Just when you think you have things organized, a monkey wrench gets tossed your way. My car, a 12yo Subi Forester, was overdue an oil change and had a warning light (brake) illuminated. Being responsible, I took it to the dealer and jokingly asked The Bald One “so, at what price point do we give in and replace this car?”
Don’t get me wrong – I love my Subi. She drives well, hauls stuff and generally a great car that got me through a rough spot when I suddenly had to replace my Focus after a run-in with a pizza delivery boy. The downside is that I didn’t get to research, debate or check things like “can it hold two car seats?” before buying it. Add to that my commute basically is a 50mi round trip fun fest and you are spending a bunch of money on gas in a car that is showing its age.
So yes, at what point do you replace a reliable car that can get you from point A to point B? To date, every time I’ve had to replace a car the decision has been made for me. The Topaz I drove for a year and a half was driven into by someone not paying attention to the fact I was not moving. This brought the Civic into my life, which got me to college before sitting in the driveway for a year and a half while I flirted with an eighteen year old Toyota minivan. The minivan died a glorious death trying to get me home from Syracuse to Cleveland through a rerouted I90 and topping out at 45mph. The Civic then made the trek back and forth to Syracuse for the next two years before having the windows jam in the up position and the A/C giving up the ghost, so for graduation I bought myself the Focus. That Focus got me through Cleveland, moved me to Raleigh and through my the first three years of marriage before I stupidly got it totalled. That got me to the Subaru and now. So it becomes an agonizing push-pull of what to do next.