The Top 20 Longest-Lasting Vehicles List Probably Won’t Surprise You…Except For This One

Surprise, surprise — people drive the crap out of their full-size SUVs

(Images: Chevrolet)

The vehicles most likely to last 200,000 miles or longer are the usual suspects…although one does surprise me.

Even with some of the pressure waning just a little bit, buying a new car still sucks, for the most part. It’s expensive if you can find what you want at all, so it makes sense to hold onto your purchase for awhile if you do decide to pull the trigger right now. To that end, researchers over at iSeeCars published a new study on the longest-lasting vehicles on the road. The general consensus is that a new car or truck today will last (with regular maintenance) about 200,000 miles.

Looking at over 2 million vehicles, this study indeed confirms what you probably suspect: Toyota absolutely dominates the list. Of the top 20 entries, the Japanese automaker comprises half of all models in the running. To qualify in this study at all, each model had to be in produced and sold for at least 10 of the past 20 model years. Of those in the top 20 on the list, 2.5% clocked at least 200,000 miles, while the top 1% had between 230,000 and 297,000 miles on the odometer.

“What we see is a list of highly-durable vehicles, capable of more than a quarter-million miles of use if properly maintained,” says iSeeCars executive analyst Karl Brauer. “And to be clear, this study isn’t reporting the maximum lifespan of these vehicles. This is simply a measure of current odometer readings. Most of these cars are still in use and going strong.”

Just a personal anecdote to share here: Someone I know with a GMC Yukon (placed 14th on the list, with an average odometer reading of 238,956 miles) clocked up at least 419,000 miles and it was still ticking. I’m certainly not alone in knowing someone with a GM SUV carrying insanely high mileage.

Top 20 Longest-Lasting Cars (and Trucks):

RankModelLifespan (among top 1% over 200K miles)
20Toyota Camry Hybrid230,547
19Ford F-150232,650
18Nissan Titan233,295
17Toyota Tacoma235,070
16Honda Odyssey235,852
15Honda Pilot236,807
14GMC Yukon238,956
13Toyota Sienna239,607
12Toyota 4Runner244,665
11Ford Expedition244,682
10Toyota Highlander Hybrid244,994
9Toyota Avalon245,710
8Honda Ridgeline248,669
7Chevrolet Tahoe250,338
6Toyota Prius250,601
5GMC Yukon XL252,360
4Toyota Tundra256,022
3Chevrolet Suburban265,732
2Toyota Land Cruiser280,236
1Toyota Sequoia296,509

The surprising entry is…

You can make your way through the iSeeCars study and intuit why each model made it on the list. We’re looking at trucks, full-size SUVs and family haulers that comprise most of the top ranks. Beyond those, cars like the Toyota Camry often land in rental fleets (and have efficient, high-mpg hybrid models). For those who want to regularly hit 50+ mpg, it’s tough to ignore the Toyota Prius.

That said, the one vehicle on this list that did surprise me is the Honda Ridgeline:

Honda Ridgeline with HPD package - top 20 longest-lasting vehicles

Sure, other Hondas made it into the top 20 as well, but you sort of expect those. The Pilot and Odyssey take on family-hauling duty from Seattle to Miami and everywhere in between, often embarking on long road trips. It is a bit strange, though, that it beat out not just every other Honda, but most trucks period, apart from the Toyota Tundra. Even the Tacoma — the sales king and midsize truck you would expect to dominate the segment on lifespan — didn’t beat out the Ridgeline, according to iSeeCars‘ data.

Of course, as Brauer pointed out, this study does not say that a Tacoma is unable to reach 250,000 miles and beyond. Really, that comes down to the individual vehicle and how much the owner wants to invest in its upkeep once it’s effectively driven from the Earth to the moon in terms of distance. Plenty of high-mileage Tacos are kicking around out there. Land Cruisers and Sequoias? Yeah, it’s easy to find examples of those well into the 200K-mile club and beyond.

Still, this study does show what sort of chosen chariots people tend to stick with for the long haul. If you want an idea of what vehicles will make the grade if you’re looking to run 200,000 miles or more, this study should put you on the right track.