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How Much Would a Weekend Car Cost?

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You buy a car for many different reasons, like commuting, road tripping, hitting the race track, or driving your family members to work or school. Whatever the purpose, your vehicle becomes a weekend car if you limit its use to weekends.

A weekend car can be a brand-new economy vehicle that you use for Saturday grocery runs or an old yet well-conditioned ute that consumes too much fuel so that you’ve decided to reserve it only for weekend off-road adventures.

Although you do not use the vehicle regularly, this doesn’t mean that it will not cost you money.

Generally, the expenses on your weekend car are affected by the following factors:


Regardless of how you intend to use your car, you need to register it as required by the law. The cost of rego depends on the type of car you own.

There are no federal guidelines on car registration because the service is administered on a state and territory basis. This means that the rego can cost more in some states and less in others. Some states also include your compulsory third-party (CTP) insurance or green slip in the overall registration fee while in other states.

For instance, in Victoria, the annual fee for normal, privately-owned passenger cars is $834.80 in the Melbourne metro area, $779.80 in the outer metro area, and $716 in rural areas. Meanwhile, NSW levies an annual registration fee of $67 and then get down to the specifics; Light vehicles (under 4.5-tonne) are charged a Motor Vehicle Tax according to their mass starting at $219 for a private vehicle up to 975kg and going all the way to more than $2000 for the heaviest light vehicles.


Proper maintenance should also be observed to avoid road mishaps and costly repairs.

The routine maintenance your car will need depends on the vehicle itself. Modern cars need less maintenance than ever, thanks to increased computerization and mechanical improvements in engine design. However, nearly every car regularly requires oil and filter change, tire rotation, and multipoint section.

The average new car is generally costly to maintain and repair, but several cars have much lower maintenance costs. These include Toyota Corolla, Toyota Prius, Honda Accord, Kia Soul, and Ford Mustang.

Your car’s maintenance needs also depend on how you drive it. If you use your weekend car for towing heavy loads, driving in extreme weather conditions, or leaving it frequently idle, you may need to spend more on maintenance. Also, as a general rule of thumb, any car will require more costly maintenance once it exceeds 100,000 miles.

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The average cost is $1,681.50, or 11.2 cents per mile. This is also the main reason why total operating expenses fell by 2% from 2014 — fuel costs were lower by $268.50 due to the dramatic fall in gas prices since the middle of 2014. It’s important to understand that this is just an average based on national statistics. How much you pay for the fuel each year will depend upon the miles per gallon that you get with your car, road conditions in your area, and the specific price of gas where you live, which can vary widely.


You can, of course, usually find savings by taking time to compare car insurance quotes from competing insurers. One of the quickest ways to do this is through Gabi, a service that uses your current policy to find better deals from competing insurers. The service is fast and free, so you have nothing to lose by trying it out.

If you prefer to work directly with a local insurance agent, Allstate is always a trusted option. With so many discounts available, you can save money every month. Allstate offers discounts for new cars, multiple policies, accident-free driving, good school performance, and safety features.

Finance Charges

The average expense is $669 per year, which assumes that you bought your car with a 10% down payment, with a five-year loan and average credit. The amount you pay will vary depending upon the size of your down payment, the length of your loan, and your actual credit.


At $3,654, it represents more than 40% of the annual cost of owning a car. This should come as no surprise, since new cars in particular experience rapid depreciation in the early years of ownership. Though many consumers don’t think about depreciation in this way, it is very much a real cost. It represents the loss in value of the vehicle over its useful life.

Cars Direct reports that, on average, a new car depreciates by 20% as soon as you drive it off the lot, then at roughly 15% per year thereafter. Of course, those are just average numbers. Individual depreciation rates are based heavily on the make and model, total mileage, and even the condition of the car.

The cost of owning a weekend car depends on your lifestyle. To ensure that buying and maintaining one won't destroy your budget, choose those that have an established history of durability and good fuel economy.

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