3274RE: [CarFree] getting around in snow
- Oct 2, 2001I also forgot this ...
A $500 to $1000 used car is bound to have major repair needs over a 7 year
period. Heck even a $10,000 Shiny Lease Turn In might need $1000's of
repairs over 7 years.
Unless the car market is much cheaper where you live...
I also believe, and I'm sure to get flamed for this, that if you had ANY
real volume in the velomobile business .... something akin to a Lietra would
sell for $999.95.
From: John Snyder [mailto:JCSnyder.studio@...]
Sent: Tuesday, October 02, 2001 1:01 AM
Subject: RE: [CarFree] getting around in snow
I've gone through this excercise too many times, comparing the
operating costs of a used car to the various upscale HPVs. It's
a part of my wishful human-powered-centric evangelism. Not a
single-one of our fine neighbors has seen glorious light for
more than a month at a time. In part this is because the old
cars tend too often to do well in terms of manageble
out-of-pocket expenses. Rats. Potential money savings is not
always the best pry bar to help another person discover the
benefits and advantages of self-mobility.
Start with a $500 to $1,000 purchase price for a small 10
year old automobile with a beat up body but otherwise good
mechanical condition. Insurance for an adult driver without
prior claims will run approximately $275 per year. Taxes and
tags (these are all Montana figures) add in another $30/yr. With
fuel selling at $1.30 per gallon, 5,000 miles per year at 35
mpg requires about $185.71/yr. Tack in at minimum $200 per
year for maintance. The spreadsheet sez'; this scenario
results in a highly optimistic $65.80/month average cost, or
$7,897 T.C.O. for the ten years. So, for the same number
of miles the lovely one-seater Lietra imported from Denmark
would likely finish, in terms of costs over ten years, in a
near dead heat with an old-beater automobile. However, I
suspect a more realistic break even point would happen
closer to 7 or 8 years, baring any major accidents.
Even seven years is long time to gamble on having such an
investment pay off, obviously not an entry level option.
When comparing against an older used car (or small motor
scooter) as basic transportation, even the HPVs in the
$2,000 to $3,000 range will ask for approximately two to
three years before begining to pass on savings to the
owner. The money situation with the high end bikes and
trikes is not unlike converting a house to solar
electricity, e.g., a long term commitment mixed
in with a bit of luck. In my opinion if a person
wants an expensive or better than average item,
desire is the only rational needed to be given.
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