There are hundreds of super high mileage vehicles on British roads that are still in use despite clocking up over three quarts of a million miles, according to official records.
There are currently 5,897 motors with more than 400,000 miles showing, 2,676 vehicles beyond 500,000 miles and even those that have covered 750,000 miles in their time, odometer data provided by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency shows.
These astronomical mileage cars include 35 Vauxhall Astras, 33 Rover 75s, 25 Ford Fiestas and the same amount of Focus hatchbacks.
There are 16 Land Rover Defender still going, too – though it is a van model that has the most 750,000-plus examples still being driven in Britain today.
Three-quarter-of-a-million-mile motors: We reveal the top 10 vehicles with the most examples showing in excess of 750,000 miles on the clock
With the likes of Ford’s Fiesta and Focus, Vauxhall’s Astra and Corsa and VW’s Golf all being volume-selling models in the UK for many years, it’s not a surprise to see these cars among the top 10.
The same can be said about the workhorse Defender, which is commonly retained by farmers due to their ease of repair and unrivaled off-road capability.
However, the 33 cases of Rover 75s suggests Britons have something of a love affair with the family model, which went out of production in 2005.
Another surprise is the number of Audi TTs – 16 – with over three-quarters-of-a-million mile examples still running.
There are some 104 LDV Maxus vans in use on the road with over 750,000 miles clocked up by their drivers
Yet it is a commercial vehicle at the top of the list, with businesses still using 104 LDV Maxus vans that have surpassed 750,000 miles.
To put into perspective just how many miles each of these motors have accumulated, it is the equivalent of driving to the moon and back…then returning again.
All 10 of the vehicles listed below are road legal and still in use today despite going beyond 750,000, with DVSA records based on the latest MOT data provided by testing stations.
Most common vehicles with over 750k miles on the clock
1. LDV Maxus: 104
2. Vauxhall Astra: 35
3. Rover 75: 33
=4. Ford Fiesta: 25
=4. Ford Focus: 25
6. Vauxhall Zafira: 20
7. VW Golf: 19
=8. Audi TT: 16
=8. Land Rover Defender: 16
10. Vauxhall Corsa: 14
Source: DVSA data provided to LeaseLoco, October 2021
The Vauxhall Astra is the car mostly common in use today in Britain with over 750,000 miles covered
Britons are clearly unwilling to depart with their Rover 75s, with 33 examples still being driven despite having more than 750,000 miles on the clock
It’s no surprise that the Ford Fiesta is among the most common cars with over three-quarters-of-a-million miles, being the best-selling motor in Britain for 12 consecutive years
Audi’s sporty TT is one of the surprise inclusions in the list, with 16 examples registered in Britain – and roadworthy – with 750,000 miles covered so far
Land Rover’s agricultural workhorse, the Defender, also makes the list, with 16 models still being driven with 750,000 miles clocked up
The data was provided by the DVSA to motor leasing firm, LeaseLoco, which also requested information and which vehicles remain in use in the UK with above 250,000 miles.
Again, it is vans – like the VW Transporter, Mercedes Vito and Ford Transit – that dominate the list, though the Toyota Prius features second overall with some 3,817 examples on the road with a quarter of a million miles racked up.
Other notable car entries among the host of vans include the VW Passat (2,456), Skoda Octavia (2,109), Mercedes-Benz E-Class (1,805) and Ford’s recently killed-off Mondeo (1,402).
While this is a more modest number of miles on the odometer than the vehicles in the original list, it is suggested that this could be a more common trend as more people look to hold onto their existing cars as we approach 2030 and the ban on sales of new petrol and diesel cars.
Knowing which motors are likely to stand the test of time – and mileage – could also be informative to anyone looking to avoid electric vehicle ownership entirely after the deadline passes, with cars with internal combustion engines likely to be allowed to remain on the road until 2050.
The following table shows the top 10 most common road legal vehicles (makes and models) with more than 250,000 miles on the clock.
Most common vehicles with over 250k miles on the clock
1. VW Transporter: 4,471
2. Toyota Prius: 3,817
3. Mercedes-Benz Vito: 2,949
4. VW Passat: 2,456
5. Ford Transit: 2,251
6. Skoda Octavia: 2,109
7. Mercedes-Benz E-Class: 1,805
8. Peugeot Expert: 1,688
9. Ford Mondeo: 1,402
10. Mercedes-Benz Sprinter: 1,393
Source: DVSA data provided to LeaseLoco, October 2021
John Wilmot, chief executive at LeaseLoco, said that recent events might also inspire others to hold onto their cars for longer.
He says a combination of used car prices rocketing and microchips shortages affecting new car supply could encourage some motorists to retain their existing cars for longer, rather than upgrading.
‘The Government doesn’t want to see the roads clogged up with high mileage, high polluting cars, at a time when it’s trying to encourage people to early switch to greener motoring,’ Wilmot said.
‘But many drivers are reluctant to switch over to electric until they feel more confident in the charging infrastructure.
‘And as we approach 2030, car owners may be less willing to buy new petrol or diesel cars, knowing their value could plummet.
‘We could see a situation where more people stick with what they have, and the number of extremely high mileage cars on our roads escalates.’
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