When properly maintained, well-built cars can last an impressive amount of miles.
Consider this 2006 Honda Civic, which hit one million miles on its original engine and transmission. Amusingly, the car’s odometer maxes out at 999,999 miles.
While that case may be an extreme outlier, most modern cars are expected to last 200,000 miles before experiencing some significant failure. That’s roughly double the lifespan of cars from the 1960s and 1970s, which typically lasted about 100,000 miles.
Study Methodology & Data
To come up with their rankings, iSeeCars analyzed over 2 million used cars between January and October 2022. The rankings are based on the mileage that the top 1% of cars within each model obtained. Models with less than 10 years of production, such as the Tesla Model 3, were excluded.
The following tables show an expanded list of the longest lasting cars, by model category. Our infographic only includes the top five from each.
Sedans & Hatchbacks
The only non-Japanese model in the top 10 is the Chevrolet Impala, which is one of the most commonly found rental cars in the U.S.
Another interesting takeaway is that Lexus is the only luxury brand in this list. This is likely due to the fact that Lexus and Toyota often share drivetrain components.
iSeeCars has a larger top 20 list for the SUV category.
This is a more diverse list, with American and Japanese models seemingly on par. The GM family of SUVs (Tahoe, Suburban, Yukon, and Yukon XL) are narrowly edged out by Toyota’s full size options (Sequoia and Land Cruiser).
The Land Cruiser was discontinued in the U.S. for 2021, but it remains a very popular model in Middle Eastern countries like Bahrain, Qatar, and the UAE.
Once again, Japanese manufacturers hold the top spots. According to Toyota, the Tundra is the only full-size pickup that is currently being built in Texas.
Despite their marginally higher potential lifespans, sales of Japanese trucks come nowhere close to their American counterparts.
The last category is EVs, which due to the 10 years of production requirement, only includes the Tesla Model S (133,998 miles) and Nissan LEAF (98,081).
These figures are much lower than the gasoline cars discussed above, but it’s not exactly a fair comparison. We probably won’t be able to judge the long-term reliability of EVs until they’ve been around for at least another decade.
In addition to needing more time, another reason is scale—the Model S and LEAF have been sold in relatively limited numbers. The Tesla Model 3, which is the first EV to sell over one million units, will likely become the first reliable benchmark.