thanks for the Down Under reply, mate!
Honestly, if I lived in Aussie, I wouldn’t be writing. You Blokes :D don’t get any snow compared to us in Pittsburgh, and your public transit was excellent. For the 3 weeks I was in Australia I didn’t bother with cars at all. if I lived in Melbourne or Sydney, I wouldn’t own a car – besides, your car prices are about twice what we pay here, and your petrol (gasoline) is about 4 times the cost. What you pay for a liter, we pay for 4 liters. And there’s no propane-powered vehicles like you have.
So, I paid about $12,000 for my brand-new Escort. Even with the exchange rate, that’s about A$14,000.
But for me, I *must* have a reliable car. There really isn’t any public transit whatsoever (the bus in my neighborhood runs twice a DAY), and I’m too far to walk or bike to my work and school.
However, you bring up a fantastic point: cars last a heck of a lot longer than 20 years ago. 100,000 miles is just the beginning, and perhaps I should stick that money into some short-term bonds and save it up for a repair bill instead of a new purchase.
I don’t have to make my decision for another 10 months, so I’m sure I’ll waffle back and forth many many times before then! :-)