SCHAUMBURG, Ill. (June 27, 2012) — The number of light-duty vehicles seven years old or older registered in the U.S. grew by 17.3 million in the past three years, according to an analysis of available data by Experian Automotive .
The growth in older vehicles pushed the number of such vehicles on the road to more than 175 million, or roughly 71 percent of the 245 million light-duty vehicles registered, Experian said, and raised the average age of a vehicle in the U.S. 1.9 percent to 11 years. By contrast, the average vehicle age in Canada is 9.6 years.
“An increase of later-model vehicles on the road is a positive sign for the industry because it creates growth opportunities in the important aftermarket sector,” said Jeffrey Anderson, director of consulting and analytics for Experian Automotive.
“With lower scrappage rates, historically large sales of older-model vehicles and an increase in incentives for maintaining vehicle ownership, aftermarket part manufacturers and retailers will see an influx of shoppers looking to extend the life of their vehicle.”
The findings are part of Experian's Q1 2012 Vehicles in Operation market analysis.
Other findings from the analysis show that light trucks made up 50.8 percent of the U.S. car parc in the first quarter, and hybrid/electric vehicles make up just 0.9 percent.
Full-sized pickups make up the greatest percentage of vehicles in operation at 14.6 percent overall, Experian said, with vehicles from General Motors Co., Ford Motor Co., Chrysler Group L.L.C. and Toyota Motor Co. making up 98.7 percent of the total.
In Canada, cars make up the majority of vehicles registered, 53.2 percent, Experian said.
Experian Automotive is part of Experian P.L.C. of Dublin, Ireland, a global information services company.