm

tludwig23 wrote:
hsv_climber wrote:
tludwig23 wrote:
hsv_climber wrote:The expensive car demonstrates the male's resource capability, which is a signal to potential female mates that this male has the resources to attract multiple female mates.
Perhaps, but this of no evolutionary benefit to the individual female. Her biological interest is in having her offspring survive.
You are missing the point of competition and attractiveness of a prohibited fruit. Don't forget that it all started with Eve and the apple.
Not sure I follow you. What is the "prohibited fruit" is this case? And how is the Eve allegory relevant to driving an expensive car?

Desire to have a guy who is sought after by other females.

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Post by eucalyptus » Sun Jan 30, 2011 12:57 pm

I have yet to meet anyone - other than teenage boys, maybe - who thought better of me, or whom I impressed, because of my cars. I never really understood the "who's he trying to impress" feeling. In general, I believe most people have a negative reaction to expensive modern cars.

No sophisticated person believes that one's car signals his wealth. It symbolizes an ability to consume, to be sure - but for Pete's sake the sellers of very expensive cars are as desperate to get them out the door as everyone else. Loans, leases, whatever you need. And the market for fairly recent used exotics has in some sense collapsed. Though perhaps most of you would not consider buying a Ferrari 360, I suspect many of you could drive one home.

Truthfully, not only do I not expect you to be impressed, or think me wealthy, because of my cars, I'd find you rather simple if you did.

No doubt more than a few expensive cars are bought to impress, and signal wealth. I clearly don't think that works terribly well, but some are attracted to the promise.

It seems difficult for those outside the world of car enthusiasts to understand why people like me buy expensive cars. You have to understand what a company like Ferrari represents to many of us. The oldest cars speak of the craftsmanship of shops like Vignale, Touring, Pininfarina. Interesting and tragic figures like close friends Peter Collins and Mike Hawthorn, much more recently Gilles Villeneuve, passed through the Scuderia. The whole undertaking represented the complicated man himself, at least until his death, and now reflects the personality of his trained protege, a Columbia alum, who may yet enter Italian politics.

So, to answer the OPs question, some people buy expensive cars out of passion.
Last edited by eucalyptus on Sun Jan 30, 2011 12:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Kenkat
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Post by Kenkat » Sun Jan 30, 2011 12:58 pm

tludwig23 wrote:Perhaps human sexual selection is somewhat complicated?
Yeah, just a wee little bit!

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Post by Dandy » Sun Jan 30, 2011 2:15 pm

stemikger

I view cars like you do. Safe, reliable transportation. I don't like to pay more since I don't think of cars as status. I like the car makers that have a base model that has reasonable "options", especially those involving safety, standard. That way a base model is reasonably equiped vs having to sift though a maze of option packages that contain one thing I want but many that I don't.

I used to try to hold on to the car for more than 10 years but there have been so many safety improvements recently that I need to balance being frugal with being wise.

If you notice, recent model used cars don't get much more money for the upscale model vs the base.

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Post by yobria » Sun Jan 30, 2011 2:34 pm

I just drive a Honda with a bumper sticker that has my investment account balance...

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Post by gabylon » Sun Jan 30, 2011 3:00 pm

eucalyptus wrote:So, to answer the OPs question, some people buy expensive cars out of passion.
Yes, we have to keep in mind that if people are willing to pay that price, they must see the value in it (for them). Telling a car enthusiast that it is only needed to go from point A to point B, is like telling an art lover why pay that much for a Picasso, when all you need is a nice picture to hang on the wall. Some collectors, whether of cars or paintings, don't even want to show their possessions to others.
On the other hand, we are always vulnerable to social conventions, whether we like it or not. Hasn't anyone ever felt under-dressed at some event? It happens with clothing, it can also happen with cars. If you are getting married, how will you dress, what car will you hire for the ceremony? Would you change your choice if your net worth was 5 times as much? Or would you stick to just what is needed to go from point A to point B? If so, there's nothing wrong with that, but I am just trying to point out that perceived value is not only strictly functional.
And speaking of function, there is a real added cost for ABS, lateral multiple air bags, etc. Not that long ago, you could only get them on expensive cars.

Full disclosure: I don't own Picassos or Ferraris, but I wish I could, even if I had to keep it a secret :D

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Post by thechoson » Sun Jan 30, 2011 3:23 pm

For me personally, safety is a consideration. The cheapest model of a car brand (unless it's a luxury brand) tend to be among the smallest cars on the road- Honda Fit, Nissan Versa, Hyundai Accent, Toyota Yaris, etc.

Simple fact of the matter is smaller cars are not as safe as larger cars, especially with all these SUVs on the road. And it does not matter how safe you drive, it's the other people on the road with you you have to worry about.

Having said that, I think a solid, dependable "boring" midsize would be the only car I'd really "need". And the feature content on these types of cars are starting to rival more expensive cars. I test drove a fully loaded Honda Accord EX-L the other day. For under 30k OTD, it came with leather seats, nav, seat warmers, etc.

Plus there's a lot of brand engineering going on as well. A Lexus ES is a Toyota Camry, the Acura TSX is a Honda Accord, etc.

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Post by sscritic » Sun Jan 30, 2011 3:32 pm

What does expensive mean? Are you comparing nominal dollars or relative dollars?

Which is more expensive, a new $60,000 car when the cheapest new car you can get is $15,000 (factor of 4) or a new $5,000 watch when the cheapest new watch you can get is $20 (factor of 250)?

I would argue a $5,000 watch at a price 250 times the price of a serviceable $20 watch is a lot more expensive than a $60,000 car. By that standard, any watch over $80 is expensive, at least as expensive as a $60,000 car.

brainstem
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Post by brainstem » Sun Jan 30, 2011 3:39 pm

A better analysis for this should reflect on annual cost per year ..

Total price tag does not mean much unless you factor in your disposal recovery.

So the increased depreciation per year might be 2000 and the insurance maybe another 500 .... so over 4-5 years, the expensive car might cost you another 2000-4000 a year unless you get in the real stratosphere -- seen in this light, the expense makes more sense than a lump sum 20-40K ....

I tend to stay under 50K but like a well made car -- would love a spreadsheet to see just how much extra per year going upscale actually costs -- maybe an acceptable reward for not paying high advisor/mutual fund fees on your investments!

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Post by LynnC » Sun Jan 30, 2011 3:41 pm

tludwig23 wrote:The expensive car demonstrates the male's resource capability, which is a signal to potential female mates that this male has the resources to provide for her offspring.

Obviously there are other factors.
....and, if you are a woman who works?

LynnC

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Post by OAG » Sun Jan 30, 2011 4:01 pm

I have worked my way up from having "lower" priced vehicles and driving them "longer". However in about the last 15 years I have been able to enjoy buying "higher" priced vehicles and driving them for "shorter" periods (4 to 5 years) of time before trading or giving the vehicle to a family member (usual a child) and buying the next high priced vehicle that I like. I do not know all of the psychology of this but I feel that I have reached a point in life I can enjoy some indulgences that I could not in the previous 55 years or so.
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Post by eucalyptus » Sun Jan 30, 2011 4:01 pm

"....and, if you are a woman who works?"


Then you are almost certainly too intelligent to pay attention to a male who tries to send you "signals" with his car.

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Post by KyleAAA » Sun Jan 30, 2011 7:24 pm

eucalyptus wrote:"....and, if you are a woman who works?"


Then you are almost certainly too intelligent to pay attention to a male who tries to send you "signals" with his car.
Mating signals have nothing to do with intelligence. Ever had a friend who was poor, lazy, and abusive but that had amazing luck with women? Women who are intelligent, successful, and should otherwise know better? Everybody knows a guy like this.

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Post by KyleAAA » Sun Jan 30, 2011 7:25 pm

LynnC wrote:
tludwig23 wrote:The expensive car demonstrates the male's resource capability, which is a signal to potential female mates that this male has the resources to provide for her offspring.

Obviously there are other factors.
....and, if you are a woman who works?
Same. That the woman doesn't need the resources of a man to provide for her offspring does not enter into the equation. Face it, if being attracted to somebody were a conscious decision, most people wouldn't choose to be attracted to the people they are attracted to.

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Post by beareconomy » Sun Jan 30, 2011 8:26 pm

Currently, I have 2 cars, a 10 year old saturn[bought new in med school, currently with almost 200k miles] which is currently my backup and a 2 year old toyota[daily driver]. Truth be told, I could easily afford a $100k Mercedes, but I am not sure what advantage it would give me over the toyota, which cost me $20k. I do prefer new cars as I get all the new safety options.

I guess if you like to take a lot of depreciation, the 100k car is perfect cause after 10 years it will be worth about 8k and the 20k car will be worth about 3-5k.

I think people buy expensive cars to show off how great they are. And truth be told, expensive cars seem to cost more to insure and fix and seem to be more aggravation than they are worth. The less expensive cars are easier to get fixed and parts being readily available make them easier to deal with. If a more expensive car required less maintence and less trips to the dealer, it woudl be worth it, but honestly, I can live without burlnut trim and lambswool carpet in my car.

Just my 2 cents.

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Post by LynnC » Sun Jan 30, 2011 8:55 pm

I honestly think you should buy what you want and can afford. It's really no one else's business.

Some people travel, buy expensive jewelry, boats, designer clothes, cars or McMansions....others hoard every dime until they die, so who is to judge?

LynnC

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Post by Beantown85 » Sun Jan 30, 2011 8:59 pm

I have a truck, but it's not "entry-level". I needed (see: wanted) a back seat.

I am a little confused by the question. Is someone who buys a Mercedes "entry-level" making a better decision than someone who buys an Accord, because that's a "step-up" from the Civic?

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Post by eucalyptus » Sun Jan 30, 2011 9:24 pm

"I think people buy expensive cars to show off how great they are."

OK, you caught me. That's it! I can't speak for everyone else, but I've found that buying expensive cars convinces virtually everyone - present company excluded - that I am great! When I'm away from my expensive car, I hold my expensive key fob, emblazoned with the car company's world famous logo, conspicuously in front of me so that everyone I pass must acknowledge my greatness. You may not know this, but one exotic car manufacturer sends me a beautiful magazine with lots of fantastic photos of its cars and, most important, ads for watches and other accessories complementing my greatness.

I realize that I can't fool you, sir, but 99 times out of a hundred I climb out of my car to applause, sometimes the golf clap, occasionally air horns.

My first post in this thread explains my greatness at greater length. ;)

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Post by eucalyptus » Sun Jan 30, 2011 9:30 pm

"Mating signals have nothing to do with intelligence. Ever had a friend who was poor, lazy, and abusive but that had amazing luck with women? Women who are intelligent, successful, and should otherwise know better? Everybody knows a guy like this."


I don't think the guy you refer to owes his luck with women to his car. When the average chap steps out of an especially flashy car, most people paying any attention will be disappointed, having expected someone interesting, a professional athlete, an actor, a drug dealer, etc. Ask me how I know ....

This forum is hilarious when it comes to cars, some really genuinely great advice, some nonsense. I'll bet there are a number of closet exotic car owners and racers here, who won't speak up.

Ask Eucalyptus about exotic cars and their mesmerizing effect on the general population, please, this is your opportunity ....

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Post by Toons » Sun Jan 30, 2011 9:39 pm

I own older cars ,but then again life is short ,,if you have the cash and thats what you want,,,Enjoy! :D :D
"One does not accumulate but eliminate. It is not daily increase but daily decrease. The height of cultivation always runs to simplicity" –Bruce Lee

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