AAA: Car ownership costs on the rise

Tuesday, April 16, 2013 - 11:49am

Overall, the costs of car ownership have risen compared to last year, according to an annual study by AAA, which says it now costs 2% more to own a sedan than it did last year.

It costs $9,122 a year for the average sedan such as a Toyota Camry or Ford Fusion. That works out to 61 cents a mile, assuming the car is driven 15,000 miles a year.

The costs vary a lot according to the type and size of vehicle, though. It costs about $7,000 a year to own a small car in the United States but about $11,600 to own a four-wheel-drive SUV, according to AAA.

The study factored in costs such as fuel, maintenance, insurance, tires and depreciation.

Maintenance costs have risen the most, according to AAA, going up 11.26% compared to last year. Maintenance costs almost 5 cents for every mile driven. Those costs have gone up because of increases in labor costs, replacement parts prices and extended warranty prices.

Insurance costs have gone up 2.76% for sedans, AAA said. The drivers' group based its annual estimate of $1,029 assuming that a driver has a clean record. Insurance companies in seven states showed small increases for sedans of all sizes.

Fuel costs rose only 1.93% compared to last year. While the price of regular gasoline rose 3.84%, that was partly offset by improvements in the fuel economy of new cars. The cost of tires was unchanged from last year.

 

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