> Total operating cost: $3,641
> No. of vehicles per 1,000 people: 917 (17th highest)
> Avg. price of gas: $2.70 (21st lowest)
> Avg. insurance premium: $1,341 (20th highest)
The average cost of car repairs, including parts and labor, was $416 per year in Kentucky, 12th highest among all states. As a result, car repairs accounted for a slightly above average share of the total costs of operating a vehicle. Gas in the state cost slightly less than it did nationwide, at $2.70 per gallon, and annual gas expenditure accounted for 51.7% of the total operating cost in Kentucky, in line with the national average share.
19. South Carolina
> Total operating cost: $3,652
> No. of vehicles per 1,000 people: 835 (21st lowest)
> Avg. price of gas: $2.41 (the lowest)
> Avg. insurance premium: $1,210 (21st lowest)
South Carolina had the lowest gas price in the nation at $2.41 per gallon as of the middle of July. Cheap fuel may have encouraged motorists to drive more often, as state car owners also reported the fifth highest gas consumption rate of 844.3 gallons per vehicle each year. This high consumption is largely due to high traffic volume on South Carolina’s major roads, according to the EIA. Drivers spent more than $2,000 per year on average on gasoline, 12th most in the country. This amounted to 55.6% of South Carolina drivers’ total annual expenses, the 13th largest share compared to other states.
> Total operating cost: $3,663
> No. of vehicles per 1,000 people: 817 (18th lowest)
> Avg. price of gas: $2.49 (4th lowest)
> Avg. insurance premium: $1,239 (25th lowest)
Two oil refineries operate in the south of Arkansas. A relatively close source of gasoline may partly explain the state’s low gas prices. As of July 15, gas cost $2.49 per gallon, the fourth lowest gas prices nationwide. As in many other states with relatively low gas prices, cheap fuel may make driving more appealing. Arkansas had the seventh highest gas consumption of all states, with an average vehicle using 802.5 gallons annually to travel 13,852 miles, the seventh and sixth highest figures, respectively. As a result, the average expenditure on fuel was nearly $2,000 per year, one of the higher annual costs.
> Total operating cost: $3,681
> No. of vehicles per 1,000 people: 710 (4th lowest)
> Avg. price of gas: $2.97 (8th highest)
> Avg. insurance premium: $1,059 (12th lowest)
Gas expenditure accounted for 60.1% of the total operating costs of owning a vehicle in Utah, the second highest such contribution compared to other states. Gas in Utah was far more expensive than in the rest of the nation, and drivers consumed more fuel than in the rest of the country. As of mid July, a gallon cost $2.97, the eighth highest gas price. Motorists used 745.6 gallons each year on average, well above the national average consumption of 663.0 gallons. As a consequence, a typical car owner spent $2,212 on fuel each year, the sixth highest figure. However, vehicles were not very numerous in Utah. There were just 710 cars per 1,000 people, the fourth lowest proportion in the country.
> Total operating cost: $3,685
> No. of vehicles per 1,000 people: 790 (11th lowest)
> Avg. price of gas: $3.27 (4th highest)
> Avg. insurance premium: $1,248 (24th highest)
Gas cost $3.27 per gallon in Nevada, higher than in all but three other states. Nevada was also one of only seven states where the average gas price exceeded $3.00 per gallon. The Las Vegas metro area mandates clean-burning gasoline blends. The higher prices of these blends partly accounts for the high statewide gas prices. While Nevada motorists tended to drive less than most Americans, the average gas expenditure of $2,064 per year was among the highest nationwide. Commuters in particular may have preferred driving to work, as the average commute time by public transportation was about one hour for Nevadan workers, the second longest average time nationwide.
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