Buy a Car Project

Buying a Car Project

There are a lot of hidden costs to owning a car, costs that students may not think about when they are dreaming of driving themselves around. In this buy a car project, students learn about the costs associated with buying and owning a car so that they can be prepared when the time comes to buy their own car. 

Buy a car project car choices

To start, students choose a car from the 6 car choices. Each car comes with stats: purchase cost, gas mileage, gas tank size, annual insurance premium and deductible. 

Buy a car project auto loan choices

Students then choose a bank loan. There are 4 loans to choose from. Each loan has a different term, interest rate and down payment. 

For the first part of the project, students choose 4 car/loan options. You can have students choose 4 different loans for the same car, 4 different cars with the same loan, or have them choose themselves. 

Students then record the price of their vehicle, interest rate, term and down payment. They then use an online auto calculator (linked inside the file) to find: total interest paid over the course of the loan, total paid for their car and monthly car payment. 

Next, students figure out the cost of gas based on their car’s mpg and tank size. Students then calculate the cost to fill their car’s tank, miles that can be driven on one tank of gas, and cost per mile. Formulas are provided to make these calculations. 

Students are then asked to summarize the project by recording total monthly costs of owning the cars they chose, then compare their cars for most/least interest paid, most/least expensive to fill with gas, most/least cost per mile, etc.

Students then complete the project analyzing which car they would prefer to buy and own and what they learned during the project. 

Buy a car project answer key

This project comes with full answer keys, including all costs for each car/loan combination (24 combinations). 

Buy a Car Project
Buy a Car Project

This project has been added to the Scaffolded Consumer Math Curriculum in the car loans folder.

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