Cars Americans Drive the Most

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Buying a car — new or used — is one of the biggest investments many Americans make, and for many, getting the most out of that investment is an important goal. No one wants to buy a lemon that breaks down for good after less than 50,000 miles.    

A recent analysis of more than 13.8 million used cars found that only 0.8% of preowned cars sold in 2018 had over 200,000 miles. There are, however, some models that are several times more likely to reach that mileage. For one model, a stunning 7.4% of cars exceed the 200,000 miles mark.

The most likely cars to reach very high mileage are pickup trucks and SUVs — 13 of the 15 vehicles where over 2.5% of used cars had at least 200,000 miles are trucks or SUVs. There are also plenty of passenger cars, and even a couple of minivans that are more likely than most cars to last the longest. According to used car listing web site iseecars.com, there are 32 SUVs, trucks, minivans, and sedans where at least 1.2% of each model’s used cars sold in 2018 had accumulated over 200,000 miles. 

While mechanical reliability may be a factor in how long the vehicles on this list last, iseecars.com notes that the list composition likely has a lot to do with how people use these vehicles. Pickup trucks overall are the most likely to exceed 200,000 miles, which the site explains is because they are frequently used as work vehicles. The presence of so many large SUVs at the top of the list is probably, to a large extent, due to the fact that people tend to take these vehicles on long road trips. More space means more room for family trips. These are some of the largest cars on the road today.

Some car brands are substantially more likely to have vehicles reach 200,000 miles than others. At the top of this list is Toyota, which also has the No. 1-ranked model on this list. Toyotas are more than twice as likely to have a car reach 200,000 miles as the average across all vehicles. Brands that last longer on the road are more likely to maintain the loyalty of their customers. These are the car brands with the most — and least — loyal customers.

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