The cost to own a car is higher than ever, according to the latest report on the subject from AAA.
The average annual outlay is now $9,282, which is the most in the study’s history and up from $8849 in 2018.
AAA said a 24 percent increase in financing charges is largely to blame, but that depreciation, fuel and maintenance costs have also gotten worse.
Even electric cars saw a tiny bump in energy costs but had the lowest maintenance at 6.6 cents per mile compared to an average of 8.94 cents.
The organization suggests the following tips for reducing the cost of ownership:
- Set a budget before you buy and don't go over it
- Get the shortest loan term you can handle
- The best times to buy are the last two weeks of December, between July and October and always near the end of a month.
- Gently used cars can offer significantly reduced purchase and insurance costs.
- Dealer discounts are sometimes available to members of AAA and other organizations.
Here is a list of the average costs for each vehicle segment:
Small Sedan: $7,114
Small SUV: $8,394
Medium Sedan: $8,643
Medium SUV: $10,265
Large Sedan: $10,403