Only twenty years ago, as many as two-thirds of teens under 18 had their driver’s licenses. Today, that number is down to about 50%. In years past, a car had stood as a beacon of freedom for teens, but now it seems more and more are willing to get rides from friends or parents. In the face of these new numbers, the question becomes; is this a shift in the youth culture, or is this indicative of something else?
There is evidence that shows that the case may be that young people just can’t afford cars right now. Car manufacturers are betting that the millennials and young adults will buck the recent trend of living life without a car, but as it stands now, less young people are buy new cars than ever before. As a matter of fact, the average age of a car on the road now is up to 11.4 years: an all time high.
It seems as if there are so many alternatives to owning your own car now, that some people have chosen to go without – almost how people have cut the cable and turned to the internet to watch their TV via services like Netflix, Hulu Plus, and Amazon Prime.
Only time will tell if what we’re seeing today in the under 30 crowd will stick, or if, like their baby boomer parents (who are still the largest car buying group today), they’ll turn to car ownership as they get older.