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Friday, April 26, 2013

The cost of owning your car? $9,000 a year [USA Today]


The average owner of a sedan has to shell out nearly $10,000 a year to own and operate that car, according to auto club AAA.
A new AAA reports shows, on average, the cost of driving 15,000 miles a year rose 1.17 cents to 60.8 cents per mile, or $9,122 per year. Overall, that's a roughly 2% increase on the cost of operating a car last year.
Auto club AAA studies five cost categories – maintenance, fuel, tires, insurance and depreciation – for its annual "Your Driving Costs" study.
The biggest percentage increase this year was in maintenance costs, which grew by 11.26% to 4.97 cents per mile, on average, for sedan owners. Average costs in all categories are lower for smaller vehicles and higher for bigger ones.
The maintenance cost estimates are based on the cost to maintain a vehicle and perform needed repairs for five years and 75,000 miles, including labor expenses, replacement part prices and the purchase of an extended warranty.
"As a vehicle gets older you tend to encounter more significant repair costs," says Michael Calkins, AAA's manager of technical services.
Since last year's study, there were substantial increases in labor and parts costs for some models, and a significant rise in the price of extended warranties. "People are keeping cars longer," Calkins says. "Extended warranties are seeing a bit of an increase in claims. That's where the costs have gone up."

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