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Cost savings- is it every cheaper to have two cars?

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  • Cost savings- is it every cheaper to have two cars?

    As of right now I have a Silverado truck worth about 14k.  It is reliable but a 2012 kinda bare bones, 14 mpg.  I thought about upgrading this to a 30k truck as features like blue tooth and fuel efficiency would be nice.  My daily commute is about 4 miles to work- so not bad.  Would I be better off to stick with a (single) vehicle and just upgrade to a newer truck or buy something like a Subaru Forester for daily driving with upgraded features like blue tooth heated seats and then also keep my truck for weekend 4wheelin trips and hauling firewood/lumber.

    I feel like most miles put on a truck as a doctor driving to and from work are a waste of money but I am not willing to go without a truck for those niche times when I need it.  Any thoughts?

  • #2
    Been there, done that. It's far more expensive to have two, and they still depreciate every week and month whether you have insurance/driving on them or not.

    Do single vehicle if at all possible. Rent occasionally if you need specialty vehicle (high capacity, mpg friendly, hauling, etc).

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    • #3
      it would probably be cheaper to rent a truck when you need it.

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      • #4
        You’d be better off selling your truck and using the proceeds to buy a used and more current sedan that will last longer and get you more mpg.

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        • #5
          Buying an extra vehicle generally won't save you money. The extra insurance and registration expenses hit no matter which one you drive more. But, it is nice to have specialized vehicles for hauling things, comfortably seating a whole family, off-roading, driving fast, etc. Date night -- fancy drop-top roadster; taking the kids team to a game -- 7 seater with extra space.

          If an extra car is a luxury you can afford, spend it if you want to. No different than flying first class, international vacations, living in a big house, etc. Pick a few, just not all of them. If you think it'll make your life better and you can afford it, go for it. It won't save you money though.

           

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          • #6
            Oh, and then do what Triad said for those niche times.

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            • #7
              Back in the day maybe wasn't so bad but now with insurance rates and other fees every extra vehicle is deadweight unless really required.

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              • #8
                It's usually much cheaper to have one vehicle as opposed to two but if you feel like you need the truck enough just keep the truck and buy another vehicle. Liability insurance likely won't be all that expensive and registration will vary by start but should be somewhat reasonable, too.

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                • #9
                  Just upgrade your stereo system to a decent bluetooth unit. Generally speaking, even new factory-installed units with bluetooth offer crappy quality and value compared to what you can get aftermarket.

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                  • #10
                    You also have to have a place to store or park it. If it can be kept from the elements and only sparsely used it can last quite a long time.

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                    • #11
                      Let me be the contrarian here.

                      Check the additional insurance. That will be your main expense. If you have a good driving record it will be the Forrester that will cost you the majority portion. The old truck might not add much more.

                      Easy to say to rent but then you won't be renting as much as you wish and it is much easier to have one at hand to use immediately. And having a 2nd vehicle in case the 1st one dies or gets into an accident or does not start in cold weather is always a good thing. If you are earning well and save well this is one luxury that you can afford and will give you pleasure - no different from first class travel or Disney cruise or whatever.

                      Get a bluetooth audio for the truck. If you still feel the need for a Subaru, get that. Obviously you won't save money but if it makes you happy you should do it and not regret it later on. In the overall scheme of things this is small potatoes.

                       

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                      • #12
                        And here I thought this would be about having 1 vs 2 family cars! I am definitely in team rent when you need a truck. We have one car, we occasionally rent a bigger car when family comes in town or if we want to haul a bunch of extra kids around, like for a birthday party. I guess this goes back to the making do thread but you would probably be surprised how often you could make do without the truck. We have done all kinds of moves, house projects, landscaping, bringing home furniture, etc in our trusty little Corolla.

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                        • #13
                          tough to say silverado and fuel efficiency in the same sentence.

                          if that's your concern then as others have said go in a different direction.

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                          • #14
                            I appreciate the thoughts, I actually use my truck probably 4 to 6 times per month. I have no plans at all to not have my truck available. I think part of the question is whether it makes sense to pay the premium of upgrading a truck to a newer model with improved features such as fuel-efficient technology Bluetooth heated seats etc. when something like A Subaru could be head much cheaper with these features and become my daily driver with just a truck on hand parked along the street for those times when I need that.

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                            • #15
                              It does not.

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