There’s little doubt that electrification is the future of the automobile. Witness the bevy of EVs that are now for sale and coming soon, like the Mustang Mach-E. Cadillac is pledging to take their entire brand EV-only by 2030.
However, like all cars, EVs are not immune to the laws of depreciation. They will change hands, and some will eventually be abused, neglected, or even outright abandoned. Some may even become curbside classics to be featured in some future post at this site.
In theory, EVs should make great beaters. With no engine, transmission, exhaust system, fuel system, or cooling system, there are far fewer things to break and cause a “career-ending injury” that we so often see when the repair cost exceeds the value of the vehicle. Other than the battery and electronics (the jury is still out on the long-term durability of both), there is little preventing an EV from running almost indefinitely. (ED: there are liquid battery cooling systems on almost all EVs. And there’s heat pumps used on an increasing number of them)
If you are one to neglect maintenance, then you are in luck: EVs have no fluids to replace (or leak), they require no tune-ups, and thanks to regenerative braking, the brake pads and rotors could very well last the lifetime of the car. A fresh set of tires every so often is potentially all you need to keep on motoring. (ED: there’s still brake fluid to change)
Some early model EVs are already getting close to CC-level prices. You can find early Nissan LEAFs all day long for under 10 grand, and I was able to find some running examples for under $4,000, which is really getting close to beater territory.
Granted, the interior of this model is water stained and looks like it was used to transport mulch, but still, you could do far worse at this price point.
Cheap Teslas are more difficult to find. The least expensive one I could find was this 2014 Model S (edit: it now appears to be gone) with a worn interior, ripped seats, scuffed up bumpers, and badly misaligned panels (which may or may not have been like that from the factory). Even with all these cosmetic issues, the seller was still asking $20,000, which is not exactly buy-here, pay-here territory, but at least is entering the neighborhood.
So how long do you think it will be before we start seeing pictures in the Cohort of Nissan LEAFs covered in, well, leaves, or Teslas sinking into the ground surrounded by overgrown weeds?
Roughly twenty years from date of manufacture. That seems to be the tipping point for many.
There are also wheel bearings and other suspension bits that will wear out on an EV.
A better question might be hybrids. Those are most definitely into CC territory. IIRC, the 1st gen Honda Insight and Toyota Prius arrived on the US scene in 2001, and many of them are still on the road. The Insight has something of a cult-following with a battery that tends to need replacing after so many miles. Interestingly, I’ve seen reports that say the Insight’s stellar fuel mileage is not all that much different with a depleted battery.
But, as far as ‘pure’ EVs, the Leaf and Chevy Volt both arrived in 2011 and the Leaf has, indeed, dropped down to beater land, mostly due to a battery that is air-cooled and, thus, has a real bad habit of losing capacity/range over time, especially in 3-season states. Just recently, someone seems to have gotten over at a nearby Chevy dealer by trading in an old Leaf with a battery that couldn’t be charged to more than 11% (!). So, those really old Leafs might not have much of a range; I’d say, typically, less than 50 miles on a full charge. Hell, when they were new, I think the range was only 89 miles.
First and especially second gen Prius are common at self-serve junkyards. Third generations are getting more common too but mostly still accident damaged ones. The original Insight is found as well, and the reboot (2010/2011) shows up from time to time as do Accord and Camry hybrids as well as Escape and Mariner ones. Leafs and other all-electrics are still very rare.
With digital instrument panels the mileage is hard to figure out usually beyond hoping for an oil change sticker (on the hybrids).
Haven’t come across a Volt yet…
Some good observations on the prevalence of Priuses and Insights at junkyards. I’m a little surprised at seeing non-damaged ones, though. The Prius, in particular, has a reputation of being long-lived and running for many hundreds of thousands of miles. OTOH, I do know that it’s possible to brick a Prius’ battery by running it out of gas. The car will go into ’emergency mode’ to keep going and delve deaper into the battery’s reserve than is normally safe to do so without damaging it.
I’m wondering if the junkyard dearth of the pure EV (more accurately known as a Battery Electric Vehicel, or BEV) has something to do with their being saved by the tinkerers who feel they can resurrect them with shade-tree engineering. Sort of the modern version of the old hotrod guys who would swap-in a drivetrain from something else.
In fact, I know of a guy in southern Indiana (‘AutoBeYours’ in Scottsburg) who actually specializes in doing exactly that. His most well-known Frankenstein creations were combining the front of a rear-ended 2nd gen Prius with the pickup bed from an old Subaru Baja. When I was there years ago, he was actually putting an electric drivetrain into a Jaguar convertible.
If you ran an early Prius out of gas and continued to drive yes it would go to the point where the vehicle wouldn’t try to start the engine because they let it run until it was at the absolute minimum SOC and the traction battery is used to start the ICE. However the Toyota dealers had an external charger they could connect to the car to recharge the battery to the point where it will allow the engine to crank. Definitely not good for the battery but it does not render it dead due to a single occurrence.
Thanks for the clarification. It didn’t sound quite right that just running a Prius out of gas would kill the battery. Still, unlike an ICE vehicle where all you have to do is add some gas, having to have your empty Prius towed to a dealer for a charge to get it going again (which they would undoubtedly charge for) isn’t so great.
Well most self serve yards, around here anyway, deal in cars that are older than 10-12 years. I went to row52 and found 88 pages of vehicles at the yards in a 50 mile radius. It was on page 85, half way down that the first 2010 showed up sorted by year, oldest first. Page 35 was where the first 2000 showed up.
**Next time I see a 1911 Baker Electric, I’ll write it up.
Not a Baker, but we did do a Detroit Electric here;
I’ve ridden in a Baker! Also wrote up one of the few surviving EV1s here:
We’ve had a pretty good number of EV CC’s here. Here’s one:
And a junkyard one!
All current EVs have transmissions, yes they are a fixed ratio but they still have gears and bearings in them that need fluid. That fluid can leak just as likely as it can in an ICE car. Most eventually should be changed, given enough time or miles, even if it isn’t called out by the mfg.
They all also have some sort of cooling system, including a radiator, hoses, tubes, water pump(s) ect. All points where a leak can occur and fluid, that given enough time, should be changed.
Then you have those that have heat pumps. Yeah you can say screw it and not get the AC repaired on that old beater ICE vehicle, but if the compressor dies or any of the multitude of valves or sensors fails you run the risk of bricking the car as it can be an integral part of the battery/motor/electronics cooling system.
Yes the friction materials in an EV’s brakes don’t wear out as quickly but that doesn’t mean you won’t have to touch them for the life of the vehicle. The lack of use means that the rate of corrosion will be higher. That means rotors that need to be replaced more frequently, calipers that stick and wear out the pads and rust jacking or age causing failure in the bond between the friction material and backing.
My experience with even hybrids is that they rely on regenerative braking for all but hard stops usually, making the brake pads and rotors seem to last the life of the car (or since 2008 and 2010 for the ones I’m keeping tabs on). As for full EVs, no radiator/cooling system, fuel injection, spark plugs, muffler/exhaust, transmission (usually), most belts and hoses, cat/EGR, piston rings, valvetrain, distributor, and many other parts that tend to go bad on an ICE car. The parts that replace those at least tend to be simple.
Yeah those pesky piston rings are a real nuisance to modern vehicles, and those factory stainless steel exhausts/mufflers sure like to rust out
Are S/S exhaust systems ubiquitous now? Haven’t been paying attention, but my current ride is my first new car to be factory equipped with stainless exhaust and muffler. Surely piston rings are still a thing, or maybe I’m way behind the times regarding internal combustion engine tech.
Stainless exhausts were standard equipment on run-of-the mill Chrysler Spirit-Acclaim-Shadow-Sundance-LeBaron types of cars three decades ago, for one data point.
Full EVs do have radiators and cooling systems.
Nissan Leaf radiator https://www.amazon.com/TYC-13442-Replacement-Radiator-Nissan/dp/B00TTZKAXE
Model S https://www.ebay.com/itm/TESLA-MODEL-S-RADIATOR-CENTER-COOLER-6007372-00-A-2012-2013-2014-2015-OEM/143753183535?epid=1873603434&hash=item21785b812f:g:2X8AAOSwHxZfbDnS
At this point I don’t know of any mass market EVs in the US that have in wheel motors, so yeah they all have a transmission to connect the motor to the wheels and they are wet.
Here is a video of a tear down on a Leaf transmission, or technically a transaxle.
Well I suppose it’s a transmission – a 1-speed transmission. Of the EVs I’m aware of, the Porsche Taycan has a 2-speed transmission; don’t think there’s any with 3 or more gears.
That Leaf radiator must be solely for the HVAC system since the battery in those is air-cooled.
No it is not for the HVAC, it doesn’t have or need a radiator, it does have a heater core though. The radiator is for the motor and electronics.
This disassembly video shows the power train coolant connections and a shot of the data plate from the charger showing its water source requirements.
Modern ICE cars don’t need a lot of maintenance. Piston rings? With regular oil changes, pretty much any modern gasoline engine can go 400,000 km+.
I have had my Golf for two and a half years. In that time, the oil has been changed three times and the tires rotated once.
By my math the typical ICE has two things that repairing/replacing can exceed the cost of the vehicle once it has reached a certain value.
An EV has 3-4 or more pieces that can fall into the category of too expensive to fix, Motor(s), transmission(s). inverter/charger, and battery. Yes some, like Teslas, have an integrated drive unit so if the motor, or trans have a problem you are replacing it as a unit.
My taxi owning friends inform me they routinely go 200,000 km on a set of brakes for a Prius.
Pretty sure at least some EVs have fluids, although the replacement interval may be quite extended. For example: brake fluid, coolant, and gearbox oil.
In the UK, a Leaf that is getting anywhere near ten years old is worth more as a breaker than as a runner, due to the cost of replacing the battery.
Soon, very soon. I took my first photo of an electric vehicle back in about 1989 it was a Renault le Car converted to an electric leopard. Actually got to drive it, very crude by today’s standards but at the time I thought it was cool
I’ve been seeing curbside classic electric cars for over 10 years now. Geo Metros, MGBs, those EV1s, and turn of the century RAV4s.
I’d be worried about a beater electric car (especially a Leaf) since I have no place to charge it and my round trip commute is about 50 miles. Then there is AC and heat usage to factor in as well.
The time is now, if I can get around to writing up the 2011-12 Think City I caught in a parking lot some time ago.
An electric smart fortwo would be a great CC.
I think that we celebrate “survivor cars” on websites such as CC is that as a species, humans have an innate desire to root for the underdog. With a few exceptions, cars have never been designed to last more than 20 years or so, and so the ones that do survive tend to bring a smile to our collective faces.
Having said that, I’m approaching the decision of replacing the battery (to the tune of $2k+) in my ’08 Prius – a car that maybe only has a resale value of $4k. It will be a difficult decision when the time comes.
Tell us more! What’s it doing (or not doing)? How many miles are on it? Can a portion of the battery be replaced or is it required that the whole pack be done at once? What are the replacement options, what’s the process like? If you had a $4,000 Camry and it needed a $2,000 transmission, would you do that? This is interesting.
This could be worth writing up as a story.
Jim, right now the indicator is how quickly the battery pack depletes on long uphill climbs. It’s significantly faster than it was ~3 years ago when I bought the car.
There are people who do replace individual battery modules – 28 of them make up the pack – but conventional wisdom is that it’s a game of whack-a-mole. Used individual modules (they can’t be purchased new) are a crapshoot, and replacing even a single module is an involved process, which you might do again and again if replacing the modules one at a time.
Dman, common wisdom is that the packs degrade over time, not mileage. Generally, that time appears to be 13-15 years.
This reminds me of something I once read about the battery ‘pack’ in the original Ford Escape hybrid. It seems that it was comprised of long tubes of rechargeable D-cell sized batteries. IIRC, it was something like 277 of them.
So, I always thought if you could get rechargeable D-cell batteries really cheap, you could just fill up a bunch of those tubes, occasionally refill and replace them, ad infinitum.
They are smaller than a D but yeah tubes of 5 with nice bus bars on each end make them popular for projects. Here is a guy using them for his electric motor cycle project.
Our son still has our ‘08 Prius, on the opposite coast now, where it’s been to and from on two round trips now. Still under 200K miles, so far so good battery-wise, but I too would be curious about your experience if you do it.
Cars aren’t designed to last 20 years. It’s an economic function where–as you point out–the next repair to keep the car running represents too much of the value/replacement cost of the car. If your Prius were worth $7500, you’d certainly fix it for $2000 and drive it or sell it.
I’m surprised no one mentioned the original Lotus/Tesla roadster.
I thought about the Tesla roadster but I’m going to guess that there were so few of them built, the likelihood of seeing one on the street is quite slim.
A good friend of mine has a brother who bought one of the first Tesla roadsters, he still has it and drives it fairly often, still in great shape
First electric beaters will be the early compliance cars that have 70 mile range and are based on tiny cars almost nobody wants even with IC power. Not Teslas, not more common or practical cars like Leafs or e-Golfs.
Old gasoline-powered cars sometimes become environmental menaces if they aren’t kept in tune. EVs, though could actually become cleaner if the area where they reside switches from coal or other fossil-fuel power generation to a cleaner method.
One of the original EV ‘beaters’ might be the late, unlamented, egg-shaped Mitsubishi i-MiEV. It took extraordinarily long to charge and, conversely, had one of the shortest EV ranges, even when new. Quite frankly, it seemed like something more akin to a really souped-up golf cart and I always envisioned them being perfect for one of those planned, geriatric, golf course communities (like The Villages in Florida).
First, they have to be collectible.
I’d say 90% of the cars on this site aren’t collectible.
Put another way, for most folk not CC-enlightened, 90% of things here are collectible – just by a recycler.
I like it.
There is no market for an EV that is at a collectible age.
First, the car has to be seen as iconic and we’re not there.
At one point, there was a generation of collectors who couldn’t imagine no one being interested in either a Stanley or White steam car. When that generation died off, so did the interest in them as a collectible. While no one can deny these company’s history, the market doesn’t support it as it had.
We’ll probably not see that happen to the muscle cars, because we’ll be dead when they lose collectible popularity. We are seeing it with Model T and A Fords, some independent brands, and early Willys Jeepsters.
It happens – hence the question of when with the EV, right?
I’m concerned that the trend toward dependency on subscription services and manufacturer’s systems will endanger future classics. We have already seen this with Saab’s bankruptcy making it impossible to program key fobs for several years and I fear that any Tesla without a paid up subscription will be bricked, or at least kneecapped as in recent cases where Tesla remotely disabled high performance and autopilot features.
There is no “subscription fee” to own or operate a Tesla.
I interpreted slow_joe_crow’s remarks as a reference to the likes of Tesla magnanimously unlocking “extra” battery capacity, usually a money-required unlock, for those Tesla owners fleeing one or another of the hurricanes not long ago. Or Audi and the others wetting their pants over the ability to charge again and again and again and again for the privilege of using hardware installed on the car, instead of just one upfront charge as before. A maker capable of enabling is equally capable of disabling, which means there’s nothing stopping Tesla deciding a particular car (or cars above a certain age or mileage, etc) are “no longer supported” and remotely bricking them—cf Nest, Flash, G+, etc.
I didn’t, I got the idea that he was under the impression that you had to pay an ongoing service fee (subscription) to Tesla for the car to continue operating or receive over the air updates, similar to how some people still think a EV or hybrid battery can’t possibly last longer than 80,000 miles. There is no such thing.
There’s plenty stopping them from actively deciding to “brick” a car, not least of which is public opinion. But to go down the track you laid out, GM can do it too with any OnStar equipped vehicle for example. Most any current maker could likely do it as well, most cars are “connected” these days.
Tesla unlocking extra range due to a natural disaster (haven’t checked if it was charged for or not) is certainly better than all the gas cars not being able to get more gas on the way out, nobody’s just handing out free full gas cans. Either way, hardly an ongoing “subscription” as the term is defined.
If you sell your car back to a manufacturer/dealer and it has an optional item installed on it that cost you something at purchase, I assume you’d hope to recoup some value for that. If they want to remove it after they pay you for it and then charge the next person for it prior to re-purchase as a new item, that’s their prerogative. If it’s sold to you via a sales contract and then removed somehow afterward without your consent, feel free to call your lawyer, there are remedies for that.
Tesla and the others are in business to generate more business. Piss off your existing client base directly and that’ll dry up.
There have been cases where Tesla “took back” features after they wholesaled or retailed the car with a copy of the sticker showing the features were present on the vehicle when new.
Presumably the price people paid was based on their thought that those features were active and would remain active not removed at a later date followed up by Tesla offering to reactivate them for the original cost when new.
Mr. Musk and his car company consistently and enthusiastically demonstrate he/they don’t much care about public opinion. Aside from many tweets to that effect, Mr. Musk shut down and ended Tesla’s entire public relations department. He appears to believe he doesn’t have to care about negative publicity or pissing off Tesla drivers, and he very well might be right about that; at least for now, there are a lot of people willing to put up with it, and that shows up in Tesla’s balance sheets.
Beyond that, remote bricking is only one way of ending a car’s useful life. Consider: if you can’t get a part at the dealer for your old Accord any more because the part is considered obsolete and Honda no longer supply it, in most cases you can still get new aftermarket parts. Tesla drivers, as I understand it, cannot buy repair parts from Tesla or from a Tesla dealer (except as part of work done by the dealer), and as far as I can tell there are next to no aftermarket parts available.
I am not trying to start or stir any pro- or anti- Tesla/Musk/whatever fires here, nor am I attacking you or anyone else for driving a Tesla; the question at hand is whether/when we’ll see the likes of Tesla CCs, and this issue strikes me as relevant to that question.
@Scout Yes I’m aware of that and if accurate it’s a good way to piss off your customers. However a buyer of a used car should do their due diligence to be sure the original equipment is still on a car. As a simile it’s not uncommon to see a used car for sale with different (and/or smaller) wheels than what a car came with originally, especially in snowbelt areas and the “features” sticker shows what should have been there, especially on a lot that is not branded the same as the vehicle in question. Most sales are as is.
But if they purchased the vehicle and the item was advertised as being present, verified as being so, spelled out in the contract as being so, and agreed to by both parties as being so and then at a later post-sale date removed, well, again I’d be consulting a lawyer.
In that provided link the beef would be between the buyer and the used car dealer who’s recourse then should take it back up the chain to whoever they bought it from.
My understanding is Tesla will apparently sell you an inventory car (new, they do exist) and decontent it if you’d like in regard to optional software features you may not want. This ability is a difference between a manufacturer and a dealer, right? But the original Monroney IS still out there at least digitally, and could in theory be used to misrepresent a car at a later date.
It’s a new frontier out there with software features. If the used car was purchased at a Tesla store and advertised/documented as having those features at the time of sale, I don’t think there’d be an issue now.
In either case, and what I think is being referred to here is that people believe Tesla will sell you a new car and then hold you for ransom to keep using the features/car you paid for on an ongoing basis. That is absolutely not the case.
Interestingly, there is now talk that Tesla may offer FSD as a subscription model and in that case I would expect that if the user decides to stop paying for it, then that feature would be activated, similar to how your cable TV provider would stop sending you a signal if you don’t pay the bill. Of course it also depends on what the user agreed to on a subscription contract, i.e. month to month or for a set term.
@Jim in both cases in that article the features operated on the car at the time it was sold by Tesla, either at retail or wholesale and continued to work until Tesla “performed an audit and determined that the features weren’t paid for”. So it wasn’t a case of the car being an in-stock unit that had those features removed before the first retail sale.
Sure if they want to try and sell those features separately at the time they retail or wholesale the vehicle that is fine, but they should deactivate them before the sale not after.
@Daniel – No, I see your point. But I also believe that where there’s a demand, there will sooner or later be a market. For example I recently took a look behind the wheels of my car. The brakes use Brembo calipers and I’m sure they are exactly the same as on something else, same with the rotors and pads. The suspension links, someone sooner or later will reverse engineer them and come up with replacement parts for the Tesla branded items, the driveshafts carry a Hyundai subsidiary tag on them. Something like a wishbone? Whatever, if it breaks under warranty it’s Tesla’s problem, if it’s in an accident, my (or the other party’s) insurer will deal with the Tesla repair dept. Fifteen years down the road, who knows, I’ll be at the junkyard pulling a part off another Tesla that got hit on the other side. Nobody is making ’92 Prelude wishbones either. (or maybe they are? IDK 🙂 )
At this point, while definitely more mass-market than in the past, Tesla are still something of an exotic. I wouldn’t buy my Porsche parts at Pep Boys either but there’s enough of a market that there are aftermarket parts, for a 911 at least, a Carrera GT maybe different, even 20 years later, right?
As one small example though, they happily sold me four Tesla branded Bluetooth tire pressure monitors over the counter at the service center and are certainly equipped to do the work of installing them there, so that part at least is possible to purchase direct. I wasn’t even asked if I wanted them to do the work. Time will tell how my future experiences pan out. But even if they “have to” be the ones to install the part, at the end of the day that is always an option, and Tesla just isn’t going to purposely “brick” the car in the driveway that they can generate future business and repeat sales from.
@Daniel, I do expect the availability of aftermarket parts for Teslas to get better over time. And there are already people gearing up to fix the under engineered parts. For example https://www.ebay.com/itm/Tesla-model-S-door-handle-upgrade-rebuild-kit-1042845-00-1016009-00-1025401-00/293896277345?fits=Make%3ATesla&hash=item446d954d61:g:zFIAAOSwzPlfqwF5
Things should be better for the 3 and Y since they are finally getting volumes that make it worthwhile for aftermarket companies to start making parts. The metric in the aftermarket is millions of units in operation. With the Accord so many of the parts are used in other Honda vehicles and they are sold in volume around the world.
Catching up here, while I’m wrong about needing a subscription to drive anything now, I see it as something automakers want in the the future, so we should worry about it now. I think my concern about dependencies will become more valid as technology heavy vehicles with always on network connections become increasingly reliant on being able to “phone home”. This creates potential situations like a recent article about a car share vehicle shutting down after being driven into an area without cell coverage. If a car depends on the existence of a back end server then the loss of that service creates a problem for future owners and restorers. The more proprietary the vehicle the more difficult it is to support. As an example, while Think is defunct a Think City can be easily kept running because apart from body panels and trim parts it’s all off the shelf components and no special tools or services are required.
There’s still this original first-gen electric RAV4 running around my neighborhood; it’s now almost 20 years old, and only about 1,500 of them were made. That’s approaching CC territory, if it hasn’t gotten there already (I think it has, hence the picture).
But I’m still holding out hope to find a curbside Henney Kilowatt. No such luck so far…
Back in the early 1990s prior to cell phones with decent cameras being common I remember seeing the ugliest car I have ever seen in my life. It was an orangish color similar to a spotty unripened tomato Citicar parked next to artist community garden with weeds growing around it almost the same height. It had an “Electric Personality” type bumper sticker of some sort. So I looked closer and could see a the battery harnesses inside but no batteries. Minnesota winter’s and road salt had eaten it for breakfest. It was in an advanced state of decomposition similar to Kesey’s Furthur bus. This caused me to pause for some time. I thought about how it embraced the singular ideal of electric propulsion but disregarded all other all other aspects of personal transportation people expect. My apologies to the designer but it is the original “Penalty Box” if you will. It was a statement vehicle of that time if you had the money and guts to drive it. According to Wikipedia it weight 1,300 pounds with 3.5 – 6HP motor. That pretty much sums its chance of success.
I drove one often back in 1973. ‘Penalty box’ is way too kind a description for these cars. Noisy inside, slow, a propane heater that barely worked, a 35 mile or so range, don’t remembering ever getting the car over 35mph, and listening to the relays click as additional lead acid batteries were added into line as speed increased are all vivid memories of the car.
I seem to remember John D’Angelo (the car’s owner and cycling friend of mine, I worked in his bicycle shop for awhile, thus my use of the car) got something like two years of use out of the car before that braking system failed completely, thus trashing it.
John was a dedicated eco-freak. His predecessor to the CitiCar was the first Honda 600Z seen in Erie, PA. He wasn’t a car junkie, if anything he was an anti-car person, and owned the Honda because it was the only two cylinder car available at the time, and nobody made a one cylinder car.
I’d love to find a CitiCar, just for the stupid grins. My memories of it are very fond.
Syke, I don’t know if you were living in Richmond in 2011, but I came upon this 1976 CitiCar for sale at a body shop east of town on US 60. Look at those 5 mph bumpers!
“They will change hands, and some will eventually be abused, neglected, or even outright abandoned.”
Now hold on. These choices all lay blame on the owner or driver for declining quality of a nifty car.
Let me add to the list: “Some will be vandalized.”
Case in point:
The 2008 Prius I bought new, had just passed 100K miles, and was looking like a candidate for a long-time, every day runner. Curbside Classic material.
Then comes Covid. Someone’s out of work and decides that the Platinum in my catalytic converter would be a good income source.
The police knock on my door at 6 AM, telling me the perps were spotted messing with my car, and a load of catalytic converters was in the back of their pickup.
Next, insurance tells me that the cost of replacing the converter, exceeds the blue-book value of the 12-yr. old car, so it’s a total loss.
End of the day, I drive home from Toyota in my “new” 2018 Corolla iM.
With lower ground clearance, no one’s sliding underneath looking for car parts.
And a Prius-like 40 mpg …..
Speaking of Toyota Hybrids and their Cats being a hot commodity. My state has a couple of Prius they are retiring early due to the Cats being stolen.
Here is one. https://www.govdeals.com/index.cfm?fa=Main.Item&itemid=15947&acctid=8445 If you follow the maintenance records link the state considers it a $2000 loss.
An interesting but similarly provoking question – will there ever be a diesel car that becomes a true classic to match the true petrol engine classics?
Surely the W123 300Ds are already well there? (Dreadful gutless stinking piles of pus for mine, but each to their own, of course).
There’s a ’77 one at an uppity dealer in Sydney at the moment, clearly immaculate, and only 88k miles, but at $40KAUD! (22kGBP/$30K USD), someone thinks it’s a true classic!
Current Denver Craig’s List: 1980 Mercedes 300 CD 2dr coupe looks and runs great 30 mpg diesel automatic trans, sunroof, air cond, could use a little cosmetic work or drive as is. 187k miles. $2000
Such a good QUOTD, this.
Like others above, I suspect that until such time as an aftermarket/junkyard supply is in train, the lower-end stuff won’t be worth fixing, so it maybe some time yet before beater Tesla S’s abound.
I wonder also at the interest in doing so, not because there’s not plenty of youngsters who’d be into it just as us older farts were with our ICE machines – which makes it sound as if we all drove freezers, but you know what I mean – but because there seems to be even more who are just not much interested in cars or even driving anymore. That’s a city-dweller’s bias, of course, but it’s pretty striking how many 20’s kids I’m aware of who either don’t have licences or when they do, no car. That just didn’t happen 30 or so years ago.
What makes any car collectible?
A collectible car is one that stirs positive memories and can be used on the road. It could be as common as a Beetle. Popularity is key to conductibility. A failed brand isn’t as collectible. Often the brands exist today. If there was no longer a Chevrolet, then at some point a Corvette will be about as collectible as a Studebaker Avanti, another excellent car. Could the 1956 Lincoln Mark be as collectible without Lincoln? Want a Hupmobile?
Or, a popular car coveted by a generation, outlasts the generation. We see that with Model T Fords, Model A Fords and we’re seeing it with other cars from that era. The generation died off. No market.
A collectible car needs to have generated positive memories of either it, the owner’s memories, or of the era itself. You need a living buyer with positive memories. Without that, the vehicle is only collectible to museums.
That’s my opinion.
Exactly. Go to a car show, and what do you see? And how does that compare to 20 years ago, or 30 years ago, or 40? A car show from 1980 would have more cars from the 30s, 40s, and 50s than anything else. And right now, few collect cars from the 30s, except the really rare and unusual, or as a fiberglass reproduction shell on a hot rod. The desire for those has gone down, but not gone away. Same will happen with all the cars, at some point. Look at Wayne Carrini, for example. His father specialized in Model A Fords, and that seems to be the only reason Wayne has interest in them, other than a good appreciation for most cars as he normally exhibits. Wayne seems to like cars up to about the 1970s, at least it appears that way to me. We all have cars that appeal to us, and when we are no longer of this earth, those things we covet may well not be coveted by others.
Great QOTD, Tom! – Late to the party, but let’s see if we can have some fun with this.
FFWD to 2060, at a Cars & Coffee event assuming they still exist…
Two friends, let’s call them Jim and Paul, go to a car show and strike up this conversation upon seeing this Curbside Classic… Let’s listen in…..
Jim: Oh man, look at that one over there.
Paul: Which car?
Jim: That gorgeous Mustang Mach E. I haven’t seen one in years.
Paul: It’s ok.
Jim: Just Ok?!?!? That’s not just any Mach E. That is a 2027 e-Shelby GT-400V-KW. They called these the “King of the Watts”. That’s what the “KW” stands for. The car was affectionately known by enthusiasts as the “Tesla Killer” back in the day.
Paul: Meh… It’s just another damned Mustang at a car show.
There is no doubt that electrification is not in my future. I will never buy an electric car no matter what incentives or “nudges” are inflicted on us by the powers that be, even if it means that driving an old gasoline job becomes more expensive than going electric. There is no good reason for this forced transition and I won’t be going along with it. In any event I expect that most electric vehicles will become Junkyard Classics as the batteries wear down and are not worth replacing.
Internal combustion – accept no substitutes.