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Discussion Starter #1
Do you ever find that there are always some people who think old cars are inherently "crap" and simply won't stop pestering you with "you need a NEW car".

I can't stand it! I'm not giving up my MN12 to pay lease on a Toyota Prius.:rolleyes:
 

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Do you ever find that there are always some people who think old cars are inherently "crap" and simply won't stop pestering you with "you need a NEW car".

I can't stand it! I'm not giving up my MN12 to pay lease on a Toyota Prius.:rolleyes:
Completely 100% agreed. I couldnt give a sh/t less how old my car is, I drive it because I like the car, not because I want to impress someone with something new.
 

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Do you ever find that there are always some people who think old cars are inherently "crap" and simply won't stop pestering you with "you need a NEW car".

I can't stand it! I'm not giving up my MN12 to pay lease on a Toyota Prius.:rolleyes:
A lease on a Prius doesn't make sense to me. After all, the reason you buy a Prius is because of it's lower than avg fuel consumption. If you only have a lease for 10K mi (or 15K km) per year, you aren't giving yourself enough time to pay yourself back for the cost premium.

However, if you DO drive significant distances, a newer car with a 4-cyl bought outright can make sense over a heavy V8 tbird. For my commuter car, I replaced my Acura Legend with a 3.2L V6 with a 4cyl Honda Accord. The gas savings were significant enough (22MPG -> 31MPG) to pay me back for any costs incurred in "upgrading" within a year.

Depending on how much you drive, doing the same and turning your tbird into a secondary car may be worth it to you.
Regards,
-g
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I am actually making my T-Bird a hobby only car once I get a truck, a little counter-productive at first but I need a truck as the bread maker and beater, perhaps a little Ford Ranger l4 to save on fuel.
 

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For my commuter car, I replaced my Acura Legend with a 3.2L V6 with a 4cyl Honda Accord. The gas savings were significant enough (22MPG -> 31MPG) to pay me back for any costs incurred in "upgrading" within a year.
Hmmm... let's do the math...

10,000 miles / 22 MPG = 455 gallons
10,000 miles / 31 MPG = 323 gallons
455 - 323 = 132 gallons

At today's national average price for regular...

132 gallons * $3.565/gal = $470.58

I doubt that covered the sales tax on your "upgrade". :rolleyes:
 

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Hmmm... let's do the math...

10,000 miles / 22 MPG = 455 gallons
10,000 miles / 31 MPG = 323 gallons
455 - 323 = 132 gallons

At today's national average price for regular...

132 gallons * $3.565/gal = $470.58

I doubt that covered the sales tax on your "upgrade". :rolleyes:
Some corrections:

1) I don't drive 10K miles/yr. My commute is 100mi/day. Try doubling your gallon estimate and then some. With the Legend, I was burning 100gal/month. Seriously.
With my Accord, I'm only consuming 70-71 gal/mo.

2) I live in CA. I think I've paid >$4.30 at the high point this year. My last fillup was still $3.85/gal for regular. Call it $4/gal for the year.

3) The Acura Legend "required" premium. Even getting away with using midgrade (which did NOT impact my MPG according to my logs) , I would pay 10c gal more per gallon than for my Accord (which uses regular).
$4920 /yr for 1200 gallons of midgrade @ $4.10
$3360/yr for 840 gallons of regular @ $4

~$1500/yr in savings

2) Even with 220K mi, the Acura Legend was worth $2K. Some people who don't drive as much as I do like the comfort and HP. It was also quite well maintained.

A CB7 (mid nighties) Honda accord can be had for $3500 ($2K + $1.5K).

My personal acquisition cost was much lower than that b/c I obtained it through the family. Even including shipping from Texas plus maintenance that my family neglected, I'll still be ahead within a year based on gas savings.

This is just my scenario. The OP should consider his own driving distances. However, I looked and while mid nighties rangers are cheap (I just saw one on Craigslist for $1200), fuel economy is still ~20MPG. That's what you get for shoving a brick through the air.

-g
 

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^^ Is it new with payments or is it paid in full secondhand? That makes the difference when you look at "savings"

I could get a vehicle that gets better gas milage but for the amount of driving I do with my bird it would be stupid(I've put 14K miles on it in the last 2 years).

I think what the OP meant is that people give you greif about owning an older car(that's assumed paid in full) to buy a new ****ty econobox to "save money on gas" but in turn you give up a car that has no payments and there's only the cost of maintenance, compaired to a 400+/month car payment PLUS maintenance still.

I've had my Tbird for 2 years now and paid $400+ a tow. Since then I have put about another $1000 into it repairing things so $1400 total cost for 2 years = $58.33/month to own this vehicle, plus gas and routine oil changes. I would MUCH rather have my old car that's paid off than a new car just because of gas milage. That's why CFC was the biggest JOKE going imo, but that's a whole different story........
 

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A lease on a Prius doesn't make sense to me. After all, the reason you buy a Prius is because of it's lower than avg fuel consumption. If you only have a lease for 10K mi (or 15K km) per year, you aren't giving yourself enough time to pay yourself back for the cost premium.

However, if you DO drive significant distances, a newer car with a 4-cyl bought outright can make sense over a heavy V8 tbird. For my commuter car, I replaced my Acura Legend with a 3.2L V6 with a 4cyl Honda Accord. The gas savings were significant enough (22MPG -> 31MPG) to pay me back for any costs incurred in "upgrading" within a year.

Depending on how much you drive, doing the same and turning your tbird into a secondary car may be worth it to you.
Regards,
-g
How fast do you drive? You should have been getting way more than 22MPG from an Acura Legend if you are driving the car properly. I've gotten 38 (yes thirty-eight) mpg from my Thunderbird and 32 (thirty-two) from my 04 Mustang GT driving at sensible speeds (60MPH) on the highway. Hell, my 1989 F-150 4x4 gets 22MPG on the highway with a 4.9L Inline 6 and a 5 speed (3.55 gears).

So either that Legend of yours was running like absolute garbage, or you were making a conscious decision to get crappy gas mileage by driving 85MPH...

Also I hate how someone mentioned "better MPG than a heavy V8 Thunderbird," well actually being heavy and V8 powered actually helps the Thunderbird in that case. The engine barely has to do more than idle to keep the car in motion on the highway. Sure it pays the penalty in town where it has to accelerate 4000lbs from every stoplight, but for a commute having all of that weight is actually an advantage. A V8 Thunderbird merely has to idle down the highway whereas a wheezy asthmatic 4cyl Honda has to work hard to do the same task. Its like when the M3 got better fuel economy than the Prius around the Top Gear test track.
 

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I agree. I only have to feather my gas pedal to maintain 60 mph on the highway. my response when someone tells me to get a new car:" You want to make my car payments?" My car is bought and long paid for.
 

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I love threads such as this. :D

Some corrections:...
Sounds like you are the exception to the rule. Best of luck with your decision. ;)

^^ Is it new with payments or is it paid in full secondhand? That makes the difference when you look at "savings"....
I recently paid over $800 for work on my '99 Navigator. Yeah, that hurt but the Navi' is bought and paid for and still, that's less than 2-3 months typical 'new car' payments... not to mention the difference in insurance for any new vehicle. As much as I'd like a new hauler, for no more than I drive it (winter or towing), I cannot justify a newer purchase.

A typical MN12, or for that matter a FN10, is not that bad at gas mileage when well maintained. Even today's 'econoboxes' don't outpace them that much in the real world combined mileage. Going from 20 something mpg in a 'paid for' vehicle to 30 something mpg in a new car with a monthly payment is not necessarily that great of deal when all the factors are considered.
 

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Ha for the longest time in college my mother tried to get me to sell the bird and get a new car, because little things went bad on the bird, Blown HG, Windows didnt roll down, had to open my driver door by crawling into the pass door lol, Rad Cracked, Weeper Hole leaked and one thing that did suck in FL heat no A/C.

Never fixed the door issue or the A/C but for a total of around 2100 dollars for car plus fixing it i had a car that lasted 5 years well over 250,000 miles on the 3.8L and it now sits waiting for me to come home to fix it up, it cranks over and runs but i dont have a break system on it atm so ya ill keep the ole bird till someone smashing into it completely.
 

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A car's a car.

****ty mileage? tune it up and change your driving habits. No cupholders? add them or stop drinking. Non working items? fix them. All is cheaper than a New car.
 

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I have noticed that those same people who say "you should buy a new car" are the same folks who will tell you that you should have kept your paid off car
 

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A car's a car.

****ty mileage? tune it up and change your driving habits. No cupholders? add them or stop drinking. Non working items? fix them. All is cheaper than a New car.
Who needs cupholders, put the cup/can/bottle between your legs... :tongue:

It even keeps your balls warm/cold. :D
 

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How fast do you drive? You should have been getting way more than 22MPG from an Acura Legend if you are driving the car properly. I've gotten 38 (yes thirty-eight) mpg from my Thunderbird and 32 (thirty-two) from my 04 Mustang GT driving at sensible speeds (60MPH) on the highway. Hell, my 1989 F-150 4x4 gets 22MPG on the highway with a 4.9L Inline 6 and a 5 speed (3.55 gears).

So either that Legend of yours was running like absolute garbage, or you were making a conscious decision to get crappy gas mileage by driving 85MPH...

Also I hate how someone mentioned "better MPG than a heavy V8 Thunderbird," well actually being heavy and V8 powered actually helps the Thunderbird in that case. The engine barely has to do more than idle to keep the car in motion on the highway. Sure it pays the penalty in town where it has to accelerate 4000lbs from every stoplight, but for a commute having all of that weight is actually an advantage. A V8 Thunderbird merely has to idle down the highway whereas a wheezy asthmatic 4cyl Honda has to work hard to do the same task. Its like when the M3 got better fuel economy than the Prius around the Top Gear test track.
I'm not suggesting you all chuck your tbirds. By all means, keep them on the road.
However, you can justify it all you like but a car and a thunderbird is NOT an ideal commuter vehicle.

Sure, it's got a better than average co-efficient of drag. Sure, a torquey V8 doesn't have to work as hard than a smaller 4cyl to keep a car moving once it is up to speed. However, in order to take advantage of such engine capabilities, you must have an appropriately geared transmission to make sure the RPMs are at a reasonable level.

For a given RPM though, a larger displacement V8 will consume more fuel than a smaller 4cyl and a heavy car requires more energy to keep it at speed (the Accord is 3000LBs with driver, a tbird would be 4K LBs easy).

In the case of my Acura Legend, the biggest issue was its 4 speed automatic. IIRC, that engine was at 3200RPM at 80MPH.... and that sucks gas. The same vehicle engine/weight (it weighed about 3600LBs) with the 6 speed manual (they had those even back in the early 90s) would get better gas mileage. Yes, I do drive 80MPH but if you've ever been to CA, that's the average speed of traffic up/down the highway in the Bay Area (especially 280).

You can't make a blanket assumption as to what car fits your needs. In my scenario, a smaller car works for me as a DD. In yours, continuing to drive your tbird might make more sense.

-g
 

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However, you can justify it all you like but a car and a thunderbird is NOT an ideal commuter vehicle.
Why are T-birds not suited as commuters? I see 23 MPG in the city in the Cougar, and 35+ on the highway. The T-bird is the "fun" car, but even so it still sees 20-21 in the city and 24+ on the freeway.

For a given RPM though, a larger displacement V8 will consume more fuel than a smaller 4cyl and a heavy car requires more energy to keep it at speed (the Accord is 3000LBs with driver, a tbird would be 4K LBs easy).
All things being equal, yes. Let's not forget about engine loading. For a given RPM and engine load, yes, a V8 will consume more fuel than an I4. But the more air you cram into a cylinder (higher load) the more fuel you have to chuck in as well. You have to load an I4 twice as much as a V8 to achieve the same output. It still takes the same amount of energy to keep the same mass moving at the same speed for a given resistance. Turn a V8 at 2000 RPM to move a T-bird at 65 MPH and you need something like (arbitrary figure) 50 HP. You'd have to turn a similar I4 at 3000+ RPM to generate the same power to do the same job.

Also, T-birds don't necessarily weigh 4k with a driver. 3800 is a much more realistic figure. Curb weight is around 3600.

In the case of my Acura Legend, the biggest issue was its 4 speed automatic. IIRC, that engine was at 3200RPM at 80MPH.... and that sucks gas. The same vehicle engine/weight (it weighed about 3600LBs) with the 6 speed manual (they had those even back in the early 90s) would get better gas mileage. Yes, I do drive 80MPH but if you've ever been to CA, that's the average speed of traffic up/down the highway in the Bay Area (especially 280).
Let's not forget it takes energy to turn an automatic transmisison. We in our MN12s lose about 40 HP through the 4R70W.

You can't make a blanket assumption as to what car fits your needs. In my scenario, a smaller car works for me as a DD. In yours, continuing to drive your tbird might make more sense.
Exactly.
 

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I hear the "you need to buy a new car" almost everytime I'm doing regular routine maintenance on my vehicles. New spark plugs and wires? You shoulda bought a new car. New starter? A new car wouldn't have needed that. lol

These Pearls of Advice are also coming from people (family) that never fix or work on anything themselves; they pay some shop for every little thing.

I laugh every Fall when my family has a big get-together because I can't tell who's vehicle is who's because everyone gets a new one all the time. So, among the pool of various Audi's, VW's, Hummers, Lexus's.....there's a Thunderbird that sticks out.

"Isn't that the same car you had last year?"
I proudly say, "Why yes. Yes it is."
 

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I'm not suggesting you all chuck your tbirds. By all means, keep them on the road.
However, you can justify it all you like but a car and a thunderbird is NOT an ideal commuter vehicle.

Sure, it's got a better than average co-efficient of drag. Sure, a torquey V8 doesn't have to work as hard than a smaller 4cyl to keep a car moving once it is up to speed. However, in order to take advantage of such engine capabilities, you must have an appropriately geared transmission to make sure the RPMs are at a reasonable level.

For a given RPM though, a larger displacement V8 will consume more fuel than a smaller 4cyl and a heavy car requires more energy to keep it at speed (the Accord is 3000LBs with driver, a tbird would be 4K LBs easy).

In the case of my Acura Legend, the biggest issue was its 4 speed automatic. IIRC, that engine was at 3200RPM at 80MPH.... and that sucks gas. The same vehicle engine/weight (it weighed about 3600LBs) with the 6 speed manual (they had those even back in the early 90s) would get better gas mileage. Yes, I do drive 80MPH but if you've ever been to CA, that's the average speed of traffic up/down the highway in the Bay Area (especially 280).

You can't make a blanket assumption as to what car fits your needs. In my scenario, a smaller car works for me as a DD. In yours, continuing to drive your tbird might make more sense.

-g
Lol "if I have ever been to California..."

I live 10 minutes west of Sacramento on I-80 and just over an hour from you. I know how people in CA drive, but the fact is trucks are still limited to 55 MPH so there is always slower moving traffic in the right lane on the highway. The large trucks also break up the air and allow for drafting and even better MPG. I think thats one advantage I have with my 3.8L Thunderbird is that it has the torque and the gearing to handle highway driving with ease. Driving 80MPH I am sure I would be turning over less than 3200RPMs, thats ridiculous.

0-30 still is pretty anemic though (tall first gear) and I barely get 16MPGs in town. Every car has an area where it shines.
 

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My morning commute is 48miles, one way.

It's interstate traffic, 70mph speed limit. No one drives the speed limit. :)

An econo-sh1tbox is a deathtrap here; thank god the Prius drivers realize early on that pulling out in front of a semi doing 90 is a bad idea, lol. :facepalm:

I average 24mpg, doing this 5 days a week, 52 weeks a year.

And all the parts I bought last year were performance parts, not replacement. Except for the eol stuff I stocked up on...and haven't had time to install.

So, Gas, Tires, and Oil ONLY for the last two years (~155k to 190k miles); I'll probably do the rack this year, and maybe a pi intake. :) I have a spare in the garage...

The last repair work done to my DD was an 02 tranny in 08... but I did bracing, konis, and learned to tune. :)
 
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