Letter: Cost of the car

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The Independent Culture
Sir: Andreas Whittam Smith says, "Never forget the massive advantages car ownership provides." What he means is the perceived and marketed advantages, the images produced by advertising men of clifftop roads and empty cities where you can park right outside your place of work.

He fails to mention the massive disadvantages of car ownership for the urban user. It costs a fortune (depreciation, tax, insurance, fines, repairs and servicing, petrol); it is inconvenient (traffic, lack of parking, fear of theft, you cannot consume alcohol); it is unhealthy (no exercise, the radiator sucks pollution into the vehicle interior). This is without even going into the disadvantages of car ownership for society.