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3,469 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I was talking to me wife about cars, and she complained that we have been buying cars non-stop in the past decade or so. So we tabulated our car purchases:

December 1997: ML 320 (new). Terrible car. Sold December 2001.
December 1999 : Odyssey (new, her daily driver). Still here.
April 2001: M5 (used, my toy). Totalled January 2005.
December 2001 : Highlander (new, replaced MB). Now son's car.
December 2002: Miata (used, my toy). Sold October 2003.
December 2003: RUF BTR (used, my toy). Still here.
July 2005: RX330 (new, replaced M5).

So it's seven cars in about 8 years. Actually the Odyssey we did not buy, it was kind of a gift, but a very long story.

Before that, we have kept almost every car between 8-12 years. She may be right that I bought cars too frequently of late.

What do you guys think? Care to share your purchase history as well?



2,564 Posts
I have had 2 cars in 4 years. Before that it was a new car every few months, but that is another long story.
July 2001 to May 2003, VW GTI 16V
May 2003 to now it's been a 2003 VW Jetta. I'll be hanging onto it for years. Having bounced through cars on a almost monthly basis in highschool, I want to get a car and keep it for some time.

332 Posts
Bought a camaro in sept. 2002, then my career really took off in july 2005, and the same month i traded in the camaro and got the M5 in the same month. This car is a keeper, as everything I have wanted in a car, the M5 satisfies.

648 Posts
My family was the same way. We bought new cars just about once a decade. Beginning in 1999 that all changed. ouich

1999 - MY1997 (used) Land Rover Discovery SE7 5-speed manual
2000 - MY1974 (used) BMW 2002tii
2001 - MY2000 (new) 528i Sport 5-speed (replaced Land Rover)
2001 - MY1988 (used) Schneller BMW M5 (replaced 2002)
2002 - MY2000 (used) BMW 323i Sport Wagon 5-speed
2002 - MY1995 (used) BMW M3 (replaced M5 :crying: )
2003 - MY1999 (used) Porsche 996 Carrera

Currently looking to replace my M3 with a Boxster S. Pong's RUF is to blame!

Super Moderator
10,462 Posts
i tend to get an itch every two years or so...

95 318 kept until winter 96, traded for a 92 525iTa when child #1 arrived(oddly enough, i still miss the e34), which was traded in summer of 99 for an e46 323 (wife got an suv, so didn't need 2 'family cars'), which was traded in winter of 01 for a cpo 98 528. M5 came along in summer of 03, 528 was sold about 6 mos later (happily to another enthusiast). Original plan was to keep the 528 as the daily driver and the M5 for fun/weekends/track, but i always wanted to drive the M5.

Thru this time, my wife has had a couple bmws as well, including a 95 325ia and an 02 525iTa (tried to sell it when child number 3 came along, but nobody seemed to want to buy an 18 month old 525 wagon, so i traded it in on the m5), but she also seemed to go thru cars at approx 2 year interval. She currently has the newest car, 05 lx470 so it's "my turn" next time a car comes along...

I've had the M5 for just over 2 years, and have an itch for something else, but the m5 isn't going anywhere!

142 Posts
My brother is bad at this also...

1998 Camaro (used) sold 2000
2000 RAV 4 (new) sold 2001
2001 BMW 3 series (silver) (new) sold 2003
2002 BMW 3 series (white) (new) sold 2004
2003 Hummer H2 (new) sold 2005
2004 Merc C230 (new) still have
2005 Porsche Boxster (used) pending sale
2005 BMW 7 series (used) still have
most recent purchase Acura NSX (used)

oh 2004 he bought a Ducati 778 I think...Yellow sold 2005

I'm ok at it..
2000 Jetta Vr6 new sold 2002
2002 Passat new sold 2005
2003 Infiniti FX35 new (wifes car)
2004 Toyota truck ( home depot ride)
2005 M5 (used)

4,089 Posts
Well, lets see...

Not counting cars while still in various types of colleges...

1998: '99 528i(s) 5-speed; new. My breakthrough car, could not believe how much fun it was to drive! Was going to keep it but...
2001: '02 530i(s) 5-speed; new. Well I made the mistake of test driving one and I liked the looks of the update, so I ordered one. Was going to keep it but...
2004: '02 M5; used, CPO (from M5board owner!). Wife sent me to the BMW driving school in SC; drove M5, that was it for my beloved 530!:haha: Planning on keeping this one for some time but my record on this (as my wife reminds me) is not too stellar...


1999: '99 Merc ML 320, new. Initially a big disappointment due to an oil leak, but has been very reliable since, which AMAZES me. Early on I was in a big hurry to get rid of it, but now it keeps going and has no problems so will give it to my son in three years when he gets his license (wife will then get an M3

2001: Mitsubishi Eclipse (or whatever it is called) for daughter, have never driven it.

2003: Toyota Tundra for other daughter, have never driven it.

NO wants right now except for my wife to get her M3 so she will not want to drive my M5 once a week...maybe I'll buy it early!

377 Posts
During the '70's I had access to a dealer's auction so I traded every 6 months for the daily driver. While in California in 1976 I purchased a '57 T-Bird. Had to sell it to finance a house.

1981 MY1981 Audi 4000 5+5. Sold in 1982 to buy an '81 320i which started the love affair with BMWs.

From then on MORE POWER!

1985 MY1984 325es. Gave to the wife in 1988 as I bought a new 1988 325is.
1992 sold the 325es and bought MY1992 Ford Explorer.
1996 bought MY1995 540i 6sp Sport. Kept the '88 325is as airport car.
1997 replaced the 325is with '94 Honda Accord. Sold that a year later 'cuz all I wanted to drive was the 540i.
1999 replaced the Ford Explorer with '99 MB ML320. Goes in the snow, but very poor build quality. If I could afford to replace it I'll go with Accura MDX.
2002 bought MY1969 MB 280SL. Great summer weekend car.
2005 sold both 540i and MB 280SL to purchase my "Beast". No regrets, but will probably have to replace it in a few years as I'm retiring to Colorado and will need all wheel drive.

977 Posts
I'm a yougen, so here is my history:

1995 - received 1988 Dodge Lancer ES from parents, first car (paid off in full prior to this)
August 2001 - Lease a 2001 Audi A4 1.8TQ - Drive for 39 months and return in Sept 2004
July 2004 - Purchase 2003 M3 SMG - Drive for 11 months and trade in in June 2005
June 2005 - Purchase 2002 M5

I wanted out of my Audi lease about 2 years in, maybe less. I started looking for an E46 M3, but couldn't afford it. Getting out of the lease would have be tough to. Who knows how long I'll keep my M5... Hopefully more then 1 year! It's definately a car I can keep longer then the M3 because it's got 4 doors. But, the E90 M3 could entice me, and I wouldn't mind an E55 AMG either. Hopefully I'll be able to afford a couple similar to the M3 or a P-Car, and a luxo sedan like the M5/E55 in the future.

My wife doesn't have the itch to go through cars, she drove a 1994 Jeep Grand Cherokee from around 1994 to 2004. She drive my Audi the last month of it's lease. Then I got her a 2005 Solara the day after we returned the Audi. She'll drive that at least another year, until we have a child, then she'll want to get back into a 4 door or a luxo SUV.

992 Posts
Let's see:

1984: 1971 Fiat Spider (horrid car, but looked cool) - totaled (hit from front)

1985: 1982 Nissan pickup

1993: 1972 Datsun B210 added - totaled (hit from behind and sandwiched)

1994: 1987 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme (sold Nissan pickup)

1996: 1994 Land Rover Defender 90 (sold Olds)

2001: 2000 Cadillac Escalade

2004: 2004 Cadillac Escalade ESV (traded in previous Escalade)

2004: 2003 BMW M5 (for sale!)

2005: 2006 BMW M5

So, I don't really buy cars a lot - the Fiat, Nissan, Datsun, and Olds were all gifts from parents. I bought my first car in 1996. The Escalade is the wife's car.

1,722 Posts
2000: '92 BMW E36 320 coupe
2001: '92 BMW E36 325 coupe (replaced previous)
2003: '94 BMW E36 325 coupe (new daily, since previous one was not practical anymore)
2003: coupe nr 2 had complete M3 conversion
2004: '88 VW Golf Gti convertible (girlfriends new daily)
2005: '00 BMW M5 (replaced daily 325)
2005: '01 Toyota Rav4 (girlfriends new daily, Golf becomes fun car)

Now planning to buy 2 E24 M635CSi oldtimers...

739 Posts
I don't accumulate much mileage on my cars, so if I like them (like the beast), I keep them. Progress for me over the last decade or so has been:


1990 Lincoln Mark VII, wanted a stick, so bought a

1995 BMW 54I Sport, heard about the M5 coming out, so bought a

2000 BMW M5

My wife's cars?

1991 Lexus LS400, had an accident so bought a

1996 Lexus LS400, kept that 8 years, only had 45k on the clock, bought a

2004 Lexus LS430. That car is now 21 months old and has 7,500 miles on it.

For road trips, we have a conversion van

1992 Ford E-150, Explorer High Top Conversion. Had 75k on the clock, bought a

2003 GMC Savannah, Explorerer High Top Conversion.

M5 Extraordinare!
8,318 Posts
I think we have another thread similiar in nature to this one but who cares! This one could be fun!

I can't even start to remember all the cars my family has purchased which probably numbers over 30 in the last decade. I'll just list the ones that I've purchased.

1990 Chevrolet Corvette (1st car)
1991 Toyota 4runner (Got this because I felt I needed more room)
1993 Toyota Supra Turbo
1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee
2000 Yamaha R1
2001 Mercedes ML55 (probably kept this one for the shortest amount of time because I REALLY hated the way it handled)
2001 Toyota Tundra (Got this as a replacement for the ML55 for towing/outdoor purposes)
2001 BMW M5 (Also a replacement for the ML55 to cover my "itch" for a high performance vehicle)
2003 MINI Cooper S (Got this after riding in VanCooper's MINI and seeing the Italian Job)
2005 Land Rover Range Rover (Got this as a replacement for the Tundra which I felt wasn't very safe in snowy conditions because of the lack of weight in the back)
2005 BMW K1200S

531 Posts
Here is my list

1995 - 1998 '90 Nissan 240SX Fastback
1998 - 2005 '98 Toyota 4Runner
2002 - 2005 '02 Honda CBR600 F4i
2005 - '03 M5!!!

I get the itch for something different every 4 years. Not sure there is more to want after the M5 (except a bigger tire budget).

1,405 Posts
We usually hold cars for 8 years or so but I usually get the itch for a different ride every 4 years or so. What works for us: My wife refuses to EVER drive "my car" (a long story...), so I buy a new car every 4 years and she gets the car I used to drive. To her it's a new car even though she sees it in the garage every day. I take immaculate care of my car so it is "delivered" like new to her anyway. This won't work for some, period. For others it might work if the hand-me-down is something they like too. Lucky for me she's a performance freak too! She loves sticks, she loves the 540i six speed I gave up and she's been bugging me to replace my E39 M5 because that will become her car. It distresses her greatly that I don't like the E60 M5! It also distresses my delusional speed freak son, who thinks that if I replace the M5 he'll be driving one of our existing V8 BMWs when he gets his license (no freakin way!!!). Something's gotta give soon, but I don't know what

311 Posts
I have bought and sold other cars while holding on to my M's till new designs come out so the E39 M5 had it since 12/99. Wow! Soon to be 6 years. Time goes by fast when you are having fun.

1,292 Posts
rvacha said:
What works for us: My wife refuses to EVER drive "my car" (a long story...), so I buy a new car every 4 years and she gets the car I used to drive...It also distresses my delusional speed freak son, who thinks that if I replace the M5 he'll be driving one of our existing V8 BMWs when he gets his license (no freakin way!!!). Something's gotta give soon, but I don't know what
You're lucky, rvacha...that's the way it was in my family for a long time. My Dad would get a new car, give the old one to mom and all was well. It eventually got bad and he was getting a new car every 6 months. Well, mom snapped and now he's on the 5-year, no hand-me-downs plan. We'll see if it sticks, but he doesn't seem to like the idea. PS my .02 as a kid who was always trusted with dad's fast car and now an M3...Take your kid to the track and show him where it is okay to let a car loose and then show him that a car is to be respected on the street. Let him know that if he ever messes up, the car is gone. He'll be okay.

Depends...some are in it for the long haul, some not:
96- Chevy Tahoe
97- 325
99-03 740
01-04 528
03-04 745
04- SRX
04- Cayenne
05- M3

13,638 Posts
I don't change cars very often:

'87 Volvo 740 Turbo
'88 Rolls Royce Silver Sprit
'89 Volvo 740 Turbo
'02 E39 M5
'05 E60 M5

The man who changes cars more often than most is JohnH - he's had some real stunners in his collection....

3,006 Posts
I think the cars you have been buying more or less are crappy, perhaps better cars lead to keeping them longer, that said, In 9 yrs Ive had 4 cars.

2,443 Posts
I can probably top many of you at least in # of cars purchased over the last 8 years - wasn't that the comparison point?

1997: bought '94 Q45 - sold in '01 (4 yrs)
1997: bought '94 Suburban - sold in '01 (4 years)
1998: nothing that year
1999: bought '91 Corvette, still have it - converted to road race car
2000: bought '68 Camaro - sold in 2001 (1 yr)
2001: bought '98 M3/4 - sold in 2003 (2 yr)
2001: bought '01 Suburban new - sold in '04 (3 yr)
2002: bought '99 540iT - sold in '03 (1 yr)
2003: bought '00 M5 - sold in 2004 (1 yr)
2003: bought '03 Mazda Protege5 new (still have)
2004: bought '04 Z06 - sold in 2005 (1 yr)
2004: bought '04 Nissan Armada - (still have)
2005: bought '02 BMW 330i sport - for sale (sub 1 yr)
2005: bought '05 CTS-V new - (still have)

Whew. So, 2 drivers. 13 cars purchased in the last 8 years.
Ave. stay in the stable (only counting cars that were sold): 3 years.

The wife is numb. Dizzy. Kids too. They don't even remember some of the cars we had :)

I did own a '63 Impala for 20 years and a '89 IROC Camaro for 9 tho, if that counts for anything....

So over the last 8 years I have averaged more than 1.5 car purchases per year. We won't think about the $$ down the drain to the nice state of CA....

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