9

Ages ago, I read a science fiction short story in an anthology of Eastern European, Cold War-era science fiction. It involved a man leading an ordinary life who finds a lovely sports car at an out of the way gas station and finding out it is being sold at a very modest price, he then buys it.

His life changes instantly and the next thing he knows he is meeting beautiful women, dashing world-travelling men and getting invited to fabulous parties and the like. He's sure the car is at the center of the change. Then he notices a small sore on one of his feet is not healing, and as the weeks go by the sore gets worse. He feels weaker, anemic. The car is drinking his blood. The rewards were great, but the price was too much. The car would kill him, so he winds up offering it for sale at a modest price.

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I believe the story is "Vampires Ltd.", an English translation of "Upír ltd" by the Czech author Josef Nesvadba.

However, Nesvadba's story differs from your description in some details: the events take place over a couple of days, not weeks; the protagonist pays nothing for the car, the owner gives it to him as a free loan; and he gives it away after he learns that it's sucking his blood. Could you have remembered that wrong? Do these quotations ring any bells?

But even back home I do not hitchhike. I am already quite bald, and I doubt if anyone would pull up because of my personal charms. I trudged up to a Shell station and gazed yearningly at the drivers.
[. . . .]
"Do you need a lift?" asked a tall, pale fellow with whiskers.
[. . . .]
"You really need a car," he said after a while, having reached the main highway.
[. . . .]
"You can drive, he suddenly announced as he stopped the car and stumbled out of the seat. "I shall come to Bolster for the car tomorrow. I still have some business to transact in the city." He was deathly pale—ought to have done business with a funeral parlor.
[. . . .]
When I awoke, it was already night. Susan gave me Schweppes with tonic (they drink soda water with quinine in England). Then she took off my right shoe and cradled my foot in her lap. "You didn't tell me you were injured," she said. I'd had a medical checkup in Prague before leaving, and I knew there was nothing wrong with me. But all the same Susan showed me a fresh sore on my sole, almost as big as her palm. "You must see a doctor. You've lost a lot of blood," she said.
[. . . .]
I started the engine and tried to rev it up by pressing the generator with my empty shoe, without touching it myself. The car didn't budge. I poked the accelerator with my finger and the car leaped forward, both of us bumping our heads on the roof.
[. . . .]
After a lot of trouble I switched on the light and showed her my finger. There was a fairly small sore on it, only a bruise as yet.
[. . . .]
"This is some car. No Bentley, nor Mors, but it could really bring death to its driver. It runs on human blood . . ."

If that's your story, the anthology you read it in was probably European Tales of Terror edited by J. J. Strating; you might recognize one of these covers.

The English title varies between singular and plural: it's "Vampires Ltd." in the anthologies European Tales of Terror and World's Best Science Fiction: 1965, but "Vampire Ltd." in Car Sinister. The Czech "Upír" is singular.

The 1982 Czech movie Ferat Vampire (original title Upir z Feratu) is based on this story.

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