Americans Holding On To Our Vehicles For Longer

Auto loan payments are stretched out as vehicles are owned for over a decade

Shaun Plum
MoneyTips Contributor

Borrowing Automotive Loan

Americans Holding On To Our Vehicles For Longer
November 23, 2016

New data shows that the average vehicle is now owned for almost twelve years, as cars now last longer before they need replacing. As a result, drivers are able to stretch their auto loan payments.

The latest research by IHS Markit, suggests that this could also be a positive sign for the automotive industry, with more consumers having to buy replacement parts for their vehicles. Mark Seng from IHS Markit pointed out that although 100,000 miles used to be a good lifespan for a car, "Now, when that vehicle is 11.5 or 11.6 years old, you are talking 110,000 or 115,000 miles and it is halfway through its life."

IHS Markit's research shows that a quarter of vehicles were manufactured before 2001. By 2021, approximately 20 million of the vehicles on our roads will be a quarter of a century old. There are two main reasons for the changing face of the industry, IHS Markit suggests. These include increased consumer confidence and fluctuating prices. People are confident their older vehicles will last longer. Meanwhile, as prices rise and fall, people have increased the payment periods for their auto loans. Data from Experian shows that in 2009 the average loan period was five years and two months - this has grown to five years and six months now.

If you are interested in an auto loan, visit our curated list of top lenders.

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