Behind the Wheel with Phil Lebeau

Keeping Your Car For A Long Time? You're Not Alone

plymouth fury

The latest survey by R.L. Polk about how long we hold onto our cars or trucks (on avg. 9.2 years) confirms something I've heard from many of you for some time: my car is old, but I'm not getting rid of it.

Every time I get an e-mail from someone expressing that sentiment, they almost always say that as long as their car, truck, or SUV continues to perform ok, they aren't feeling the need to buy a new car. Hey, if you are happy with your ride and don't need to take on a car payment, more power to you.

The irony of all this is that the auto industry is giving us more "specialized" editions of new models than ever before. There are more options than ever to "customize" your ride exactly as you want it. In short, this is the golden age of getting your car how you want it. So why aren't more people ponying up?

Maybe it's because many of us already have what we want. I think it's more likely that most of us are pragmatic. It's like the guy who has a nice house that meets his needs and most of his wants. He may see other homes go on sale that peak his interest, but does he want to go through the hassle, and cost of moving, or is he likely to say, "Hey, what I have suits me?" I think it's the latter.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go back to daydreaming about this car I would love to own.

Questions?  Comments?