Fix it or Ditch it: Is it Time to Replace Your Ride?
by Staff
Is it worth putting up with the occasional big repair bill and less-than-perfect-paint on your old car to avoid a new-car payment for the next several years? This quiz might help you make a decision -- finally.

You can probably eke a few more miles out of your ancient automobile if it's been:

  • Well-maintained.
  • Kept in a warm garage.
  • Fed only high-octane fuel.

One way to keep the cost of repairs down on your old clunker is:

  • Doing them yourself.
  • Eating less to make up for what you're paying the mechanic.
  • Washing the car more often for improved aerodynamics.

Replacing your car becomes a need rather than a want when:

  • Jay-Z raps about whatever car he just added to his garage.
  • You need reliable wheels for work.
  • You're tired of that burnt-orange color that seemed like such a cool paint job in 2004.

One of the most clear-cut reasons for keeping your car instead of buying a new one is:

  • You have your eye on a Guinness World Records feat for most miles driven.
  • Your car is a sweet Olds on twenty-fours.
  • You paid off the car loan.

Let's say you've paid off your car completely. If you continue to drive that dear old automobile for five more years, it's the monetary equivalent of:

  • Getting a free, in-ground swimming pool.
  • Buying a new car.
  • Eating lobster every night for five years.

A pretty good sign that it's time to replace your old car is:

  • The repairs cost more than a monthly car payment.
  • It's on the list of the worst cars of the 20th century.
  • Your kids are embarrassed to be seen in your car.

Lots of little things can make your car run longer so you can eke the maximum value out of it. Which of these will NOT help you reach a quarter-million miles?

  • fuzzy dice
  • oil changes
  • tire rotation

If you do the math and decide to keep your old car, you should consider investing in:

  • bitcoin
  • better tires
  • roadside assistance

What's the average life expectancy of a modern car?

  • five years
  • eight years
  • Depends on if your Uncle Ronnie has run it into a ditch. Again.

How many miles can you expect to put on a new car before it's ready for the wrecking yard?

  • 100,000
  • 150,000
  • A million! My car is the undead vampire of automobiles!

If you really want to ditch your car and sell it, how do you find out what it's worth?

  • search online at,, or a number of other sites
  • ask your dad
  • take it to the dealership and let the sales guy make an offer

Insurance rates for a new car are generally:

  • Higher than for an older car.
  • Lower than for an older car.
  • The same as an older car, especially if they're the same make and model.

If you buy a brand-new car, you'll get which of these money-saving benefits?

  • matching floor mats
  • lower insurance rates
  • a warranty

Buying a new car usually means a new car payment, which also means:

  • Yet another PIN and user ID to remember.
  • Finance charges and interest.
  • The auto manufacturer owns your soul.

If you do pay off your old car and hang on to it for a while, what's the smartest thing to do with the cash you save?

  • make it rain
  • upgrade the stereo as a gift to the old girl
  • save up for the down payment on the new car you'll need to buy someday

When you're finally ready to let go of your falling-apart car, you'll get the best deal by:

  • Handing it down to your little sister, who lives in Idaho.
  • Selling it yourself.
  • Trading it in at the dealership.

Your old car is sucking your wallet dry, but how much do you think it will cost to maintain a new car properly for the first 100,000 miles?

  • $1,500 to $3,000
  • $100 to $500
  • Nothing. It's called a warranty.

Once you've bitten the new-car bullet, how can you avoid having to go through this decision making process again in three years or so?

  • never drive above 60 miles per hour
  • only drive at constant speeds on highways
  • check the owner's manual and do the scheduled maintenance

Let's talk depreciation. How much less will a brand-new car be worth three years after you drive it off the lot?

  • 45 percent less
  • 75 percent less
  • It doesn't matter, because it's not that crappy old car I used to have.

If you can't afford to keep repairing your current hunk of junk, but you also can't afford a shiny new car, how can you make sure you don't buy another crappy used car?

  • only buy cars from your Uncle Ronnie
  • get a vehicle history report, like CarFax
  • buy any make but the one you're currently driving