By Ryan Pfirrmann-Powell: “From 2008 to 2012, the average age of U.S. households’ vehicles increased as owners held on to their cars, trucks, and vans longer. The trend in aging autos coincides with declines in average household income in 2008; however, subsequent recovery in households’ incomes and a return to previous levels of expenditures on vehicles in 2012 do not appear to have reversed the pattern of aging. Analysis of data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Expenditure Survey suggests that households continued to own the same number of vehicles over the last 10 years, but are owning their vehicles longer. The average age of households’ cars, vans, sport utility vehicles (SUVs), and trucks increased from 10.1 years in 2007 to just over 11.3 years in 2012. Chart 2 shows that the share of newer vehicles (those manufactured less than 5 years earlier than the year shown) dropped by nearly 33 percent from 2007 to 2012 while the share of vehicles 11–20 years old grew by 25 percent over the same timeframe.”
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