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cars getting more expensive(27 posts)

cars getting more expensiveColnagoFE
Jan 22, 2004 10:59 AM

I remember when I was a kid in the 70s looking at a Chevy Corvette and thinking the $7k pricetag was out of this world but it was a mighty fine looking car. Now the avg price of new cars is above 30k. Everything seems to keep going up dramatically in price except my salary.
You're living the American Dream!czardonic
Jan 22, 2004 11:04 AM
    "Everything seems to keep going up dramatically in price except my salary."
Like bikes?Spoiler
Jan 22, 2004 11:13 AM
Look at the average cost of a racing bicycle, or the price of a Campy group, a helmet, pair of road shoes, or a wheelset. I think it's reflective of what the upper levels are willing to pay.
A couple years ago, a three or four hundred dollar pair of custom LUST shoes was unthinkable to the average cyclist. Now look at how many manufacturers make $300+ shoes. Helmets are another one. Few could justify buying a $80 chunk of styrofoam. Now that cheap's compared to the $200 Lance models which, by the way, contain much less material. Less is more.
It's a bad metric,TJeanloz
Jan 22, 2004 11:33 AM
The average is skewed high, and doesn't necessarily mean that cars are getting more expensive, just that more expensive cars are being sold. You sell five $10,000 cars (Kia), and one $100,000 car, and your average price is $25,000.

Cars now are, IMHO, cheaper than ever. A $30,000 car today would have cost ~6,000 in 1970, based on inflation alone. A Kia Rio only costs ~$8,860 - or $1,800 in 1970 dollars. And from a quality perspective, it's much better than most of the cars from that era (100,000 mile warranty, for example). It really is amazing how much quality has improved in cars.
My rant.Jon Billheimer
Jan 22, 2004 11:45 AM
Five years ago my carbon fibre bike w/Ultegra cost me $3000.00 Cdn. Today that same bike runs about $5,000.00. CF boutique stuff has inflated even more rapidly, e.g. wheelsets, seatposts, etc. This American/Cdn/Shimano/Zipp "dream" is turning into a nightmare! Ditto for ski stuff. IMHO the only way to stem the tide is for us invidious consumers to simply STOP buying. Not that I'll ever do it. I'm as gullible and envious as everyone else!
Back in 1970 that $1800 would buy a VW bugMR_GRUMPY
Jan 22, 2004 12:07 PM
In 1971, I bought a $2100 Toyota. An $8000 car now, is much better than those oldies.
It's a bad metric,gtx
Jan 22, 2004 2:22 PM
In 1970 a Plymouth Road Runner was around $3k. There's nothing nearly as cool today for $15k (using your equation of multiplying x 5). The modern equivalent (if there was one, and there isn't really) would cost in the range of $25-30k. Of course for that you get a safer and more fuel efficient car with more standard features, but not necessarily more durable if both cars were maintained properly (the older car will require more maintenance--but it won't require tools that only dealers can afford). I think the main thing driving these higher prices is the number of standard features everyone seems to expect these days--from ABS, navigation systems, airbags, etc. And, typically, "Edmunds' senior analyst Jesse Torak said the higher prices are due mostly to buyers using incentives to get more vehicle rather than cut the amount paid."
what about the turbo neon? It's even a chrysler product... nmshawndoggy
Jan 22, 2004 3:15 PM
21K MSRP? (nm)czardonic
Jan 22, 2004 3:24 PM
NO NEONS! Take it from a guy who's owned two.Cory
Jan 22, 2004 3:45 PM
In 1994 I got caught up in a rush of patriotism and my wife's perverted tastes and bought a Neon Highline. Compared to our previous Toyota-Honda-Subaru experiences, it was a nightmare: Rattles, warning lights, horrible service--at 50,000 miles it was far worse than a Subaru Legacy with 130,000 on it. The dealer finally left a hose clamp loose, so it dumped the coolant and blew a head gasket. He fixed it free (after extensive communication with the Better Business Bureau and Chrysler), and we sold it.
Couple of years later my daughter, very much against my advice, bought a '97 Neon Sport. Same experience minus some of the service problems--we started taking it to an independent mechanic I've used for years, and he was at least honest about what it needed. We spent more than $2000 on repairs in 18 months, only a few hundred the result of problems that existed when we bought the car. Meanwhile, we've taken a Corolla to 162,000 miles, a Honda to 90,000 with NO trouble at all and my Isuzu pickup (built in Mexico, for whatever THAT'S worth) to 114,000 with one belt change and a $40 tie rod. I'll never buy another Chrysler product, and I'm struggling with the notion of ever buying another American vehicle.
yeah yeah, I wouldn't buy one either....shawndoggy
Jan 22, 2004 4:28 PM
But I was just trying to come up with an example of cheap and quick 'merican iron. Fact is, though, a bottom of the line Honda civic is probably as quick as that road runner, at least on an autocross course. No melting your tires to black goo, though.

Fact is, those late 60s/early 70s muscle cars were pigs.

WRX, Cory, WRX. Best bang for the buck going.
on an autocross course?gtx
Jan 22, 2004 4:37 PM
Road Runners are straight line performers. If you want an autocross contender from 1970 how about a Mini Cooper? I bet those were well under $3k then and will kill today's Civic on the autocross course.

WRX is fine as long as you don't have to work on it. Those AWD drivetrain parts are pricey and not terribly durable, especially if you drive that car the way it begs to be driven. And if you damage a tire you have to replace ALL FOUR.
Jan 22, 2004 4:40 PM
there is a rumor going around that Ford will offer a base trim (ie LX not GT) V8 05 Mustang for under $20k. 300HP for under $20k sounds good to me.
hit the nail on the head there....shawndoggy
Jan 23, 2004 9:51 AM
Could a cheap reliable american v8 be built? Sure, but it wouldn't have all of the creature comforts that are standard fare and drive up the price. Is it even possible to buy a car with (gasp!) roll-up windows anymore (besides a lightened up Porsche or Mitsu EVO which you'll get charged MORE for)?

No anti-lock brakes, no power windows or door locks, light on the sound deadening....
the beauty of the late model Japanese automobile...shawndoggy
Jan 22, 2004 4:47 PM
you don't have to work on it. Change the oil, get the scheduled services, and they go and go. I still feel guilty about getting rid of the '93 accord with 105K on the odo cuz it was bulletproof.

That's true re the mini and the road runner. And so you've been forced to own a car today that doesn't rust, provides you with some likelihood of surviving a crash, pollutes at about 1/10000 the amount of a pre-emissions car, doesn't break, etc. Crash a mini (original) and you are dead. Much higher likelihood in the road runner too.

There's an argument to be made for the unsafe good ol' days (damn it, I still miss lawn darts. We can have guns but not lawn darts?), but in the big scheme of things, new cars are better than the old ones in a million different ways.

Doesn't keep me from lusting after a TR-6 or a late 80s 944 Turbo S, mind you, but that's irrational lust not based on logic.
mmmmmmmmm, WRX! *drool*dr hoo
Jan 22, 2004 5:29 PM
I admit wanting one, and thinking about buying one for a good 30 seconds.

But, if I were going to drop $30k+ on a toy car, I would buy a classic car. 5 years later I could sell it for least 30k, and perhaps more.

If I want vroom vroom speed, I will buy a motorcycle. $3k used and I will have more acceleration and handling than any car out there, and higher top speed than most. 12-15k buys INSANE performance, more than I would ever use. I took a friend's R1 out last summer, and I could not bring myself to redline the sucker in 2nd gear!

At least that's what I told him.

FYI, it redlined in first gear around 60. Or so he told me :-)
NO MORE Caravans...asphalt assault
Jan 23, 2004 4:58 AM
I had two high end Caravans (ES w/all the toys). The first, a 96 at 55K miles was in need of some front end work so I traded it in for a 2000. The 2000 developed a NASTY top end (lifters, rockers etc.) clatter at 67k miles. After some exploritory surgery we found that there was some sort of blockage in the oil passages up top and wasn't getting sufficient lubrication up top resulting in premature wear.

Last Monday I traded the 2000 in on a 04 Odyssey. Luckily, that top end clatter would go away for about 1000 miles when you put fresh oil...other wise I would have REALLY taken a bath on the trade in.

I still have a 00 Dakota w/70k miles and it's been quite reliable. Let's see how it goes but that new Honda Sport Utility Truck that's coming out in 05 is looking pretty interesting.

All I ask is to get to 100k miles without any majior repair expenses...I don't think Chrysler can provide that.
Looks like a WRX to me. Either way...No_sprint
Jan 23, 2004 8:01 AM
my rides put them to shame. No oversized roller skates for me!
Fer a single guy in socal, OK, but for a dad in Renoshawndoggy
Jan 23, 2004 9:47 AM
4wd and four doors are nice to have. Can't drive a camaro in the snow.

Now a late 90s SS is on my wish list too, fer when the rex is done. I've decided no more new cars for me... just the old ones I've lusted over in the 5-10 year old range that I can pay cash for, abuse for a year and sell for close to what I paid.
That's what the Navigator is for SDoggy!No_sprint
Jan 23, 2004 10:35 AM
Don't go fer the late 90s. 01/02.

I'm a serious ls6/c5/c6 hunter until I put the Viper next to them all... I'm hopin' more sooner than later.
Americans have bought into the idea that they "need"...MR_GRUMPY
Jan 22, 2004 11:58 AM
a $35,000 car. You can still buy a $15,000 car the is just as good as a $30,000 one. Likewise, unless you race, you don't "need" Dura Ace, or even Chorus.
I agree that no-one needs Dura Ace...PdxMark
Jan 22, 2004 1:00 PM
maybe not even for racing. (Troll bait) But Chorus is another matter altogether. Lovely, smooth, elegant... I NEED my Chorus groups... OK, not to help me climb hills or motor along flats, but as a luxurious self-indulgence for working too dang much... And as I keep telling my wife, at least it's not a $35,000 car...
I agree entirelyCARBON110
Jan 22, 2004 3:26 PM
its outragous! 1800$ is what Reynolds wants for thier new clincher wheelset. WTF are they thinking? That wheelset is NOT worth 7-900 dollars more then a pair of Zipps. No way! Ok there is a bigger difference between say a 2400$ Trek 5200 and a 2100$ Caad 5. The material is different, wheels, ride quality, etc etc. but there isn't as big a Difference between say a 5900 and a C40 for example yet the C40 is like 1000+ more. The only bike worth over 4k IMHO is the Merlin Cielo since it uses Hand craafted designs on the TI.

I love owning 30$ k cars, but who loves paying for them? Its true a 15$k car has almost everything a car twice its price has. A 30K car has nothing you can't live without but it's not about price anymore. When VW reintroduced the Bug it was a genius profitable marketing release but the car itself isnt any more practical then a Porsche (half the cost) at all but they are sold sold sold. I thought the Bug rerelease was a litmis test that you can build a car based on nastolgia and art design and sell it successfully to the public now because, people will buy it.
What we pay for cars our parents paid for homes128
Jan 23, 2004 7:39 AM
And that was on one income with 2.5 children. So maybe we all need a raise.

I "paid" 18.8 for the 03 Accord on the theory that all it needs is oil and gas for a looong time. Absolutley love this car. You can get a lot of car for the money these days.
What some of us earn in a month, our parents earned in a year nmPdxMark
Jan 23, 2004 10:06 AM
A candy bar or a phone call cost 10c. (nm)ColnagoFE
Jan 23, 2004 11:11 AM
It always comes down to a "want" more than a "need" factor. -nm.Ti22
Jan 23, 2004 3:42 PM