You Bought It, You Fill It

In the halcyon days when I first got my driver’s license, gas cost less than $1 a gallon. A week’s worth of commuting to school, Dunkin’ Donuts, and my part-time job could be financed by a single evening of babysitting. It was a great time to be a teenager in the suburbs.

1210082720But even back when a gallon of bottled water cost more than the same amount of fuel, I was happy to not have to pay to fill the hulking trucks and SUVs that some of my classmates drove. So I can’t feel too bad for people who bought huge vehicles and now can’t afford to keep them running.

Last July, 20-year-old Sannan Nizami, of Lowell, bought a 2007 Toyota 4Runner SUV for $32,000 when it cost about $65 to fill the tank. Six months later, as a gallon of gas soared to $3.50 and more, and tank refills climbed over $80, Nizami put the vehicle up for sale.

“I didn’t think gas would shoot up this much. I’m willing to take a hit just to take the pressure off,” Nizami said.

How. . . did you not see this coming? Prices have been on the rise for years. Haven’t we all learned that minor disruptions in the oil supply or refinery shutdowns can cause the cost of gas to spike?

It’s sad that it took skyrocketing gas prices to make consumers think twice about the hulking behemoths they once took for granted.

At his Mini dealership, [Herb] Chambers said people have been turning in Chevrolet Suburbans for the tiny British car in recent weeks. He currently has a one-year waiting list for the coveted Smart Car, an 8-foot-8-inch vehicle that gets more than 40 miles per gallon.

Unless you live in the boonies, you do not need an SUV. Or if you’re this guy.