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Why these 5 billionaires still drive these cheap cars

Jonathan Blumberg
One billionaire cruises around in a 1993 Volvo.

Billionaires build their fortunes on wise financial decisions. Once those fortunes are made, though, they can afford to splurge on things they don't really need — like luxury cars.

For instance, Microsoft co-founder and world's richest person Bill Gates recently bought himself a Porsche 911 supercar. Virgin founder Sir Richard Branson, likewise, famously drives his amphibious Gibbs Aquada around the U.K. But there are other billionaires who never let go of the thrifty habits that contributed to their success.

Here are five remarkably modest vehicles owned by five of the world's wealthiest people:

Warren Buffett

The CEO of Berkshire Hathaway is well-known for his frugal quirks . He never spends more than $3.17 on breakfast, and he lives in the same house he bought for $31,500 in 1958 (or $260,000 in today's dollars).

In 2014, he reportedly bought a Cadillac XTS, a car with a retail price of around $45,000. It was an upgrade from his previous car: a 2006 Cadillac DTS, which he decided to get rid of when his his daughter Susie told him it was embarrassing.

The business mogul justified the delay, as you might expect, pragmatically, telling Forbes: "I only drive about 3,500 miles a year so I will buy a new car very infrequently."


Mark Zuckerberg

The founder and CEO of Facebook, the world's largest social networking platform, is often seen driving a black Acura TSX, a car valued around $30,000. He says he prefers the choice because it's "safe, comfortable and not ostentatious."

He also reportedly has a Volkswagen GTI, a car of similar value.


Alice Walton

Heiress to the Wal-Mart fortune, Alice Walton is the second wealthiest woman in the world. Her vehicle of choice is a 2006 Ford F-150 King Ranch, with a modest price of around $40,000

Her late father Sam Walton, the founder of Wal-Mart, drove around the 1979 version of the same truck until he died in 1992.


Ingvar Kamprad

Ikea founder Ingvar Kamprad doesn't like to spend money on what he doesn't need. He once claimed to save by only getting his hair cut when he's in developing countries.

In 2014, when he returned to Sweden after 40 years of tax exile, The Telegraph reported that he said on television, "If you look at me now, I don't think I'm wearing anything that wasn't bought at a flea market."

For two decades, he drove a 1993 Volvo 240 GL. He only gave it up recently when someone persuaded the now 91-year-old that driving it was too dangerous. Originally, the car was worth around $22,000, but today, it wouldn't go for more than a few thousand dollars.


Steve Ballmer

The owner of the Los Angeles Clippers and former CEO of Microsoft has proudly driven Fords throughout his life because his father was a manager at Ford Motor Company.

In 2009, Ballmer was personally delivered a new Ford Fusion Hybrid by Ford's CEO at the time, Alan Mulally, in celebration of their one-millionth vehicle equipped with SYNC, an in-vehicle communications and entertainment system.

The car's original retail price was around $28,000.

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