Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Used Cars Part 2 - Gas, Insurance, and Cost to Own

My other metric with which to evaluate a car is a determination of the non-purchase costs associated with it. Consumer Reports has an estimate of how many gallons of gasoline that you'll use per 12K miles, but I find their gasoline pricing system optimistic. So I'm going to use my own guesses as to fuel price, on average, for the next 10 years, in 2010 dollars. Totally unscientifically, I guess that Regular will average more like $3/gal and premium will be $3.25. I ran insurance numbers on all three cars using Progressive's Quote system, first with no collision and second with comprehensive and collision with a 1K deductible. So those numbers were:

Ford Fusion: $1065 per 12K for gas, Insurance increases $179 or $296 per 6 mos

Acura TSX: $1543.75 per 12K for gas, Insurance increases$172 or $365 per 6 mos

Infinity G35: $1770 per 12K for gas, insurance increases $206 or $422 per 6 mos

So without repair and maintenance costs, with comprehensive and collision, and assuming 12K miles per year, annual costs will be:

Ford Fusion: $1657
Acura TSX: $2273.75
Infinity G35: $2614

Thus giving me a savings of $399.38 a year for the Ford and a cost of $584.59 for the Acura versus buying the Infinity. Of course, if I could really accurately predict gas prices, I'd be a millionaire. And all these numbers are really kind of silly without repair costs to add in. Consumer Reports claims to have an "owner's cost" number that includes repairs, but their repair numbers also seem optimistically low to me.

Grrr ... I hate not being able to run real numbers on my options! I hate that cars are so idiosyncratic! I hate that I am totally mechanically fail so I am at the mercy of others for such a huge purchase! And I really hate spending all this lovely money on something that is just going to depreciate!


OK, I guess I am going to have to suck it up and do this. I promise not to post on this again until and unless I have some actual information to report.

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