You have no idea how bad I want a new car! My beloved 1997 Camry hit the 11-year-old mark this year (1997 model sold in mid-2006). I have toyed with the idea of buying a new car several times over the last few years. I even actually bought one a couple of years ago, but the dealer couldn't get the color & model combination that I wanted, and they didn't have my money yet - so I chickened out. I'm glad I didn't buy at that time, but when Maria bought a new car earlier this year - to say I wasn't dying to buy one too would be an understatement. It's silly for me to spend a lot of money on a car at this point - I hardly put 1,000 miles a month on my car as it is, and even though I seem to have to put in a major repair about every year or so now - that odd $700 bill is a lot less than a monthly car payment and additional insurance.
One cure for my longing is re-reading Robert Kiyosaki's (sp?) "Rich Dad, Poor Dad", which always frustrates me because I'm not making a million dollars today - but reminds me that not buying a new car will make me more wealthy in the long run.
ANYWAY, I just read this report from consumer reports Drive Your Car to Death, Save $31,000. Basically, they say that if you can make your car last 15 years / 200K miles - then you are $31K ahead of the people who buy a new car every 5 years. So, by my calculations I have to make the Camry last until the summer of 2011, at which point I can set aside my guilt and buy that shiny new car... 2011 seems like a long time from now.