View Full Version : Cars that can outlast all the rest

09-01-07, 09:22 AM
Drive your car to death, save $31,000

By keeping your car for 200,000 miles or more, you can save the money of buying a new car. Plus: Cars that can outlast all the rest.

August 31 2007: 1:53 PM EDT
<!--endclickprintexclude--><!-- CONTENT -->NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- By keeping your car for 15 years, or 225,000 miles of driving, you could save nearly $31,000, according to Consumer Reports magazine. That's compared to the cost of buying an identical model every five years, which is roughly the rate at which most car owners trade in their vehicles.

In its annual national auto survey, the magazine found6,769 readers who had logged more than 200,000 miles on their cars. Their cars included a 1990 Lexus LS400 with 332,000 miles and a 1994 Ford Ranger pick-up that had gone 488,000 miles.

<!-- REAP --><!--startclickprintexclude--><!-- KEEP --><TABLE cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=0 width=220 border=0><TBODY><TR><TD align=middle>http://i.cnn.net/money/2007/08/30/autos/cr_drive_200k/2007_honda_civic_gx.03.jpg</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top align=left>Consumer Reports calls the Honda Civic a "Good bet" to make it to 200,000 miles.</TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>
Calculating the costs involved in buying a new Honda Civic EX every five years for 15 years - including depreciation, taxes, fees and insurance - the magazine estimated it would cost $20,500 more than it would have cost to simply maintain one car for the same period.

<!-- REAP --><!--startclickprintexclude-->Tagged: 10 cars with bad reputations (http://money.cnn.com/galleries/2007/autos/0708/gallery.questionable_cars/)
<!--endclickprintexclude--><!-- /REAP -->Added to that, the magazine factored in $10,300 in interest that could have been earned on that money, assuming a five percent interest rate and a three percent inflation rate, over that time.

The magazine found similar savings with other models.

To have much hope of making it to 200,000 miles, a car has to be well maintained, of course. The magazine recommends several steps to help your car see it through.

Follow the maintenance guide in your owner's manual and make needed repairs promptly.
Use only the recommended types of fluids, including oil and transmission fluids.
Check under the hood regularly. Listen for strange sounds, sniff for odd smells and look for fraying or bulges in pipes or belts. Also, get a vehicle service manual. They're available at most auto parts stores or your dealership.
Clean the car carefully inside and out. This not only helps the car's appearance but can prevent premature rust. Vacuuming the inside also prevents premature carpet wear from sand and grit.
Buy a safe, reliable car. Buying a car with the latest safety equipment makes it more likely you'll feel as safe in your aging car as a newer model.The magazine recommends several cars that have the best shot at reaching the 200,000 mile mark and a few that, according to its data, aren't likely to make it.

All the cars in the magazine's "Good bets" list are manufactured by Honda (http://money.cnn.com/quote/quote.html?symb=HMC&source=story_quote_link) (Charts (http://money.cnn.com/quote/chart/chart.html?symb=HMC&source=story_charts_link)) and Toyota (http://money.cnn.com/quote/quote.html?symb=TM&source=story_quote_link) (Charts (http://money.cnn.com/quote/chart/chart.html?symb=TM&source=story_charts_link)). (One extreme example was not enough to get the Ford Ranger onto the list.) The "Bad bets" are a mixture of European models and two Nissans.

Consumer Reports' "Good bets" for making 200,000 miles: Honda Civic, Honda CR-V, Honda Element, Lexus ES, Lexus LS, Toyota 4Runner, Toyota Highlander, Toyota Land Cruiser, Toyota Prius, Toyota RAV4

Consumer Reports' "Bad bets" for making 200,000 miles: BMW 7-series, Infiniti QX56, Jaguar X-type, V8-powered Mercedes-Benz M-class, Mercedes-Benz SL, Nissan Armada, Nissan Titan, Volkswagen Touareg, V6-powered Volvo XC90. http://i.cnn.net/money/images/bug.gif (http://money.cnn.com/2007/08/30/autos/cr_drive_200k/index.htm?section=money_latest#TOP)

<!-- /CONTENT -->GM unveils diesel-like gasoline engines (http://money.cnn.com/2007/08/23/autos/gm_hcci/index.htm?postversion=2007082415)
Porsche's carbon tire-print (http://money.cnn.com/2007/08/09/autos/porsche_green_performance/index.htm?postversion=2007082311)
Tagged: 10 cars with bad reputations (http://money.cnn.com/galleries/2007/autos/0708/gallery.questionable_cars/)



09-01-07, 11:15 PM
Has anyone else noticed that Consumer Reports has never, EVER, in the history of the magazine said anything positive about domestic makes of cars?

It's interesting to note that out of five vehicles I own, the lowest mileage one is also the oldest. But--it's an old '78 Chevy 4X4 pickup with a snow plow on it that I don't even bother putting plates or insurance on anymore, just use it off-road on the farm, so it doesn't go far enough to get many miles.

Beyond that, I have another Chevy 4X4 pickup with 259,000, an Olds 88 with 205,000, another Chevy 4X4 pickup with 204,000, and a Pontiac minivan with 168,000. All are perfectly healthy; I wouldn't hesitate to head out across country with any of them, so why blow a bunch of money replacing them? I also make a practice of never buying a vehicle I can't pay cash for.

BTW, speaking of imports, I think it's funny that in NASCAR racing, the Toyotas are the only cars built in the U.S. The Chevys and Dodges are made in Canada and the Fords in Mexico.


09-02-07, 12:32 AM
I like those older models. Had a 74 Cougar and with a good auto manual I could do most of the work myself. Replacing the transmission was the only thing I hired out.

09-02-07, 10:20 AM
Lost a '96 Taurus last year;
239,000 miles and still going when a flash flood came thru Louisville and she drowned, parked in the front yard. Water line was up to the door locks. It was almost her 11th birthday, we had ordered her, built in Oct. '05.
Nationwide was on our side, and bought her (since we'd been paying full comprehensive coverage).

I drive 'em till the wheels fall off. Got 180K on the C.O.s '01 SuperCrew F150.

09-02-07, 12:17 PM
I had an '89 Toyota p/u 4x4 that I sold 3 yrs. ago! When I sold it, it had 340,000 original miles on it! The guy I sold it to still drives it everyday & now it has almost 400,000 miles on it! The only thing I did to it was maintenance & tune-ups! I got my money's worth out of that truck!


09-02-07, 07:35 PM
A buddy of mine recently sold an '88 Chevy pickup with 431,000 miles on it. He put most of them on it himself.

His mother-in-law is a widow living in Chicago. (Bruce's wife was from Chicago and was teaching out here when they met and married). According to his mother-in-law's circle of friends, when a car has 40,000 miles on it, it's basically junk and ready to be traded for a new one. She like to freaked out the first time she came out here and found out we drive vehicles with 200,000 to 300,000 miles on them without giving it a second thought.


09-03-07, 02:27 AM
On the other end of the scale, in 1990 I saw a '68 Chevelle with 631 miles on it. This little old lady in Mufreesboro TN liked the looks of it in '68 and the longest trip she ever made was to bury her brother in West Tennessee.

"Folks stop by all the time and try to buy it from me. I expect my son may sell it when I'm gone, but I need it to get my groceries."

She lived three blocks from her grocery store. :D