With an estimated 71 Million millennials living in America today, they’re quickly becoming America’s largest generation. Millennials are the trend setters in industries like technology, but the auto industry they don't have the same influence.
QuoteWizard looked ‘under the hood’ of its car insurance quote data to see what cars millennials are driving these days. The data shows that they tend to drive cheaper sedans over the more popular SUV’s and Trucks of their elder generations.
Below are the most popular cars driven by millennials and their 2018 MSRP (Manufacturer Suggested Retail Price):
- Honda Accord - $23,720
- Nissan Altima - $23,900
- Honda Civic - $19,450
- Toyota Camry - $23,945
- Hyundai Sonata - $22,500
- Chevrolet Impala - $28,020
- Ford F-150 - $28,155
- Toyota Corolla - $18,700
- Ford Focus - $17,950
- Jeep Grand Cherokee - $31,945
Millennials Are Driving Cheaper Cars
The average MSRP of the top 10 cars driven by millennials is only $23,829. Out of the top 10 most popular vehicles, eight were small to mid-sized cars. These are typically among the cheaper cars on the road. KBB places small to mid-sized cars in the $20,000 to $25,000 dollar range.
Millennials aren’t following 2018 auto trends. The top five selling cars of 2018 according to Car and Driver are all SUV and Trucks. The SUV and Truck trend of 2018 is putting higher priced cars at the top. 2018's five best selling cars cost an average of $5,310 more than the millennial's top five cars.
Why Are Millennials Driving Cheaper Cars?
Millennials are making more money than ever for the 22 to 37 age group $69,000 a year, according to Pew Research. But they still earn significantly less than their Gen-X and baby boomer counterparts. Earning less money and being buried by debt is a huge factor. Millennials on average carry $36,000 in debt. However, this doesn't paint the entire picture of why millennials prefer cheaper cars.
Urbanization trends show that millennials are happier living in big cities. They're also moving to cities at a higher rate in the last nine years than they did in the 2000’s. Living in urban cities gives millennials more options like public transit, ridesharing services, or the dangerous electric scooter. All these alternative options create less of a need for cars, let alone expensive ones.
The desire to live in urban cities and the high paying jobs at large urban companies, like Amazon cause rental and housing prices to soar. Leading to opposite trends of people leaving the big city for affordable housing. In an effort to keep their high paying city jobs while also living in affordable suburban areas, millennials have helped give rise to the ‘Super Commuter’. A Super Commuter is someone who travels 90 minutes or more to work and is more likely to use public transit.
The living habits of millennials make them less reliant on their personal cars for transportation. Though this reduced necessity isn’t exactly keeping them from driving cars, it certainly seems to keep them from spending more on cars. As more viable transportation becomes more common, millennials are showing they're willing to gravitate towards alternative options rather than spending on cars.
QuoteWizard looked at auto insurance quote data from users of our website. We took data from the most recent year 2018 and filtered for drivers in the millennial age range of 22 to 37 to find the most common vehicles driven by millennials.