2006 Honda Ridgeline - keep or trade?

My wife is telling me to get rid of my 2006 Honda Ridgeline! It only has 236,000 miles on it and is in near pristine condition, other than some rust on the tops of the door frames. Runs like a dream! What a great little truck! I keep a spreadsheet with every service it’s ever had: I’m up to about $25,000 in service and maintenance, but over 13 yrs, that works out to about $160/month. The services now, though are starting to be a bit more involved: $1000 here, $1000 there… almost all of its servicing has been at the dealership. One of my wife’s life-long friends, who owns an independent car service shop in town, says I’d be crazy to let it go! “It’s a great truck”, he says…“Drive it until it stops, take the plates and leave it on the side of the road” he told her. I’d think about trading it in on a new Ridgeline, but I hate what Honda has done to the model with the 2nd generation. What do you think I should do? Thanks!

You probably have reached the “turn the corner” point in your ownership. It still runs well and has value to a buyer. But, it has gotten to the point where repairs will be expensive, numerous and annoying as little stuff breaks that Honda no longer stocks.

I admire your dedication and punctuality in maintenance, but you are spending too much by taking it to a dealer, An independent garage would do all this work for much less.

I do life cycle cost consulting and a typical motor vehicle will incur the original cost in maintenance and repairs over its design life. That design life might be 20+ years for a Honda and as little a 10 years for a Fiat.

Your maintenance works out to 10.6 cents per mile representing $1923 per year which compares with about $1100 per year for the US average.

Your wife may object to the cosmetic appearance of a less than perfect vehicle that is still reliable.

A vehicle that old is normally relegated to the status of a second car or given to one of the kids as a college car.

Our family has had many “old” cars over the years; a 13 year old Dodge Dart sold in 1978, a 1976 Ford Granada sold in 1988, a 1994 Nissan Sentra sold in 2012, a 1984 Chevy Impala sold in 2004, and a 1988 Caprice sold in 2007. None of these cars had a major item such as a transmission or engine replaced. Either of these would have meant a trip to to crusher since it is uneconomic to make such a major repair on a very old vehicle.

None of these vehicles incurred anywhere near the cost per mile in upkeep of your truck.