I have to get a new car. There is simply no way around it. We have not had to worry about a car payment in more than three years, which has been nice, but both our vehicles are pushing 200,000 miles. It's only a matter of time before one or both of them go belly up. With three kids, an extreme climate where we live, and a new job that requires occasional long distance driving (by myself in some pretty remote areas), we need a reliable car. Actually, we need two.
Our plan is to save up some cash as quickly as possible to pay up front for a good, preowned minivan (yes, my husband has finally decided he'll still have testicles even if there's a minivan in the garage). Since it would probably take us a couple years to save enough for a second car as well, we're going to break one of Dave Ramsey's cardinal rules and go ahead and finance the purchase of a second vehicle. This one should be something economical. We intend for the economy car to be used by me when I'm on travel in state, then used by my husband on all other days for his 40 mile round trip commute to work. Whoever is not using the economy car will be the one dealing with the kids that day anyway, so it makes sense for that person to have the minivan.
My husband is a fairly big guy. He is convinced it's impossible for him to drive anything smaller that a full size truck or luxury sedan...this kind of defeats the idea of an economical car. I'm trying to convince him he could learn to be happy with something more along the lines of this:
I hope I can get him over to my side!