Cars - How to Reach the 200,000-Mile
a look at your vehicles odometer.
What do you see?
With proper care, you could see you
car last up to 200,000 miles or more.
According to Consumer Reports, trading
in your used vehicle every three to
five years could actually be costs you
thousands in savings.
a recent survey, Consumer Reports identified
6,769 readers with 200,000 miles or
more on their vehicles odometers.
Car owner accounts ran the gamut of
make and model, including a 1995 Honda
Civic with 227,000 miles, a 1990 Lexus
LS400 with 332,000 miles and one especially
long-running 1994 Ford Ranger with an
impressive 488,000 miles.
comparing the costs of keeping a vehicle
for 225,000 miles over 15 years, to
purchasing and financing an identical
model every five, the survery found
that keeping a vehicle could potentially
save the owner more than the original
purchase price of that car.
Reports estimates that vehicle models,
such as the popular Honda Civic EX (with
an automatic transmission), could potentially
save their owners as much as $20,500
over 15 years if properly maintained.
That's a savings of $1,500 more than
the vehicle's original purchase price.
its analysis, the report included 15-years
of destination fees, depreciation, maintenance
and repairs, finance and interest, fees
and taxes, and insurance costs to the
vehicle purchase, the same factors used
in figuring the costs of purchasing
a new model every five years.
in 3 percent inflation and an annual
5 percent interest rate, an additional
$10,300 in investment savings is estimated
for those choosing to maintain their
current vehicle. As a result, the proposed
Honda Civic EX would cost approximately
$30,800 less over the course of 15 years,
than purchasing a new Civic EX every
how do you know if your vehicle can
handle the long race to the finish line,
that victorious moment when 200,000
appears in its odometer?
to experts, buying a car with a good
track record is important. Here, as
tested by Consumer Reports, are a list
of vehicles that have better-than-average
reliability scores over several model
years. Also listed are vehicles with
multiple years of worse-than-average
reliability and a history of problems.
Toyota Land Cruiser
Mercedes-Benz M-Class (V8)
Volvo XC90 (6-cyclinder)
Getting Your Car to Go the Distance
motorists looking to make their car
reach that 200,000-mile mark, heres
some advice on how to maintain its integrity.
by the book. Follow the maintenance
schedule in the vehicle's owners
manual and make any necessary repairs
promptly. If you think youre saving
money by skipping an oil change, think
again. Missing even one oil change can
accelerate premature engine wear and
cause engine damage. The manual contains
a maintenance schedule.
the right stuff. When it
is time for maintenance or repairs,
use only parts and fluids meeting the
manufacturer's specifications. Using
the wrong type of oil or transmission
fluid, could result in damage, which
always leads to more expensive repairs.
what to look for. Problems
can arise at any time for inexplicable
reasons. So it helps to get in the habit
of opening the hood and looking, listening,
and smelling whats happening in
your engine bay. Look for fraying or
cracks in belts and cracks or bulges
in hoses. Investing in a vehicle service
manual available at car dealerships
and most auto-parts stores will
help show you what to look for and assist
you with minor repairs.
it clean. Get out the cleaning
products periodically. Regularly cleaning
your vehicle inside and out can make
it a more pleasant place to be as you
rack up the miles. Also, washing and
waxing your vehicle can help preserve
its paint and keep its sheet metal from
rusting. Vacuuming sand and dirt out
of the carpets and seats can also the
minimize premature wear that leads to
tears and holes.
a reliable, safe car. Buy
a car with a good track record. Buy
a car that has performed well in government
and insurance-industry safety tests,
and has the latest safety equipment
including electronic stability control
and curtain air bags. If youre
going to live with this vehicle for
a long time, you want it to provide
maximum safety protection. Check online,
at sites including Consumer Reports,
for important safety information and