Those were bad old days. The “Fall of 2008″ was a brutal, hopeless, and downright dire time in the American retail car market. Nobody was buying $50,000+ sports cars like this Lexus, and the few that could afford to were too busy watching their stock values sink like stones and their home values dive straight into the ass end of a 20 year time warp.
Tag: Car Buying Advice
This August, we will have a 23-year-old German au pair coming to live with us. She will be taking care of our three boys – ages 6, 4, and 1. I am looking for transportation for said au pair that fulfills the following criteria:
About a third of the questions I get from readers center around one issue: euthanasia in the car world, or what I like to call “automotive decrapitation”.
In other words, when is it the right time to recycle an old car and transform it into a cheap Chinese washer and dryer?
I have been trying to find a Lexus GX470 for several months now. Either a 2012 or a 2013.
What I have found is that these vehicles simply don’t exist here in Tennessee.
I have gone through every Lexus dealer in the state, along with a few others that are out of state. I can’t find a GX anywhere.
So I thought that maybe I should try to look at a Toyota Sequoia, or maybe even a Toyota Tundra instead. I have found a few of these vehicles at the dealerships, but the prices are stupid high, and I just can’t justify paying what they want me to pay.
I am a cash customer, and I don’t think I’m too picky when it comes to cars. What I wanted to ask you is whether you can actually find a good deal on a late model GX at the auctions.
Dear Mr. Lang,
Your most recent article put the final nail in the C4 coffin for me and for that, I’m everlastingly grateful.
The VW GTI is but a distant infatuation, another foolish pleasure set aside.
Onward to the Infiniti M35.
The bases are loaded and the score is tied. Two outs in the bottom of ninth. 3 balls. 1 strike.
You know this pitcher better than you know your brother. The last pitch had almost cleared the left field pole, and the entire stadium. Your swing was as beautiful as Mickey Mantle in his prime. Just a few inches to the right and you would have been on your way to a private party with friends instead of another walk back to the batter’s box.
The catcher signals, and you catch one finger out of the very corner of your eye. Fastball. The pitch comes, right down the middle. It’s almost like a dream and yet, you can’t do anything about it.
The stomach pangs in stress and anguish as the rest of your body remains still. You watch it go past. The thud in the catcher’s mitt. The umpire bellowing, “Stttaaarrriiikkeee!!!” Your manager had told you not to swing and now, you have 50,000 fans booing as you curse under the breath and step away from the batters box.
Will you get a pitch that good again? The pitcher grins as he now knows, his mistake ended up giving him an advantage.
Rookies. All-stars. Hall of Famers.
Those were the only three types of baseball cards that I thought were worth the trade when I was a kid. I was eight years old, but that didn’t stop me from becoming diligently schooled by my three older brothers who knew the ropes of other similar hobbies such as comics, coins, and stamps.
The drill was simple. Every time someone wanted to trade cards with me, I would ask them one simple question.
“What’s your favorite team?” From there, I would bring out an album loaded with baseball cards. Every one in mint condition and encased in plastic sheets. “Pick your favorites!” They would gather their own, and I would go through their collection, find the fresher cards in mint condition, and gather mine.
Over 30 years later I do the exact same thing with cars. I sell based on interest and buy based on condition and long-term reliability. I’m still not loyal to any brand or model these days. For me, even after all these years, the opportunity to buy and sell any car comes down to three simple concepts I learned in my youth.
Condition, presentation, and price.
What would be the most reliable car I can purchase for about $7000-8000? And what would be the upper limit on mileage that I would even consider?
$150 a week.
For some folks, this is a mere pittance. A lunch for four at a fancy restaurant that can be easily charged off to Uncle Sam and his seventeen trillion dollar debit card.
For others, it’s the beginning of a barnacle that will likely outlast their ability to pay it.
They will flex their muscles and run while they can. Then once they trip, due to a lost job or a family emergency, they will pick up an even heavier barnacle, with four wheels on it, and keep running.
It’s a vicious cycle of poverty. Where the poor always stay poor. After witnessing this cycle of automotive indebtitude for years on end, I’ve come to blame one solitary thing.
I’m a working musician from NYC. I have a conundrum.
Since 1998 I’ve owned a 1989 BMW E30 ‘vert, which has served me well as a touring artist — it just hit 160k, most of those miles mine. However, all those miles have come at a price, between 40k timing belt changes and other occasional maintenance items, I wind up putting roughly $1500 into it every two to four years.
But I’ve always loved it, and it never let me down, until recently.