By on August 30, 2017

Image: Bentley Arnage Final Series


Time to suspend disbelief, much like you do with your favorite television show featuring dragons and incestual relations (between people, not dragons). A new government regime has outlawed production of the private automobile. All new car sales will end in 48 hours. Much like Jack Bauer, you’ve got to make an important decision in that timespan: Purchasing your last car of choice.

Which automobile will you pick, knowing it’s the last one you’ll ever have?

An interesting question to ponder, as many variables hang in the balance. We’re going to make it a bit easier and simplify things with Three Simple Tricks Rules.

  1. The single (just one) forever car you choose must be new, and in production in 2017 somewhere in the world.
  2. You are not limited by wallet size in this particular purchase.
  3. Sales or exchanges later are also outlawed; this is the car your household will have for the rest of your life. Upon your death, the car will be crushed.

The knee-jerk reaction when given unlimited funds is to pick something hugely expensive, and perhaps rare (like that glorious Bentley above). However, with new car production outlawed there will only be so many companies left to maintain the deteriorating cars left on the roads. Cars with stratospheric prices are often frail, riddled with electronic gremlins, and limited in parts supply. Other things to consider:

  • Enjoyable driving
  • Cargo versatility
  • Present and future family and household needs
  • General robustness

Those things in mind, the choice for me was fairly easy.

Image: 2017 GMC Yukon

It’s the GMC Yukon, in less-than-Denali trim. Robust, sure availability of parts, reliable V8, versatile for cargo and people. As a bonus, the Yukon can go off road a bit when I want to escape the totalitarian state that banned new car sales. It’s luxurious, but not so much as to make certain Americans swell with rage in these trying times. The Yukon is always acceptable, in all American situations.

Your turn, think it through.

[Images: Bentley, General Motors]

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138 Comments on “QOTD: All Car Production Ends Tomorrow – What’s Your Forever Vehicle?...”

  • avatar

    Commandant, may I customize the MY17 any way I wish?

  • avatar

    Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid. Can move 7 around in comfort with good gas mileage, and can avoid gas pumps entirely with my usual route. (Yes, they are finally shipping again).

  • avatar

    Similar to you I’d opt for a Suburban 4×4 in a lower trim level. It’s reliable, durable, and incredibly utilitarian.

  • avatar

    Middle East Spec LHD 200-series Land Cruiser with MT/diesel.

    • 0 avatar


      Any 200. They may be neither fowl nor fish along the 1st world paved road/recreational technical offroad spectrum, but as a comfortable end-of-days-take-her-anywhere’er, man are they well built and versatile.

      A 3/4 ton crew cab is up there as well. Although, if ONE vehicle means no bikes either, that bed does lose lots of utility….

  • avatar

    So basically if the world became Cuba car wise?

    I can’t think of what I will want to replace my G37S in as is, so this is probably it. Maybe I’d convert it to stickshift. Only replacements that look appealing at all are some kind of post 996 C2S, which would be a real commitment practicality wise, or an x35i (2 or 3 series) which is a reliability crapshoot. I suppose an S550 Mustang GT could be fun too.

  • avatar

    I’ll just take a Nissan Rogue. Enough space, good fuel economy for what it is, common, and probably cheap to fix

  • avatar

    Caprice PPV 6.0L

    • 0 avatar

      I thought of that one too…or maybe a Challenger R/T (I’d skip the 392 or Hellcat – not as many replacement parts).


    • 0 avatar

      Yup, R/T is the way to go. 345 Hemis are common as dirt if you kill it and you aren’t stuck with boat anchor 20″ wheels that wont survive day 1 of post apocalyptic infrastructure. Squeeze 17″ D slot steelies on there and a good all around knobby tread and its competent in mildly rough driving.

      • 0 avatar

        The premise did not specify the apocalypse, only our betters declaring an end to vehicle production – for the good of Gaea and the ozone layer, or something. Infrastructure survives. Of course, 20″ wheels are ridiculous in their own right.

  • avatar

    Well…if this is what’s happening, the world pretty much sucks, so I’m going out in style.

    Ferrari 488 in Rossa Corsa. FTW.

  • avatar

    A 5-door Łada Niva, or whatever it’s called these days. Perhaps not such an obvious choice in N. America, but the Niva 1) can tackle all sorts of terrain, 2) has proven itself through decades of
    production in more-or-less the same form, 3) is supported by an extensive & affordable network of parts suppliers, and 4) has straightforward engineering which should contribute to its servicabity for the long haul.

  • avatar

    I would say the Land Cruiser for obvious reasons. I need to still be able to tow a travel trailer.

  • avatar

    Perfoamce drivign fun is always a priority
    Ferrari GTC 4 Lusso covers all the bases. Ill assume that the tech econmy remains robust so the expertise to keep it going survives in desperate times people will figure out how to keep these things running.

    Alternatively a Jeep tackhawk, simpler vehicle to keep running.

    Realiticaly if somehting has to last a lifetime, assmuning the tech society is defunct no modern car will work, in which case one has to get soemhting from the 60s or earlier.

  • avatar

    Durango. Too bad the SRT isn’t out yet.

  • avatar

    A crew cab Cummins Ram 2500 with the 6 speed, followed immediately by a delete of the unreliable and costly emissions equipment. With that stuff gone, it stands as good a chance as anything of lasting a million miles.

  • avatar

    My heart wants a 2009-2012 Infiniti G37X. My brain wants a 2012-2014 Mazda 5. In the end, I’d probably end up with something like a 2012-2016 Honda CR-V: reliable, easy to drive, fuel efficient, and more practical than its size suggests.

  • avatar

    Forever, a Porsche 911 GTS.

    If it’s for the zombie apocalypse? Maybe a wrangler or something.

  • avatar

    I have ZERO INTEREST in a tesla.

    But I’d have to say “Tesla model X”

    I hate them.

    But I just have a feeling that in 30 years, if no more cars are being produced, gas pumps will be harder to come by than repair parts, and at least I can create electricity at home.

    You can horde replacement parts, but gas goes bad in a matter of months. Replacement Lithium Ion cells on the other hand would be commonplace.

    And its the biggest electric vehicle on the market.

    As I said, its the LAST car I’d buy in the “Real world”, but in your hypothetical situation, its the only one that makes sense.

    The only other answer would be to destroy your question and play games… Ie, you didn’t say TRUCK so can I buy a fun car and drive around a volvo Semi truck? You also didn’t say MOTORCYCLE, so does that mean I can have a motorcycle too? and 3 wheelers?

  • avatar

    I’m torn between the current Land Cruiser (there’s so few options available on the US spec model who cares) and a GMC Yukon XL SLT 4×4 with “trailering package” as they call the tow package now.

    Either one should last me until the 2nd coming and I don’t think that I’d be afraid to try for 500,000 miles on either one.

    • 0 avatar

      Dan, the world market is your oyster. Feel free to pick an LC we don’t get here.

      • 0 avatar

        With that kind of freedom I’d rather invent a time machine and get a new 1991 GMC Suburban (end of the line for that body style). Give me a 3/4 ton model with solid axle 4×4 and a TBI 454 V8.

        That I’d drive forever hands down.

  • avatar
    S2k Chris

    I’m slowly starting to think that a Ridgeline makes the most sense for me as a next car. I’m not a truck guy, but the ability to haul and tow would be handy, plus the top trims have (almost) all of the luxury car stuff as well. Add to it the all-weather capabilities as well as a suspension and ride height that deals well with our terrible IL roads and it is making a lot of sense. Just need Honda to give us a locking tailgate, Canada’s ventilated seats, and a man sized arm rest and it would be the perfect little Swiss Army Knife of vehicles. In the real world I have my S2000 for fun; in this pretend world I don’t guess there will be a lot of opportunity for fun driving anyways.

  • avatar

    Assuming I don’t have to have a car for transportation, because pods or mass transit will be commonplace, I’d have to go with a Corvette Gran Sport–fun to drive, decent fuel economy, reliable, and parts should be available for the foreseeable future.

  • avatar

    Chinese-made Cadillac CT6 with “Super Cruise.”

  • avatar

    I was gonna say a honda accord since I have faith it will last 25 years , which should meet my needs esp if they made a 17 in the hybrid model, but since i can not trust this gov to maintain roads I may’ve to rethink that to go with a more robust higher vehicle so based on reputation lets go with a 2017 land cruiser diesel, I assume there will be 18 wheelers moving stuff for the next 25 years so there should be diesel fuel, they last forever based on past models and i hope are pretty easy to fix, I could be tempted with their lexus cousin but we are hoping les tech will mean less headaches in 2036.

    • 0 avatar

      Good choice – there is a 17 Hybrid Accord, and based on my 2 months of ownership it’s a great car. Heavy discounts too.

      But I agree with you on the roads, so off roader may be the way to go, or even the Yukon as in the original premise.

  • avatar

    Lexus LS 460. Smooth, comfortable and reliable, wish I could get one now.

  • avatar
    87 Morgan

    Suburban LTZ or 4Runner.

    I go with ltz for the sole reason of who cares if the overhead dvd or whatever your tech of choice quits working 14 years later? At least you had 14 years with a dvd, back up camera, lane assist etc. Get all of the techno stuff you can. If and when they go bad the rest of the rig will still work.

    As said before, a GM v8 drivetrain will run far longer poorly than most run at all.

  • avatar

    And I was sure “Miata” was always the correct answer . . . . .

  • avatar

    …if i can keep my existing fleet, i’d probably pick up an evora 2+0, with that sweet package shelf, for long-distance travel…if it has to replace everything i own, one car with maximum versatility, i’d probably go for a mazda 3, even though it’s a bit larger and heavier than i prefer for a daily runabout…

  • avatar

    Toyota Land Cruiser. Better ride and better off road than a Tahoe. Big enough for my family of 4 plus it should hold up for a long time. Not as blingy as the Lexus version so it won’t attract as much attention from the huddled masses.

  • avatar

    If you gonna have just one car and have it forever, it has to be Toyota 4Runner.

  • avatar

    Porsche Macan Turbo

  • avatar
    Stanley Steamer

    It’s not so far fetched. There was little to no car production between 1941 and 1945. It could happen again. Conventionally, I think a 4runner or Land Cruiser would fit the bill.

  • avatar

    Jeep Wrangler JK Willys (for the LSD) 2-door with stick. It’s all I’ll ever need.

  • avatar

    These are boring choices, but I think a Honda Ridgeline, Pilot or Odyssey would be the best candidates for my last end-all, be-all vehicle. It would need to haul people and stuff, so any of these would probably be suitable choices for weekend trips and vacations, etc. Would not take my commute/DD needs into account since i would just take transit, ride a bike, etc.

    Now, if gas itself becomes scare in this scenario then that changes the entire question and I just go for an EV like a Bolt or Plug-In hybrid.

  • avatar

    Probably a brand new Impala Premier. Might as well go out in style!

  • avatar
    Shortest Circuit

    Go out in style then, AMG E63 Wagon.

  • avatar

    Yep, Yukon or Tahoe, preferably with only two rows of seats but whatever. It’ll run forever and can do almost anything I ask of it

  • avatar

    True to my log-in name, likely a BMW 330i Sports Wagon. Probably a tad tight for hauling the dog show stuff, but I’d make it fit.

  • avatar

    Unimog U530

  • avatar

    Base 4wd Tahoe…

  • avatar

    2017 Shelby GT350.

  • avatar

    I didn’t even have to think long on this one. I would get a 2017 Ford F-150 XLT 4X4 5.0L V8 Crewcab. This truck does it all and with the V8 would run forever.

  • avatar

    Last vehicle forever, end-of-production, unlimited loot.
    OK. Well, make mine a ’17 F-450, Lariat trim should be fine, less gadgets to fail.
    48 gallon tank, 6.7L diesel, frame rated for eleventy billion tons of towing, general ruggedness.

    I suppose a F250 would work too, but hey, it’s not my money. :P

  • avatar

    So many choices.

    Candidate one: Nissan Patrol Pickup.

    Candidate two: Toyota Land Cruiser crew cab truck

    Candidate three: Ford F-150 XL 4×4 SuperCrew. No link because we all know what it is/looks like.

    Can’t really go wrong with any of them, they’re tough trucks with good capabilities and long term reliability. In a world gone mad, a good truck may be as much a tool for survival as it is for transportation alone.

    I know I’m supposed to pick one, not three, but any particular one of them would do, so I can’t really decide which one. With the base engine or the 2.7L EcoBoost, the F-150 would probably be the best on fuel, so that may give it the nod if fuel availability is a concern.

    I’d outfit any of them with auxiliary fuel tanks, and put a drop-side flat bed on the Ford to increase its usefulness (I’m sure the others would have them anyway).

  • avatar

    No love yet for the Raptor?

    I am disappoint.

  • avatar

    I guess when you said “All car production ends tomorrow, forever”, I assumed it was dystopian. I need something to move 6+ people, that we can sleep in, that can probably be up-armored, uses USA OEM underpinnings, and can go where there are no roads.

    I’m not a Ford fan, but Diesel Brother’s F650-based camper it is. Come at me, zombies (or hordes of rogue gas ravagers, whatever our apocalypse du jour is).

    • 0 avatar

      I, for one, look forward to the apocalypse. It would be the greatest money-making opportunity of my lifetime. I already know how I’d do it, too. The way it was always done in a dangerous world – securing the trade routes. Think East India Trading Company, Wells Fargo, etc. Between all my redneck relatives, we could assemble a small, well-armed army to start with and grow from there.

      I could even vertically integrate the trade contracts like Lloyd’s of London. And move alcohol around. Alcohol is always a hot commodity in that kind of environment. (Remember when Coor’s and Yuengling were regional beers?)

      The apocalypse would turn me into a Rockefeller.

      • 0 avatar

        All hail USAFMech as new supreme leader. Some of my gun-owning friends also fantasize about a zombie apocalypse as the perfect opportunity for them to deploy their sizeable arsenal in a guilt-free and target-rich environment, with scant concern regarding a fundamental flaw: what happens when the ammo runs out? Won’t all their time be spent on raids to acquire more ammo (in addition to other essentials)? So I commend you for taking this to the next level, with a business plan.

        • 0 avatar

          That’s the thing most preppers get wrong. Hoarding food or gold is foolish. One should hoard lead. If you have lead, you can get food and gold.

          And don’t get me started on chem-gear and first aid supplies. Have you seen Mogadishu? In anarchy and/or severe social meltdown, tribalism, violence, and war-lords rule. That [email protected] will be taken from you by those with lead.

          See, this is why I couldn’t stand The Walking Dead. They all deserved to be eaten, over-run, and/or subjugated. Idjits.

          • 0 avatar

            Agree. With ammo and no food, your enemy can become food

          • 0 avatar

            I see that the extra-mild sarcasm in my last response was lost on you. I am not against the 2nd Amendment, but I certainly don’t share the orgasmic enthusiasm that many “preppers” seem to have for a zombie apocalypse or other causes of societal collapse.

            The original premise was just the cessation of personal motor vehicle production and sales. While others posit driving bans or mandatory public transportation, you assume dystopic apocalypse.

    • 0 avatar

      A camper would not provide a sturdy mount for a gun turret. You would want a fixed roof, otherwise you must choose between the mount and the 6+ people in the truck bed.

      • 0 avatar

        I included “ability to be up-armored” in my specifications. Besides, the passengers are… capable of self-defense. :-)

        And my experience with anyone who says they’re “not against the 2A, but…”, is.

  • avatar

    Some sort of Land Cruiser 70 variant if simplicity and long term sustainability in some post-apocalyptic world is needed, or a Land Cruiser 200 series in poverty-UN spec with steel wheels and such for more comfort.

  • avatar

    1972 Buick Electra 225.

  • avatar

    I like both of my cars so that is my choice.

    2016 Mazda MX-5 Sport, 2.0, 6MT
    2015 Dodge Challenger SXT, 3.6, 8AT

    I have a fun sports car and a boring family “wife’s” car which we already have 50k+ miles: great for groceries, road trips, and winter driving (the mazda is fine in the snow, but the gearbox was pretty notchy last winter).

    And it’s still way cooler than a van/suv.

    If I had to choose one the mazda would have to go. And I’d never thought I’d say that /about a dodge/…

  • avatar

    Chevy SS. Manual, ‘natch. Parts availability, space for family and family dog, and driving it in a fit of rage would make me happy.

    Plus, the sound.

  • avatar

    I’d try and find me one of the last Citroen C5 with hydropneumatic suspension, preferrably as a Break (wagon) with a big Diesel and an automatic in it, and put steel-sprung automobiles out of my life forever.

  • avatar

    Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited w/ Pentastar V6, pearl white exterior and cream leather interior.

    I wouldn’t mind a 300C. Hemi or Pentastar V6, doesn’t matter. Pearl white or ivory on black.

  • avatar

    Non-Mad-Maxian scenario: Bentley Mulsanne in British Racing Green

    Mad-Maxian scenario: Ford F250 XL Super Crew in “blue jeans,” with cloth interior. 6.2L gasser.

  • avatar

    Somebody mentioned Mercedes but they mentioned the wrong one imo. The G550 would be quite perfect. Utility, extremely old design so good parts availability, and it has timeless good looks. I’m sure the 4.0 biturbo would have reliability issues but it wouldn’t be impossible to shoehorn a GM LS in there..

  • avatar

    Rando Kuruza. Not close. It’s pretty much the most reliable vehicle on the road, and it can do anything (if sometimes slowly and clumsily).

  • avatar
    Rick T.

    I am actually approaching this decision in a couple of years. I’ll take an AMG E63 Wagon which will get us to the estate sales quickly. I hope to outlive an extended warranty…or maybe not.

  • avatar

    Beer-Bahn 4X4

  • avatar

    Something simple, rugged as hell and with plenty of easily sourced replacement parts out there to scavenge. Minimal electronics and since this is the apocalypse, it needs an open deck for stashing supplies and there needs to be a leather clad roadwarrior babe out back lobbing molotovs at other road pirates/poor saps to be plundered. It will also need plenty of body armor (no plasticky pedestrian friendly bumpers) and a decent lift and tire/wheel package for navigating the hellscape.

    Easy answer is a Ram 3500 4×4 non dually, crewcab shortbed with the Cummins/6spd. Will last forever.

    Outlier answer is a Jeep Wrangler, but a mandatory drag thru AEV’s facilities to get a Brute double cab and 345 Hemi/NV4500 conversion.

    • 0 avatar

      A modern cummins encumbered with emissions crap and common rail injection is NOT an injection-pump 12 valve of yore. Id’ almost rather have a Hemi Ram 2500 with floor-shifted t-case then.

  • avatar

    I’d make a plug for an UAZ Hunter/469. They’re fuel injected these days and went to an overhead cam motor a while back which makes it less road-side repair worthy than the old carb’d Volga 2.5L OHV lump, but the rest of the truck is the same crude old beast with fat sheetmetal and simple underpinnings that are meant to be mended and maintained in the most remote of undeveloped areas.

    In really remote areas of Northern Russia and Siberia, people use these funny little custom made railway carts powered by various two stroke motors to get around on barely used or abandoned narrow-gauge railways:

  • avatar

    An easy pick for me:
    The latest VW GTI, base model with minimum of electronic nannies.
    Fun to drive, good storage for it’s size, great fuel economy.

  • avatar

    Ford Taurus. Modern-ish, yet bulletproof.

    Otherwise a Jeep GC.

  • avatar
    MRF 95 T-Bird

    Dodge Challenger GT. It has what you need. Pentastar power AWD thats almost Jeep like and plenty of room for 4 with cargo. Plus livable 29MPG fuel economy. Fine even with the spikes that might occur in the coming weeks.

  • avatar

    Hmmm… if I can keep the stuff in my garage already the 911 GT2 RS. If I have to get rid of the current ride then I’ll just take another GT350.

  • avatar

    Look, if money is no object, then I hustle down to my Porsche dealer and grab a Cayenne Turbo S for my wife and a 911 Turbo S for me. Neither may last as long as a Land Cruiser, but we are gonna have a lot more fun.

  • avatar
    Big Al From 'Murica

    Abrams Tank.

  • avatar

    Audi RS6 Avant Performane

  • avatar

    Not entirely sure why we’re limited to new cars, and new cars alone?

    That said, with a prospective 50 years of driving ahead of me, more than anything, I want something that will hold up well to rust. Fragile mechanical bits are an irritation, but can be replaced, but something that will rust out in less than half the time I have left is unacceptable. Thinking quasi-rationally, a Golf Wagon has enough space for me and should hold up well (cost being no limit, the V60 or C-Class wagons are also on the table).

    Or, I could just get the snip (so I don’t need a back seat), and get a C7 Corvette. Decent sized hatch, and there should be adequate support for the powertrain for decades.

  • avatar

    Unimog U530. It’s got a mechanical PTO in the back, hydraulics and lifts front and rear. It’s a go anywhere vehicle and a tractor.

  • avatar

    QOTD: All Car Production Ends Tomorrow – What’s Your Forever Vehicle?

    Nothing recent (> 2010) — too complicated to fix economically: Too many gadgets to break.
    Want something with good aftermarket support: That means likely no foreign name-plate vehicles.

    Don’t need elegant drive methods : Gas ICE would do. All else is more “difficult” long term.
    Don’t need great fuel mileage — shopping and local only, and a few trips to see grandkids.
    Want manual transmission — lasts “forever” (NV3500 = 300k Miles): automatics don’t.

    Want something that doesn’t need garaging in order to look good and survive, and start at -20 deg F.

    So, putting all that together I’d come up with one or two I already have:
    1) 2007 Jeep “JK” Wrangler X, 2DR, 4WD, soft-top, and/or…..
    2) 1996 Dodge Ram 1500 Club Cab, 2WD, 6.5-ft box, Eagle Cap.

    On second thought…um…no, there is no second thought: these would be perfect! (^_^)..


  • avatar

    Probably Explorer Sport.

    Good engine, good clearance, decent handling, lots of cargo space…

  • avatar

    Were it not for the “must be new and in production” stipulation: Ford Crown Vic (basically any of them from 1980 onward).

    Given the parameters, however: F-250 FX4 Crew Cab Long Bed with the 6.2 gasser.

  • avatar

    My first thought was towards something that would last a long time with minimal maintenance, and/or could travel offroad. However, my chances of surviving long in such a dystopia are slim, so the hell with it, I’ll take one of the Singer 911s. In middleagedman red. And I’d go about mapping one lane bridges so I’d have a chance to escape the gleaming alloy aircars.

  • avatar

    Tough choices.

    Bentley Arnage? Certainly. But if I had to choose? Probably something much, much older that can be repaired far into the future.

    Livingood Model T

    1949 Marmon Herrington Woody

    Packard Twin Six

    Rolls Royce Phantom

    1949 Mercury Sedan

    1962 Galaxie Sunliner

  • avatar

    Not sure if this sort of one-off qualifies as “production”, but WTH:
    OscarMeyer Wienermobile

  • avatar

    Lexus LX, a Landcruiser with luxury, should last about forever

  • avatar

    F350 diesel lariat 4 door with 4wd
    tow anything, haul anything, carry 6 people, diesel will last for long time and is cheaper fuel then a gas truck (least in canada)

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