Vehicles DC-area original owners drive the longest

Toyota Sienna
The Toyota Sienna is the car most likely to be kept by D.C. car owners for at least 15 years.

The Toyota Highlander is also a popular choice among D.C. car owners.

The Subaru Forester is typically kept by D.C. car owners.
The Subaru Forester is typically kept by D.C. car owners.

The Honda CR-V is also a common pick for D.C. car owners.

D.C. car owners have proven to keep the Honda Accord.

Toyota Sienna
The Subaru Forester is typically kept by D.C. car owners.

The average age of a new vehicle still being driven by its original owner reached a record 7.4 years in 2019, but some vehicles have a much longer relationship with their first buyer.

New and used car site analyzed records for more than 350,000 vehicles in the U.S. to determine which models owners keep for 15 years or longer.

In the D.C. market, the vehicle most likely to be kept by the original owner is a Toyota Sienna minivan.

“Owners like it for its convenience,” iSeeCars’ Julie Blackley told WTOP. “A lot of people don’t want to buy a minivan, but once they do, they quickly fall in love with its convenience.”

In the D.C. market, 24.2% of the Siennas currently on the road are still driven by their original owners.

The cars original owners keep the longest all have something in common.

“The vehicles that are most often kept for 15 years or more tend to be Japanese vehicles that are known for their reliability and tend not to require as many expensive repairs as other types of vehicles,” Blackley said.

In D.C., 21.1% of Toyota Highlanders at least 15 years old are still being driven by their original owners.

The follow cars also were popular locally:

  • Subaru Forester — 20.4%;
  • Honda CR-V — 19.3%
  • Honda Accord — 18.5%.

The Mercedes C Class, BMW 3 Series and Land Rover Evoque were the cars most likely to change ownership hands the fastest, a separate iSeeCars study found.

Jeff Clabaugh

Jeff Clabaugh has spent 20 years covering the Washington region's economy and financial markets for WTOP as part of a partnership with the Washington Business Journal, and officially joined the WTOP newsroom staff in January 2016.

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