SANTA MONICA, Calif. — Shoppers age 18 to 24, or Generation Z, buy 6.5 times more used cars than new cars, according to an analysis of Polk vehicle registration data analyzed by While it’s not surprising that college-aged consumers are buying used cars, the pre-owned vehicles they’re buying is.

Through April, Generation Z purchased 181,906 used cars, compared to just 27,670 new cars. And according to the firm’s analysis, the Top 3 vehicles purchased by Generation Z are the Daewoo Lanos, Eagle Talon and Nissan 240.

“Incredible, out of the Top 20 used vehicles with the highest shares of Gen Z buyers this year, only one — the Mitsubishi Lancer — is still slated for ongoing productions,” Edmunds noted.

As for the used-car sweet spot for Gen Z, Edmunds found the group is mostly attracted to 10- to 15-year-old vehicles. In fact, the demographic has purchased twice as many 2001 to 2006 model-year vehicles this year and they have 2016 models.

“For most young car buyers, it’s price first and then everything else is gravy,” said Jessica Caldwell, director of industry analysis for “There’s no doubt that you’re probably getting a good deal these days on an Eagle Talon or a Ford Aspire — both of which ceased production in the ‘90s.

“It’s easy to look at this list and have a good laugh, but the kids buying these vehicles see them almost like a fashion statement,” Caldwell added. “If you drive a Daewoo while all your friends are driving newer Hondas and Toyotas, you kind of stand out from the crowd.”


Vehicles With Largest Share of 18- to 24-Year-Old Registrants

  1. Daewoo Lanos 7%
  2. Eagle Talon 6.2%
  3. Nissan 240 5.5%
  4. Acura Integra 5.1%
  5. Honda Prelude 5%
  6. Mistubishi Lancer 4.7%
  7. Acura RSX 4.7%
  8. Kia Sephia 4.7%
  9. Ford Aspire 4.7%
  10. Daewoo Leganza 4.6%
  11. Saturn Aura 4.6%
  12. Pontiac G6 4.3%
  13. Scion TC 4.3%
  14. Dodge Dart 4.3%
  15. Suzuki Forenza 4.3%
  16. Mitsubishi Galant 4.2%
  17. Pontiac Aztek 4.2%
  18. Dodge Caliber 4.1%
  19. Suzuki Vitara 4.1%
  20. Dodge Neon 4.1%

Originally posted on F&I and Showroom