More Old Cars Roam U.S. Roads, Average Vehicle Age Rises to 11 Years

It appears several people aren't pining for that new car scent, because a new report reveals that more and more car owners in the U.S. are driving older cars. The number of old vehicles in the U.S. has gone up to 17 million since 2009.

Cars seven years and older account for 17.3 million cars on the road, reports Experian Automotive in its Q1 2012 Vehicles in Operation Analysis. To give you a better idea of how big of a scale we're talking about, the report reveals there are more than 245 million vehicles in operation across the ‘States. The number of older vehicles isn't the only figure to go up though, as the average age of vehicles is also up at 11 years old compared to the same quarter last year.

A shaky economy could be partly to blame for people holding onto their cars longer, but the increase in average age could also be attributed to cars and trucks being built to last longer. While that may not be the best news for new-car dealerships, Experian says the change gives the aftermarket sector an opportunity to flourish.

But which make is America’s favorite? Additional data reveals the four most popular makes, in order, are Ford, Chevrolet, Toyota, and Honda. The tally comes from evaluating the vehicles in operation on both U.S. and Canadian roads, and when narrowing it down to models, the Ford F-150 ruled the road, followed by the Honda Accord, Toyota Camry, and Chevrolet Silverado. Though automakers continue to introduce hybrids and EVs to the U.S. market, the fuel-sipping and electrified cars surprisingly represented only 0.9 percent of all vehicles in operation. Also unexpected are the findings for light trucks, which make up 50.8 percent of the total vehicles in operation.

 

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