We have learned that sometimes it is a necessity to get from Point A to Point B. That is our primary purpose for having a car. Living a thrifty lifestyle means foregoing luxury and style if it is not necessary. And a car is not necessary for that purpose. After all, most cars are not collectible – they do not hold their value regardless of how well you have kept it up.
Those beautiful sports cars, luxury sedans, oversized SUVs, and many others have the disadvantage of not only costing a lot at purchase, but also in maintenance. They drink too much fuel and they are a pain to insure. Tax is probably quite heavy as well. Then, of course, there is the added risk that they will be stolen. Most thieves would not target that beat-up rust bucket, unless they just finished a bank robbery and needed a quick get-away car that they forgot to provide beforehand.
Because we do not like empty pockets, yet we need our own transportation when public transport is not available or is too costly or inefficient, we do have a car. Only one. And even though it has not quite reached rust bucket age, it is old enough to be one. So, we have that to look forward to. Yes, it has broken down a few times, but thankfully, we have the RAC. Of course, once it sputters its last breath, we will be in search of another to replace it. Believe me, it would still have to be a cheap reliable car with some life left. In our experience, Japanese cars have good long life. I can’t speak from first-hand experience of other car makes, but second-hand experience tells us to avoid many of them.
Some might argue that they need a truck or a large car in order to haul things around. Unless you are in the habit of hauling large items around, this might not be a very economical decision. Many places deliver, sometimes for a fee, or you can always rent a van when necessary. Having a large truck, for which you must insure and maintain, can be expensive. Also, regularly driving it around town on those narrow roads is nerve-racking, to yourself and others.
In England, manuals are much more common than automatics, so they tend to be cheaper. It would be a good idea to learn to drive a manual, but we have been driving automatics so long that I’m afraid you can’t teach this old dog a new trick.