Which car to sell?


Which would be a better extra vehicle to have at home. I am planning to sell either a 2001 Beetle turbo with 67 K miles or a 1997 Altima with 120 K. The Beetle is worth about four times the Altima in trade as it is newer and in good shape and I LOVE driving the car. It is however prone to electrical ( and other) failures. The Altima is a beater but NEVER breaks down. I am 6’ 6" and 250lbs and fit much better in the Beetle but -key issue- my wife loves the Altima. It’s ‘up to me’ per my lovely bride of 29 years. I need the wisdom of Solomon, but would settle for click, clack and their minions.


Happy wife, happy life.

Keep the Altima ;o)


Agree; keep the Altima and maintain it lovingly; it will last a very long time.


Absolutely. Married 29 years and this is even a question?

My wife of 29 years drives a new BMW and I drive a 1991 Volvo wagon with no air conditioning in 108F weather.


Ok, I’m not Solomon, but I’d sell BOTH cars and get another Altima that’s not a “beater”. When wife is happy, so is pappy. (I Ching?)


Thanks to all. This really was a no brainer but I was hoping for some ammo to use in our ‘discussion’ at home. The Altima it is-it’s really been a very good car. Thanks again


RULE #1 the wife is always right. RULE #2 see rule #1


You already knew the answer. That’s why you still have a lovely bride after 29 years. That’s why she left the decision up to you…she knew you’d make the right one…keep the Altima.



I am not so brow-beat as many of you, and if my wife were totally in the wrong on a major issue, I would not knuckle under. Giving in to a wife when she knows she is being a jerk does not always make a woman happier. You guys know a lot about cars, but not much about women. Cartalk brothers nonsense to the contrary. I worked on counseling divorced men for years, and wimpy men is a common reason women move on. This is more common than divorce caused by brutes. (Most men are wimps; few are brutes.)

In this case, there is not sufficient information. Based on what you told us, it makes sense to sell the more valuable piece of junk, rather than a less valuable very reliable vehicle.

What you did not make clear is what you will be driving, or what happens to the money from the sale. If you are going to develop a bad back with another car, that is a major issue and would affect advice given.


Along the same lines of missing information, am I correct in understanding that the Beetle is your daily driver? And that you can afford a replacement vehicle no matter which car you trade in?

If it was me, I’d keep the Beetle and find a car for the wife - one that she likes as much as the Altima. There’s got to be a car out there newer than a 1997 that she’ll like. That way, you get to drive what you like too. Making yourself unhappy (or uncomfortable) to satisfy your wife isn’t a good idea.


What will be done with the proceeds of the sale? Who benefits most from the sale?

I would say those are important things to consider in making your decision. I would say that whoever most benefits from the sale, sells his/her car.


If you like your bug, trade it in for a new one. Keep the Altima, it can’t cost much to have it around. I would imaging that you could get another 80k out of it easy. The bug is less likely to go high miles. You are likely to have some oil consumption problems very soon.


Brow beat? The man has a 29 year successful marriage, he still calls his wife his “bride”. Whatever he’s doing, it must be right. My guess is that many of us could learn from him.


We’re keeping the Altima ! My wife is thrilled and life is good. It is really a third car that she will use instead of her minivan . Thanks again to all.