Raul Freitas

My car is 31



I love my car. It was built around the time that I met my wife. In its day, it was exclusive, not affordable to just anyone. I’ve had it about seven years, paid much, much less than it cost new, but it’s the same car. I get to enjoy a ride that many, these days, pay hefty amounts to experience, because they’re buying new.

The charm of owning an old car has lost its luster over the last few decades. With the advent of leasing, millions of second-hand, off-lease cars flooded the market, and “newer” used cars became the norm. Newer also meant more expensive, but those convenient monthly payments made it possible for just about anyone to own a “new” car. So now we’re all hooked on luxury, all-wheel-drive and reverse cameras, so old cars are not usually an option. Needless to say, eventually even all the old cars will come with all these, and many other, options, but, at the moment, good, old vehicles are still out there, waiting to give us mere mortals a turn at what once was exclusive to those with platinum cards. I find it quite a coup to be able to drive a vehicle that, when new, (or even newer), would have been merely a fantasy in my head, but that’s just me.

The desire to wrap yourself with a shiny new ride is common enough, and when clever financing can make it all come true, then it’s a slippery slope.

There are valid arguments against buying old vehicles. You don’t really know what the car has been through in its life before you came along.

My logic, and it’s, at times, far from sensible, is that if it was a quality car when it was built, then it should stand the test of time. Risky? Obviously, and I’m here to say that it hasn’t always worked out in my favour, but it also has a lot to do with what you pay in the first place, and also finding an old car with a good reputation is, to me, a step in the right direction. I know, my logic is flawed, but it just feels so good to drive something so nice having paid so little. That’s just me, and it brings me to another point: you don’t turn heads, you don’t attract attention, nobody’s interested in an old car. Your insurance provider thanks you.

Thieves aren’t in the least bit interested, they’re busy looking for those SUV’s and fine sports cars that they can ship to Africa or the Middle East. Big bucks for these over there. My advice? Stay under the radar and you’ll be happier. It’s win, win. Save a ton of money and get yourself a quality beater. In the end, when you realize you jumped off the hamster wheel and are actually happy for having done so, you’ll want to take that attitude and apply it to other things in your life. Simpler is better in every way. You’ll kick yourself for not having done it sooner. Look ma, no stress!

Fiquem bem,

Raul Freitas/MS


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