Mar 18, 2020

Question of the Day [Updated]: What's the average monthly payment for a new car purchased in 2019?

Answer: $554


  • When do you expect to buy your first car?
  • Will you buy new or used? Explain your answer.
  • Do you think that $554/month for a car payment is reasonable? Why or why not?
  • What is the trend in monthly payments for new cars over the last five years?

Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom.

Behind the numbers (Credit Karma): 

Recent data indicates that new-car prices have gone up — by 2.3% from March 2018 to March 2019, according to Kelley Blue Book. Other data from Experian shows monthly car payments overall have risen, too.

As you can see in the chart below, which is based on Experian data, car payment costs were up in the first quarter of 2019 compared to the first quarter of 2018 across both new and used vehicles. That includes cars that were financed with a loan or leased.


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 NEW! Math: Auto and Mortgage Monthly Payments activity is a perfect extension after this Question of the Day. 

About the Author

Tim Ranzetta

Tim's saving habits started at seven when a neighbor with a broken hip gave him a dog walking job. Her recovery, which took almost a year, resulted in Tim getting to know the bank tellers quite well (and accumulating a savings account balance of over $300!). His recent entrepreneurial adventures have included driving a shredding truck, analyzing executive compensation packages for Fortune 500 companies and helping families make better college financing decisions. After volunteering in 2010 to create and teach a personal finance program at Eastside College Prep in East Palo Alto, Tim saw firsthand the impact of an engaging and activity-based curriculum, which inspired him to start a new non-profit, Next Gen Personal Finance.

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