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Thread: Test-driving the cheapest cars we could find.

  1. #1
    Super Moderator Super Moderator Big Booger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2002

    Talking Test-driving the cheapest cars we could find.

    I miss the Yugo. It was no automotive masterpiece, but you have to give it this much: It was a new car for under $4,000. People spend that kind of money on TV sets these days.

    Adjusted for inflation, the infamous '86 Yugo hatchback—named the "GV," for "Great Value"—would still cost less than $7,500 today. And it would indeed be a great value! You simply can't find a new car for that price anymore. Just a single car in the 2007 model year lists for less than $10,000 (the Chevy Aveo, the Yugo of the new millennium), and even it comes in at an eye-popping $9,995.

    It turns out most bottom-of-the-line cars these days will run you more like $12,000 to $17,000. This is disappointingly luxe for a car cheapskate like me. (I drive a '96 Saturn with 103,000 miles on it.) But here's the good news: There are some nifty little cars to be found in that price range. The whole economy category has been jump-started by today's crushing gasoline costs (which are spurring demand for smaller, cheaper cars), and Japan's big players have rushed to design brand-new models (the Honda Fit, the Toyota Yaris, and the Nissan Versa).

    For the cheap ass people (like me) on the boards who live in the US

  2. #2
    The Beast Master TZ Veteran PIPER's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2002
    And here I have been thinking about the new Shelby Cobra with 500 hp.....vrooom

  3. #3
    Bronze Member
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    Nov 2004
    Narvik, Norway
    For $10K you can easily find a used higher end car that drives well, has much more luxury, more space and is still in decent shape. Over here, where car prices has to be seen to be believed, that kind of money would get a early to mid nineties Mercedes E-class with plenty of life left.

    As for environmental causes, I find it better to keep an okay, older car in driving condition, than to scrap it (with the trash and emissions that carries) and then buy a new car (with the trash and emissions that making it carries).

    Economically speaking, the price of gas or diesel is not the most expensive part of having a car, unless you drive a LOT.

    For me, not having had a car for so long, it also makes sense to have an older car where I can make do with a cheaper insurance than a new car where I need full coverage. If I fsck up and trash the car, I can still get another one (for cheap), whereas if I have a new car, I will need the insurance, since I can't afford having to get a new car and keep up with the downpayments on the trashed one. The insurance system here is such that you get a bonus rebate on the insurance for every year you drive without damage, up to 80% off the base price. The downside is that for your first car, you start off with 20-30% off the base price and then have to work upp to the full bonus. Carrying only liability and fire/theft is half the price of full coverage.

    Another part of having an old car, is that it's possible to fix it yourself or having a buddy help you fix it. Apart from bodywork and pure mechanical stuff, you can't do that with a new car. We all know what breaks in new cars - the electronics... On my car, apart from the stereo, the most advanced electronics is the rectifier in the alternator...

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