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Americans Holding onto Their ‘Clunkers’ Longer than Ever Before

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- The U.S. isn’t as car crazy as it once was, judging by falling vehicle sales over the last decade or so.

So what happens when the job picture gets better and home prices start rising again?  Are Americans going to go back to buying a new car every two or three years?

Not according to a survey by the automotive site AutoMD.com, which found that 75 percent of respondents won’t return to their old car-buying ways even if the economy rebounds at some future time.

In the poll of 4,000 consumers, 40 percent said they will keep the car they now have and basically drive it “until it dies.”

And it's not because people want to be frugal; many motorists now believe that vehicles are built better than they used to be and are meant to last longer.  

Six in ten say their primary cars currently have at least 100,000 miles on them and two-thirds of that group say they’ll drive those cars until the odometer hits 150,000 miles or if the car breaks down, whichever comes first.

Asked why they’d hold onto their clunkers past 100,000 miles, 47 percent admitted that the economy was the main factor, while 44 percent say they are sticklers when it comes to repairs and maintenance.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

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