- The Leaf is almost paid off.
- I can only afford a $200-$250/month car payment or less on one car and insurance on up to two cars. (Currently pay $220/month car payment for Leaf)
- The wife hates the fact that we have to take the 1985 VW Golf diesel that has about 500,000 miles on it on long trips even though it gets up to 60mpg and just won't die.
- We love the Leaf but I keep wondering if it's time to trade it in or not.
Reasons for keeping the Leaf.
- We live where it's cold.
- This affects comfort and safety (window frost) for daily short range driving. I hate idling, but don't mind prewarming the Leaf. In other words, the Leaf is awesome, but anything ICE needs idling, which I hate.
- This affects engine longevity, fuel mileage and emissions. Starting a cold engine several times per day is bad. But the Leaf doesn't have an engine. In fact the cool weather here should extend it's battery life (Average temperature for the hottest summer days is 64°F).
- It may be economic to keep.
- I'm not rich, so $180 in electricity + $480 in insurance + $240 in license plate fees per year (about $75 per month) is a good thing.
- Every mile I put on the Leaf is another mile I'm not putting on an ICE. (Hence tires, shocks and such should be all about the same relatively speaking, but only with less ICE maintenance).
- Having two cars means I'll always have a back up.
- I'd walk to work and the store if I didn't have a car. But at -30°F my wife probably wouldn't be so happy. And renting for several days can be expensive.
Reasons for dropping the Leaf.
- Operating costs on two cars may be more than just one.
- So I would save on fuel with the Leaf. But not on insurance and licensing fees. Yearly depreciation would affect both too. I can only drive one car at a time, so why own and pay for two?
- That situation where both cars end up needing repairs at the same time seems to always happen (Murphy's law). Then I'd have to decide which I can fix and which I can't.
- Selling the Leaf could get me a better single car.
- I'm pretty strapped right now and can't make a big car payment. However, if I got a few thousand for the Leaf that would sure make a nice down payment.
- We wish our Leaf could be our only car.
- We love the Leaf, but do need to drive long distances (usually around 200 miles, but sometimes more) on a weekly basis.
- We've tried renting, borrowing and taking public transportation as well as making such long trips in the Leaf over our poor charging infrastructure. But we've came to the conclusion that we need a long distance car, preferably something very economical.
- The idea of a pusher or generator trailer keeps coming to mind, but I'm not sure I want to go that route for a weekly basis, although I could still do a lot of charging in route and end up needing very little ICE power most of the time.
- I keep getting bad feelings about certain other cars.
- Trading in the Leaf for a longer range EV seems like a logical step. But I keep getting the feeling that it is much too expensive right now. I have to keep payments below $250 per month. Maybe a battery trailer would be better?
- Hybrids scare me. Reviews say they cost more to operate than plain ICEV's. Plus if I trade in the Leaf I hear that most older hybrids (the ones that I would be able to afford) don't do well in the cold for town driving. And getting a hybrid as a second car to the Leaf for long distance driving may make the fuel mileage not any better than a regular ICEV.
- I don't want to get less than steller fuel mileage. I know the ol' Golf spews out black clouds of death, but I love getting up to 60mpg (US) on the highways and it just won't break down. And maintenance is minimal on it. Is there a car like it that is also nicer and won't cost me more than what I can afford? Maybe a 2014 Mitsubishi Mirage? Perhaps a Prius of some year? Heaven forbid, a dieselgate VW? Or sell the Leaf and get the old car painted and upholstered?
So far it seems best to keep the Leaf, get it paid off, and then get something newer and cleaner than the 1985 Golf diesel. But I'm not sure exactly what to get though to replace it. I don't want to lose a fortune. Also what is it that I'm missing or thinking wrong? I'd hate to get rid of our beloved Leaf and trusty VW diesel for something that we don't like or kills us in repair bills.