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Car Operating Costs Drop Marginally

For immediate release 28 May 2003

Car Operating Costs Drop Marginally

Despite the roller coaster ride of petrol prices over the previous 12 months, overall car operating costs have dipped slightly from those of 2002 by 1%. Decreased depreciation rates, a major factor in costs, were largely caused by the growing strength of the New Zealand dollar. AA Technical Advisor Jim McCutcheon collates the annual car operating cost by tracking 50 models of cars sold new in the New Zealand market-place.

This year the depreciation figure, surveyed over the first five years of car ownership, averaged 14.3% in comparison to last year’s 17.0% in part due to new car prices falling back by 4.3%.

The operating cost reduction was not even across the full range of vehicle sizes however. Cars over 2000cc recorded the greatest fall in operating costs of 4.4%; followed by small cars up to 1300cc dropping by 3.2%. But the overall operating costs of cars in the 1601 to 2000cc category actually increased by 3.1% as did the 1301 to 1600cc group by a slight 1.1%.

Overall, petrol prices had only a negligible effect on car operating costs, while repair and maintenance costs reduced by 2.99%.

The full results of the survey appear in the Winter issue of the Association’s magazine AA Directions.

Note: for business purposes, IRD allows a flat rate of 62c/km for the first 3,000 km.


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