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Have we reached "Peak Car"?

$15-20k each year spent to save an hour a day? I take it that guy’s got money to burn. It sort of makes sense not to own a car in a large city, I suppose. But I thought the trend was people were moving out of large cities and into the suburbs at one time? I think I’d rather save the $20/hr and keep my car. If you spend $15k a year on Uber, that’s just more money you’ll have to earn…at work. So how much time is really saved?

Lets say someone makes $100/hr total compensation. Saving one hour five days a week would mean an additional $26,000 per year if that person is paid by the hour. A successful entrepreneur can make A lot more than that with one extra hour of work each day.

I seem to miss the relationship between driving to work as riding to work. Most people don 't get paid until they get to work so I don’t see how saving 1 hour a week will increase their income.

Saving money over owning a vehicle and the expences involved can be a factor.

One more time, it’s not about the money. Uber is fine for taking you to a restaurant or museum but they aren’t going to pull a boat and launch it for you, or pull a snowmobile trailer. Lots of that here but not so much in NYC or Boston. I love predictions, beats the other stuff they write about.

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Lee Iaccoca had a limo pick up and bring his secretary to and from work so she could work while commuting. He was very dependent on her and was not shy about giving her the credit he felt she more than earned in is auto-biography. He felt that most executives under appreciated and under utilized their secretaries.

Have we reached peak car ownership? Perhaps. Have we reached peak annual sales volume? Probably. Have we reached peak car quality? Absolutely! I think that was reached sometime around 2000-2005.

All this talk about self-driving cars, and replacing private ownership with “mobility as a service” is so much a pipe dream. Unless you live in a location such as NYC, where parking is super-expensive, there is no possible way that relying on “mobility services” could be cheaper–or even just slightly more expensive–than owning your own car.

Also, I do not believe that people are ready to sit back and trust Skynet to drive them to their destination safely. I sure wouldn’t. Heck, I have not warmed up to such features as power windows/locks/seats/keyless entry, and wouldn’t even accept something as a gift which contains any “drive by wire” features such as an electronic throttle body or electric power steering.

That’s fine if you make $100/hr. But is that the average salary for employees in large cities? Say NYC, for example? I could imagine Wall Street tycoons and executive types not driving to work. But most will probably want to own a car anyway for weekend trips, etc.

Are you serious . . . ?!

I can think of any number of vehicles from the era you mentioned that were terrible when they were brand new . . . and they aren’t any better now, as well used vehicles

I tend to agree with him. 2000 f250 diesel more reliable than the current one (probably). 2000 Cummins 5.9 indestructible. Current Cummins in the Ram HD trucks…who knows? Same with the 2000 f150 (no vct, cam phasers, etc) 2000 Silverado (no cylinder deactivation). I imagine cars are similar. I’d trust a 2000 Camry or Tacoma to go 300k miles before I’d trust the 2019 versions. Around 2000, cars had the fuel injection systems and electronics pretty well dialed in (most cars). But today’s cars have fuel saving gadgetry, diesel emissions gadgetry, etc that often cause problems. Of course today’s cars have better fuel economy and more power. So that’s a good thing. But I’m not sure they’re going to be as trouble free as their year 2000 versions were.

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I said total compensation, which includes all benefits. Many executives make more than that.

If someone rides to work and works while riding, they are earning while riding.

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For the world as a whole we are not anywhere near “Car Peak”. Just like oil peak was spouted for years, oil demand will keep climbing but at a somewhat slower rate. Oil demand is now at 110 million barrels per day and still increasing while 10 years ago so called experts thought it would level out at 85 million barrels per day.

Those in developing countries riding bikes dream of owning a motor bike, while those with motor bikes dream of owning a car! Car ownership in developed countries may show a very slow increase because of the predominance of 2 car families already. In the US there are now more motor vehicles licensed than there are licensed drivers.

Don’t confuse cars sales with car ownership! Cars last a long time now and that’s another reason for slow growth in new car sales.

One psychologist called the automobile “the ultimate aphrodisiac”.

I currently live in Southern China. 6 months ago after that big typhoon hit, we were left without a car for about 2 months and we went everywhere using DiDi (the Chinese version of uber). It was doable but it was a huge pain to carry twin babies along with all their bottles and diapers. We might not have bought the van if our children are older. But as of right now these ride services are not enough

I do use DIDI to get to and from the high speed rail station, which BTW is awesome, and leave the van with my wife and the kids

Well, he’s a tech exec, so yeah.

That’s the trouble with articles like this. They take a premise guaranteed to get clicks, and support it with shaky logic. “This millionaire is doing X instead of Y and therefore Y is on its way out!”

It costs me around 2 bucks to commute every day. When Uber gets down to that price, I’ll consider replacing my car with them, for commutes only. Since that’ll never happen, I’m gonna keep driving my car, because I’m not lucky enough to consider 20 grand to be chump change.

And that’s true for the vast majority of the country. Articles like these are so out of touch with reality that they’re a complete waste of time to read. Or write.

Not really. If you’re paid hourly, you still work an 8-hour day. Your employer isn’t going to want you to get an hour’s worth of overtime every week just because you’re no longer driving yourself.

And if you’re salaried, you’re gonna make your salary whether you work that extra hour or not, so you don’t make any more money that way.

The only way it works as far as realizing a profit to you is if you are as you said the entrepreneur and then that goes back to my point about this article being stupid.

Fine, let’s say all of the rich, successful entrepreneurs in the country ditch their cars. There’s still an awful lot of us still driving. That’s not “peak car.”

You could have flipped that argument around in the '80’s when all the rich execs were buying Testarossas. “Oh, well, I guess we’ve reached peak Honda, because Richy Rich over here bought a Ferrari and therefore that’s the only thing anyone’s gonna drive in the future.”

This article’s argument is just as stupid as that one.


I get paid by the hour and I am an exempt employee. I realize this is unusual, but entrepreneurs can generate more business for themselves by riding rather than driving. Salespeople can do it, too. My son in law gets a bonus when a sale goes through. If his commute was one hour each way, he could get ten extra hours of work in each week. That could translate into more sales and higher commissions.

I am constantly amused by the proponents of self driving vehicles with all the reasons they give for you to be onboard with this rapidly approaching technology. How you don’t have to drive…or own or repair a vehicle and convenience etc…

I don’t know about you but I LOVE DRIVING… I love to drive and own all sorts of things…bicycles, motorcycles, boats, cars, mopeds, tricycles, unicycles, front end loaders, excavators…you name it…and I would love to drive, own and or operate it. I find it rewarding and fun, I also find it empowering and induces feelings of freedom and control… I enjoy absolutely everything about operating and owning your own vehicle… Maybe the only thing I don’t like is when you are forced into traffic situations with unskilled or uninterested “drivers”.

I mean didn’t Merica of days gone by pound into its citizens heads how liberating the automobile would be, how we needed them, how you wanted one, how you HAD to own your own? How you could earn a living with them? How we are supposed to love looking at them, What a car can say about you? Etc… Its funny watching them (whomever they are) try to persuade you into the complete opposite mindset now… How driving is unsafe, how its a chore, how cars are nothing more than an appliance of sorts. I am NOT a fan, nor am I onboard. I don’t want to be driven by another human or a machine. I am enjoying myself just fine thank you very much. Even when they break, I enjoy it ( I know I’m seeking counseling). I do not sympathize with this new mindset being foisted upon us, it is not making headway in my instance. Not sure about you…but that’s my take.

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Not if you’re a salaried employee. The only benefit of working on the commute then is getting something done you’re on the hook to complete. No extra cabbage, green backs, dough, bags or whatnot…

OK, I see your point with these examples. For me, nada!

My daughter lived in Manhattan until very recently and earned a bit over $50 per hour very shortly after graduating college. She did not own a car and either walked, took the subway, or took Uber everywhere. A monthly parking space in her apartment building was $450. Insurance in Manhattan is very expensive, as is fuel and tolls. It did not pay to own a car there. While it’s true that Uber will not take you down a boat ramp, when you’re very ambitious and earning a 6 figure salary, you don’t have time for such frivolity.

For hourly wage people yes that’s true. I’ve commuted to Boston for work before. I took public transportation (MBTA and then Green-Line or Red-line). On the 45 minute train ride I’d open my laptop and get some work done. I get paid for the work I do…not the hours I put in. If I can get some of the work done while commuting - makes my day a lot easier. Commuting into Boston was a pain. Even working at both ends of my commute - it was a 11hr+ day. Luckily I only had to do for 3 months.

I have cousins who are lawyers in Brooklyn and Bronx. Their ages range from mid 50’s into late 60’s. None of them have a drivers license. I think only 1 of their kids that still lives in NYC has a license. The oldest is partner in a good size law firm and does have a limo service he uses for most of his commuting. But the rest of them either walk or take public transportation.