Friday, March 5, 2010

Most & least expensive to own

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:

Least expensive:
Honda Fit (base) - $25,500
Smart ForTwo - $26,250
Toyota Yaris - $26,500
Scion xD - $27,000
Toyota Corolla LE - $27,250

Most expensive:
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!

1 comment:

Josh said...

My initial thought was that even though I ride most of the time, I still keep my truck for occasional commutes when I know that I’ll have to travel to another site during the day, and for hauling stuff from time to time, so I still incur a lot of those costs.
But then I realized that my 10 year old Chevy is fully depreciated, and paid for, so I don’t have depreciation, nor interest expenses. And insurance is pretty low for a vehicle like that, I only fill it up about 5 times a year, so fuel isn’t a big expense (though more than I’d like), and maintenance is pretty low too because I don’t put many miles on it.
My point is that even for those of us that do keep a vehicle, bicycle commuting is still very economical because we don’t need the best/newest vehicle, and the maintenance costs are really low.
I’ve had my commuter bike for a little over 5 years, and it’s still in pretty good shape. I’m planning to buy a recumbent this spring to hopefully be less stressful on my neck and back, and hopefully that will last me many more years. I’ll keep the old one for a winter bike. Without having to worry about all those expenses that come with a motor vehicle, I can keep more bikes around and eventually end up with one for every purpose. You can’t say that about cars. Very few people keep a truck for off-road, plus a high performance road machine, plus a utility vehicle for bad weather.
Cycling continues to make more and more sense the more I think about it.

Thanks for your encouragement.