An acquaintance from college recently posted this proverb on LinkedIn. I thought it appropriate to apply to the automobile industry. Some people scoff at the thought of purchasing a Mercedes-Benz or Volvo. Many people tell me that they could lease a ____ for $200 a month with $0 due at delivery. To which I usually reply, “You may be able to lease that car, but then you’ll have to drive it.” That’s not a clever come back. It’s the truth. You can purchase or lease a cheap car but are you willing to put up with it for the next few years?
Volvo makes the safest cars in the world. I am convinced of that. And so is the IIHS. Look at the numerous Top Safety Pick+ awards given to Volvo cars or read the stories of those who have survived horrific accidents in a Volvo or sit in the most comfortable car seats in the world. It won’t take long for you to be convinced that Volvos are worth the extra money.
Mercedes-Benz cars are very well built. Open the hood of a Mercedes-Benz and you will quickly see how nicely they are put together. Look at the seams where the fenders join the engine compartment. Look at the artwork of the brake lines coming out of the master cylinder. Sit inside a Mercedes-Benz and just look at the beautiful interior. Drive one for twenty minutes and tell me what you think of the handling.
It is true that both brands cost more to maintain than some other cars. Parts are more expensive. Maintenance visits are more expensive. The cost to purchase or lease is more. But if those were the only considerations involved with owning a car, we would all still be driving VW Beetles. Some things are more important to drivers than money. Some people consider safety to be important. They don’t mind spending a little more to be sure that their family arrives safely. Some enjoy a comfortable, relaxed drive. They like feeling refreshed when they get out of the car after either a six minute or six hour trip. Some enjoy fine craftsmanship. They enjoy the design of their car both inside and out.
But let’s be realistic. Not everyone can drive a Mercedes-Benz or a Volvo. It may not make sense financially. But those who choose to drive one realize that there is more to a car than what it costs. There are some things that are worth the investment.