For decades and even centuries, cars have been an integral part of all our lives. From the early days of Daimler-Benz when they first developed Mercedes and Daimler separately to the mass production of cars which then began. Cars have always had a standard life cycle that begins as an idea in someone’s head, and ends in the junkyard, as scrap metal, or as a vintage piece. Let’s now take a closer look at the life cycle of a modern-day vehicle.

The design

From the moment an idea is created, a car’s life starts in the design factory. Once a designer starts to design a vehicle, each element is thought about and designed meticulously. The car tyres, the body, the engine and the transmission are all part of any car manufacturers design process. Once the design is completed and it goes into production, the life of that vehicle has begun. Most vehicles come out of the factory with some form of warranty, but that does not mean that there are not certain parts the suffer from wear and tear which will need replacing on a vehicle. It is those parts that will need replacing on a vehicle.

Take for example, the tyres. Discount tyres are often used tyres and many times the first thing customers look for when thinking about replacing a worn out pair of tyres. Luckily, car tyres are usually standardised, so your new vehicle which has come out of the car showroom should have the size of tyre already available on the market.

Extras

Another aspect of a vehicle’s life is the aftermarket products that can be fitted to your vehicle. Shin guards are a popular choice when you want to protect your vehicles bodywork. It is this type of extra that helps to elongate the life of a vehicle. Another extra that you could consider is increasing the wheel size, engine modifications or even amending or grading the transmission. Transmission services are something that are often overlooked in the automotive industry. Many of us buy a vehicle, automatic or manual, and use that vehicle with the view that that is the only option that you have. However, as with engines, transmission can also be modified and this is a big area that is starting to make a difference to the vehicles that you own.

Standard ownership of a vehicle

As we’ve mentioned above, the ownership of a vehicle starts in the factory. However, when you embark on the purchase of a vehicle, there is more to life than just buying it. An aspect to consider, depending on where you live in the world, is taxation. Many vehicles have to pay some form of road tax to drive on the roads of that country. The type of vehicle that you buy and the emissions that it emits, may determine how much you have to pay to tax the vehicle.

The same can be said for insurance as well. Most countries around the world have insurance as a mandatory requirement to drive on the roads. Rating factors of car insurance depends on lots of aspects, but one of the major factors that rates on a policy is the type and power of vehicle that you own. The factors of a vehicle are the power it outputs, the value and finally its desirability. Although these aspects may not seem fair when rating for an insurance policy, the insurer has to consider these factors in order to make sure that they are happy with the risk they are insuring  and that they’re not going to make a financial loss by insuring it.

Running costs are another factor you have to think about. The amount of fuel a vehicle will use will be documented in the owner’s manual. Generally, there are few types of fuel types that are available. The most common is petrol or diesel, but we now also have access to hybrids and fully electric vehicles. Petrols and diesels are slowly being phased out across the world but we are some time away from this being completed. However, it has to be said that we are looking towards more hybrid and electric type vehicles going forward.

Generally speaking, between petrol and diesel, diesels are usually more fuel efficient than their petrol equivalents. Diesels, however, are usually not as refined as their petrol brothers. That said, when you consider more efficient modes of transportation i.e. hybrid and electric, it starts to show that combustion engines such as petrol and diesel cannot be sustained long term. It is not just the environmental impact of these vehicles, it is also related to the resources that they waste when we use them.

As there are rising fuel prices across the world, the cost of running a standard petrol or diesel vehicle is increasing. Even the governments around the world are starting to react by making electric and hybrid vehicles more cost-effective for the consumer. One of the drawbacks of these environmentally friendly vehicles was the fact that they had a lower range than their petrol and diesel equivalent, however, as the technology continues to improve, this has been addressed and now electric vehicles are going further, for longer. 

End of life

The life of a vehicle is obviously never permanent, so to keep the environment in good condition, we have to have ways of disposing of old vehicles. Scrap cars, in any country, is big business as car dismantlers often take vehicles or scrap cars and dispose of them in their giant factories. Usually, these places offer cars for cash deals, whereby they give you cash for your car. This is a great idea because not only does it give you money for your old vehicle, but it is also a nice, safe and environmental way of disposing of the vehicles that we no longer require. Car for cash is not a new concept, but it is becoming more and more common in today’s disposal markets.

As you can see the life cycle of a car is fairly straightforward. It’s the ownership and running costs that make up most of its life. The good news is modern vehicles do require less maintenance and are therefore easier to live with than older vehicles.

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