Why is it that some hybrid vehicle drivers eventually start looking down at non hybrid-owning drivers in disdain? Is the “holier-than-thou” complex too hard to contain during flights of fuel sipping passion? It’s natural to feel that whatever you purchase is the right purchase. After all, if I overpaid for a hybrid vehicle (zing!) in hopes of saving the environment when a similar non-hybrid vehicle will do, I’d defend my decision and look down on others as well! Don’t be mad, let me explain.
THE FINANCIAL SAMURAI VEHICLE
For those of you who have been following this site for a while, you’ll know that I’ve had plenty of cars over the past 10 years, and I now drive a 9 year older beater SUV which is MAYBE worth $6,000. I love “Moose“, as I affectionately call him, because he adeptly takes us up the snowy mountains during the winter with its 4-wheel-drive capabilities. Moose can conveniently carry up to 5 people with plenty of storage space, which is especially helpful when our parents visit. Too bad Moose only gets 15mpg in the City, and 19mpg on the highway. I can hear the hissing and booing now!
I bought “Moose” for $8,000 three years ago, from a woman who was in a hurry to dump her car before relocating to Amsterdam. Special brownies anyone? The hybrid craze at the time was dizzying, where seemingly rational people would spend $25,000 for a Prius vs. $15,000 for a comparable Toyota Corolla. If people did the calculations, they’d realize the premium price paid for the car is much greater than the gas savings over an average 7 year ownership period.
Consumers weren’t adhering to our “1/10th” rule either, as I knew plenty of sub $100,000/yr income earners spending $25,000 for these hybrids. I must repeat here again that it is absolutely financial destruction if you are spending more than 1/10th your annual gross income on a car. Multi-millionaires follow this rule, why shouldn’t the rest of us? Don’t give into your weak desires!
MOOSE GETS DISRESPECTED, I FIGHT BACK
Moose and I lived in harmony with the hybrids for a couple years until we encountered an evil man on a bike one day. The bicyclist rides up to Moose, gives him a “thumbs down”, and rides away. After five minutes, we see the same bicycllist in a parking lot loading up his bike onto his Prius! Annoyed by the encounter, I drive up to him and explain his hypocrisy.
“Hey you, with the spandex, and shaved girly legs. You got a problem with us?” I ask.
“Uhhh, no problem. How can I help?” he answers in shock.
“You dishonor Moose here,” I say as I pat the dashboard. “Let me tell you why your hybrid is worse for the environment than Moose. You think you’re all enviro friendly and cool just because you have a Prius, but you’re wrong.”
“By buying a new hybrid, you do more damage to the world than any second hand purchase car can do. You see, unless you destroyed your old vehicle, you ADD to the world’s pollution when you buy new. You encourage car manufacturers to pump up their production volume, emitting an incredible amount of waste in the process. Your Hybrid has higher emissions than zero, compared to zero incremental emissions from my second hand car!”
“Hmmmm, I see. Please don’t hurt me.”
“So quit with your superiority complex Steve, and hand me a beer!”
“Ok, Sam, you win. I was just fooling with you!”
We hug it out and go for a ride together. We’re actually not strangers, but buddies!
Good for you for owning a hybrid, just don’t look down on us who don’t. We may not be able to afford a $30,000 level 4 Prius because we don’t make $300,000 a year like you. More scientifically, now you know that if you don’t lead your old car to the slaughter house, hybrid owners are doing more damage to the world than us poor second hand vehicle user folks. If you’re considering a car to save the world, then ALWAYS buy second hand, and preferably make it a hybrid if you really care!
Don’t be a vegan who wears leather shoes. It’s just not right. Let us all continue to co-exist peacefully. Ahhh, I feel better now.
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Financial Samurai - “Slicing Through Money’s Mysteries”
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