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Maintenance Costs for New Cars

Maintenance costs for new cars are becoming more and more significant to think about over the course of time, with vehicles lasting longer and delivering better long term performance for owners. When anyone gets into the market and thinks about buying a new car, the overall cost of ownership and not just the initial purchase price should be considered when you look at which car to buy. A big part of this overall cost of ownership is the maintenance expense for the vehicle, an expense that can vary significantly from car to car.

For drivers whose goal is to buy a car that will last as long as possible, car maintenance costs are even more important. And for those of us who normally trade in after a few years, depreciation also factors in, but even this factor makes maintenance and headliner replacement very important because taking good care of a car figures very prominently into its eventual resale whether it is a few year down the road or several. Also, higher resale values help offset higher maintenance costs while you own the car. So, maintenance costs are an important piece of the puzzle, but must be looked at in a wider context in order to help you choose the right new car to choose to buy.

Average New Car Maintenance Expenses

There are new car maintenance expense studies out there that compare data on different brands and models and show which vehicles have the highest and lowest costs for regularly scheduled maintenance over the course of certain mileage milestones, such as 75,000 or 100,000 miles. If you access these studies, it can be very enlightening to see which makes fare best. The results are not always what we expect, with some lower priced models coming in at the lower end in terms of maintenance cost. When you see something like this, it gives you another reason to consider these cars. Costs can vary by $1,000 or more over the course of a study, depending on the terms of the study.

Maintenance Costs and Car Purchases

However, even the difference of $1,000, for instance spread out over the life of a car might not be enough to make it the most attractive to buy, especially if other factors don’t swing in that car’s favor, such as safety, performance, resale value, fuel economy, and other variables. But maintenance costs are something that probably deserves a little more attention than they get most of the time. Think about the routine of getting the oil changed on your car, for example.

These days, the mileage that we can go in between visits is higher than it used to be; yet this is something we at least need to follow manufacturer’s specifications on in order not to risk damaging the vehicle and costing ourselves more money. Routine maintenance very typically involves a small monetary investment that prevents a very large one sometime down the road. Make sure to follow your owner’s manual for these schedules in order to keep your new car warranty in force as well.

Auto Maintenance and Resale

The other thing to think about is resale when it comes to your car maintenance expenses. The better your car is cared for, the more money you are likely to get back for it when you go to sell it. Maintenance costs for new cars in a lot of ways have to be thought of as investments in these vehicles, both to make them last longer and to keep their value up. Maintenance costs for new cars are important for many reasons.


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