I forgot the other major factor related to the cost of vehicle ownership -- new cars cost more to insure than older vehicles. Plus, we did not take into account tag, tax, delivery charges, etc. The part about zero percent interest rates is all a gimmick, because there is no way dealers are willingly taking a hit so buyers can get a good deal.
My 2006 Mazda 3 hatchback costs less to insure and maintain over a five year period than if I were to go out today and purchase a brand new Mazda 3 hatchback. The money not spent can go into my various retirement accounts, because I am now leveraging the future value of my dollar.
2006 Mazda 3 2.3L Hatchback 5-speed Automatic - 180K miles
I never purchase Harbor Freight tools.