The Average Car On The Road Is 11.5 Years Old

Image courtesy of Eric Norris

My car was manufactured about eleven and a half years ago, which I thought was relatively old. That’s why I was surprised to learn that it’s perfectly average. According to data compiled by the consulting firm IHS Automotive, cars that are registered and on the roads have an average age of 11.5 years, and there’s a record number of cars registered right now.

Why does this matter? First, it’s interesting, because the trend of older cars began during the recession, and the average age of cars on the road has been increasing since 2008. People wouldn’t be keeping their cars for longer (or acquiring older used cars) if the cars themselves weren’t more durable, though, and that indicates that cars are more reliable than they use to be and staying out of the scrap heap.


IHS are business consultants, though, and one important implication of this data for repair shops, dealerships, and auto parts manufacturers is that with more cars that are in or approaching their teens in circulation, there will need to be more parts for those vehicles and mechanics able to work on them.

Cars that are more than ten or eleven years old used to be thought of as an anomaly by some aftermarket repair shops, and that’s not the case now: eleven-year-old cars are perfectly average.

Average Age of Light Vehicles in the U.S. Rises Slightly in 2015 to 11.5 years, IHS Reports (via Fortune)

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