New Data

Study: 69 million breakdowns have $41 billion economic impact each year in the U.S.

Each year there are 69 million vehicle breakdown events in the U.S. alone.

Photo by Getty Images

Has your car ever broken down? You are not alone. Agero, one of largest providers of driver assistance software and services, has announced the findings of a recent study that showed that there are 69 million breakdowns each year in the U.S. alone. That's the equivalent to one in every three drivers.

Altogether, those breakdowns have a $41 billion impact on the economy. Aergo asked a number of questions as it analyzed the gathered data including:

  • Besides the roadside and tow operator service costs, what is the financial impact of all the time that drivers spend dealing with their car when they were planning on being at work or picking up their children from school?
  • What about the time other drivers lose when they are sitting in traffic behind a stuck car?
  • How much does it cost to repair the car, or buy a new tire or battery once the car is off the road?
  • When hundreds of service providers and drivers are injured or killed on the side of the road after breakdowns, what is the cost to our society of the medical bills and the loss of life?

Here is what they learned.

The cost of breakdowns in the U.S. is more than the combined salaries of every household in Miami, Orlando, New Orleans, and St. Louis, combined, according to U.S. Census Bureau data. It averages about $315 per American household, which is the equivalent of the GDP of Bolivia, as calculated by the International Monetary Fund.

The annual cost of roadside assistance is $7 billion. Forty-one tow company workers were killed on the job in 2017 and 980 were injured according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics.

tow truck operator Ford Escape Nearly 1,000 tow truck drivers were injured on the job in 2017. Photo by Getty Images

What do breakdowns mean for U.S. businesses? There are 30 million lost workdays each year due to breakdowns alone, which results in a $9 billion impact to drivers and businesses.

Each year, 150 million people spend 120 million hours sitting in traffic jams caused by breakdowns.

The human cost of a breakdown is startling, and yet another reason for drivers to give plenty of clearance space when they approach a breakdown on the road. More than 700 drivers are killed per year while trying to resolve a breakdown according to numbers from the Governors Highway Safety Association, Center for Advancing Transportation Leadership and Safety, and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The economic of those injuries and fatalities is $8 billion.

Americans pay $15 million in repair costs annually from breakdowns.

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The Hyundai Venue is new to the U.S. for the 2020 model year.

Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor America

If you thought it didn't get any smaller than the subcompact Hyundai Kona, you were wrong. Hyundai's new, smaller SUV, the 2020 Hyundai Venue, has made its way to the U.S. market. Here's a quick look at everything you need to know.

Hyundai developed the model to be budget-friendly.

Research indicated that people often pass up buying new cars because they are too expensive, but then they miss out on the latest safety and infotainment tech. Hyundai wanted to create a vehicle that would cost as much as a used car but have all new equipment.

2020 Hyundai Venue The backside of the Venue reveals a wide opening trunk.Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor America

The Venue comes in three trim levels.

Buyers get to choose between the base SE, SEL, or top-tier Denim model. All the models come with the same engine but the base model has a six-speed manual transmission as opposed to the Venue SEL and Denim's intelligent variable transmission. SEL and Denim models of the front-wheel drive SUV have three drive modes: normal, sport, and snow.

The Nissan Kicks isn't very quick. What is the engine like in the Venue?

The Venue is powered by a 1.6-liter four-cylinder. It's peppier than the Kicks but nothing too exciting. Still, you'll feel like you have plenty of power at speed.

2020 Hyundai Venue The interior of the Venue features a standard 8-inch infotainment screen.Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor America

Hyundai has loaded the Venue with a solid list of safety features.

Standard and available safety features include:

  • Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist (FCA) uses the car's front-facing camera to help detect an imminent collision and avoid impact or minimize damage by braking
  • Lane Keeping Assist (LKA) helps prevent accidental lane departure by sensing road markings automatically steering the car if necessary.
  • Blind-Spot Collision Warning (BCW) helps detect approaching vehicles that may be obscured from view during highway
  • Driver Attention Warning (DAW) system monitors a spectrum of driver-related characteristics to help detect driver fatigue or careless
  • Rear Collision Cross-Traffic Warning (RCCW) helps detect when a vehicle may have entered a car's rearward path providing a driver

It's supposed to cost as much as a used car. What's the MSRP?

Hyundai sells the Venue SE for $17,350. The SEL is $19,250 and the Venue Denim is $22,050. That MSRP does not include the destination charge. Remember, most dealers are willing to negotiate on prices.

So it's a cheap car. Does it look cheap inside?

The short answer is no. The Venue Denim has nicer appointments than many mid-grade trucks on the market that cost a fair amount more. The designer of the HVAC system controls should be proud that they're both easy to use and attractive while looking like little else currently on the market.

The seats are comfortable.

Most low-cost SUVs and cars have seats that aren't comfortable for any length of time. The Venue is the exception to this rule.

When does it go on sale.

The Hyundai Venue is currently for sale at dealerships nationwide.

This refreshed Model A hot rod was sold at the Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale Auction.

Photo courtesy of Barrett-Jackson

Wayne Carini is the modern don of the classic car world. Beloved by fans young and old for his laid back but passionate approach to collecting vintage vehicles, the man from Portland, Connecticut has made a fair sum of money bringing the vehicles he finds to auctions across the country. Sometimes the results are as expected. Sometimes better. Sometimes worse. As "Chasing Classic Cars" viewers see, that's all part of the thrill.

Carini's latest classic car sale was at the Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale Auction this year. The 1930 Ford Model A custom coupe sold for $302,500. That's not bad considering that the original Model A sold from 1927-1931 for $385 to $1,400.

Wayne Carini's 1930 Ford Model A custom coupe

Photo courtesy of Barrett-Jackson


In addition to his usual restoration efforts, this model was custom designed for Carini by a talented cast of automotive professionals. It was built by Andy Leach of Cal Automotive Creations who has also built vehicles for Ron Cizek, Howard and Susan Groff, and Rich and Cindy Gochanour.

Charley Hutton, a frequent guest on "Overhaulin'" and "Chasing Classic Cars", and owner of Charley Hutton's Color Studio painted the car.

The hot rod is powered by a V8 engine paired with an automatic transmission.

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