This makes sense but we certainly don’t live by this rule of thumb. Owning a personal vehicle has mostly been about status since the first time they rolled off of the assembly line. What I find interesting is that it’s hard to get someone to admit they bought the car for status. They’ll say they own their Mercedes for safety purposes when there are a lot less expensive models that have five star crash ratings.
Some people will say they bought their luxury car because it has over 400 HP and its fun to drive. I don’t doubt that it’s fun to drive but they can’t unleash those horses without risking getting a speeding ticket. So basically they have the fun of darting from one signal light to the next.
I bought a program car from a Lincoln dealership (mid-size Lincoln SUV) and I got a great price on it because it was used. I felt like I was being pretty responsible in making the purchase but from a relative standpoint I wasn’t. Someone who’s driving a Ford Focus might look at my purchase and think I was being uppity. All the way up and down the purchasing ladder someone feels the person above them wasted their money and should’ve been responsible versus pompous. It’s just human nature.
The type of vehicle we drive needs to fit our lifestyles such as a van for a family but we should re-evaluate what we’re doing. I didn’t have to buy a Lincoln but I know part of me thought it would be somewhat impressive. The Ford Edge is pretty much the same car as my Lincoln MKX it just doesn’t have some of the bells and whistles mine has. These items are just fringe products that really don’t mean much to me as I use them very rarely.
So anyhow, you can continue purchasing vehicles like you always have which is certainly your prerogative but we could save money and reduce our financial stress by changing our purchasing habits. My main message here is that we shouldn’t look at other people and what they drive and judge them as everyone is guilty of the same thing; just at different levels. Another thing to consider is maybe someone is driving a BMW but he makes a lot of money so it isn’t taxing to his monthly budget whereas someone could be driving a Ford Focus and be struggling financially. This begs the question…who might be trying harder to impress?