People keep these 10 popular cars longer than any others

Ford Explorer
Image Credit: Dreamstime

Money expert Clark Howard prefers for people to buy used cars but says that if you insist on buying new, you should plan on keeping that vehicle for at least 10 years.

That’s because when you buy a new car, you have to eat the cost of depreciation — that new car loses a good bit of its value as soon as you drive it off the lot.

If you’re in the market for a new car and want to heed Clark’s advice, you might be interested in a new study from automotive search engine iSeeCars that takes a look at the vehicles new car owners keep for the longest amount of time after purchase.

Drivers typically hang on to these popular new cars long after they buy them

Japanese models and SUVs dominate the list of popular vehicles new car owners hold onto the longest on average, with the Ford Explorer leading the way.

Here are the top 10 popular makes and models when it comes to how long their original buyers hold on to them:

iSeeCars Length of Ownership for Popular Cars
Rank Model Average # Years of Ownership
1 Ford Explorer 9.6
2 Toyota Camry 9.5
3 Honda Accord 9.4
4 Toyota Highlander 9.1
5 Honda Civic 9.1
6 Jeep Grand Cherokee 9.0
7 Toyota Corolla 9.0
8 Toyota Tacoma 9.0
9 Jeep Wrangler 8.9
10 Ram Pickup 1500 8.7

The overall average length of car ownership for all cars was 8.4 years, according to the study. When all cars were considered (not just popular ones), the big winner was the Toyota Land Cruiser. Buyers of those vehicles kept them for an average of 11.4 years.

In order to come up with the numbers, iSeeCars analyzed more than five million vehicles that were sold by their original owners between January 1, 2014, and December 31, 2018. Models that were owned for less than five years were excluded from the analysis to eliminate the effect of short lease terms.

“When looking at the set of popular cars that owners keep longer than average, Toyota has the most models represented with five,” said Ly. “The enduring popularity of these vehicles and the amount of time owners hold onto them helps solidify Toyota’s reputation for making enduring and reliable vehicles.”

If you’re ready to buy a Toyota or any other new vehicle, check out our guide How to buy a new car in 5 steps now.

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