Buying the car of your dreams: an e-car? 3-seater? new or used? from car dealer or private party?

How to decide when buying a  car that drives amazingly, fits kids and their friends comfortably  in 3 seats, is safe,  reliable and and flexible  to use on  long car trips?

I bought a 2014 BMW and now am thinking of buying a new or pre-owned BMW or completely different brand.

Some pluses and minuses:

Electric self driving  car  has a plus of automation (just sit in the driver’s seat) — wow!! –  but a  downside for longer  car trips (i.e. San Francisco to L.A.)  as not that much inside car space and considerably  less flexibility re time to “re-fuel”.  Acquaintances  who have e-cars say that they  leave their e-car  home and  take their larger fossil fuel cars  on long  car trips.

What about the total cost of a car?    The interest rates  on car loans has skyrocketed.

Per phone call  today  6/10/23,  the sales department of  BMW in  Monterey CA  says that new car  interest rates run around  5-6  1/2 %   and that  pre-owned cars interest rates run between  7-8%.  Of course credit and the 40 plus sources BMW has for obtaining a loan affect the actual rate one will pay. That’s the cost of going through a dealership.

BMW   of Monterey says that the current   230 i and 240 i  series  both have more power compared to a  2014  BMW 328  purchased 10 years ago.

There is a big difference in overall style between the current 2024 BMW  versus the 2020 series.  The 2024 costs between $41-48K with the 2020 BMW  230 i  older style costing between $28 – 30,000. Check out differences in older and newer style.

Turn in value for a car:     A 2014  328 model with  (low 60,000 mileage) is worth about 10-12,000 on turn in.

My  view:   If you really like a car and plan to keep it 7-10 years– as long as the average marriage lasts in America –   then the  depreciation in value  over first couple years is less important than the overall value it has in being  truly   fun to drive,  safe, reliable  and that the car does what you want it to do. Get the car of your dreams.

So,   drive enough various  cars until you find that  “dream car” –  and only then,  look for where and from whom to purchase it. Ask for help.

Remember that story in the Bible about a man who worked 7  years for the wife of his dreams, getting hitched  instead to her sister (by  design of the father-in-law because per  tribal custom the  older sister must marry first)    and then  working another 7 years to marry the wife of his dreams.  Which he did.    So,  take your  time and make sure  both sides  to the contract can and will keep their bargain.

Maybe buy from a dealer and maybe some other way.

Question:    How can you get the car you really want at the lowest possible  interest rate and also get  great value as the car has  depreciated because  it is one year old?

In the Great Scheme of Things:   There’s someone out there who bought the car of  his  or her dreams but due to various reasons needs to re-structure debt and sell that one year old car which has a low interest rate.    Best of both worlds  — get  the right car ant the right interest rate.

But then again time may be of the essence How much time do you have to devote?

Here’s a poem about a black hen who has to make   decisions:     ” Higgily piggily my black hen; She does not know how to lay eggs in the relative when. She only knows how to lay eggs in the positive now.  Higgily, piggily my black hen. ”

Someone I respect says “Life is like a chess game.  You can move all sorts of ways.  Before you decide your next move, be  sure to ask the Man Above (God)  which way to go –  and then listen. “  Not bad advise.