Owning a vehicles teaches life lessons


Dustin McAdam

Dustin McAdam and his car.

Acxel Vargas, Reporter

Did you ever look around the student parking lot at all the different cars and wonder how do students afford to own a car, make payments, or pay for fuel?

Most students who drive to school have a job to cover the cost of car payments and insurance. But how does a high school student manage his money in order to be able to do this?

Dustin McAdam (12) owns a 2021 5.0 Ford Mustang.  Average cost for this vehicle is over 40 thousand dollars. He knew going into this purchase that he would need a plan.  “I just have to work three or four days a week to cover the expenses. I got my first car, paid it off, and used it as my down payment for the Mustang.”

McAdam makes monthly payments of $417 for the car. The vehicle makes 480 horsepower and has 5.0 liter V8 engine, with a top speed of 163 miles per hour. He enjoys owning a vehicle like this in high school.  He said, “I like it; people think its cool, and when I’m older, it’ll be paid off and I’ll have a nice car.”

He is one of the many examples on our school campus who demonstrates that hard work pays off, and that anyone can also have nice things if they put their mind to it. 

Although having a cool and fast car in high school is awesome, there are some downsides. The main one being the price of gasoline, especially in our current economy where the gas prices have been going up. The 2021 5.0 Mustang engine is made to be fed on 91 octane gasoline. The good quality gasoline brands like Shell and Chevron price this gas at $6.09. The vehicle has a 15.4 gallon capacity for fuel, at the current price of the gasoline from Chevron here in town of $6.09. that is $93.78 for a full tank of gas.

McAdam also claims that the gas is a sure negative since he only gets 10 miles per gallon. To put it in perspective that is a trip from Los Banos to San Francisco with a little bit of fuel left, considering good traffic flow and a full tank.

He also said that a downside he has experienced is he has to have a job no matter what in order to make the payments. Having a car like this is awesome, not only because of the vehicle but also because of the values it teaches.  Students, like McAdam can learn how to manage their money and to achieve high levels of responsibility.