Some statistics might be fun to see. I wonder how many miles (kilometers) the average Dutch, German, or French driver logs every year vs. the average US driver?
Speaking of basic Euro cars, there was just a Trabant gathering in Berlin for the 25th anniversary of the Berlin Wall coming down:
““It’s become a cult object — the Trabant is cool again,” said Olaf Seifert, editor of Super-Trabi, a glossy magazine that claims a circulation of 4,000.”
“Young people are discovering them now,” he said, referring to teenagers and young adults who had not been born when the last Trabants were made in 1991."
@asemaster The last time I checked those stats, the average Frenchman puts just 7000 miles per year on his car. My Dutch relatives do a little more, but few Euro drivers exceed 10,000 miles per year, unless they are salesmen or couriers.
Cars in North America and Australia put on a lot of miles, something the Japanese learned quickly and designed their cars for those conditions. European manufacturers did not bother.
Younger drivers have yet to learn what a flimsy contraption the Trabant is. They just see a cheap car their parents sniff at. Must be cool, right? Kids can be so silly.
I think the Trabant’s charm is that it reminds some of a much simpler time, a time when we knew who the good guys and the bad guys were, the “cold war” era. It has no other attributes that I can figure.
^ on the plus side, no electronics, very simple to work on.
I was hoping the OP would return and at least explain where he got the idea of building equity in a used car.
Lot of misinformation on here. Yes, Volvo parts are very expensive from the dealer, but very little difference compared to Ford or Toyota when you buy from the parts stores. I have an S40 and I am a little frustrated with it right now. It has an Aisin AW55 transmission which is giving me some problems, however this transmission can be found in numerous other vehicles from Nissan and GM. It is going to be a costly repair, but no more than any other vehicle. The S40 is a compact car, not a luxury sedan. It drives me crazy when people think Volvo is unreliable and expensive to repair. These people are thinking of them as if they are BMW’s or Mercedes cars which are much more expensive to repair and in a lot of instances are less reliable. Also, Volvo has an excellent reputation for building safe vehicles. Admittedly, the side impact on the S40 is marginal. Furthermore, the S40 contains numerous Ford parts. Ford owned Volvo from 1999-2009. The European focus, the Mazda3 and the S40 are all built in the same platform. Unfortunately, these years were probably the worst for Volvo’s quality and reliability, but they are still solid cars. I will say this, some Volvo owners claim that their cars don’t respond well to replacement parts that aren’t Volvo, but I’m not sure how accurate this is as I haven’t really had problems from aftermarket parts yet. Also, there is no need to use premium gas in this car. I use premium in the mustang, but the Volvo gets the cheapest gas I can find. Americans seem to have this disdain toward Volvo for some reason, but they are actually pretty great cars. When I need to make a repair on my Volvo, I like to compare the cost of repair to that of other vehicles and I typically find that the Volvo costs no more than average. It may need repaired a little more often than a Corolla, but in my experience with the Ford Focus at least, you might as well get the Volvo.
I’d also like to mention that my 2007 Volvo in Michigan doesn’t have a spot of rust. Although I too love the Mazda3, these cars rust like no other.