When shopping for a new or used car, the price tag is something that many of us haggle over to get the best deal.
But the sticker price is only the beginning. Another crucial factor you have to consider is the amount of money you’ll have to spend on maintenance and repairs over time.
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What your car really costs to maintain
The folks at YourMechanic.com analyzed data on the cars they have serviced and calculated the median cost by brand.
BMW and Mercedes-Benz were the most expensive to maintain over 10 years, according to the data. Toyota, on the other hand, was the most economical manufacturer, costing about $5,500 to maintain over a decade.
Ford, Chevy and Dodge all ended up somewhere in the middle, as you can see in their graphic:
YourMechanic.com found that even within a certain brand name, some models were more expensive to maintain than others. The median cost to keep Chrysler’s Sebring running for over 10 years was more than $17,000!
Toyota was really the standout in this study. None of its models made the most expensive list. In addition to the Toyota models that fared well, Kia’s Soul and Honda’s Fit also had low maintenance costs.
According to AAA, the typical driver spends $792 a year on car maintenance, including parts and labor. Experts point out that maintenance costs can be impacted by how often the car is driven, where it’s driven and how it’s driven.