Younger generations do seem to have access to better-quality cars these days, whatever their budget. Pip remembers her Triumph fondly, but as “a bit of a banger” despite the fact it was no more than 10 years old. Owen reckons the older cars at his college are more like double that.
This is a double-edged sword, though, because the complexity of modern cars means repairing them at home is much harder – so when they do go wrong, fixing them costs more.
Today’s young people are more likely to benefit from financial assistance, and even without, they have access to better-quality, safer cars that should last them longer.
That doesn’t necessarily mean they’ve got it easier, however. Even for those that do enjoy a helping hand from their parents, running costs make up a higher proportion of income than ever before.
Those that don’t, meanwhile, suffer from a vicious cycle: they’re restricted in their access to jobs and higher education unless they can save – and of course, it’s harder to save when you can’t get to the jobs.
It is perhaps overly simplistic to say that it was harder for one generation than the other. What’s certain is that there is a greater gap between the haves and the have-nots among young people today.
With a helping hand from mum and dad, you stand half a chance; without it, getting that first taste of freedom is tougher than ever.
How old were you when you got your first car? What make and model was it? How much did it cost? Let us know in the comments below
Read More: ‘I had to save up for my Triumph – we didn’t have car finance back then’