With the drastic change in lifestyle, we were suddenly down to one vehicle, The Quaalude, which has served us well in shuttling people to and from work and to and from schools. Wife going full-time and son now wanting a job of his own, we will need another vehicle and will get one soon.
Youngest brother has 3 vehicles sitting at home, once of which a '96 Jetta, is rarely if ever used. So we are getting it gratis. But that doesn't mean free. Unlike the State of Maryland, which will allow transfer of vehicle title within a family for free, VA I am very sure will want its 3.3% vehicle titling tax, which is based on the vehicle's market value. And another nice wrinkle or act of sheer stupidity, here in Va., property taxes are levied yearly on motor vehicles (and boats), the amount again based on the vehicle's market value. Thus a new vehicle, such as one I leased from large international automobile manufacturer #2, was $1,800 -which the company covered as part of the lease. The Quaalude on the other hand, costs me $67 per year. It doesn't take a PhD candidate to realize that there is not much incentive to get rid of an older and in terms of fuel economy and emissions, a less efficient vehicle.
The vehicle is also a stick-shift vehicle; not a problem for me as I learned in Japan how to drive one, left handed shifting no less on my own when I owned a super-charged version of this.
But for the other 2 in this house its 'OMG, I'll never learn to drive this'. No, they can learn to drive it, its not that hard and less difficult than learning how to operate the old, steering column mounted manual transmission shift levers. Now that was something truly hateful. Its just they won't listen to me, so I plan to ask a guy in our neighborhood, a gearhead to show them how and I'll pay him for it.