The Cars People Are Keeping as Long as Possible

Some cars are just not made for people to keep a long time. Certainly, luxury sedans fall into this category. These models, which consumers typically lease for two or three years, will eventually become a nuisance due to the cost of repairs. (They also become dated on the luxury scene.)

Meanwhile, there are the cars that drive owners crazy from the start. This list includes cheaper and less reliable models. When you look at vehicles people ditch after one year, it’s not a surprise finding Nissan Versa and Chrysler 200 among them.

When looked at the cars people keep the longest, the auto search engine found the opposite to be true. Larger, family vehicles dominated, as did models with strong reliability ratings over the past decade. Here are the 10 cars found people will keep as long as possible in a July 2018 study.

10. Honda Odyssey

2015 Honda Odyssey
2015 Honda Odyssey | Honda

In the case of the Honda Odyssey, it’s easy to see why owners stick with it. Minivans are made to get kids through their early years, and when a dependable brand like Honda gets it right, there’s no reason to make a change.

Consistently winning the IIHS Top Safety Pick award doesn’t hurt, either. Owners who sold their Odysseys in 2017 had kept the minivan an average of 8.3 years, iSeeCars data showed.

9. Ford Taurus

2014 Ford Taurus | Ford

Ford may soon be ending production of the Taurus and other cars, but you can’t blame it on this model’s performance. For years, it has turned up among the cars people refuse to give up after a few years.

You can see how Taurus’s space and sturdiness fits the needs of families for the long haul. Owners have been keeping this one an average of 8.3 years.

8. Honda Accord

2011 Honda Accord | Honda

When you look at the 2011 Honda Accord, it doesn’t seem like a car that’s terribly dated. Certainly, recent styling and performance upgrades have resulted in a better midsize sedan, but Accord owners have been content to keep theirs without trading up.

In the iSeeCars study, people had their Accords for 8.3 years on average before deciding to sell.

7. Chevrolet Suburban

Chevrolet Suburban | General Motors

While the Chevrolet Suburban was never a vehicle known for reliability, it has been a keeper for countless owners over the past decade. CEO Phong Ly attributes that partly to functionality.

“These vehicles tend to be family haulers, which means that parents are likely to keep them for longer than average and not replace them until a large family vehicle is no longer necessary,” Ly said. In Suburban’s case, it was an average of 8.4 years.

6. Ford Explorer

2013 Ford Explorer: The popular Ford SUV offers a choice between a 3.5-lter Ti-VCT V6 and a 2.0-liter EcoBoost® four-cylinder engines to deliver impressive fuel efficiency.
2013 Ford Explorer | Ford

Another Ford that’s has staying power since early in the decade is the Explorer crossover. In the iSeeCars study, buyers weren’t letting go until almost 8.5 years passed.

That means there were many body-on-frame Explorer SUVs from the previous generation in the mix. Those truck-based models might become collectors’ items someday.

5. Toyota Avalon

2015 Toyota Avalon
2015 Toyota Avalon | Toyota

Browsing through Consumer Reports’ most reliable vehicles of this decade, you find the Toyota Avalon sitting at No. 8. This full-size sedan got only the top ratings year after year.

With that in mind, it’s no wonder owners refused to let go of the Avalon. It lets even families of five travel in comfort for great value. If you see a good deal on the used market from 2015 or later, it’s a good candidate to drive into the next decade.

4. Toyota 4Runner

2014 Toyota 4Runner | Toyota

You might have noticed that it’s difficult to tell a 2013 Toyota 4Runner apart from a 2017 model, and vice versa. That’s because this model has not had a redesign i eight years.

The thing is, it hasn’t needed one. 4Runner has been the most reliable vehicle on the U.S. market since 2010. When you learn owners kept theirs an average of 8.8 years, it makes perfect sense.

3. Toyota Sequoia

2013 Sequoia
2013 Toyota Sequoia | Toyota

If you buy a Toyota SUV (new or used), chances are you can keep it for the better part of a decade. Highlander, RAV4, 4Runner, and Sequoia all rank among the most dependable vehicles sold in America.

In the case of the Tundra-based Sequoia, owners kept theirs an average of 8.9 years. Maybe that’s why people drive this SUV over 200,000 miles more than any other model.

2. Chevrolet Corvette

2009 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 | Chevrolet

While most vehicles on this list work great for families, the Chevrolet Corvette most certainly does not. In fact, it’s the model found people drive the least in another 2018 study.

Nonetheless, once people get a Corvette, people don’t let go for an average of 9.0 years. Its performance and timeless style easily explain why that would happen.

1. Ford Expedition

2014 Ford Expedition | Ford

Like several other vehicles people refuse to let go, Ford Expedition is a truck-based SUV with three rows. In the study, owners held onto theirs for an average of 9.0 years before selling. That number put Expedition 21% above the average model (7.4 years).

Whether you want the 2018 model that features elite power and sharper styling or an older model that’s earned its bulletproof reputation, large SUV buyers won’t go wrong with a Ford Expedition.