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RE: The manual Civic isn't exactly entry level.

2021 dollars is double 1990 dollars. So a car in 1990 that was $20,000 would retail for $40,000 today - I bought a brand new 1996 Honda Civic Hatchback back then (with $1,000 mag wheels) that was around $22,000 and that car would be utterly blown away by the 2021 model. And the 2021 model isn't double - it's a few grand more. Back then the Civic only came in 4 colours - black, white, red, and lime green. It had 106hp and did 0-60 in over 9 seconds. The minimum wage in Canada back in 1996 was $7 an hour. Today it is $15.20 - So the minimum wage has more than doubled but the car did not. In other words, the Honda Civic Hatchback is a far better deal today in terms of bang for the buck than it was in the 1990s.

Albeit the USA is different than Canada but in general - as min wage increases so do all other jobs above minimum wage. A server/greeter at White Spot in Canada (sorta similar to an Applebees I suppose in the USA) makes $60,000 a year including tips. Albeit in Canada they get minimum wage and tips where I believe in the USA I think they get screwed over on the wage and rely more heavily on the tips. Canadians typically tip 18-25% - don't know in the USA.

I digress. Yes, there are very cheap cars like the Chevy Spark - in Canada, the manual starts at an insanely low price of $10,398 Canadian ($8,100 USD).

But then why not go further and buy a motorcycle and attach a sidecar for even less? My friend had a Mazda 323 in the early 90s that was dirt cheap and it felt like a go-cart. To be fair to my friend he was 16. A brand new 323 when you're 16 is pretty darn good - I should hope that if you're over the age of 35 you can afford more than an $8,000 car.

On minimum wage in Canada one would earn $31,600 a year.
The Taxes paid for that income would be $3,110 and CPP/EI (Canadian Pension Plan/Employment Insurance is $1,975 leaving $26,515 take-home pay.

A couple both earning minimum wage in Canada would be at $53,030 take-home pay. They should be able to afford a Civic Hatchback. Especially given various payment plan options.

But you're right - if you want to save like $15,000 you can get this thing and even Scotty thought it was pretty respectable.

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