Discussion- If you run #'s, can you justify price, plus cost of own? When to dump it? - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-16-2011, 07:23 PM Thread Starter
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Discussion- If you run #'s, can you justify price, plus cost of own? When to dump it?

I often wonder, if you put pen to paper on the initial cost of a Mercedes, service costs, repair costs, etc...could you make the numbers work? For instance, I have a 1992 300TE that I just sold. Now, I wasn't the first owner, nor did I keep it long due to some major issues coming up, but overall the car was in pretty darn amazing shape to be TWENTY years old! How many other brands would look that great, ride that great, etc after 20 years?

But, given the touchy issues that come up, pricey parts, etc...could you justify buying a, say, E-class wagon new today with the intention of running it to 300k and show that it made more sense than buying several more modest cars over that timeframe?

And, at what time/mileage is a Mercedes no longer worth continuing to service in your opinion? For instance, I have a '99 wagon that looks like brand new. Many, many parts have been replaced, dealer serviced, etc. Has 159k miles on it. 99's were known for trans failures. So, could you justify replacing?

I know I rambled a bit, but I enjoy analyzing things like that and am curious to hear your thoughts. Both my CPA (who drives older MB's) and Dave Ramsey (who lives close and still drives his 300E some) say that you can never really justify buying new or newer, even if you have to somewhat consistently service your current car.

I know I took this a few different ways. Will be curious to hear your thoughts!
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-16-2011, 07:28 PM
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That's really a philosophical question, isn't it? I mean, at what sort of numbers is any car "justified"? In my opinion, the question is not "is it worth it?", but "is it worth it to me?", and only you can answer that.

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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-16-2011, 07:58 PM Thread Starter
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Oh, I completely agree. It's really however far you want to go with it- just like it would be very hard to justify a $50k Mercedes over a $10k Kia if you're only wanting basic transportation.

My question really centers around the idea of whether some things become a wash based on the longevity (hopefully) of the car. Kind of along the idea of the ole "have one nice thing, than a bunch of cheap things and have it forever."

An interesting experiment is to google Edmunds "True Cost of Ownership" calculator. Interesting to see what some models show after several years.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-16-2011, 08:08 PM
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I don't have any solid figures, but I have usually bought new, paid them off, and maintained cars to the best of my ability. Currently I have a 1991 Toyota Camry, a 1994 Plymouth Acclaim (both daily beaters) and the 2001 E320 carport queen.

I guess the choice is between a monthly car payment and preventative maintenance that probably equals, or hopefully less than that payment, on just about anything.

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