Author Topic: Car advice - new attending - what to buy?  (Read 1362 times)

Swat

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Car advice - new attending - what to buy?
« on: November 24, 2018, 05:23:55 PM »
I could use some advice/suggestions on a car to buy. I just finished residency in July. Here is some background financial info on me. Net worth ~300k. Paid off student loans. Stay at home wife with 1 young child. Unsure of a second. Expected income for first full year (2019) ~450-500k+. Currently own a 2016 Honda CRV. Our other car is coming off a lease in a couple months. I learned my lesson and will not be leasing again. Overall we're in very good financial shape relative to age (early 30s) and time out of training but need some help choosing a car to buy. The original plan was to buy an older family car but that fell through last minute. Other info...

-I'm definitely NOT a car guy. Just looking for something safe and reliable with minimal maintenance. Not flashy at all.
-We already have a CRV which will be used more for family trips so I was thinking a smaller vehicle and not another SUV, van, truck, etc...
-We have one child and not sure about another kid in the next few years. Therefore, not sure if the super small vehicles make sense either...although I would love to hear people's opinions on Prius's or other small cars who are doing it with a family. 
-Commute is pretty short but good mileage is also still important. Tempted by the idea of hybrids or even complete electric vehicle as I've never owned one of them before and I like the idea of being more environmentally friendly. 
-Live in Mid-Atlantic area so hopefully decent in snow (although not super important since short commute and could always borrow wife's CRV if need be I suppose).
-Was favoring a used over a new vehicle but wasn't sure how that would be impacted if I went with a hybrid or electric vehicle as the technology/range is much better in recent years than much older vehicles. 
-The hope is to keep the car until it dies. 

Without doing any research, a few vehicles crossed my mind... Toyota Camry (+/- Hybrid), Honda Accord, Toyota Prius (might be too small but curious other's thoughts), Nissan Leaf, etc... I'm sure there are LOTS of cars I'm missing so I'd appreciate any/all thoughts. Thanks!

Dave1442397

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Re: Car advice - new attending - what to buy?
« Reply #1 on: November 24, 2018, 06:23:05 PM »
I remember reading that the Toyota Camry hybrid was way over-engineered compared to a regular Camry back when it first came out, and it's recommended for its gas mileage and nice ride. My neighbor had one, and loved it.


lhamo

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Re: Car advice - new attending - what to buy?
« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2018, 07:38:52 PM »
I considered a Prius but liked the Ford C-Max hybrid better after I test drove both.  Bought new in 2015 at DH's insistence. Get around 41 mpg with mostly in city driving -- my sister gets around 50 in her Prius.  Paid around 20k after all discounts, taxes and fees. Current KBB value is around 12k with around 24k miles.

YttriumNitrate

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Re: Car advice - new attending - what to buy?
« Reply #3 on: November 24, 2018, 10:15:43 PM »
I'd probably just go with a Toyota Camry or Prius.

What I find interesting is that, as of my posting this response, only one person on the Bogleheads version of this thread has mentioned a Tesla...my how things have changed in six months.

ViperDrive97

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Re: Car advice - new attending - what to buy?
« Reply #4 on: November 27, 2018, 02:29:32 PM »
Hey Swat!

I'm not sure if you were even considering a newer or even brand new car.  BUT, there is one car that stands out if you are willing to put out the coin.  The Prius Prime, its a plug in hybrid that goes about 25 miles on its charge, after that, is a standard prius that will return 52ish mpg. 

The reason it stands out is because right now, in the north east US, Toyota is giving $4,000 of MSRP, AND you get a federal tax burden rebate of $4,502 (if you have a liability bill of more than that.)

Some folks in CA and CO I believe get another $5,000 incenttive from their states.  Not bad for a $27,000 MSRP car.  You will come out around $20,000 all in for one of those plus your individual state's rebate.

Just food for thought although, most will bring out the pitch forks for me for suggesting a new car.  HAHA.


TrMama

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Re: Car advice - new attending - what to buy?
« Reply #5 on: November 27, 2018, 03:03:00 PM »
You sound like an excellent candidate for a fully electric car. You don't need much range and don't want to deal with maintenance. If you're worried about winter performance, just get a set of winter tires for it (which you'd need for any gas powered car anyway). Many manufacturers are selling fully electric cars now, so there's lots to choose from:

Nissan Leaf
Kia Soul EV
Ford Focus electric
Chevy Bolt

Plus a number of luxury brands, like Tesla, BMW and Mercedes.

Car Jack

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Re: Car advice - new attending - what to buy?
« Reply #6 on: November 28, 2018, 12:52:30 PM »
Sorry, but I just can't answer this in a serious way.  But let's have fun.  Depends if you're going right in or if you're doing a fellowship and specializing.  I'll throw some out there.

GP:  6 year old beige Camry
Cardiologist:  Mercedes C class, CPO 3 years old.
Anesthesiologist:  BMW M3 convertible.
Ortho surgeon:  Maserati Quattroporte
Cosmetic Surgeon:  Ferrari F458 Italia
Cardiac Surgeon:  AMG S63
Talk Show Doctor:  Pagani Huayra BC
Expert Witness doctor:  McLaren Senna

Dr Kidstache

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Re: Car advice - new attending - what to buy?
« Reply #7 on: November 28, 2018, 09:09:29 PM »
No car advice but just wanted to applaud you for killing it! $300k net worth at end of residency is nuts. You're light years ahead of everyone else parked in the doc lot.

Madhobodisease

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Re: Car advice - new attending - what to buy?
« Reply #8 on: November 29, 2018, 07:10:41 AM »
Look for used Chevy Volts.  I bought one last year and really like it.  It is a plug-in hybrid that gets about 30-40 miles on electric before switching to a hybrid mode which gets 40mgp.
Gen 1s only have 2 seats in the back (no middle seat).  We have a car seat in the back, and will probably have another one back there too.

Just for a data point, I paid $15K for a 2011 volt with 45,000 mi.  Volt forum people say they have gotten better deals than that. 

Maintenance is very low.  If you never use the gas engine you will never need an oil change. 

You can plug it in to a regular wall outlet (should be a dedicated circuit though).

katscratch

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Re: Car advice - new attending - what to buy?
« Reply #9 on: November 29, 2018, 07:42:05 AM »
Car Jack that gave me a chuckle!

If you're a neurosurgeon in my hospital group you'll be best driving a 14 year old Toyota Camry or 8 year old Prius ;)


Bracken_Joy

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Re: Car advice - new attending - what to buy?
« Reply #10 on: November 29, 2018, 07:52:57 AM »
@Car Jack I definitely laughed!

Recently read an article that said basically- don't bother buying a tesla, we're finally getting to a point where more reliable all electrics are plentiful used. It specifically called out the Leaf in this case. I haven't run the numbers, but from that and conversations I've had, it seems like Leafs in the ~3-5 year old range can be a great option. You can mustachian hack it too, because so many hospitals have charging stations! So you'd never need to charge at home. That's like getting free gas. (That's what my nurse precerptor did! She drove 45 min each way in a Leaf, had done so for a couple years, and had never once had to charge at home).

That being said, some gas cars are extremely fuel efficient. We have a 2017 Jetta that, averaged across the 43k miles we've put on it, has gotten 39.2 MPG. Same technology on this engine 2015 going forward, so you could look for a used one. (Although a lot of people a- don't like VW and b- worry about reliability). You can always check Fuelly's stats to see what models are actually getting, vs EPA numbers.

HipGnosis

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Re: Car advice - new attending - what to buy?
« Reply #11 on: November 29, 2018, 09:22:03 AM »
Sorry, but I just can't answer this in a serious way.  But let's have fun.  Depends if you're going right in or if you're doing a fellowship and specializing.  I'll throw some out there.

GP:  6 year old beige Camry
Cardiologist:  Mercedes C class, CPO 3 years old.
Anesthesiologist:  BMW M3 convertible.
Ortho surgeon:  Maserati Quattroporte
Cosmetic Surgeon:  Ferrari F458 Italia
Cardiac Surgeon:  AMG S63
Talk Show Doctor:  Pagani Huayra BC
Expert Witness doctor:  McLaren Senna
If you buy any of those other than the Camry, you should ALSO buy the Camry because the other cars will spend a considerable time in the shop for maintenance.