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10 Most Expensive Cars to Maintain, New Data Shows

Prepare for serious sticker shock every time you visit the mechanic with these vehicles.

In terms of the types of big-ticket purchases you can make, it doesn't get much bigger than buying a car. Most drivers shop for vehicles that suit their needs and are within their budget. But no matter how much you're willing to spend upfront, no one likes the idea of throwing down even more cash just to keep your car running. Now, new data shows which cars are the most expensive to maintain—which can be the most important thing when considering your long-term budget.

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For its 2023 Annual Auto Surveys, Consumer Reports asked drivers how much they spent out of pocket annually on repairs and maintenance to keep their vehicles on the road. Expenses could include anything unrelated to collision repairs, such as tires, oil changes, and other upkeep. The results were then compiled to determine how much owners sunk into their cars on average for a decade after buying them.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, some of the vehicles that cost the most upfront wound up costing more in maintenance.

"The difference to maintain a car on average between some brands can be thousands over a 10-year time frame," Steven Elek, program leader for auto data analytics at Consumer Reports, said of the findings. "Also, expensive luxury vehicles are often quite expensive to maintain as well over time."

Trying to find the best ride without having to shell out for years to come? Read on for the most expensive cars to maintain, according to a recently released survey from Consumer Reports.


A close up of cars at a Subaru dealership
jetcityimage / iStock

Total maintenance cost over 10 years: $7,200

Even as a moderately priced non-luxury option, Subaru cars still managed to make it into the top 10. The survey also found that they racked up an average of $1,700 in maintenance costs during their first five years on the road.


A Mini Cooper car parked under a tree

Total maintenance cost over 10 years: $7,625

Minis may draw customers due to their uniquely compact size and stylish design, but they're not the most affordable once they leave the lot. The BMW subsidiary typically costs $1,525 to maintain during the first five years and an additional $6,100 during the second half of the decade.


Acura dealership
Ken Wolter / Shutterstock

Total maintenance cost over 10 years: $7,800

Acuras are known for their performance and style, and some drivers are usually willing to pay a little more to drive one off the lot. However, years down the line, there's still an elevated cost involved: Owners reported an average of $1,800 in maintenance costs during the first five years and $6,000 over the following five, according to Consumer Reports.

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Infiniti QX80 display at a dealership.
jetcityimage / iStock

Total maintenance cost over 10 years: $8,500

Most car buyers expect to pay a little more for a luxury brand like Infiniti, but few realize how much that can wind up costing them in the long run. The first five years of maintenance typically cost $2,150 on top of the sticker price, which is more than all but three other makes on the list. The second half of the first decade of ownership runs about $6,350 on average.


Volvo logo on front grill

Total maintenance cost over 10 years: $9,285

While they're not typically the flashiest cars on the road, Volvos are still luxury vehicles and priced as such on the lot. But if you're planning on taking one home, you can expect to keep paying for quite some time. Data shows that most owners incur $1,785 in maintenance costs in their first five years and an average of $7,500 during the next five years of driving.


bmw 7 series

Total maintenance cost over 10 years: $9,500

BMW is one of the most iconic and recognizable car brands on the road. However, the German luxury vehicles can still rack up a costly bill for owners trying to keep them on the road. Drivers report that there was an average of $1,700 in maintenance charges during the first half-decade of their BMWs' lives and $7,800 during the second.

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New 2021 Audi models at Audi dealership
shaunl / iStock

Total maintenance cost over 10 years: $9,890

Anyone driving an Audi might be expecting to pay more upfront for one of the luxury vehicles, but some hefty bills will follow. Typically, the cars rack up $1,900 in maintenance charges during the first five years and $7,990 over the following five.


Mercedes-Benz cars on a lot

Total maintenance cost over 10 years: $10,525

Mercedes-Benz is arguably one of the most recognizable names in the luxury car world, often seen as a status symbol for those who can afford to pay top dollar for a vehicle. However, along with this comes a long-running price tag to keep them running, clocking in at $2,850 in typical maintenance costs for their first five years and $7,675 for the remainder of the decade.


Close up on logo of porsche car in the rain

Total maintenance cost over 10 years: $14,090

As a leader in the luxury sports car category with iconic models like the Carrera, most drivers expect to pay top dollar for a new Porsche. But perhaps unsurprisingly, they tend to rack up high maintenance costs for the privilege. Drivers report that after spending $4,000 in the first five years, expenses jump significantly for the second five-year window of the cars' lives to an average of $10,090.

Land Rover

A row of Ranger Rovers parked in a Land Rover dealership.

Total maintenance cost over 10 years: $19,250

Whether you're after a Discovery, Defender, or Range Rover, Land Rover models stand out as a top-tier luxury SUV option whose reputation for high sticker prices precedes them. But owners willing to pay plenty upfront might also want to get comfortable with shelling out even more if they plan on owning the car for a decade.

Drivers report spending an average of $4,250 on maintenance costs during their first five years of ownership. During the following five, the amount jumped to an eye-watering $15,000, for a 10-year total of $19,250, per Consumer Reports.

Ultimately, the survey results show that those willing to sacrifice a flashy nameplate on their car's grill might not only be saving money off the bat.

"If you are considering a luxury model, it may be wise to purchase one from a domestic brand that may have lower maintenance and repair costs," Elek said. "For example, over 10 years, Mercedes-Benz models are more than double the cost to maintain and repair as those from Lincoln."

Zachary Mack
Zach is a freelance writer specializing in beer, wine, food, spirits, and travel. He is based in Manhattan. Read more
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