Interrupter CheckmarkInterrupter IconFacebookGoogle PlusInstagramGroupRamsey SolutionsTwitterYouTubeExpand MenuStoreCloseSearchExpand MenuBackStoreSign in

Ask Dave

Better Car, Better Gas Mileage?

Trey asks if he should sell his car to buy one with better gas mileage.

QUESTION: Trey on Facebook asks if he should sell his car to buy one with better gas mileage.

ANSWER: Only if it is as cheap or cheaper than the car you’re selling.

It tickles me that people go buy a $30,000 Prius and upgrade their $7,000 car to save gas. It’s a $23,000 additional expenditure to save gas. Where are you driving to—the freaking moon? You’re never going to save that much gas in your whole life, much less the life of that car.

Actually do the math and say, “Well, if we had this gas mileage rather than the gas mileage we’ve got, then how much would we save?” But if you spend $5,000 more to save $50, it takes you forever to get the money back that you’ve already spent.

Yeah, it’s good to get better gas mileage, but don’t spend any more than the current value of the car you’re driving. Actually, it’d be a good idea to move down in car and up in gas mileage. If you do that, then you’re making headway with your money. See, this is a math thing, people. It’s a math thing. Our emotions get caught up in stuff, and it’s, like, an excuse for me to buy a Prius. I guess you’d need an excuse. I don’t know.