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Vehicles Rated Most Likely to Need Repairs the First 12 Months After Buying

Here’s the latest on what vehicle types you can expect to put some money down on for repair costs within the first 12 months of ownership.


But It’s Brand New!

It’s a shock, but unfortunately not an unusual problem for most car owners---that new car or truck you bought less than a year ago is now in the garage for repair.

A recent CARFAX analysis of data from vehicles purchased new covering models from 2015-2019, alerts car-buying customers that just because it is new, does not mean that their vehicle is immune from any problems during the first year of ownership. Crazy it seems---but true.

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According to their report:

No one wants to be left stranded on the side of the road with a broken-down vehicle,” said Travis Lewis, Head of Product at CARFAX. “For years, we’ve helped consumers and dealers understand the repair history for their vehicles. Now, our unique data and capabilities let us take things a step further. We’re providing car shoppers with insights that help them better understand how reliable a car will be in the future.”

What The Data Reveals

While it may sound incredible, full size SUVs have nearly a 25% predicted chance of needing repairs during the first year making it the least reliable in this sense in comparison to all other vehicle types. And, that SUV repair comes at an average estimated cost of $330.

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At the other end of the reliability spectrum, midsize pickups are the least likely to need repairs (11.1%) within the first year of purchase, but it’s the full-size cars (15.4%) that actually have the lowest average repair cost.

Here’s the tabulated data from the study provided by CARFAX below:

-Mid-size Pickups (11.1%)

-Small Cars (12.8%)

-Small SUVs (14.0%)

-Mid-size Cars (15.1%)

-Full-size Cars (15.4%)

-Full-size Pickups (18.0%)

-Luxury Cars (18.4%)

-Sports Cars (20.1%)

-Luxury SUVs (20.2%)

-Minivans (20.3%)

-Full-size SUVs (24.6%)

What This Means To Used Car Buyers

The importance of this information to used car buyers is that since the data covers the years 2015-2019, it provides added information they can used when considering buying some used models. Since this study is a predicted reliability rating, there obviously are vehicles within the same type that will beat the odds.

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In particular, used car shoppers may want to find out the repair history of specific vehicles offered for sale as an indication of whether a “good one” came off the assembly line that had a relatively lower predicted reliability rating when brand new. It’s not an exact measure; however, it does increase the odds of deciding and choosing a good used car.

Related article: What a Used Toyota Engine Rebuild Can Cost

And finally…

For articles about car maintenance, repair, and care be sure to check out these useful articles that discusses transmission problems, changing your transmission fluid and filter, and how to fix a flat tire with the best type of flat tire sealant kit available today.

COMING UP NEXT: Car Lawyer Explains Myths, Scams, and Risks of Buying a Used Car

Timothy Boyer is Torque News automotive reporter based in Cincinnati. Experienced with early car restorations, he regularly restores older vehicles with engine modifications for improved performance. Follow Tim on Twitter at @TimBoyerWrites for daily vehicle news about new and used cars.

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