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VEHICLE OPERATING COSTS

HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO DRIVE?

AAA has published ‘Your Driving Costs’ since 1950. That year, driving a car 10,000 miles per year cost 9 cents per mile, and gasoline sold for 27 cents per gallon. Clearly, that is no longer the case. In 2015 due to declines in gas prices and finance charges, the annual cost to own and operate a vehicle has fallen to $8,698, nearly two percent lower than last year, based on 15,000 miles of annual driving.

AAA’s analysis covers vehicles equipped with standard features and optional equipment including automatic transmission, air conditioning, power steering, antilock brakes and cruise control.

Rising fuel prices are a key factor in this year’s ‘Your Driving Costs’ study. Paying more at the pump is not only increasing the operational costs of vehicles, but it’s also affecting depreciation values. With the growing appeal of more fuel efficient vehicles, small sedans are experiencing less depreciation and are holding their value longer, while there is a rise in depreciation costs of less fuel-efficient vehicles.

Based On 15,000 Miles Small Sedan Medium Sedan Larger Sedan Average Sedan 4WD SUV Minivan
Annual Total Cost $6,579 $8,604 $10,492 $8,558 $10,255 $9,262
Annual Cost Per Mile $0.4386 $0.5736 $0.6994

$0.5705

$0.6837 $0.6175

What you pay for the following contributes to your operating costs:

  • Fuel
  • Maintenance & tires
  • Insurance
  • License, Registration & Taxes
  • Depreciation
  • Finance Charges/Interest
Regular maintenance and monitoring of the following may reduce your costs:
  • Fluids: Including oil, coolant, brake, transmission, power steering fluid & grade of gasoline
  • Air Filter
  • Belts & Hoses
  • Battery
  • Tires
  • Click here to download the 2016 Edition of AAA's Your Driving Costs brochure


Click here to view AAA Mid-Atlantic's: Gas Myth Busters Who You Gonna Call? AAA Mid-Atlantic Debunks Most Cherished Fuel Saving Urban Legends and Myths