The annual Consumer Reports Auto Issue (April 2010) lists the most and least expensive passenger cars to own.
Including "depreciation, fuel, interest, insurance, sales tax, and repairs/maintenance," here are the winners and losers. These are the costs over 5 years:
Honda Fit (base) - $25,500
Smart ForTwo - $26,250
Toyota Yaris - $26,500
Scion xD - $27,000
Toyota Corolla LE - $27,250
Porsche 911 Carrera S - $91,750
Jaguar XK - $94,750
Mercedes-Benz S550 - $102,000
Mercedes-Benz SL550 - $110,750
Dodge Viper - $113,000
So the least expensive car on the list costs $5100/year, or about 14 bucks a day. (Heck! You could almost pay for your healthcare with that kind of cash!) The Viper Guy is paying $22,600 per year for his Viper Ownership Experience... of course, money is no object for him.
You transportation cyclists - how do those numbers compare with your bike-riding expenses?
If I tossed my bike in the dumpster every 5 years and started with a brand-new one, and threw my old TV in the dumpster and bought a new 52-inch bigscreen, just for fun... my 5-year cost would still be well below what it costs to run that Honda Fit for one year! "Smart for Two" indeed!