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Where Do Americans Spend The Least On Cars? You'll Be Surprised Page 2

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There are some exceptions that defy explanation. Those in the New England states of New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont spend disproportionately more on vehicle-related costs that Massachusetts or other Northeastern states (perhaps a lack of larger cities and mass transit options?), while those in Wisconsin and Connecticut shovel out higher-than-average amounts on their vehicles.

One surprise: Couples who don't have children spent 21.5 percent more on gas and getting around than those with children. But it wasn't at all surprising that those 18 to 25 put the most—18 percent—of their spending into auto expenses and gas.

Lower income, lower car spending

Overall, the raw numbers are predictable: the less you make, the less you're likely to spend on auto-related expenses. Two states that are particularly low in average income, West Virginia and Mississippi, ranked low on automotive spending.

Digging deeper, there might be more of a story when matching those numbers up to income. Earlier this spring, that point was also made by a Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) analysis, which crunched the numbers to show that some regions of the country are more vulnerable to others if gasoline prices were to spike. Despite Mississippi's low spending on auto expenses, it would be the most hurt by a price hike, the NRDC predicted, because of its low income levels and low rate of personal income growth.

Bundle's data covers most aspects of auto ownership, but it doesn't cover auto insurance—something that's likely to be a lot more expensive in, say, Manhattan.

To see 50-state rankings on household gasoline and automotive-related spending, along with the methodology, more detail, and the above infographic up close, see Bundle's complete listing.

[Bundle]


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Comments (6)
  1. As my dad used to say, your car is the second most expensive purchase behind a house. That is still true. It is hard to find a good group with whom to carpool although it is certainly a way to save.
     
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  2. Nice comparisons. I would really love to see an in-depth comparison to someone who commutes mostly by public transportation or other means (bike, feet, etc). I certainly save on gas, maintenance, and insurance by not owning a car ($0/year), but how does a car driver in my area compare with my other costs: cabs, buses, bike tires, gas for friends?
     
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  3. Interesting browsing through that infographic. A lot of the cities that pride themselves in being so eco-friendly (Austin?) are spending just as much on cars and driving as the rest of us.
     
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  4. Interesting stuff! I wonder if green cars are a factor on this level at this point ?
     
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  5. Austin talks a good talk but the walk is very short. I'm wondering what area the survey takes in as it's 40 miles to Austin from here and is a required drive to shop anyplace besides WalMart or for serious medical treatment so a simple trip to Austin is generally a 100 mile round trip when you add in the running around while in the city's area.
     
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  6. Bengt, I have to say I AM surprised. Thanks for the info!
     
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