Author Topic: Please help with vehicle dilemma  (Read 2338 times)


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Please help with vehicle dilemma
« on: April 29, 2013, 08:32:53 AM »
Hi everyone!  I found this site a few months ago and now we (me and wife) see the light!!

We both live in Southern California, within 6 miles of where we work.  I was thinking a bit like a Mustachian even before we found this site!  Since moving 2 years ago, our commuting costs have come down tremendously.  It only takes me 15 minutes to drive to the office.  Both of our offices are within 5 miles of each other.

And YES before anyone asks, I am in the process of cleaning up and tuning my old bike so that I can attempt to start riding the bike to the office! (should take approximately 30 minutes according to google maps).

I feel one of our big mistakes is that the wife and I leased a 2013 Prius Three in January 2013 (bear in mind, before we found the MMM site). We feel like we got a great deal on the lease. Honestly we love the car. Quiet, smooth, beautiful blizzard pearl color. 50mpg!!  We have another car, a 2009 IS250, with 56K miles.  This car is fully paid off - runs very well, and is probably too comfortable for our low mileage needs.

One thing we have decided - we don't NEED the luxury of having 2 vehicles.  Now I'm not sure how to get rid of one of them.

I imagine that the mustachian way is to:

1)  Sell the IS
2)  Get rid of the Prius lease via lease transfer, swapalease, leasetrader, etc
3)  Use money to buy a $5K used but reliable vehicle

We've only had this Prius for about 4 months but now we have such "buyer's remorse" and are feeling very anxious and guilty about our purchase.  We see that it is an extravagance having 2 vehicles, especially when both of our offices are less than 5 miles apart.  We intend on carpooling in the future, and I intend on giving bike rides to the office a few times a week to squeeze my cardio exercise in. 

We can afford to continue to pay the Prius lease ($342 a month for 3 years), but don't want to keep two cars.  After all, we want to retire early.

There doesn't seem to be much information online about terminating a lease early. Toyotal financial has a blurb that there may be "substantial costs in ending a lease early" but no specific details. I've read a little bit about swapalease and leasetrader, and even Carmax, but not sure if anyone will want to pick this lease up since it's so new. We've only put a little over 4,000 miles on the car. I know we are probably going to be penalized with some type of large fee.

We were thinking of getting rid of the IS, banking that money.  Then continuing to lease the Prius until the end of the contract - and buying the vehicle with money we've saved along the way.  Wife really likes this car.  Feels safe in it.  I would be comfortable knowing that we were the ones that maintained this vehicle.  If we kept it, we could probably drive that car into the ground 10 years from now, or beyond.

We also thought about transferring the lease, and keeping the IS.  The IS has been extremely reliable, it's a toyota after all.  We may have a family member interested in taking over the lease (despite our recommendations against it - they wanted to lease a Prius)

Wife wants to keep the Prius, but just hoping someone has some insight and advice to offer us.  Thank you.


  • Magnum Stache
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Re: Please help with vehicle dilemma
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2013, 09:53:20 AM »
My advice would be this: Sell the IS250, and start looking for a practical vehicle.  Take your time, review your options, try things out, and make sure you find one that is exactly what you need.  Use the Prius as your luxury of time in your search for a new vehicle (most vehicle mistakes I've witnessed have been rushed decisions due to a time crunch).  Then once you find something that you think is perfect, keep the Prius for another month in case something blows up right away, and then find a way to dump the lease.

Good luck!


  • Stubble
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  • Posts: 181
Re: Please help with vehicle dilemma
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2013, 11:51:35 AM »
An IS250 is a Toyota, but the engines potentially have severe carbon issues requiring expensive engine rebuild. Not the end of the world as long as it is rebuilt before your 60K power-train warranty expires.  Plus your friendly Lexus dealer will give you an ES350 loaner.

I'd sell the IS250 sooner rather than later.

Continue making lease payments on the Prius.

Take lots of time test driving vehicles that are in the $5k price range.  Used cars are not the great deal they were a few years ago. You just might find that most cars selling for 5K are way overpriced.

You may even be able to advertise the Prius on Craigslist for someone to take over the lease.