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Hagerty: Affordable Classic Cars for Retirees

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1974 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible

Whats to love: If its a big, cruising car youre after, the convertible Eldorado is a great choice, though be prepared to fill up often with the 500-cubic-inch V-8.

Read more: http://www.boston.com/cars/buying/2013/11/01/affordable-classic-cars-for-retirees/CUwYfAsmxz9NW0q4VGlUVJ/story.html?pg=8


2016 Cadillac ATS-V gray/black

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It burns regular unleaded, so, at $3.25 per gallon, let's say we use that car for a daily driver at 12,000 miles a year, and it gets an average of 15 mpg for everything. Let's throw in a typical full-size at 19 mpg, a smaller grocery-getter at 27 mpg, and a hybrid at 38 mpg (it would be higher if you didn't use it for highway trips, but we are talking everything).

Yearly costs, and delta from grocery-getter:

38 mpg, $1026 a year, delta -$418 (-$35/month)

27 mpg, $1444 a year, delta -0-

19 mpg, $2053 a year, delta $608 ($51/month)

15 mpg, $2600 a year, delta $1156 ($96/month)

If you buy this car instead of the $25K grocery-getter, the gas cost will equal the difference in price in about nine years.

Ever since the 1970's, I figured this out on my pocket calculator and usually bought used cars by condition and price, which means I usually got big V8's (1969 Chevrolet 427, 1977 Chevrolet 350, etc.) and came out way, way ahead of the yuppies. When I finally rolled over for my new 1997 Eldorado ETC, it was my third new car in a row, and by the above chart I paid about $50 a month to drive my VIN "9" Northstar instead of a car I would hate.

If you like the Eldorado, and you are willing to deal with maintaining an old car, go for it. It's a fine, low-maintenance car.

-- Click Here for CaddyInfo page on "How To" Read Your OBD Codes
-- Click Here for my personal page to download my OBD code list as an Excel file, plus other Cadillac data
-- See my CaddyInfo car blogs: 2011 CTS-V, 1997 ETC
Yes, I was Jims_97_ETC before I changed cars.

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