The 15 Cars Owners Are Still Driving After 15 Years

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One of the best ways to save money is to buy a used car and hold on to it for a long time. And buying from one particular manufacturer will help boost your odds of achieving that goal.

Toyota models dominate iSeeCars’ latest ranking of vehicles that are most likely to last for 15 years with their original owners. The Japanese carmaker took the top three slots — and six of the top 10 spots.

“Japanese vehicles are known for their quality and reliability, which is reaffirmed by the results of this list,” explains iSeeCars CEO Phong Ly.

In compiling the list, iSeeCars looked at more than 750,000 cars from the 1981-2003 model years and ranked them by the percentage of owners who held on to their cars for at least 15 years.

The Toyota Highlander topped the list — as it also did last year.

The latest analysis found that 18.5 percent of Highlander owners are still firmly planted in the driver’s seat at least 15 years after purchase. By comparison, only 7.5 percent of all car owners keep their cars for at least 15 years, on average.

The 15 cars you’re most likely to drive for 15 years

The entire iSeeCars list is as follows:

  • Toyota Highlander: 18.5 percent of owners keep their car at least 15 years
  • Toyota Prius: 16.2 percent
  • Toyota Sienna: 16.1 percent
  • Honda Pilot: 15.3 percent
  • Toyota Tundra: 14.1 percent
  • Toyota Sequoia: 13.5 percent
  • Toyota Tacoma: 13.4 percent
  • Honda Odyssey: 12.6 percent
  • Honda CR-V: 12.4 percent
  • Subaru Forester: 12.1 percent
  • Toyota RAV4: 12.1 percent
  • Toyota Camry: 11.5 percent
  • Acura MDX: 11.4 percent
  • Toyota 4Runner: 11.2 percent
  • Toyota Avalon: 10.8 percent

How to buy the right car

Want more tips on buying the right car at a great price? Last year, iSeeCars published a separate study that highlighted the models whose values depreciate more than the average car during the first few years the car is on the road.

Buying a car with a faster-falling value can help you snag a better price. For a list of cars on which you might get a great deal, check out “The 10 Best Late-Model Used Cars for Your Money.”

Also, consider stopping by Edmunds.com to research auto performance and car values. That way, you’ll have a better sense of which car might be right for you.

If you already know what model you want, Edmunds’ search tool will show you which dealers in your area currently have that model for sale.

Before you shop, educate yourself about the car-buying process. The more you know, the better equipped you will be to find the right car at a great price.

For example, think twice about buying a car that once served as a rental vehicle. As we have noted:

“Rental cars might not have a lot of miles or any obvious damage, but the engine likely has a lot of wear and tear. Ask the dealership or owner if the car you’re considering was ever a rental.”

For more tips, check out “7 Steps to Buying a Reliable Used Car.”

Have you ever driven a car for a decade or longer? Share your story in comments below or on our Facebook page.

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