If you DO only drive VERY short distances and infrequently, a car battery can get too low. Your friend could be right, but no, you could charge the battery with a charger, rather than have to waste fuel plus engine life! A battery that is continually in a low state of charge has a far greater chance of failing prematurely. Lead acid batteries are meant to be maintained at full charge. Just because the car started after running it for 1/2 hr., doesn't mean the battery is good. You would have to leave it (say) overnight, then see if it starts next morning without struggling. If it then struggles, the battery is probably finished. Alternatively, an auto electrician can put a load test on the battery, and tell you immediately if it is bad. One caution, the battery must be as fully charged as possible when such a test is put on it. If you are only driving the car infrequently or very short distances, a trickle charger could be put on the battery to maintain full charge and keep the battery healthy. Yes, any car can have a similar battery problem if not used frequently or for long enough distances.