Vehicle owners are holding onto their vehicles for a longer period, according to data from R.L. Polk and Company. The vehicle retention trends show that owners held onto a new vehicle for 56.3 months in 2008, up from 48.4 months six years earlier. New vehicle owners hold onto vehicles about 15 or 16 months longer than used vehicle owners.

Average Length of Light Vehicle Ownership, 2002-2008
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Supporting Information

Average Length of Light Vehicle Ownership, 2002-2008
YearNew Vehicle BuyersUsed Vehicle BuyersAll Light Vehicle Buyers
Length of Ownership (Months)
200248.431.637.2
200350.233.438.9
200452.035.341.1
200552.937.342.5
200653.638.944.8
200754.940.045.0
200856.341.346.3

Source: Estimated using graph from R.L. Polk and Company, The Changing U.S. Auto Industry Series: Consumer Sentiment During Challenging Times.

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