The Student News Site of Center Grove High School


The Student News Site of Center Grove High School


The Student News Site of Center Grove High School


Fancy cars: a letter to parents and students alike

Jonathon Sutton

It was a warm, cloudy afternoon when I was walking home after an hour spent at Gamer’s Guild. I had come to school that day by bus, so while it would have been convenient to drive home, my car was absent from the student parking lots.

However, that earlier decision led me upon a rather humorous discovery. Out in the student parking lots, I came across a new Jeep Rubicon, which led me down a line of thought: does any high schooler really need an expensive, high-end car?

I personally drive a rusty, off-white Nissan with a broken muffler that’s older than myself, which I bought from a grandparent of mine for $500 worth of splitting firewood. However, even if it may not be showy, it gets me where I need to go.

Meanwhile, a brand-new Jeep Rubicon costs at least $45,000 MSRP, and its associated costs such as more expensive car insurance and maintenance requirements push the true costs of such a car far higher.

But aside from just upfront costs, I argue that there are far more important hidden benefits to having your first car be an old, yet serviceable workhorse rather than a high-cost, high-performance trophy.

For one, it’s far less of a headache to deal with the aftermath of a teenager’s first car accident.

A cheaper car that’s already past warranty is much less of a burden to bear if/when a first-time driver fails to react in time to a red light runner and totals their ride.

However, not only are old cars easier to bear the loss of, but they can also serve as an introduction to car maintenance.

Venerable value models such as Toyota Corollas are famous for their longevity and ease of repair, and an older car serves as a valuable platform for teaching first-time drivers how to properly care for an automobile.

Not to mention that the lack of automated features in most older cars can help instill and enforce good driving habits, which often translate well into driving different car models later on.

Finally, a more abstract benefit might be in having a car that you can truly make yours.

A newer, more expensive car might be tied to its brand name, but a cheaper, older car can have far more stories behind it. With the aforementioned ruggedness and ease of withstanding abuse, there’s far more potential for turning an old set of wheels into something you remember for years to come.

Speaking to both students and parents, there is absolutely nothing wrong with feeling like you need to have the latest and greatest, so you or your kid can stand out.

But before you saddle yourself and/or your kids with the costs of luxury, remember:

Sometimes, it’s best to just keep things simple.

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