When it comes to things such as depreciation and long-term reliability, luxury car owners typically don’t care too much for them. If they wanted a car that could last them 300,000 miles, then they probably wouldn’t be buying a luxury car in the first place. That said, luxury car owners do hold onto a few luxury cars for a long time.
What the study says
iSeeCars ran the study, and the results were almost predictable. iSeeCars analyzed 350,000 cars that were made between 1981 to 2004. If a car was owned by its owner for at least 15 years, then iSeeCars considered that long-term ownership.
Unsurprisingly, Asian automakers like Toyota and Honda dominated the list. Their cars are known for their long-term reliability, and for most people, that means that they can keep driving their Toyota or Honda for a long time. However, luxury car owners generally aren’t looking for a car that can last them a long time, so the results for the luxury cars are actually different.
The Japanese luxury cars that were kept the longest
That said, the luxury car brands of Toyota and Honda, which are Lexus and Acura respectively, still made the list. They didn’t dominate the list though. Lexus and Acura only had 3 of the 10 cars that were on the list.
Lexus has two cars that made the list. The Lexus IS 300 came in third place and the Lexus GS 300 came in seventh place. Both of these Lexus luxury cars were sedans, and the latest models of these cars are currently starting in the $40,000 to $50,000 price range. iSeeCars says that about 8% of IS 300 owners were long-term owners, while 7.1% of GS 300 owners were long-term owners.
Acura, while it only has one car on the list, actually came in at first place. The Acura MDX is the luxury car that was kept the longest. About 8.4% of MDX owners were long-term owners. This is about 40% higher than the average for luxury cars, which is at 5.9%. The MDX is also one of two luxury SUVs that made the list. Currently, the MDX starts at about $45,000.
The German luxury cars that were kept the longest
While Asian car brands were the brands that owners kept the longest in most segments, German luxury carmakers dominated their segment. Mercedes-Benz, BMW, and Audi had 7 of the 10 cars on the list. iSeeCars says that German luxury cars are well-known for their quality, so many of their owners will keep their luxury car for the long haul.
Mercedes-Benz had four luxury cars make the list. They were the C-Class, which came in at fifth place, the sedan version of the E-Class, which came in at sixth place, the G-Class, which came in at eighth place, and the wagon version of the E-Class, which came in at tenth place. Between 6.9% and 7.2% of the owners of these Mercedes-Benz luxury cars kept their cars for 15 years, according to iSeeCars.
BMW had two luxury cars make the list. They were the 3 Series in second place and the Z4 in ninth place. About 8.2% of 3 Series owners kept their car for 15 years, while 7% of Z4 owners kept their car for that long.
Lastly, Audi had one car make the list. That was the S4, and it came in fourth place. About 7.9% of S4 owners kept their cars for 15 years.
Because of how many German luxury cars made the list, their current prices will vary. There are some very affordable and iconic BMW 3 Series on the market, and then there are the Mercedes-Benz G-Class SUVs that are in the six-figure range.