Average cost of owning a car in CT exceeds $11,000 per year: AAA study

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CONNECTICUT – The average cost to own and operate a car in Connecticut is about $11,000 a year, which is above the national average, according to a new AAA study. The national average cost was approximately $10,700.

AAA has assessed the costs of mid-priced vehicles including: fuel, maintenance, insurance, depreciation and finance charges. The study assumes five years of ownership, 15,000 annual trip miles and a fuel price of $4 per gallon.

Small sedans have the lowest annual ownership costs at around 55 cents per mile. Electric vehicles – which have lower fuel and maintenance costs than internal combustion cars – came in second at around 60 cents per mile. An electric vehicle owner spends about 4 cents per mile to charge at home, while a similar gas-powered car costs 18.4 cents per mile for fuel.

Compact SUVs have benefited from lower insurance costs and cost around 62 cents per mile to own.

The costs of new and used vehicles have skyrocketed in recent years due to supply chain issues. New vehicle prices have increased 10.4% from July 2021 to 2022, and used vehicles grew by 6.6%, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The average transaction price of a new car eclipsed $47,000 in Decemberaccording to Kelley Blue Book.

Sales of luxury vehicles took a bigger share of the market, which also helped push up the average transaction price, according to KBB. The average luxury buyer in December paid more than $64,800 for a new vehicle, or $1,300 more than the list price. Luxury vehicles sold for an average of $3,000 below MSRP a year prior.

“Consumers are paying more attention when buying a vehicle because many products are more expensive right now,” Alec Slatky, director of public and government affairs for AAA Northeast, said in a statement. “Especially as fuel prices remain high compared to last year, drivers want to know the true costs of owning a car beyond their monthly payment.”

The cost of ownership can vary widely and depends on many factors. AAA has a free calculator which allows consumers to compare the estimated cost of ownership based on the vehicle and the annual number of kilometers driven. The US Department of Energy also has its own calculator which takes even more factors into consideration.

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