How Much Money Will You Lose When Buying A Car?

The average U.S. Consumer will spend up to $500,000 on car purchases and leases during their lifetime.

And most will throw-away up to $165,000 on those car purchases because of mistakes they make when buying a car.

No, it's not that people are getting ripped off when they buy.  It's just that they....

Buy The Wrong Car

Instead of treating the car purchase as a financial decision, they make it purely emotional.

People listen to their friends, family, or even worse, they read the glowing reviews in the car magazines.

These folks then enter what I call the "Car Fantasy Zone" - they start thinking about how "cool" a car is, or how "aggressive","pretty", "sharp", or "elegant" it is.

Or, worst of all, they start to fantasize about how they think they'll look in it.... while driving around town.

There has to be a balance between your emotions and your money.  If not, thousand$ of dollars are going to be flushed down the toilet, year-after-year.

So, how do you balance your emotional needs and your financial well-being by keeping your money in your pocket?

By simply spending 5 minutes of your time at a very, very special place.  I'm serious - 5 lousy minutes is all it takes to keep upwards of $100,000 in your pocket.

How To Avoid Throwing Away Thousands Of Dollars When Buying A Car

The only way to avoid throwing your money away is to visit that very special place I mentioned earlier.  It's at a huge Web Site - probably one of the top Automotive Sites in the world.  Yet, the info you need is buried deep in the bowels of that website.

Why's that?  Well, this websites revenue is largely provided by the Car Makers in the way of advertising and referral dollars.  And this special information is not something the Car Makers want plastered all over the home page.  It's very damaging to many of the Car Makers.  So, in order to keep the money flowing, this website kind of hides it.  I guess the car makers can live with that.

The website I'm talking about

The special place I want you to visit at the Edmunds website is -- TCO SM or, True Cost to Own SM

The TCO SM information is a gold mine – a gold mine that many car shoppers have never even heard of, never think of, or completely ignore.  In fact, only 20% of new vehicle buyers even consider any of this information.  The TCO SM will tell you what that new car, van, truck or SUV you're considering will cost you....for the entire time you own it.  And the differences can be HUGE!

It's some of the best information you can have when buying a car.  In particular, it highlights the hidden costs of car ownership. Some of these things you've probably never even thought of - such as;

Below, you'll see a screen shot of 5 similar cars using TCO SM at - all 5 are in the same price range with the same features.  Take a careful look - It'll save you a fortune when buying a car.

2005 Hyundai Elantra
GLS 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 4A)
2005 Ford Focus
ZX4 S 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M)
2005 Nissan Sentra
1.8 4dr Sedan (1.8L 4cyl 4A)
2005 Mazda MAZDA3
i 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M)
2005 Honda Civic
Value Package 4dr Sedan ( 1.7L 4cyl 4A)
True Cost to Own
$28,526 $28,495 $27,448 $26,678 $23,976
Total Cash Price
$14,777 $14,895 $13,806 $16,377 $14,882
Average Cost per Mile*
$0.38 $0.38 $0.37 $0.36 $0.32
Operating Cost  
lo hi
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Depreciation Cost  
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lo hi
Expected Resale Value
Year 1:
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Year 5:
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* These are 5-year estimate (based on 15,000 miles per year)

Above, you see 5 popular models.  Two of the most popular are the Elantra and the Focus.  Both are heavily advertised as a low cost option.  The Elantra even offers an enticing extended powertrain warranty (see rebates, incentives & gimmicks to get the real facts when buying a car).

Look closely though.  Although both are advertised as a cheaper alternative, the Sale Price for each are similar to the other three options presented.  An even closer look reveals that neither is much of a bargain when you look at the overall cost.

The Elantra will cost you $4,550 more to own than a Civic over a 5 year period, while the Focus will cost more $4,519 more to own.

The question you need to ask yourself is this - Would you rather save yourself a few bucks now when buying a Focus or Elantra.....or save up to $4,550 by purchasing the Civic. 

The information is rather convincing....and shows how much money Elantra and Focus Buyers will throw away.

Imagine how much money people throw away on cars, vans, trucks and suvs that cost $30k, 40k or more!

You can get the TCO™ for any car, van truck or SUV by going to and using their TCO SM.

When you get there, just select the year, make and model of the car, van, truck or suv you really like, and you're on your way.

Now it's time to see if your choice is a great one....or a real lousy one.

Once your choice is displayed, you'll find a link that says "click here to compare similar vehicles" - click it and see how your choice stacks up against it's competition.

This Data will help tell you which car, van, truck or SUV should be sitting in your driveway or garage.

Choose wisely - Grasshopper.  And keep your money where it belongs....

In your Pocket.

Tom O'Leary is an Automotive Portfolio Analyst, Author and has been called a modern-day "Robin Hood" for his efforts in helping the Automotive Consumer.

Going to be buying a car?  Then just look below for the models you're considering and you're on your way.  No haggling with a salesperson.  The best new car prices delivered right to your home or office.

Buying a Car? The Best Prices are here.

Best Pick for  2006 - 2007

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