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These Are America’s Longest-Lasting Car Brands

24/7 Wall St. logo 24/7 Wall St. 3/6/2021 Douglas A. McIntyre

a car parked in a parking lot © Provided by 24/7 Wall St. In general, cars and light trucks sold in the United States are better built and last longer. The period when cars built by Chrysler, Ford and General Motors were considered inferior to those made in Japan and Germany has passed. Widely followed car owner surveys from researchers J.D. Power and Consumer Reports support this.

Durability and quality seem to have extended the life of cars and light trucks. The average number of years an American car has been on the road is nearly 12, and that regularly rises. Some car brands might be labeled super-durable. These are ones that have been driven over 200,000 miles. Based on research from iSeeCars, only 1% of vehicles make it that far. They set out to find those brands most likely to reach 200,000 miles.

iSeeCars looked at 11.8 million preowned cars sold in 2020. They checked the odometers when they were listed for sale. The two longest-lasting car brands based on this analysis were Toyota and Honda. According to iSeeCars Executive Analyst Karl Brauer, “Along with setting the standard for reliability and durability, Toyotas and Hondas also have lower-than-average ownership costs. Owners are more likely to keep their vehicles on the road if they are performing well and don’t need costly repairs.”

The percentage of Toyota's that made it past the 200,000-mile yardstick was 2.0%. The Honda figure was 1.6%. It was followed by Chevy at 1.5%, Cadillac at 1.5%, GMC at 1.4%, Ford at 1.4%, and Ram at 1.1%. Bauer added, “Three General Motors brands all rank closely at the top, which shows that although their vehicles target different consumer types, they are consistently reliable.”

When Consumer Reports released its 2020 Auto Reliability Survey, the top three brands were Mazda, Toyota, and Lexus. It is unusual to see the small Japanese car company at the head of any such list. However, Toyota and its luxury brand Lexus have been in the top tier of many such rankings for decades.

The iSeeCars research only serves to prove something that the industry and public have known for a long time.

Click here to read about America's longest-lasting car nodels.


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