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Published December 04, 2012, 09:29 PM

More older cars are being found on the road

Moorhead, MN (WDAY TV) -- They're not exactly classic cars, but many of the vehicles we drive are getting older. In fact the average age of a car on the road is at an all time high.

Moorhead, MN (WDAY TV) -- They're not exactly classic cars, but many of the vehicles we drive are getting older. In fact the average age of a car on the road is at an all time high.

This 8 year old Nissan is in for a bad wheel bearing. This is a newer vehicle compared to the average age of 11 of the cars on the road in the U.S.

A couple of bays down at Duggan's Garage in Moorhead is slightly older vehicle.

Dan Duggan: "This vehicle here is a 1994 chevy pick up 350 motor in it. So what we are doing is actually replacing some valves in it."

Big jobs like this on older cars are now much more common.

Duggan: "The Repairs that they wouldn't have done 5 years ago or even 3 years ago they're doing today."

And 20% of the cars on the road are like my 94 Saturn here greater than 16 years old. Dave Barth plans on keeping his 1998 Isuzu Hombre on the road.

Barth: "It's getting rust on the other side and I talked to a body shop I'll just keep it running until falls apart."

So why the increase in age, first of all cars today are just made to last longer. Even the new paints and plastics reduce rust on vehicles, and Duggan thinks that the slow economy also comes into play.

Duggan: "A decent new car is just too far out of reach for the middle income people."

And this increase in car age may actually be in part to the cash for clunkers program which was supposed to get old cars off the road.

It took so many off the market and what happens when you do that is that it doesn't allow the person that can't afford the new car to go buy a used one.

All these older cars will give out at some point and US car makers are banking on that to increase sales the next few years.

Barring a serious down turn in the economy car manufacturers are expecting a third straight year of growth next year.

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