Most of us didn't have a selection choice for our first vehicle, it was a matter of getting what was handed down to you. Inevitably, in that situation with likely limited resources, we all faced a situation where you had to decide to continue sinking money into a money pit, or finally bite the bullet and splurge on a new car.
Rather than face a similar money pit of a car situation again, Consumer Reports has kindly released a study for 10 Best Cars to Get to 200,000 Miles and Beyond. Let's check out the list was created, and some of the surprises on the list.
How it works
Out of the 740,000 vehicles/owners in Consumer Reports' annual subscriber survey, it collected the 10 cars, SUVs, minivans and pickup trucks that most often exceeded 200,000 miles. Starting from the top, the list is in order by the total number of responses of the specific vehicle having at least that many miles. Consumer Reports also notes that all of the models on this list also happened to be models CR "recommended" when they were new, which means the vehicles initially scored well in road tests.
1. Honda Accord
2. Toyota Camry
3. Honda Odyssey
4. Honda Civic
5. Toyota Prius
6. Toyota Sienna
7. Honda CR-V
8. Toyota Corolla
9. Toyota 4Runner
10. Ford F-150
Now, don't get me wrong, my assumption was that Japanese automakers would dominate this list. But I found it surprising that Toyota and Honda so thoroughly trounced the competition. Only one vehicle from Detroit automakers; and that was Ford Motor Company's (NYSE:F) full-size F-150 truck which is expected to get tons of work-related, vacation-driven miles. Further, even Japanese automaker Nissan could crack into the top 10, or a European luxury automaker that requires you pay a premium for their vehicles.
The skeptic in me wants to point out that it could be a partially flawed statistic. For instance, I've owned a Ford Mustang since I was 24, and I guarantee with the way it gets driven, it won't make it to 200,000 miles – and that's more an indictment of the consumer demographic, rather than the vehicle, to some degree. One could argue the consumer of a Toyota Prius or Honda Odyssey more likely to be responsible and take care of their vehicles for the long-term than an owner of a Mustang or Corvette might be.
Or, one could argue that this list is influenced by the fact those are some of the highest-volume selling vehicles in the U.S. in most years. That simply means there are more opportunities by sheer numbers for these vehicles to have models with 200,000 miles rather than a slower selling vehicle – which could help explain why there are no luxury vehicles on this list. Consider that the Accord, Camry, Civic, CR-V, F-150 and Corolla all rank in the top 11 for year-to-date sales in the U.S. through February.
But I digress, because the skeptic in me isn't giving Japanese-made autos enough credit for their long history of quality vehicles, and this is just another piece of evidence to back that up.