Sedan Depreciation Skyrockets As Buyers Flock To Crossovers

The carpocalypse is upon us as automakers are increasingly looking to trim their sedan lineup while adding more crossovers.

It appears the crossover trend is also causing some other consequences as AAA’s 2018 Your Driving Costs study has revealed America’s love affair with crossovers is causing cars to depreciate at faster rates. In the past year alone, the group says depreciation costs for sedans have climbed 13 percent.

The study isn’t all bad news for cars as AAA noted 20 percent of American consumers want their next vehicle to have either a hybrid of electric powertrain. The increased appeal of eco-friendly vehicles means their depreciation rates have decreased and this is backed up by a recent study which found all five of the fastest-selling late model used vehicles are hybrid or electric. They include the Toyota Prius C, Tesla Model S, BMW i3, Toyota Prius and Chevrolet Volt.

Overall, AAA says depreciation accounts for almost 40 percent of the “cost” of owning a new vehicle. The amount of depreciation varies by model, but it is typically more than $3,000 (£2,296 / €2,580) per year.

As for the cost of owning a new vehicle in 2018? AAA suggests that drivers will spend an average of $8,849 (£6,773 / €7,609) a year if they drive 15,000 miles (24,140 km) annually. This figure was calculated by factoring in maintenance, repairs, insurance, license/registration/taxes, depreciation, loan interest and fuel costs for the top selling 45 vehicles in the United States.

While sedans are getting hit hard by depreciation, small sedans were the most affordable vehicles to own as they have an average annual cost of $6,777 (£5,188 / €5,828). Hybrids and small crossovers weren’t far behind as they had annual costs of $7,485 (£5,730 / €6,436) and $7,869 (£6,024 / €6,767), respectively.

As for the most expensive vehicles, they were pickups which cost owners around $10,215 (£7,820 / €8,784) per year. They narrowly beat out large sedans which cost around $9,804 (£7,505 / €6,455) annually.

  • Bill Nguyen


  • Jason Miller

    I love my sedan. It’s not going anywhere.

    • Six Thousand Times

      I dunno, maybe you ought to drive it.

  • SpongeBob99Swell

    The new upcoming RAV4 seems like the only Crossover on the road with some personality, in my book.

    Regardless, I still miss when Body-On-Frame SUVs were still around, while sedans just become the more popular and popular…

  • Craig

    Great news for people like ME who love SEDANS!

    • MultiKdizzle

      Well it’s only good news in the short-term. The endgame is that manufacturers will react by developing less of the sedan bodystyle, which in turn will raise prices down the line.

      • Craig

        Maybe. But I doubt that will have much impact on the value of a USED sedan. THAT SAID…. I actually don’t think the CUV and SUV will be popular forever. Eventually the sedan will become the cool ‘thing’ to own.

  • charlotteharry57

    Pretty soon, if this nonsense continues, everyone will be driving ugly boxes, and not by choice. Millenials and Gen Zers apparently want nothing to do with SUVs/CUVs and lean toward sedans. Go Ms/GenZers!

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