Why I bought a Honda Jazz. Again.

Posted: August 29, 2012 in Uncategorized

So after a good eight years with my car, a faithful Honda Jazz, it’s finally time to replace it. As you who know me can imagine, no small thought has gone into its replacement. With options galore facing me (three years of saving has been very worthwhile), I’ve come to the conclusion that the best car I can get for me right now is…another Honda Jazz. Right down to the same model. Why?


I thought a lot about what to get, I really did. It was a bit of a thrill to think that I had a lot of options to choose from, especially if I looked at second hand models. Would I go for a sporty model? A luxury car? The thing is, the more I thought about it, the more the practical implications of my choices came home to me. And, eventually, I realised that I didn’t want to get on the treadmill of relentlessly upgrading my car: it’s not how I want to spend my money.

To be sure, cars can be beautiful things, but, if I’m honest, it’s just more stuff. And money can buy you happiness, but not through acquiring more stuff. Once you reach a certain level of comfort, your money makes you happy if you spend it on (a) other people and (b) experiences. The more I commit financially to a car, whether in the monthly instalment or in the cost of upkeep, the more I limit my options to increase happiness; as a result, I’ve tried to impose limits on this purchase rather than stretch them.

I know this sounds kind of sanctimonious, but it’s really not meant to be. I also have to admit that the Jazz I’ve bought represents a pretty good “level of comfort”, so I’m hardly suffering as a result of the decision. It might not have the most powerful engine but I live in PE, slow driving capital of the world, so anything faster would just frustrate me, and it does have all the modern conveniences like air conditioning and electric this and that. Plus it’s a low fuel consumption, low carbon emissions engine, which satisfies my growing green conscience. The point is, though, that I’m increasingly keen to draw the line here.

Does this mean that I think the Jazz should be where everyone draws the line? I don’t know, but I’d be happy if everyone gave serious thought about where that line should be and actually draw it instead of defaulting to the upgrade treadmill. Where do you think you’d draw the line?

  1. Peta-Ann says:

    Great thoughts as usual

  2. andy says:

    Ja, good thought Steve, just what I need to help me make a responsible decision. I’m also stuck with this “enviable” situation of having plenty of options and a nice ‘kitty’ after having saved for a long time. My younger brother’s offer of using his car while he’s away, which coincided beautifully with our return from the UK, has enabled me to save up and continue saving until December. It’s time to make up my mind now.

    Funnily enough I test drove a Jazz two weeks ago and loved it, but I haven’t tried any others yet so I’m not sure how they all compare. In my case, I’m expecting that most options will easily surpass the ‘drive-ability’ and comfort of my previous versions of “skorokoro” (not Scirocco unfortunately!!)

    The problem comes with that excitement of the POSSIBILITY of driving one of “THOSE” as you squeak and splutter your way through traffic! I started looking at SUVs and Sciroccos (before looking up their prices!) and thinking that (before kids come along) it will be another 20 years before I’ve got this kind of “excess” – followed by thoughts of “you only live once!”…. But the reality is that I’ve been blessed to have “this kind of excess” and my responsibility is to be a good steward, and that’s where “drawing the line” brings me back to the reality of a sensible choice!

    At least it’s not going to be a disappointment and I can still be excited (and I am!!) because whatever my choice is, it definitely won’t be a downgrade!!

    • veethree says:

      Yes, the thought that anything will be an upgrade certainly helps. My choices were more limited than yours, so I don’t envy the extra thought that will go into it! That said, as long as you make the decision deliberately I’m sure it will be a wise one.

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