If you're driving an older vehicle, you're not alone. The average age of vehicles on the road here in Michigan and throughout the United States is going up.

Why Are People Keeping Their Vehicles Longer?

The average age of cars, trucks, and SUVs in the United States has hit a new record high, with the average age of vehicles on the road today clocking in at 12.6 years. That figure - just released today by S&P Global Mobility - is two months longer than last year's figure.

The reason people are keeping their cars longer is simple. New vehicles cost too much. Many consumers can't afford new vehicles, with the price of a new car straight off the showroom floor average just over $45,000, according to JD Power.

“It’s prohibitively high for a lot of households now,” said Todd Campau, aftermarket leader for S&P Global Mobility. "So I think consumers are being painted into the corner of having to keep the vehicle on the road longer.”


Vehicle Quality Increases

Campau goes on to say that price isn't the only reason consumers are keeping their vehicles longer than ever before.

Vehicles are made better today than they have been in the past. New vehicles simply last longer today than they did in previous generations because of increased quality.

Other consumers are contemplating switching to electric or hybrid vehicles. Some consumers are in wait-and-see mode right now, waiting to see if electric vehicle networks become stronger, providing more charging opportunities while traveling.

New Car Depreciation

Consumers who purchase used cars generally experience less depreciation. Although there is no exact formula to determine how much value vehicles lose, Progressive estimates that most new cars lose approximately 20% of their value during the first year of ownership and about 15% in subsequent years.


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