Pareto's Principle and your Choice of Vehicle (or anything)

Also known as the 80:20 Rule, Vilfredo Pareto's principle states that 80% of your income will come from 20% of your clients or 80% of a problem is caused by 20% of the causes. TreeHugger reader Brenton applied it to his mom's car purchase, and we quote: "The basis of my logic is Pareto’s Principle. You should buy a vehicle that works best for 80% of the driving you do most, and leave the other 20% out of your decision. Not only will this help save the environment, but it will save you a lot of money in the end. To explain, I’ll go over the conversation/math used to sway my mom."My mom was convinced she needed a large SUV/van/truck as her next vehicle, on account that she takes one trip into the ADKs a year (which requires a lot of cargo space) and likes to garden (she’ll save on delivery cost of trees and stuff).

I can see why people weigh these things so high on the list, they’re the fun things. You tend to think more about the fun uses of a vehicle then you do about the run of the mill, everyday uses.

Lets do the numbers.

80% of my mom’s driving is highway 20% is trips needing large cargo. So, if she chose for 80% she might pick the Pontiac Vibe, if she chose for 20% she might pick the GMC Envoy.

Initial Cost:

* Pontiac Vibe = ~$17,000
* GMC Envoy = ~$27,000

Instant savings of ~$10,000

Fuel Cost:

* Pontiac Vibe: (15,000miles a year / 36mpg hwy) * $3 a gallon = ~$1250 a year to fuel
* GMC Envoy: (15,000miles a year / 21mpg hwy) * $3 a gallon = ~$2143 a year to fuel

Yearly savings of ~$893

But what about that other 20% when you need the larger car? read on at ::Brenton's Blog