Owning a car in Toronto can cost you over $1,600

Living costs in Toronto are rising dramatically, affecting various aspects of daily life, including grocery shopping, renting, and now, even car ownership. A recent analysis by financial planning platform Hardbacon reveals that the average cost of owning a car in Toronto has surged by 52% since 2019, reaching $1,623 per month in 2024. This increase is attributed to several factors such as higher prices for new cars, rising insurance fees, fuel costs, maintenance expenses, and parking fines.

Notably, the study highlights a significant spike in the cost of new cars, which has risen from an average of $38,690 in 2019 to $68,574 in 2024. Additionally, Toronto drivers face doubled fines for parking violations, with penalties for no-parking zones increasing from $30 to $75 last year. Annual insurance fees are projected to average $2,428 in 2024, with gas prices expected to rise further.

Interest payments on new cars contribute substantially to overall ownership costs, making up 16% of the total in 2024. The study estimates that purchasers of new cars in 2024 will spend a total of $140,408 over seven years, factoring in the purchase price and associated expenses adjusted for inflation.

Julien Brault, CEO of Hardbacon, emphasizes the need to consider all expenses related to owning a vehicle, not just the purchase price. The study compares the cost of car ownership to alternative transportation methods like the TTC and rideshare services. It finds that using Uber or Lyft for two round trips per week at an average distance of 16km would cost significantly less than owning a car. Combining a TTC monthly pass with rideshares for similar distances and routes would cost around $474 per month using Uber and $437 using Lyft, approximately one-quarter of the monthly price of car ownership.

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