It’s really not that difficult to keep your car in good shape. Here are the basics:
Read your car owner’s manual, it has all the information on car maintenance as well as safety precautions.
Keep all the fluids (e.g. engine oil, transmission fluid, coolant, etc.) clean and topped up.
Follow your maintenance schedule, there is a number of things that need to be regularly serviced or replaced at certain intervals (e.g. brakes, air filter, timing belt, spark plugs, etc.)
Check tire pressure regularly.
Change you windshield wipers if they don’t clean properly.
Wash and wax your vehicle once in a while to keep the car finish shiny and protected from corrosion.
Deal with any problems as soon as they arise, before they become more serious and require expensive repairs.
Use only original parts.
At least once a year have your car check out in a garage.